How can depression feel?
Life is full of these pits and you can end up trapped in one without even realising, as they are normally covered behind something we desire. We can also be pushed into them by the actions of others, or perhaps a lack of awareness makes us step into one. Most people catch themselves at the top and can quickly pull themselves out without too much harm, others fall in completely but grab a hold close enough to the surface others can help them out. Some have the misfortune of falling so far down that they have to climb the steep, jagged, slippery walls by themselves and most people never get out when they are that far down. These ones spend their time moving up and down the pit, getting close enough to the top to put on a brave face only to slide back down to repeat the climb again.
Hanging on to the sharp painful wall and freezing in the cold air, unable to move, is the point when you’ve run out of energy. The cold seeps and your brain tells you to stay where you are with words like “I don’t fit in, I’m not enough and will never be enough, everyone hates me and I hate everyone.” Your own mind is playing tricks on you to keep you in the pit.
I hope that the illustration above gave those of you who have never had depression or only had it in its mild case can now better understand how bad it can get for those who battle with it constantly, and I hope those who have had serious cases of depression feel I’ve correctly illustrated how it can feel.
If you’re struggling with depression and you feel like there is no way back to the top then read the next part carefully as it may help.
(DISCLAIMER: I am not a medical professional. I am simply sharing my experience to help others.)
NOTE: If you would like to get a better understanding of what I and the team at Networthpick went through you can read our other article entitled “RAW and REAL”.
Falling Through Depression, and How
As described above, depression may seem like a bottomless pit, but it’s not this endless. It’s more like a tube where you can come out in a different place. I liken it to the planetary elevator in the movie “Total Recall” where they can use an elevator through Earth to come out elsewhere.
The first step is letting go of the wall and is the hardest and scariest step as it involves embracing into the emotions that you’re trying to get away from, going into the unknown and trying the things you’ve been avoiding out of fear and discomfort.
The cold in the pit are the emotions, fears or feelings we’re avoiding or denying ourselves and the walls we cling to are things that cause us pain as we’re trying to get away from them.
As soon as you let go and embrace what it is you’re avoiding it will be a bit of a shock as the cold air suddenly got much colder, much like jumping into cold water.
You find as you’re falling that the air gradually gets warmer and you begin to see a light and that what was pulling you down is now propelling you upwards. That upwards momentum carries you up and out of the pit leaving you in a new place with different views.
How do you embrace those emotions correctly? It takes more than simply acknowledging what it is you’re feeling, you have to take action and face them once you know what is causing you to grow cold. As there are many forms and triggers I will only be able to list a few solutions but most if not all of these can be overcome by setting very clear goals for yourself, trying new things and a willingness to learn from failure.
Loneliness, low self-esteem, confidence, these triggers normally come from not making enough time for yourself and relying on others to validate your thoughts, feelings and decisions. So when those people you’ve placed above yourself stop giving advice or the advice they don’t feel right you start to become unsure, indecisive, lose confidence in your decisions. Other feelings such as sadness and anger trigger depression due to the frustration of not being able to express oneself. Because shedding tears and giving into fits of anger can lead to a loss of self control or be viewed as a sign of weakness, we can often tell ourselves it’s wrong to feel these emotions. To avoid expressing them we’ll tell ourselves it’s wrong to feel these emotions because we don’t want to be viewed as weak or immature and often when we do this we can start to make ourselves ashamed of our own feelings because we’ve been telling ourselves it’s wrong to feel that way for so long.
First thing you need to learn is, it’s okay to be alone. Being happy by yourself is one of the most powerful things you can learn because regardless of whatever happens outside of you, you will always have yourself. Getting to know who you are and what you want is very important, you want to make sure that you’re waking up in the morning knowing that you are living your own life for the things you want. Spend time by yourself, get comfortable with your own company and teach yourself to make your own decisions and not rely on others.
It’s fine to have friends and family around to support you but they can’t live your life for you. Making time for yourself is just as important as socialising and making time for others if not more important. The choices you make and what you choose to dedicate yourself to will decide how your life will go and ultimately finish, so make sure you’re living the best life ever.
Another thing to learn is how to express yourself. Learning to express yourself is key for dealing with emotions. If your sad crying can help and don’t be ashamed of it, we all do it. Anger too is a normal emotion but does need to be expressed in the proper manner, not violents or uncontrolled outbursts. speak up and let others know how you are feeling, improve your communication. Putting your feelings into words without being overwhelmed is a very powerful thing and shows maturity. I understand as some things can’t be expressed verbally or others may just not want to listen to you. If that is the case, finding a passion that allows you to vent can be just as good. Channeling your emotions into things like the gym, painting, poetry, journaling, reading, music, dancing, ect… will not only help you emotionally but can also help develop a new skill.
Depression comes from a lack of understanding of how to deal with the emotions we feel because we’re scared or ashamed of them. Instead of denying yourself embrace them and learn how to express them. As you do you will learn more about yourself and every place you come out at will be better than the last. You may even find yourself jumping into these pits as you learn to navigate them because you will no longer have that fear or lack of understanding. You may become better at managing your emotions than most people.
All the emotions you feel will be fuel that drives you. If you feel lonely, embrace being alone and do things for yourself and you’ll see how much you can accomplish by yourself, sadness and anger channeled can give you passion, anxiety can drive you to learn, understand and change your perspective on an issue. You’ll find with each obstacle you overcome and every emotion you learn to control, channel and use for motivation will add something to you, value, self worth. This takes away from those feelings of worthlessness and gives you confidence. By no means does this cure you but you will gain experience, learn to navigate your own feelings and the way through the void that is depression.