I have the will

I have the will

I have the will to try and optimize my life, I know you do too.

I have always believed that in order for one to grow, one must reflect on where they have been. But I also believe, that’s only the start of one’s personal growth. We must have the strength and courage to better ourselves and learn from our past. Fortunately for me, I have the will to at least try and face my demons.

Now, I have to be honest, it sounds like I have the ability to plow through depression’s powers each and every day, Man I wish, not so. At least not all the time. Personally, I have learned to be good with that fact and work on improvement when I am able.

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

As it happens, I have spent the last few days hiding from the outside world; PTSD’s flashbacks can often throw me into a depressive episode. Thankfully, like always, I got through it, at least well enough to function outside the realm of isolation. I do so because I have the will and the resolve to keep moving forward.

I have the will
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Self-care tips when in a depressive episode.

As far as I’m concerned, going full tilt all the time is not a sign of dealing with a mental health condition. Similarly, having an episode of continual mental pain is not the demise of your wellness journey.

Read: Storytelling will Save the World… Yes, Even Yours

No, I would argue that, like your body, the brain can tell you when you’ve exceeded your tolerance. The difference being, that rather than it being overly physical, you’ve had enough mentally.

So, if we accept this as true, that our mind knows the score, we can make it easier to embrace the episodes that take the wheel of life from time to time. So you can’t go to work, enjoy large parties and go for days with our passions, It’s ok if you can’t, you’re not like anyone else; just know that you shall overcome your darker days and when you feel better you’ll end up with the will to keep going. Simply pick up where you left off

Checkout the book I helped to write:

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 service’s, 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 you served their countries and communities a voice… Which is amazing!

Pre order today

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

OR

Checkout our Mental Health Resources Page.

Contact me on my Facebook page: The Road To Mental Wellness

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When depression speaks

When Depression Speaks

It really sucks when depression speaks.

Humans are a wonderfully diverse species. All one needs to do to see this is to take a look at the numbers of different languages we speak. We are so diverse, in fact, that as of 2009, there were 6,909 on earth; (Linguistic Society of America)(1). Similarly, Major depressive disorder also seems to have its own language. If this is true, what does it sound like when depression speaks?

Of course, it doesn’t truly speak, but what it does do is hijack one’s positivity and replace it with its own repertoire. This hostile takeover makes you hate the things you love by nattering in your mind’s ear; and we humans, if we hear a lie long enough, it starts to become truth. Amazing how our own brains can take something it knows to be true, turn on its head and make us accept a lie as truth.

Indeed, our interior script gets written in the style it’s either trained in or what it’s pre-programmed software has written, genetics. More likely, it’s a combination of these two.

Genetic factors in depression

So, when depression speaks, it’s often in a discouraging tone. For example, it will take you out of your entire routine. Saying things like, “Nah, I’m not going for my morning run today.” or “F#$% it, I don’t feel like cleaning out my car.” For many of us, this negative speak can land us in bed for the day; for some, even longer.

In my own experience, when overtaken by depression’s gift to gab, I find that besides being talked out of all that is good for me, I am completely exhausted; drained by constantly trying to fight back against its powers.

When depression speaks
Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.com

Under these circumstances, I find it difficult to rally against depression. I find it so hard because often I don’t realize that I am not my regular, positive self. It’s not always possible to be self-aware and therein lays the problem. Ultimately, depression will win the day with its brand of speak. I say let it! If for whatever reason it slips past my defences, I relent and let it have that day.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned, its this;

  1. Give yourself permission to rest but set a limit. E.g. a day.
  2. Seek out and or continue to seek therapy.
  3. There’s no shame in your mental pain.
  4. Finally, get your ass moving again.

Why not read Anxiety And Depression.

Once you have taken the time to weather the storm, get back to living. Don’t allow depresson’s sneaky one liners to take command of you for long periods. I, for example, will force myself out for coffee or I will find a quiet trail.

So, what does getting moving again look like for me? Well, simply put, at a turtle’s pace at times, whist others, I can hit the ground running. Personally, I gauge it on the amount of residual brain fog and exhaustion I feel.

Effective ways to manage depression

With that said, if I make it as far as the couch, it’s a success; likewise, if I get up and feel well enough to hit the gym, it too is a success. The important thing here? I tell myself and now truly believe that they are of equal success. I’m tired of feeling bad for feeling bad, no more. It really is ok not to be ok. You got this!

