For as long as I can remember, I have lived with depression. I have spent years hating myself and wishing I was dead. I have lived in a constant state of depression and hopelessness. I have been full of self doubt, and negative talk. I am my own worst enemy, constantly putting myself down, not taking care of myself, choosing to believe those negative thoughts swirling round in my mind.
I've been waiting for some miracle cure, a magic spell to rid me of these feelings. I have hoped that someone, anyone would come along and make everything OK. I haven't allowed myself to work through the reasons behind these feelings. I haven't allowed them to be important. Instead, I've created the truth in my head that these things have happened because I'm depressed, because I'm a bad person, because I deserved them. I'm slowly starting to accept that that isn't the truth. That I am depressed because of the things that have happened in my life.And that to rid myself of the depression then I have to acknowledge their importance.. and confront them face on so that I can put them to rest.
When we are born, happiness is an innate quality that we possess. Unfortunately, as we grow and are exposed to negativity, violence, suffering and sadness, the happiness that once we took for granted leaves us. Happiness is a skill that we have to practice, to work on. It won't just reappear, we have to actively seek it out and invite it back into our lives.
- Letting go of depression
It's easy to get stuck in a pattern of behaviours, feelings and emotions. To some extent, we make the decision to be depressed. Safe in what we have always known, we hold on to our depression, afraid to make the changes necessary to move on.
Have you wondered why people who complain, all of the time, about how bad everything in their life is, yet make no effort to change things? They are thriving on their self-pity, and inviting others to reaffirm it to them.
I've been doing lots of thinking lately, and have started being truthful with myself. One of my biggest obstacles to being happy is myself. I have grown comfortable with my depression, it's almost like a safety net, a get out clause for me.... oh I can't do that I'm too depressed... It is the only way I have ever known how to be. I'm afraid of happiness, because it's unfamiliar to me.
- Removing Negativity and Introducing Positivity
Whilst cutting out negativity from your life, it's also important to surround yourself with positivity, be it images, people or what you are reading. Positivity creates more positivity.
There are times when I can feel myself slipping back into negativity and depression. In the past I would allow those feelings to overwhelm me, to give in entirely to them. But now I am learning how to stamp them out, by listening to uplifting music, or reading books/articles online that encourage positive thinking, by painting/crafting, by reaching out to a friend.... things that make me feel good.
- Confront your demons
The old self will fight and scream and kick to be allowed to keep on living... you have to fight back and not give in to it. Let it go.
- Allow yourself to be alone
Allow myself time alone, time to write or paint or think or just be. Become aware of yourself, of who you really are, what you think, what you feel. Turn your self-pity into compassion, and then into love. Love for yourself, and love for living. Seperating the lies from the truth, and becoming aware of just how powerful you can be.
- Know you are loved
You are loved. Life is short. Don't waste time worrying over what may be, or what has been. You can't change the past, but by accepting it and letting yourself move on, you can change your future.