It seems as though, nowadays, mental health awareness is at an all time high! This is really great and encouraging news! It means people are talking about it openly and for the most part, free of judgement. However, I am afraid to see that there is a negative side to this awareness: some may see it as a trend. It’s almost “trendy” now to have some sort of anxiety or depression. There are facebook groups dedicated to sharing memes about depression, and some of those groups have over two million followers!
While sharing your feelings and finding a community that makes you feel as though you are not alone in how you feel isn’t bad, it’s not a long term solution. This leads me to my point… acknowledgement is NOT enough! Acknowledgement that you are going through depression is just the first step. It can almost be a relief to have a diagnosis sometimes… knowing that there is a name for what you are going through, a list of symptoms that you are experiencing and a community of people who have the same struggle, can give you a certain freedom in itself. At the same time, we are not meant to stay in that state.
Depression is dangerous. Depression postpones our purpose, our motivation, our joy! Depression is sneaky; it conquers our lives one day at a time, until we look back and see that a whole week has gone by where we didn’t accomplish one thing we hoped to. We didn’t do one thing that brings us joy. If we give into depression it simply takes our lives. Depression becomes deadly.
I know this post may be heavy, but it’s the truth. Depression is not trendy, and it’s not something we have simply in order to fit into a community of those struggling with it. Depression is a darkness that needs to be eradicated. It needs to be destroyed and to be conquered. Acknowledgement is not enough!
So how do we even begin to conquer depression? First you should know, it’s not going to happen overnight. It will take a fight from you. It will take effort. This is not easy when you are struggling with depression. How you conquer depression will not be the same way someone else does. But there are a few steps I believe necessary for EVERYONE struggling with depression…
- Check your medications: antidepressants and antianxiety medication included! Read reviews on all the medications you are taking (including birth control ladies!!). If reviews are confirming that others are having struggles with their mental state, talk to your doctor right away, consider switching or not taking that medication, and then give it some time to leave your system! Here is a link to another site that lists out the different types of medications that have been known to cause depression! From high blood pressure medication, to ADHD medication. It may be something you are taking!https://www.verywellmind.com/drugs-that-can-cause-depression-1067458
- Seek a counselor! I recommend seeing a Christian counselor! I have had great success with mine. (If you live in Joplin, Missouri area, message me because I have a counselor recommendation that will change your life!) But you don’t have to see a Christian counselor. Just do some research and find someone with great reviews! Usually, you can also see someone who has certain specialties, like a family counselor or a grief counselor. When you find a counselor that fits your needs and budget, MAKE IT HAPPEN. No more postponing, if you do nothing else today, make that appointment!
- Reach out to someone! Reach out to anyone: a family member, a friend, or if that’s not an option, you can reach out to me! But tell someone that you are struggling with depression. Even if you send a message that simply said, “I don’t want to talk about it yet, but I am struggling with depression and could use your support. Thanks for being my friend.” Just let someone know! Just by letting someone know, this means that you are no longer battling alone! You have someone to check in on you, to give you encouragement, to pray for you, and when you are ready, to speak about it with!
- Finally, give yourself a break from the dark content. Take a break from the depression quotes. Fill your mind with things that bring encouragement and joy! If you need a meme fix, try searching out quotes and memes about joy! Instead of focusing on the things that have brought you depression, start envisioning a future that is full of passion and joy and endless possibilities. Start writing down your goals and what you WANT for yourself and your future! Even if it’s cloudy and you have no idea what the future brings, pick one thing you want and declare it daily for your future.
When it comes to fighting depression, nobody else can conquer it for you. It’s going to take a lot of hard work, but these steps should help get you started. But YOU have to take a step. Your goal should be to destroy your depression, eradicate it from your life forever, and as much as I wish it was, acknowledgement is not enough!