I recently did a podcast interview with Jeannette Bridoux, where we uncovered some misconceptions around depression.
Both Jeanette and myself have suffered with depression on and off; and it was important that we shed some light on this very important subject.
Depression can show up in different ways, for different people. One of the best things you can do for yourself is be aware of how it shows up for you.
Do you start sleeping more?
Do you start to isolate yourself from friend, family or work functions?
Do you find yourself having emotional breakdowns, more than the usual hiccups we incur in life?
Do you start eating more or less?
Do you start hearing more negative thoughts in your mind that usual?
Being aware of how depression shows up, means we can see the signs earlier so we can start to prepare for the feelings, emotions, and thoughts that will come.
One of the misconceptions Jeannette highlighted during our interview was that depression doesn’t come once and go way. If you have never struggled with depression, this might be strange to hear. And if you are experiencing depression for the first time, Jeannette also offered some words of solace. “The first time you experience depression, the intensity will lessen over time.”
It can be bewildering to experience it for the first time. This is why it is paramount to try your very best to recognize it when it returns and have a game plan for how to get through it.
Getting through a bout of depression is key. We can move through it, not push it away or run away from it. We can face it, straight on with bravery and trust that we will get to the other side.
In the past, when I could feel depression returning, I had a “break the glass” plan. I made sure I doing my morning meditation, especially the Divine Light Meditation. I made sure that I talked to someone (a therapist, my inner circle). I didn’t judge myself for what I was feeling. I just asked it to show me what was making me hurt. I prayed, a lot. Asking for Divine support too. I also made a point to get out of my head, if I found my mind was circling one depressive thought. I literally, would go out and ground myself my putting my feet in the grass, or taking a hot shower and doing breathing meditations. To help me move out from my mind and back into reality—which was usually uneventful and doing just fine.
Depression is not something anyone should ever be ashamed of.
There are a lot of people in this world suffering with depression, with no one to lean on or talk to about it for fear of feeling weak, judged or exposed. We must do our best as a culture to support each other in the bad times too. By acknowledging they exist for us and holding space for those in our biospheres who need help.
I am also a huge proponent of professional help.
Therapists spend a great deal of time in school and continuing education to ensure they have the correct tools and words to help us through the different seasons of our lives. We can lean on these confidential angels. Most therapy offices offer sliding scales, so you can pay according to your income level. There is also new online therapy like “Talk Space.” Where you can reach a therapist at any time for a small fee. If all that doesn’t work, there are free hotlines and most employers are required to have EAP services that are free and confidential to you, so you can get the support you need if you are in an emotional and mental crisis.
I am with you sweet souls. Trying my very best to give you the tools you may need. You are not alone and you are loved. You got this and be gentle with yourself if you feel yourself slipping into depression.
Love + Light
Photo Credit: Anastasia Vityukov