Although I am officially bipolar for almost ten years now, it was for the first time today when it finally became official in my own worldview. You must understand, intellect was all I ever had and to accept something in my brain is not working right was not easy to accept. I went through stages when I enjoyed feeling of being in a unique group of individuals like Van Gogh, Churchill or Virginia Woolf. There were also times when I felt like damaged goods not worthy to take up space.
Today I sat myself down and for the first time and told myself that it is ok. Especially when one is in depression it is so easy to fall into the spiral of darkness and hopelessness. Nothing is worth doing/living, nothing brings joy and no, there is no at the tunnel. In times when I am depressed it is specifically difficult. I am usually mad at myself for being “lazy”, for not being able to do anything but watch tv shows all days and feeling pathetic when asked to do even simple thing. How should I feel excited about the fact that I made my bed in the morning? It is the most simple thing to do! It is ridiculous to cheer for something so trivial. My ego was constantly on me. Guarding my every inaction and mocking me down for loosing.
Few days ago I downloaded yet another game for my phone. I liked it for its calming music and universe environment. This is you:
A little blue sphere or planet if you like. You float in the darkness of universe and usually try to become the biggest sphere by “eating” smaller spheres, while avoiding black holes or bigger spheres which would consume you and finish your game.
If I should describe how my depression feels, the best would be to use this set up from the game:
Almost no space to breathe. The whole perspective seems impossible for me to move. But when I looked closer… it turned out to be true what my best friend used to say: Even the longest journey begins with first step! Little by little, step by step I focused on next step and staying safe and in the end I was able to become the biggest.
In the same way my mind works like this game or universe… if I get too close to black holes, I will most likely not succeed. If I got caught in orbit of depression or thoughts that constantly bring me down, I need other, stronger force to pull me out of it.
Lesson #1 Admit your size and context
I had to admit I am depressed. I had to tell myself that it is ok to be feel all the feelings I feel and be nice to myself as I would to any friend in my position. Depression is attracting most of the negative feelings, moods and thoughts and although it is not pleasant I have to endure it for a while. That is how it is now, even washing my hair is a big task! Making my bed or waking up two minutes earlier than I absolutely have to is a big task! Don’t be mad. Don’t be angry. Understand and rescale your sense of accomplishment (temporary, until you get back to normal – whatever that is).
Lesson #2 Only way to get bigger is to consume smaller
Does it feel ridiculous to be proud of making your bad? Since you already looked at step 1, your current state is world where simple things deserve to be celebrated and acknowledged. When you grew bigger, you can shift your attention to finishing half marathon, but you are not there, yet!
Lesson #3 Avoid black holes and bigger planets
Black holes suck your energy out. No matter how small they are whenever in touch with them, you will become weaker. What are these things in my mind? Perhaps thinking endlessly about things that could have been, but are not. Avoid bigger planets as well, those might be things that are not within your reach at the moment. As you grow stronger, you will be able to tackle things that are now hard, but it all will come with time.
Cherry on the top!
Do you want to change (your) world? Make your bed (motivational video)!