for the strugglers of depression & anxiety:
Updated: Dec 29, 2020
Mental illness is real. It’s not “just feeling a little sad” or “being worried”. It’s far more complex than that. Regardless of what type of mental illness you may struggle from: depression, bipolar disorder, OCD, eating disorders PTSD (the list goes on); you are valid. Your thoughts are valid. Your feelings are valid. Your mind is valid. This is for you.
For me, one of the most frustrating things surrounding mental health is when people place negative stigmas around it. The societal disapproval and shame that is placed on people who struggle with mental illness is wrong. This can come from friends, family, co-workers etc. and prevents us who live with these struggles from getting help and leading happy, comfortable lives.
During my season of depression, I didn’t eat. I didn’t get out of bed. I didn’t talk to anyone. Simple acts like brushing my teeth or showering seemed impossible. It was draining. The feeling of overwhelming sadness consumed me some days. Other days, I was completely numb to everything. The ups and downs that come with mental illness are grueling. But from one fighter to another, please do not give up.
I know you feel like you’ll never get better but I promise, you will.
Advocate for yourself! Tell a trusted friend or family member how you’re feeling (no matter how minor or insignificant it may seem). Journal. Listen to music. Go on walks in nature. Seek therapy. Take your meds!!! Count little things as blessings. Breathe in for 5 seconds, hold your breath for 3, and breathe out for 7 seconds. Use your senses; feel the wind on your face, listen to your moms voice, smell your favorite flower, chew on a piece of gum. This helps to refocus your mind on the present and be aware of what is real, what is happening right now. Accept yourself, flaws and all! Pet your dog or cat. These things have all helped me so give them a try!
Soft reminders for when you’re feeling hopeless:
-You have value even when you can’t get out of bed.
-You are deserving of love, kindness and time.
-You will ALWAYS have inherent worth, unaffected by your level of functioning or productivity.
-You are worth the ‘burden’ of getting help and recovering.
For when you are feeling unworthy:
-You deserve to eat.
-You deserve to hear nice things people say about you.
-You deserve to be happy.
-You deserve people in your life you can confide in about your mental illness.
-You deserve to be loved, fully and unapologetically, for who you are.
-You deserve to exist.
-You deserve not to feel guilty for the above. Just because you are in a battle with your mental health doesn’t mean you are less deserving than others.
Lastly, know you aren’t alone. Millions of people suffer. Some suffer outwardly. Some suffer in silence. We all cope with our struggles in different ways but the one thing we share is that we all struggle. You matter and I’m here for you!
Sending you all the love, happiness and hope.