My current ghost-writing project is heavily focused on depression and anxiety. These are such a severe problem permeating our society, and I have quite a few friends that deal with both. I took the chance to spend quite some time meeting, listening, and working with some phenomenal depression & anxiety support groups to gain more depth in my understanding. While there, as an exercise in empathy, I was challenged to rebuild my foundation, and try to re-learn to function without the habits that make me most functional, calm, and productive.
I've never understood depression or anxiety. I don't mean that I don't believe they exist. I mean, for a large portion of my life, I didn't understand the emotional pressure and crippling effects that both of these things can have. Even this mild "exercise", was terrifying for me, I can't imagine what the toll lifelong depression and anxiety has on those who never get control. For some, it seems that depression is a tapeworm that feeds on the emotional sustenance that should be supporting you.
Rebuilding good habits took me way longer than expected. Physically 3-4 weeks. Mentally,4-5 weeks (THANKS, Headspace!! ) I can feel my brain stitching itself back together; sorry for those who've had to deal with me in the meantime.
Due to the nature of the project, I can't share most of the piece. However, I can share some of scattered questions and thoughts from my experience, to try and paint a picture:
Questions asked from the group
How do you cultivate healthy relationships, when you constantly feel disappointed in the version of yourself you are giving to others ?
How can you ever grow when you are busy romanticizing your poor decisions?
How do you escape the quicksand of nothing is right, when you can't see that nothing is wrong?
How can you connect, when you truly believe that you ruin people?
What do you do, when the longest relationship you've ever had is one of self-deprecation?
Cynicism is easy, wasteful, and lazy. Cynicism is a disease that undermines the importance of connection. Normally feeding itself through circular reasoning.
Dishonesty is corrosive. It's always going to eat away at something; when you are lying to yourself, that something is normally your future relationships, opportunities, or health. It's eating away somewhere.
The problem with victimhood, is that it sometimes perpetuates the original problem the victim had. If the core belief in treating someone like a victim isn't paired with equality, empathy, and understanding, you may just be slapping a band-aid on a broken leg.
Control in stressful situations will lower your stress levels; if you find yourself constantly in a highly stressful environment, find little wins. This is why the importance of building a routine is paramount to success for some.
This is quite a bit to delve deeply into in one post. I'll definitely be fleshing out most of these statements in full, in the near future.