Putting out the main fire

In order to get well, I must focus on putting out the main fire.

Each and every human on earth faces their own struggles – whether they have a mental illness or not. Similarly, many of us are stuck in what I like to call self-preservation mode. It can feel like all we are doing is running around trying to minimize the effects of the enviable assortments of crises that pop up in real time. The daily battle is real.

Still, while this is a common experience, there are those of us who just refuse to deal. Often claiming that we are “too busy” to take a moment to figure out why we are going down the rabbit hole.

Listen to other people tell their story at: The Depression Files

But is this really the case? Sure, I can imagine that it may be extremely difficult for some. With that said, however, there are indeed those out there who avoid their unpleasant feelings at all costs. The trouble with this approach is, it can get you in the end.

This can be especially true for those who have a mental-health condition. I for one was just such a person. I mean, who wants to entertain the idea that they are somehow vulnerable? Stigma is such a scary monster, and the very thought of addressing one’s illness can freeze one into a solid block of oppression.

How to overcome stigma.

But by not putting out the main fire, you’re only allowing it to spread. Trust me, if left unattended, it will consume you and leave you in a pile of ruins. So, it’s imperative to address the root cause.

Personally, what I find most effective is to indeed work hard at putting out the main fire. This, in my experience, helps to lower the number of spot fires and thus, helps my struggles become more manageable.

In other words, be honest with yourself and work towards accepting your mental disorder. Tackling depression for example, is essentially fighting the main fire and thus making the smaller ones (day-to-day challenges) easier to contain. If you can figure out the source of your difficulties, you can devise a method of attack to save yourself.

The Road To Mental Wellness is made possible in part by readers like you… thank you for your support.

A good diet, exercise and down time can all help one dampen down your depressive symptoms, boost your mood and make the wider world seem way less overwhelming. These actions are applicable to other mental health conditions, like anxiety, PTSD, etc.

Daily stress can be accumulative if we fight on without self-care. Every try running in the water? For me, it’s kinda like that.

I look at it this way. Trying to go full-tilt while in a pool or another body of water will only achieve one thing: it will exhaust a person very quickly. Stress and taking on the world has this effect on my mental well-being. Oftentimes, it’s simply too heavy to navigate my way through the wider world. All I achieve is extreme fatigue. Yay, me!

Why depression is so exhausting.

All I can do is work on putting out the main fire. Or at least knocking it down to a degree that allows me to get back on the road to mental wellness. Over the years, I have come to realize that having depression, anxiety and PTSD, will always be a fire-breathing dragon that I must contend with. So, even if I don’t slay the beast, through therapy, mindfulness and exercise, I may just be able to tame it.


Lemonade Stand: Vol. III 

Created by Josh Rivedal and Kathleen Myre, Lemonade Stand: Vol. III is a compilation of 20 stories from those who have served in the emergency services and the military.  In it, the authors talk about their battles with PTSD, a debilitating and for many, a life-long mental illness.  So, if you are from the military or emergency services, perhaps this book can help you combat the feelings of isolation and fear that frequently comes with post-traumatic stress disorder. Sometimes, just knowing that there are others out there, just like you, can provide you with the strength and courage to speak up and or get the help you need. The intention of this book is to help with that…. You’re not alone.

Also, Lemonade Stand: Vol III was written to help combat the stigma that often accompanies mental illness, best of all, it attempts to give all who served their countries and communities a voice… Which is amazing!

Order today

If you are struggling please go here for help: Crisis Services Canada


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