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

Checkout the book I helped to write:

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 service’s, 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 you served their countries and communities a voice… Which is amazing!

Pre order today

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

OR

Checkout our Mental Health Resources Page

Contact me on my Facebook page: The Road To Mental Wellness

Depression's mindset

Depression’s mindset

Since the world fell to the mercy of the COVID-19 virus, I have been plagued with a low-grade sense of dread; a feeling that I have become all too familiar with over the years; my life has been held hostage by depression for as long as I can remember. To make matters worse, my mind has been hijacked by depression’s mindset.

Ways to cope though COVID-19:

Depression’s mindset

Over the years, I have learned that each mental illness has its own language; an interior dialect that can dictate how far down the rabbit hole I go. For example; when my anxiety disorder is speaking the loudest, it does so after it incorrectly accesses the environment I am in. When my anxiety is high, it will tell me that no one likes me.

Of course, this conclusion can’t really be true, can it? In reality, there’s no evidence of that. Similarly, depressive talk is responsible for brewing a deep sense of sadness within me. While this is somewhat obvious when we think about depression, its how my mind gets there that’s important.

Depression’s mindset is born out of the chatter in our heads.

In short, I am held captive by depression when I am experiencing the absence of something that gives me meaning or that I hold dearly; like friends and family. When denied, I find it difficult to defend my rational self; the sorrow just becomes too much.

How to find meaning in your life.

When this great brain invader speaks, my energy dwindles and I isolate myself. Pretty powerful right? So powerful in fact that it takes me out. Normally, I am a person with high energy and loads of passion. Sadly, but when the darkness settles over me, I am forced to retreat to my bedroom; mainly because of a few reoccurring lines bouncing around in my head.

Depression’s mindset

So then, what are these few dominating sentences that form depression’s mindset? Since my biggest passion in life is the love I have for family and friends, I tend to ruminate on them when I am experiencing a depressive episode.

What gets me down or exacerbates my lows is constantly thinking about their absence. Moreover, I tend to get angry at the fact that few of those I care for reach out. Although I understand that this is not done to be malicious, it nonetheless makes my isolation all the more difficult.

I mean, what the hell are we so busy doing?

What fuels the flames of this anger is this line; How can people not want to reach out when they care for someone? Sure, you may think about them often but that does little for those who care for you. I’m reminded of the old saying; “deeds not words.” Oneway relationships really cut and make you feel like you’re the only one trying.

Furthermore, my depressive voice only makes the dark even darker when I find myself saying; “It’s silly for people to use the excuse that they are too busy to call, go for coffee or stop in. To me, there’s no greater feeling then when someone whom you love calls and takes the initiative.

Want to hear other’s talk about their mental health journies? Then A New Dawn podcast is what you are looking for.

Sadly, this rarely happens. When I am well, it still bothers me but I manage it well; when held captive by depression’s mindset, it makes me want to sever ties with everyone. After all, why should I be the only one making the effort? Truly, does being “too busy” really trump the company of someone you care for? I mean, what the hell are we so busy doing? Binge-watching Netflix, playing video games and constantly staring at our phones? In my mind’s eye, we aren’t busy so much as we, just don’t “feel” like it.

you just might save a life

Equally sad, is that this “too busy” phenomenon has, at some point been normalized and for the life of me, I can’t figure out how we justify deprioritizing those who matter the most.

Finally, I remain hopeful that this unprecedented health crisis will help us to realine our priorities; to show us that we must make time for our loved ones; thereby cultivating our very real survival need for connection.

So, if you wish to quell your anxiety, fear and depression, put down that device, pause Netflix and whatever else you are doing and just reach out. You never know, you just might save a life.

In crisis? Call 1.833.456.4566 | Text 45645 (Crisis Services Canada) Crisis Services Canada

Want to help make my book a reality? Donate here: GoFundMe

The Long Standing Battle
My long-standing battle with PTSD has taught me that there is a …
What You Don’t See
Pictures on social media are cool but its what you don’t see …
Where’s My glasses
Have you ever asked yourself; “where’s my glasses?” Is it near constant? …
We do something wrong for so long
We human are funny creatures, sometimes we do something wrong for so …

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