This week has been ‘good’. No sadness. No feeling of dread or doom. I think I laughed, I definitely felt joy, I definitely got excited and I definitely felt loved. So why did the drip and then trickle of thoughts start creeping in yesterday?
The thoughts that cloud the brain and trick it into thinking you will fail, that you’re not deserving or capable, that no one cares and you are alone and then subsequently your brain starts suggesting that you quit, because ‘what is the point?’ and obviously ‘why wouldn’t you quit?’.
How did I go from hero to zero in a matter of hours? Why do I get anxious? Why do I always have to be sad?
Apparently we have between 50,000 – 70,000 thoughts per day, which I think I just condensed into an hour. Why is it that when your body feels limp and lifeless that your brain starts running a marathon without any of the necessary training?
Yesterday I felt all of this, thought all of this and in a ditch attempt to record every heightened feeling both physically and mentally I grabbed a pen and some paper and started journaling. I have never journal-ed. I have been told it is ‘good’, but I doubted something so ‘easy’ could help me, but that’s the trick with depression. Depression only works if you’re not. Depression will trick you, lie to you and isolate you, especially if you feed it. Add a second helping of dessert, otherwise known as anxiety and hey presto, we have ourselves a P-A-R-T-Y! Lets invite all of our mates round. Oh hey self-harm, skin-picking, hair pulling, nail-biting – it’s been ages.
When I say ‘journaling’ I am kind of talking about the ‘Dear Diary’ style of jotting down the days happenings, but instead of thinking about what I was going to write or writing for someone to read – I just wrote. I wrote and I wrote and I noticed my breathing calmed, my leg stopped jigging up and down and I noticed I had focused on one thing which silenced the 70,000 other thoughts that were whizzing around my noggin. It was nice. It worked.
I didn’t feel embarrassed by what I wrote, I actually felt proud – like I had achieved clarity by myself through my words. It didn’t matter that the words were on paper, the paper helped me when I couldn’t articulate my feelings and emotions with talking. I realised that what I had written got to the heart of my ‘flip’ within a paragraph, which was incredible. Because I wrote my feelings down so they could stop the pain in my heart and head, but because they were on paper – I could see them.
My depression is invisible and something I can hide and bury within myself, so when I am experiencing a whirlpool of negativity in my mind, it’s hard knowing what to ‘fix’ and what tool to use, but as if by magic I could see them. I could see them and I could show them and so I did, which started a conversation between my better half and I and I didn’t feel alone. Just like that. No feeling of dread and doom. I felt supported. I felt loved and cared for. Today will be a good day.
What tools, practises or outlets do you use or would like to try for your mental health? Leave a comment below and lets get chatting about s**t that works.