Professional Anxiety Sufferer
Professional Anxiety Sufferer
An honest journey through Depression & my 6 tips to cope22 min read
Why am I feeling so shit? Why am I questioning every f*cking thing that comes into my head? I wonder if anyone else feels this way? I just can’t control these bloody THOUGHTS!!!
I’m a shit friend. I’m actually not even contributing to anything or anyone. My life feels like fricken ground-hog day. Why can’t I love all the things that used to make me happy? Why am I comparing myself to everyone around me? Why didn’t I get invited to that event? Maybe it’s because I’m annoying, or because people don’t like me anymore…
Do you ever have these thoughts?
Because I did constantly for over 2 years and it fricken sucked. And one of the biggest reasons for why it sucked, was that I felt like I was the only one going through the shit-storm.
So my purpose for sharing this post is to help those that are suffering through Depression, and give them some reassurance that they are not alone and that there is a way out. I want to share an insight into how I realised I had Depression and 6 helpful tips that helped me overcome depression.
I knew I was on a downward spiral when I couldn’t even be around the people who loved me the most. I would hide my tears behind my sunglasses. I would make stupid excuses to leave events. I would pretend I was really tired, or I was getting sick when people asked what was wrong, because I wasn’t my ‘normal’ talkative self.
It was so hard putting on the “nothings wrong” Act. I ended up just not wanting to go anywhere because I couldn’t deal with everyone asking what was wrong. And it wasnt that I didn’t appreciate the concern. It was because I didn’t have a fricken clue what was wrong either. When people asked, I just wanted to cry more because I couldn’t explain it. Whenever I did venture out, I would keep checking the time, hoping an hour would have passed so that I could just disappear and go home.
On the drive home I would ball my eyes out. Not sure why…it would just happen.
When I got home, I would jump in bed and just ball my eyes out. I honestly just drowned myself in tears. Who would have thought a human could produce so many tears?
My mind would just take over. The negative thoughts would just pile in. And then the thoughts would just eat at each other. It was like my mind would just keep digging one big massive hole, then dig another hole inside that hole.
No pot of gold at the end, just a whole lot more holes, slippery rocks and negative thoughts. No matter how hard I tried to stop digging, I just couldn’t stop.
I don’t have a right to feel like this. I’m usually such a positive person but I can’t help but think I’m a failure. There are so many more people worse off than me, I have no right to feel or think this way. What have I got to be sad about? Nothing. I have everything I need. I think…Do I?”
I then started to actually question everything that I was doing. Looking for a reason for why I was acting and thinking this way..
Why have I always wanted to be doing so many activities? Why can’t I just be ok with doing nothing?
All I want to do is chill the f*ck out but I can’t.Am I just keeping myself busy because I’m trying to hide the fact that something else is wrong?
Why am I so OCD about things?
Do I have a problem?
Why can’t I just not care about the little things?
Reflecting back on these thoughts, remembering them so clearly, remembering the way I was feeling. The loneliness, the emptiness, the sadness, the confusion. Yes, it does sound all doom and gloom, it sounds like such a bad thing. But it makes so much sense.
Its like anything. When you feel a certain way or have a certain thought about something, there is often a reason why. When you have a sore gut, you think, it must have been something I ate, or that I havent eaten. Or your just all blocked up and need to back one out (poo that is), or let out a big fart!!!
Totally relevent hey?….. poo’s, farts and depression??? (insert laughing, joking emoji here)
So my point here is, I now understand that it was/is normal to try to find a reason for these shit feelings/thoughts. But because I couldn’t find any reasons for feeling so low, I started to look for something to blame.
WHAT THE F*CK IS IT?
I NEED AN ANSWER!!!
Like anything when you feel crappy, you want to find a solution to ease the pain or make the pain go away. It’s like when you stub your toe and rip your toenail off on that inconveniently placed coffee table. You go to the first aid draw and get a band-aid.
Solutions are pretty easy to find for the physical pain that we feel.
But the hard thing is… how the f*ck do you find a solution to fix the pain inside your mind, inside your thoughts?
