Improved is my mood. It pleases me to write this. A combination of self imposed interventions coupled with some good old fashion luck reinforced the levies to keep the deluge of depression at bay. First to thank my friends and family—my people—for hanging in there and supporting me. The treasured and unbreakable bonds forged in love and tempered in the flames of hardship keep me strong. Iron does sharpen iron, and lost I would be without them. I love you.
Reestablishing mindfulness and meditation practices, daily and with intent, served to ground me. Tethering me back to my breath—the single most fundamental essence of life. This is creating a setting of ease and space to cope. I use an app called Headspace to guide this practice, and I recommend trying out anything to help guide you and keep you on track. There’s no right or wrong way to mediate. No beginning or end to meditation. There is only what you take with you. There is only practice.
Disabling my social media accounts for about three weeks proved an enormous boon. While I am back on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, it is only the latter that has its app on my iPhone. Were I able to share photos from my laptop, I’d have no app at all. I strongly recommend a break to anyone considering it. It’s refreshing and wholesome to lose the anxious connection to the impersonal toxicity of the online world. Now that I am back, I have better boundaries, and going sans app reinforces said boundaries.
Audiobooks came to the rescue, too. Starting in an unexpected way. Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! followed up with What Do You Care What Other People Think? surprised me in their countless life lessons weaved into the narrative subtext. This theme of course being ancillary in their intention to let the world into the mind of one of the 20th century’s most gifted physicists. Richard Feynman was far more than a Noble laureate, though. In fact, there was little typical about him. With intention cultivated himself as a curious, skeptical, and inquisitive observer of life parsed through a scientific lens with no space in his brain for fakers. This proved refreshing. I piggybacked this with Jay Shetty’s Think Like A Monk. An instructive tool for bringing purpose, calm, balance, ease, stillness, and peace into our lives. I don’t typically go in for self help books, but this was a joyous journey, and one which offers numerous tangible strategies to help you find your way.
Therapy remains the key piece constant through all this. A safe place to connect with a professional who brings objectivity and experience to your situation. It provides a place to reflect, open up, share, and discover. As self-awareness grows, strategies take shape to help recognize triggers, execute mitigation tactics against them, thereby minimizing the frequency, intensity, and duration of future episodes. If you have been considering therapy but feel shame or weakness, I do encourage you to take the step. You have the strength. Reaching out for help is hard, but it is always a huge leap worth taking. Complicated and difficult is our world. Our hearts and minds more so. Connecting with people to better understand ourselves, our purpose, and our meaning in this life is a great place to start and essential to wellness.
Thanks for reading, and thank you for your support in this.
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