I love being healthy, yet a lot of the time I focus on food and exercise and forget about the mental aspect of health. Good sleep, mediation, yoga, exercises that calm your mind and train you brain, not your body.
For me personally I have had low moments, struggles with finances, or relationships, often a major attack of loneliness, and I have felt down and out. However I have refused to title it as depression as I have always been able to swing back up and get moving again.
However during those low moments, it did feel like there was no solution, no way out. I can only imagine what it would be like to carry the black dog around with you everywhere.
The funny thing is I am a massive dog lover, I have two of them who are very close to my heart. One of them is black, but his name isn’t depression, it’s Rhiley.
I don’t’ have a PHD or any qualifications for giving official advise on depression, however from the small amount of research I have done, and the personal development courses and books I have read, here is what I have found helped pick me up when I was down.
Step 1 – Awareness
People tend to be in their heads a lot these days, either thinking about what could happen, or was has happened, but not so much about what is happening. When I was low, I learnt to really identify that I was in that spot. Once I was aware, I was able to choose my response.
Sure I often stayed there, and I just laid in bed, or would stay in my head in a nearby park or beach. However often I was able to choose a more productive option, which is step 2.
Step 2 – Take Action
I always find when I am a bit flat, or struggling with motivation, it is taking action that ends up creating the motivation. I dig deep and find the motivation to exercise, write in a journal, or ring a friend and pop around to say hi. This action nearly always switches on a something in my mind and can turn negative thoughts into positive ones.
Step 3 – Open Up
This is by far the hardest for me, and that is opening up and talking about ‘the black dog’. I have only ever spoken to a few people about being a bit low, as I am way to scared about what people would think, however the odd occasion I would speak about being sad, or being lonely, I always got ab understanding ear, and a sympathetic tone.
As the video talks about dogs are way better when they are tamed, so if you can, be aware, take action, and talk about it. You might find a very happy playful black puppy on the other side.