Let me just preface this article with a few facts. I'm no shrink. I don't study human behavior. I don't have some fancy degree from a fancy school. (In fact, I don't even have any degree because I do hair! LOL! ) So who am I to dish out advice on mental health you ask?
Well, I'm someone who went from having depression for three years to someone who is very happy and fulfilled and gets everything they want out of life. So... how's happiness for a credential?
A Quick Backstory
I'm not going to spend much time here because remembering my depression does not serve me (or anyone really) in any way, but basically I was taking some medicine (**COUGH COUGH, birth control.) that made me have depression and then I was depressed for three years and it really sucked and I wanted to die about 93% of the time.
How I Healed myself from depression
You want to know the biggest thing that helped me get rid of the depression?
It wasn't thinking positive (because you physically can't when you're depressed). It wasn't anti depressants (I personally refused to take meds since meds were the initial trigger). It was a simple mindset shift. A shift in perception, if you will.
One day I just remembered, and sort of realized, that I had not always been depressed... (Sounds silly in hindsight, but when you have depression it feels VERY permanent so it's easy to forget that you were once normal.)
I got to thinking, "Wait a minute... I didn't always used to be this way. I used to be bubbly and fun. I used to like doing things and living life. Actually, now that I think about it, I used to be perfectly healthy. Which means that I'm not a depressed person, I just have depression. I'm not my depression. I just have it."
I separated myself from the illness in my mind and that's when the healing began.
(Depression is like any other sickness in the sense that it comes, which means it can go. Nobody is just born depressed and then has depression forever because they are a naturally depressed person! Depression is an illness.
Even though it doesn't feel like this when you have it, it's not who you are. The truth is, you're simply not your depression. I repeat: YOU ARE NOT YOUR DEPRESSION.)
That simple realization immediately gave me the relief I needed to start recovering. I knew that if I used to healthy... I could be healthy again. That was the first sign of hope. The second occurrence (that most people would call a coincidence, but I never do because I know how the Universe works now) was something very profound that somebody said to me.
My wonderful psychologist at the time referred me to a holistic doctor who could maybe give me something natural to take (like an herbal pill) to just give me that extra little push I needed to get better. Because, by this point, I could feel the depression lifting now and then, I could sense I was getting towards the end.
So, I met this new doctor. We chatted, I gave him a little bit of background info... and you know what he said to me?! "Well... I don't really see how I can help you because you don't seem very depressed to me. You seem like a very strong woman who is on the tale end of this and I think you're gonna be better for it."
And that's when it hit me. That inner part of me (my higher self ) was in agreement with every single one of his words.
My spirit immediately lifted. "You know what?! I think you're right! I AM getting over this and I AM strong and I AM going to be better because of this experience. Thank you for reminding me."
And from that day on I was basically healed. I say "basically" because I did have some shorter/minor episodes of depression after that, and still do from time to time, but for the most part I was healthy again. It was like the doctor gave me the permission the confidence to feel better and I was able to reclaim my power and start the road to recovery.
And from that day on, I simply chose to feel better. I dedicated my life to feeling good on purpose.
A note to anyone with depression
I think one of the worst parts about having depression is that it feels so permanent when you're stuck inside of it. But if you can realize that you are not your depression and you can separate yourself from it, you can free yourself of it.
Now, I'm not saying how I did it is for everyone. But it just goes to show the power or affirmations, self-talk, and perception. Everything I learn and teach is a direct result of me having had depression.
Heck, these days I'm even thankful for my depression! Because without it I would have never had such a strong desire for wellness and I would have never become an inspirational blogger and an author!
So, if you or a loved one is struggling with depression. Just know that it is possible to feel better. Just because you're depressed now, doesn't mean you have to get stuck there forever. It's your life to live. You got this!