I can’t just go to the first aid draw and pull out another set of thoughts? I can’t just pull out a book from the shelf and read a ‘quick fix it’ guide to delete the deep dark thoughts that I’m thinking.
So what did I do?
Well you know that big f*ck-off hole I was digging before? Well that shit got DEEP…
The biggest tipping point for me was when I actually felt nothing…
NOTHING…I WAS EMPTY…NIL…NUDA…NOTHING
Was it because I was bullied at school? Was it because I didn’t hit puberty until the end of year 10 and I was teased for not having any Norks (boobs)? Was it because I was a tomboy when I was growing up and I didn’t have many ‘girl’ friends? Was it my parents? Was it my upbringing? Was it because I didn’t go to Uni? Did I drink too much in my teenage years? Have I got ADHD? Is it because I’m too outspoken? Do I talk to much?
So with the encouragement of the ones closest to me, I sought help from my Doctor, which led to talking to someone who was outside my life. Someone that knew nothing about me. Someone that was able to listen, and educate me to accept that I wasn’t going crazy, and that all these thoughts were ‘NORMAL’.
It was hard at the start to accept that I needed to see a psychologist, but I knew I needed to do something.
My first session, I couldn’t believe how bloody nervous I was. I sat in my car looking at the house. It was weird. It’s like I didn’t want anyone to see me go in. It kind of felt like I was going into a loony house or something.
BUT…OMG… you should have seen me when I walked back out. Or should I say skipped out.
It was the best f*cking hour of my life.
I don’t even know what really happened. But, I laughed, I cried, I wept, I cried some more and I just let it all out. I didn’t realise how much I was holding in. It was like a 17 tonne elephant had been lifted off my shoulders.
It was just me offloading my mind to a complete stranger. But a stranger that could help make sense of everything.
In our own individual ways, in our own individual circumstances, we experience change and/or trauma throughout life. Past and Present. I feel we all have a CHOICE on how we deal or manage this. For me, my choice was to start thinking about things differently, and it forced me to spend some thinking time on me, for me.
I spent so much time worrying about other people, and wanting to please other people, I actually didn’t care about myself or even 100% know myself. So obviously there was going to be a point of self-combustion.
No wonder I bloody drowned.
I needed to learn who I was and why I was the way I was. And be ok with that (still a work in progress).
I realised it’s not about blame, it’s not about what I should have done, what I could have done or what I would have done (shoulda, coulda, woulda).
It’s about understanding and learning.
I hadn’t found an understanding, because I have never looked for it.
The hard thing is, the stigma attached to depression (the little shit voice in my head) made me think that if I admitted I had depression, or people knew I had depression, it meant I’m a failure. I’m weak. I’m mental. I’m crazy. If I am on Medication, it means im not strong enough to deal with things. I have an illness which means I can’t be trusted. If I was to see a psychologist or mental health professional it meant I have “problems”.
If you ask me now what I think of the stigma, I think that it’s all a load of
My SIX tips
to get you through the hard times of depression
1) Talking to someone outside my circle of family & friends. There are so many options out there. Someone was recommended to me. I saw a psychologist, and I started off having weekly sessions then it moved out to fortnightly and then monthly. I now go once every 4-6 months.
2) I learnt to understand what my triggers were (the things that made me really anxious, really down, and things that triggered the negative thoughts), and I also learnt to understand what things made me feel good. When I started to feel shitty I distracted myself with the feel good things. I was at my happiest when I was exercising, lying on the beach or catching up with close friends.
3) I spoke more openly about how I was feeling. If I needed to cry I just would. If I couldn’t explain it, I wouldn’t have to.
4) I asked my partner to come with me to a session so that he could understand what was happening, and therefore be able to offer more support at home in the day-to-day. THIS WAS THE BEST.
5) I knew that there would be ups and downs. Knowing this helped me manage the downs and not get too excited when I was feeling on top of the world.
6) I asked some of my close friends to encourage me (sometimes force me) to get out of the house or meet them for a coffee if they felt I was being a hermit or being distant.
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