You may have noticed that things have been a little quiet around these parts. Being a biz owner and also living with depression is a challenge, it’s a lot to handle and it takes a lot of extra self-compassion. My focus over the last four years has been managing my depression and not letting it manage me.
Still, the last 20 days of living together have not been fun.
Everyone experiences depression differently. It’s difficult for me to think of a time when I wasn’t depressed. We’ve learned to coexist. We barely interact anymore. I can go days, weeks, even months sometimes without seeing it. In the far long ago past Depression made me cry a lot, or made me suicidal, or made me very angry, or made me act out in ways I didn’t understand. Now it’s not so viscous as that, for which I am thankful.
It just makes everything feel “meh”.
Which in the big scheme of things isn’t so bad given the alternatives. The meh-ness of life gets pretty boring after a few days. Then you start feeling guilty because you have absolutely no drive to do anything on your to-do list. Then you start feeling angry because nothing ever sounds good to eat, or fun to do, and you spend your day in this limbo of not doing much of anything. Then there’s that irrational fear that this feeling is going to last forever and ever and ever. But in the end, it never does. It goes away eventually.
So how do I deal with it?
It depends actually. Sometimes it’s best to just do nothing. Let the feelings run their course, discover what, if anything triggered those feelings and deal with them accordingly. That’ll clear it right up. Other times Depression decides to be stubborn and clingy and doesn’t want to bugger off. So you’ve got to do things to make it go away. Which is harder than you think because when depression comes a callin’ you don’t want to do much of anything.
But there’s a list of things that help and that make me feel normal-ish again. Those things are called Self Care. Epic self care. The kind of self care that feel essential right now because it’s something that I need to do.
So why didn’t this work for me?
It usually does. When I pay attention to what I need and then fulfill those needs it lessens those meh feelings, it makes me feel good and gives me the energy to make myself feel even better. It didn’t work this time because I let outside sources get me down. Through all of this I was dealing with huge amounts of stress. I was trying to set boundaries with someone who wasn’t listening to me. Confrontation stresses me out but sometimes it has to be done. I hated every moment of it.
Things at the retail job were really stressing me out too. I should have taken a few mental health days you know, but even that comes with its own feelings of guilt, so I resisted even though it was what I needed. It took me awhile to work through those yucky feelings but now I feel like I’m coming out the other side. I’ve changed my attitude about my other job, sometimes that’s all you can do. I dealt with the boundaries situation and despite how much that sucked I feel good, proud even, of the way that I handled it.
Things can only go up from here.
I’d love to hear how you deal with bouts of depression. Do you wait it out or work to cope with it?
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My answer is yes. That means while I am waiting it out I work to cope with it. I have things I need and want to do, and hibernating until the depression abates doesn't usually mesh with those obligations and desires. But I'm extra careful with myself and don't demand too much of myself on those days.
I live with clinical depression. I definitely slow down when the "funk" comes knocking at my door. I have three children, so there are things I have to continue to do while I am battling depression, but if it isn't a super important thing – it waits until I start feeling better. Since I have started prioritizing what I can & can not handle during depression, I noticed my funks aren't as severe and do not last as long. Sending you lots of love! xo