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How to Combat the Summer Funk

raindrops-2-1548562I know what it’s like to get stuck in a funk. For normal people a funk can be anything from a feeling of stagnancy to a mild depression where the thought of routine creates a sense of ennui.

As a person with schizophrenia a funk looks a little different. It’s the same feeling of ennui but it can be compounded by the acute symptoms of delusions and paranoia or any low level psychosis.

This stuff never really goes away even with meds and there comes a point every few months or every year where the symptoms mixed with the ennui create a kind of rainy day period.

I’ve been there and I’ve been feeling that funk for the last couple of weeks. It’s manifested itself as more of a depression than anything else and while the symptoms are there, the depression is the worst part.

On a given beautiful sunny day you can feel like you don’t want to get off the couch or get out of bed but you know you should. You just can’t.

The thing is, when these funks appear it may be time to do something about it.

I realize that the idea of doing something is just as hard as dealing with it but it gets to a point where you’re so fed up with it that you will do anything to feel better. That’s usually my catalyst for change anyway.

The solution I made for myself involved eating better, starting to take a multivitamin and getting in some exercise when I can. I still don’t have the energy to walk everyday especially not in the hot sun but I’ve been drinking smoothies with plenty of fruits and vegetables and those, amazingly give me a little boost of energy and make me feel a bit better about my penchant for smoking cigarettes and eating carbohydrates.

There’s always the behavioral methods too, like meditating or doing yoga or positive self talk but those things seem so temporary and don’t always work great.

Sometimes a change in scenery is a good thing too. For the last year and a half I’ve been coming to the same coffee shop and just recently I decided to switch it up and see what else is out there. There’s something about feeling anonymous, a breeding ground for possibility maybe that makes you feel a bit better about things.

Now I know these things are all a little superfluous and nothing really hits the spot perfectly just like you hope it would but little by little these small changes can impact you and eventually make you feel a bit better about things.

The most important thing to remember is that the feeling will pass, it always does. That’s the thing about life, you go through waves, hills and valleys and what’s affecting you right now might not be affecting you so strongly if you give it a little time and just try to feel a little better in the present.

Dealing with funks are hard and they come all to frequently when you’re also dealing with a major mental illness. If you’re at your wit’s end though, and you know something has to change, give it a try and with enough time you’ll feel better.

That’s the way it goes.

How to Combat the Summer Funk


Michael Hedrick

Michael Hedrick is a writer and photographer who has lived with schizophrenia since he was 20. His work has been featured in Salon, The Week, Scientific American and The New York Times. You can purchase his book 'Connections' here or Follow his blog on Living with Schizophrenia here.


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APA Reference
Hedrick, M. (2015). How to Combat the Summer Funk. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 16, 2019, from https://blogs.psychcentral.com/two-minds/2015/08/how-to-combat-the-summer-funk/

 

Last updated: 8 Aug 2015
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