Three Strategies I Have Used to Combat Depression
I haven’t wanted to write a blog post for this Sunday. I’ve been putting it off all week.
A friend of mine died on the 29th September, just over a week ago now.
For the first couple of days I was numb. And then for the next couple of days I grieved, and there were tears. Lots of them.
The grief then acted as a trigger for the depression which lurks in the corners of my life, waiting to spring.
Fortunately I’ve had enough experience of the black dog pouncing upon me that I have strategies in place to deal with him.
Top of the list was calling my GP, who agreed to adjust my medication for a month or two.
I also knew I needed to keep lines of communication open with my friends and family. Not that I need to sit down and talk with them about every bad feeling I am experiencing, but my natural tendency when feeling like this is to withdraw into myself. Much like a tortoise will do if it senses an attack, withdrawing all of its soft tissue and vulnerable places inside its hard shell. This is a remarkable tactic when the attack is approaching from the outside, but a terrible one for the person who is being attacked from the inside.
And the third strategy is exercise. Specifically, for me at least, it is running. Running outside, in daylight, through the countryside. Nodding acknowledgement to and saying hello to other runners, being passed by cyclists, being aware of the sights and sounds of nature, of the air on my skin and in my lungs.
These three strategies are a way of fortifying myself. Of remembering that I am alive still, and that life is worth living.
Another strategy for life is to create, to actively engage in the pursuit of creativity. For me that is writing.
And so this where I am going to finish this week’s post.
Because I have a novel to continue working on.