6 “important” things about depression that you must know

Around 2 hours back I got to know that 10th October is “World Mental Health Day” (what a wuss I’m), so had to type some s**t out rapidly.

Being a mental health fighter on “surviving” mode, I’ve no medical expertise to dish out more authentic gyaan

But there are some highly overrated/understated myths surrounding “depression” which I think, are needed to be bust.

6 things about depression few talk about- World Mental Health Day

 

1. Writing gratitude journal works not for all

I’ve read countless times that- by listing down all the gifts thy lord bequeathed upon thee, at the end of the day, shall make you feel happy/cheerful during despair.

But guess what? It never worked for me.

The times I tried very hard to do it, my depression-and-anxiety addled mind made me feel like-

I’m counting the few pennies amassed in my beggar’s bowl.

Morale:

If you are not up to writing  “10 things you should be grateful for“, quit. Watch nonsense sitcom instead.

 

2. Your family may not be your greatest comfort

It is “popularly” recommended that, during the time of depression or any mental health illness, confess it to your parents etc.

Well, I’m strictly speaking from an Indian perspective( thus taken into account the entire claustrophobic SE Asian society).

Our parents,(over 60 mostly), are not as woke about “depression” as we are.

I tried very hard (in vain) to make my procreators understand that I’m not going through a lazy phase/throwing tantrums.

So instead of banging your head against the known-but-impenetrable wall, it would be refreshing to find your compatriots in other avenues.

6 things about depression nob-World Mental Health Day

Morale:

If depression is as alien a word to your parents as it was to mine, keep them in loop but don’t expect/burden them for your emotional crutch.

 

3. Taking even a tiny control  matters

When everything goes haywire and your brain is too tired to make sense out of anything anymore, taking a tiny step matters immensely.

Like, we all know (or are made to believe) that working out counts, a lot, in depression.

Lifting up those dumb-bells or shaking your booty during Zumba classes will make you feel great, just like snapping the fingers.

But what happens when you’re not feeling to get out of the house, let alone subscribing for an expensive gym membership?

On top of it, it doesn’t help that roads of your city are-

  • in pathetic step- thus unfit for walk/jog and
  • thanks to the rapid urbanization all the greeneries and parks are gone?

 

You do the obvious and that is –

checking out what you eat.

Which I’ve been doing for the past 2 months and it did deliver the result.

Morale:

Don’t beat yourself up to death if you don’t feel like sweating it out. Instead, become  a conscious-eater.

Knocking off few extra inches always lifts me up.

 

 

4.  External validations suck

 

This is another very, very important aspect which I think has made India one of the most depressed countries on earth, along with other grim social issues.

Everything here revolves around-

 what others think about you.

 (the most perplexing crux, if there’s any)

 

If you’ve been successfully able to get yourself out about this labyrinth, let me know.

I’m still languishing.

Morale:

If your livelihood depends upon what others think about it (which comprises of world’s 99% professions), then being rebellious means having an empty stomach.

 

6 things about depression that are underrated- World Mental Health Day

Irrelevant P.S.-

This is another reason I’m sympathetic of actors getting the lippi/tummy/nose job done, posing as a role model to the next generation be damned.

When you’re pauper and depressed, no generation comes to rescue.

 

5. Be happy/smile always is another BS

This one advice is so puerile that I don’t want to waste more lines on it.

Morale:

 

We don’t pretend to be bumbling unicorns with a grin plastered across our faces, when internally we are downright sinking.

Don’t feel guilty if you don’t look like Gwyneth Paltrow (not that I’m undermining her ordeal) during the depression.

 

 

6. Will it ever go away?

 

Therapy, medications, time, upgrading lifestyle would do great to dull the edge, but I’m doubtful if “depression” goes away ever.

Here, I can recall a very beautiful quote by Orhan Pamuk, which I read somewhere.

It was an excerpt from his interview where he was saying (indirect quotation) about-

how with aging comes a hollowness inside, which everybody should be accustomed to, as soon as possible. ‘Cause this is the only way to go.

 

6 things about depression that are underrated

I’m no expert here but I suspect, this is similar with depression as well.

 

Are you a psychiatric survivor? What tools have you used to tackle “it” head-on? Do share with me.

 

 

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14 thoughts on “6 “important” things about depression that you must know

  1. The Words Kraft says:

    I loved your article. The social pressure is so massive, that we often suffer from anxiety that no one understands. What if I am not competitive enough? What if I am not successful enough? I personally wouldn’t have a problem. But the society, including family, would keep measuring you against ‘social standards’ until you have this engulfing darkness within that convinces your wandering mind – “You are so useless. You have no place here.” I wrote a series of articles from my personal experiences : https://wordskraft.com/2018/09/06/1-%E2%80%8B-conventionally-unsuccessful-so-far/

    • Jheelam says:

      You’re so very right. I read your post and can relate with so many things, though we come from two totally different professional back-grounds.

      Well, Eddie Vedder sang it already- “Society, you’re a crazy breed”. 🙂

  2. Yolanda says:

    I’m right here with you on all of this. Depression is so hard to live with. It drains everything out of you. I think everyone’s experience with depression is unique and what works for some may not work for others. The one thing I can say about depression is to really try to look after yourself. I know that is is SO hard to do this when you feel paralyzed, but just a little care can make the bad days a little more bearable. Thanks for the great post!

    • Jheelam says:

      Thank you Yolanda. You’re spot on about the “self-care” part. It’s so essential but hard to implement when one’s mind is foggy. Glad that you found the post helpful. 🙂

  3. Victor Ugoo Njoku says:

    I love your style of writing. I love the fact that you had to talk about some of the myths. Thank you for writing about this sensitive issue at a time like this.

  4. Natalie says:

    I love how raw and truthful this is! As someone who just weaned from an anti-depressant and have been dealing with anxiety and depression for a while I can say that I find comfort in reading blogs like this that don’t just talk about the Law of Attraction all day long. Even though I am a huge believer in positivity it will not heal everyones depression. Great Post!

    • Jheelam says:

      Thank you so much Natalie. Couldn’t agree more with what you said here. Positivity should come with rationality. Nobody can fake cheeriness all day long while dying inside.

      Wishing you recovery and good health.

  5. Michele says:

    I love this!! I suffer from depression but it has been controlled with meds but recently came back even worse because of menopause! It’s so hard to talk about and to get empathy is even worse! My family acts like I can snap out of it ugh if that were the case no one would have this problem! I don’t choose depression!! Thanks so much for writing this!!

    • Jheelam says:

      Oh menopause is another part I’d want to write about.

      Saw my own mother going through it with so many physical/mental repercussions and it quite shook me. Unlike menstruation, menopause is so under-discussed.

      I’m so sorry for what you’ve gone through. Hope you’ve come out of it stronger and resilient.

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