Hello, my name is depression. You know me by many different names, including dysthymic disorder, bipolar disorder, major depression and so forth. I am an insidious in nature, sneaking up on you when you least expect it.
If left unchecked, I grow in power and have the ability to bring you to your knees. I can lie to you, twist your thoughts and make you disconnect from everyone you care about. When I am super strong, I can even make you take your life.
What you may not know however, is that I am vulnerable to 10 specific things that weaken my intensity. If you engage in any one of these, you chip away at my strength. When you combine several together however, you cause me to lose my grip and become smaller.
I shouldn’t be telling you this information – but I am going to do it anyway.
Are you ready? Let’s jump right in!
10 Things Depression Doesn’t Want You To Know
1. Circle of support
When you call upon your circle of support, like friends and family members, I start to cower. Reaching out to others means you are not isolating. This in turn makes my presence weaker.
2. Talk Therapy
When you visit your therapist to engage in talk-therapy, particularly cognitive behavioral therapy to address your sadness, you cause me to lose my reign of terror. Choosing to bravely work through your feelings is one of the things I fear most!
3. Physical Activity
When you embark on an exercise program like strength training or involve yourself with other forms of physical activity, you prevent me from taking a hold of your body and mind. One of the things that repels me from you is your commitment to self-care, particularly during stressful times.
Because you engage in mindfulness based living, I don’t have the ability to sneak into your mind and make you ruminate about the past. Mindfulness robs me of my most powerful weapons; guilt, shame and fear!
When you embrace the various parts of your life, including my presence, you paradoxically make me smaller. That which you fear controls you but that which you confront, you begin to control. I can’t tell you how much it upsets me when you do this!
When you make the conscious choice to have a happy day, you seriously mess with my plans to wreak havoc upon you. Simply put, when you decide to choose how your day will be, I start to melt away like snow in the sun.
Oh how I despise it when you laugh! Any time you seek out forms of humor therapy or engage in things that are fun, I start to shake in my boots! Watching a funny movie or making light of something serious really gets under my skin.
8. Healthy Diet
I love it when you stress eat and gobble down food that causes my powers to grow! On the flipside, I absolutely hate it when you choose to eat healthy meals that cause me to lose my grip. Making the deliberate choice to care about what you put into your body sends me running for the hills!
When you consult with your doctor and decide to use anti-depressant medications, I get really freaked out. I don’t like it when you become educated on the different types of anti-depressants. I get really scared too when you ask your physician questions about potential side effects. All of this means you are actively doing things to drive me out of your life.
10. Patterns of time
When you recognize that I often visit you on a seasonal basis, particularly during wintertime, you start become empowered with knowledge. I particularly despise it when you are aware that I am a temporary presence in your life. Oh how I hate it when you say to yourself: this too will pass. Your ability to rationally look at who I am and my patterns really dis-empowers me.
There are lots of other things that you can do to repel me away but I have said far too much already. And hey baby – what you choose to do with this information is up to you.
Remember this – I’m always here – lurking in the darkness and waiting to attack. I generally give you warning signs before I kick in to full gear. Oh yeah – it bothers me that you know this too!