FLOURISH BLOG: Providing tools and (true) stories for creating an inspired, intuitive life.
I was struck last weekend while doing a reading by how many normally happy healthy people are in the mire of depression and seriousness right now. As a seer, when I get so many calls like this, and have experienced it myself, I know that there is something else going on here. I see a pattern. I can’t tell you why it is but I see that it’s there—and even this gives me hope. With so many people in this boat it seems we are all collectively (but individually) working through something. Like my client this weekend I know that many of us will end up on the other side of it with something valuable in our hands, something shiny and golden that we couldn’t have gotten otherwise. Something that helps us understand something crucial about ourselves or aids us in doing our own particular work in this world.
What I saw in this woman’s life in particular seemed like a good analogy for a bigger perspective that I see happening right now in the world. The vision I had was this: everyone is in a dark tunnel together. Everyone is moving forward, inch by painstaking inch, going through their own personal darkness and heartaches. From where you are standing you can’t see that there is an end to this tunnel. You don’t even know when or if there is an end. All you can see is darkness. There are others around you—you can bump up against each other for a minute—maybe cry on another’s shoulder while you are moving, get a little comfort from each other, walk arm in arm for a bit. But the truth is that no one but you can truly help you out of your own personal hardship. No one else can save you. You have to walk through the tunnel alone—even if surrounded by people who are also experiencing pain.
I know, I’ve felt it myself. Since having my daughter I go through something cyclical—every month for a few days in a row I wake up and I am not myself. Furthermore I see the world through a dark and terrible lens. I can’t help it. And believe me I’ve tried. I have a whole bag of tools that I’ve spent my life gathering and applying and still I cannot change this. For me it is something chemical that is related to hormones and nursing—or truly a lack of something essential that I need in my body. It triggers this thing dark and terrible. It’s honestly horrible.
After I finished the reading for this client and was looking at the pattern, I felt a new understanding and peace and ease with what happens to me every month. For the first time I felt grateful for it’s occurrence. I saw how it has helped me gain a profound understanding of others who are experiencing this. I now understand depression and darkness in a way that was completely foreign to me before. And I felt grateful that in my case it is limited to a few days a month. Now I know. I get it. I understand what that feels like—and that it’s not your fault. You can’t help it. It’s not about making yourself think positively. It’s about something going on in your body that you can’t help or change. Every case is different in terms of what is actually triggering it and so the healing for everyone comes differently. But here are a few things that I’ve learned to do when I’m experiencing this depressive state.
For me different things work at different times. So I’m passing on a bag full of tricks that you can try too.
1. Exercise. It produces endorphins. Endorphins make you feel good. You need those when you are depressed. (You need those always!) Cardio especially does the trick for me, and a good shower with a body scrub afterward…. mmmm.
2. Try to keep your mouth shut! Seriously! On those days I say things that I regret. I act in ways that I wish I wouldn’t. On those days I cannot help my outlook, and that everything looks bleak and depressing, and that my thoughts are largely negative and sarcastic. So, I try to keep my mouth shut as much as I can and not say those things that are rattling around in my head like a balls in a cage. Especially to my husband. Poor man, it’s not his fault I feel like this. I love the dude—so if it’s at all possible I try to protect us both from the things that want to blurt out of my mouth.
3. Get outside. It’s good medicine. Being in nature makes me feel better.
4. Distract yourself. Those are great days for book reading. It may sound the opposite as looking something in the face and working through it, but because to me this feels chemical, and not related to something I am not noticing or looking at in my life—the more I can distract myself from the gross stuff in my head, the better. Chatting with girlfriends on the phone – or listening really—because I don’t want to hear my business at the moment, watching movies, doing activities with the kids, reading. Those are all things that I find bring me comfort and solace from the intensity.
5. Positive audio books. Sometimes especially while I’m exercising I’ll put any positive audio book on in my headphones. Even if it doesn’t exactly speak to me at the moment, or if the information is outdated or well known to me, I feel that at least it is putting positive messages into a brain which otherwise would be clogged with junk. I try to put these into my (library) queue ahead of time so that I have them on hand when I’m in need. Especially with two young children at home, I don’t always have the time to find them in the moment I need them. If I plan ahead, I’ve got options.
6. Brainwave Music. I’m a big fan of the work of Dr. Jeffery Thompson. His CD’s—Awakened Mind System, Healing Mind System, and Theta Meditation System, all are good for my brain during this time period. These are my favorites and a great deal. (It’s 12 CD’s for $90.) You can buy them separately too.
6.5 Oh, and there is always this two minute stances that increase your confidence and make positive shifts in your body chemistry.
If you’ve got any other tips or tricks that help you or someone you know add them in a comment so that others can see them too.