And so I enter this Holiday season with a window in my 12-year-old car that doesn’t roll down (important when you live in Florida), a broken sprinkler system (also important when you live in Florida), a pool that has a serious leak, a roof that needs to be replaced and a credit card that is bumping up against its limit.
Am I going to let these first-world problems ruin my holidays? Heck yea. And therein lies the problem: I’m going to LET my little list of, seriously, not to serious problems ruin my holidays. They won’t ruin the entire holiday season, just as much as I allow. I often forget that I control the problems, not the other way around.
I learned after coming out of my last depression that there is a physiological explanation for why people with depression cop to the negative. It’s how are brains are wired. It’s a form of selective memory that feeds our depression. It’s why I tend to focus on the bad aspects of my childhood and have totally forgotten many of the good. Thank God I have my sister and a childhood friend who remind me of the good times.
I have found that the key to managing my depression is as much about taking my meds, getting enough sleep and exercise as it is about controlling my thoughts. I must be mindful of when my thoughts stray to the negative. If I don’t reign them in, they trigger an avalanche of negativity. My pants are tight. My dog smells. I should have a nicer car. I should have a bigger, better house. I should be making more money. I should save more. I’m such a loser. I should returned that phone call. I’m not a very good friend and I’m a lousy sister and aunt.
Next thing I know I’m singing “Nobody likes me. Everybody hates me. Think I’ll go eat worms.”
After studying this phenomenon, I have come to the conclusion that when my thoughts begin spinning out of control it’s because I’m either dwelling on the past or …