Monday, February 8, 2016

Shit going uphill

Depression is tough. The reality of being depressed over a long period of time is so sapping of vitality. For me, I use metaphors from cycling to relate to depression.

First, the words we use are real - real in the psychological sense, but like dirt on a chain, they build up slowly until they stop allowing clear decisions to occur, like how a dirty chain stops crisp shifting.

Second, the words we use in our minds need to change from negative to positive to prevent them from piling up and gumming up the system of clear thought. So instead of having a problem (negative word) that needs to be fixed (negative word) because it is broken (negative word), see a challenge (positive word) that needs to be turned into manageable goals (positive construction of words).

Third, because psychology is much more complicated than a clean drivetrain, it is vital to our mental health that we give ourselves some slack to deal with real pressures - some are internal, some external. Know to divide them, then to manage each separately so as to be aware of where your stressors are coming from.

Fourth, it can be bewildering to find the source of stress, and so yes, like taking your bike to a pro to isolate that annoying creak, take yourself to a pro and let them find the problem. The solution is harder to hear at times because the tools are words and words can be so flitting. Keep this in mind: words are real to your psychology, so they do have an effect, and the ones the pros give you - mind them like you would the highest end tools for bike maintenance - they are essential to getting back on track.

Fifth, the inability to make clear decisions is my benchmark for depression creep. Take a moment to objectively take good stock of the decisions you've made to help build up the sense of clear thought. Like if you've brushed your teeth, it means you've decided that you need good oral hygiene and that is a goal that you can keep in check. Move from the basics and into more fundamental goals. It's surprising how they all intertwine and are balanced with one another.

Sixth, don't discount being social as avoiding your problems. If it helps your mental health, then what's the problem? It helps! Enjoy it, be in the moment to really be appreciative of those times to just not worry about your mental health. It's a relief isn't it so why complicate it?

Seventh, stop making things complicated to figure out. Well, that's an oversimplification, but break down the complicated stuff into simple stuff. Remember, clear decisions: clean drivetrain: better shifting when shit goes uphill.

Eighth, and the hardest for anyone: Quitting or worse, going backwards. Sometimes that is just what you've gotta do. The race is too hard, gotta quit. The injury is too bad, gotta quit. Reinvent. It's the only way to take on a change like that. You're going to have to just work hard at trying to put together a new strategy, a new perspective. And you know what hard work is. That is a plus, you have that knowledge in spades. Just keep trying to reinvent.

That's all I've got, I hope the best for anyone that is carrying the weight of depression. It is just such a heavy burden.

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