Ever wake up in a bad mood? For no apparent reason? No idea what’s causing it but nothing helps?
Well this has been me for the last few days. Stuck in a high level of grump. Every little thing annoying me. Snapping at family and friends when they’ve done nothing wrong.
And this is where my vicious cycle kicks in.
So I’m grumpy. I hate it. I’m largely a happy go lucky chap. Keep smiling. Keep calm. Carry on kind of exterior. But this is rubbish. I snap. I feel worse. I grump. I feel worse. I then end up feeling down because I’ve upset (or feel like I’ve upset people).
So how does it stop? At the moment? I have no idea but i don’t like where it’s heading. But knowing this is happening, and knowing its not all me but a large part of it is out of my control provides a crumb of comfort.
Trying to snap out of it? Easier said than done. Depression has some powerful weapons in it’s armoury. It’s ability to isolate me is huge. Because when I feel like this, i feel i want to be alone, but that doesn’t help.
And thus my vicious cycle continues until something changes. But what is that something and when will it come? Perhaps It’s a bereavement reaction to events of the last week? Who knows.
I wish i knew
So. I’ve been thinking about how Americans talk about seeing their therapist or psychiatrist as openly as we talk about going for a pint. Feel this is another stigma I want to chat about.
After a tough couple of months, I’ve started seeing a new therapist. I think i’m now in double figures for them so I get a feeling for how useful it will be.
After years of battling, beating and re-battling depression I have developed anxiety. I didn’t even notice. I began worrying that I had nothing to worry about. So rather than let my own mental health drag me down again, I sought help at the first possible juncture.
Anxiety is new to me. From my first session I felt immediately better. Knowing I needed to open myself up to the process. For this I needed to be honest and open. It felt good to let all this worry out.
With the combination of medication and 3 sessions in I can feel a palpable change. It feels easy to talk about being back in therapy, but why won’t people talk about it? Is it still too British to admit defeat? To say we are struggling?
It’s time to change. Talk. Have a cup of tea with an old friend. Be there. Be present. Be strong.
Ever heard the analogy about stress and beer? Well if not, it goes something like this – imagine your store of a stress is an empty beer barrel. The more stress we experience, it drips into our barrel and unless we let some stress out then it spills out everywhere – and no one likes spilt beer.
With this in mind recently i’ve been going through a fair amount of stress like many people do on a daily basis but ive been imagining that beer barrel getting pretty full this past few weeks. Dripping away like a leaking tap.
The awareness is key here. Knowing that im getting stressed and not enjoying that feeling – i know some people who say they never get stressed, well i envy you.
Having an outlet, being able to pour some beer out before it over flows and causes a health and safety issue is paramount. But what can you do? How do you prevent things from reaching crisis point where theres beer everywhere?
Some turn to alcohol. Which is a depressant, which can make you feel worse. But whatever works for you works for you. There is no prescription for what you can do. I personally love video games. I like to immerse myself in another world for a little while and calm my over active brain down.
I also depend on my family. They are everything to me. I have a daughter. A little tiny (sort of) one that depends on me. I can have a terrible day. The worst. Stressed up to 11. Within 5 minutes its forgotten.
There are so many things that have helped me on my journey through depression, relapse and recovery. Expressing myself through doodling and art helps.
Take some time for yourself. Tell people your struggling. Speak out. This week marks the start of Mental Health Awareness week. Be aware. Have conversations. Break down stigma. Stigma’s most powerful weapon is itself. If we no longer fear talking about depression and mental health wecare taking huge steps as a society.
Its time to change. Check out this link and be part of something incredible.
Time to Change