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Tag Archives: Depression

Stuck at a crossroads.

I feel as though I’ve been stuck in the mud; spinning my wheels, trying to get out of a ditch with no luck. I hate complaining about it because I think back to when I was so depressed that I didn’t see the point in living this life anymore.

I’m not depressed now, I know that, but I feel somewhat indifferent, especially in the past few days and I’m not sure what’s worse. It seems as though I’m just going through the motions with no specific goal or purpose. Sure I have things that I’m working towards such as changing my body and the way that I take care of it, thinking of possibly getting my personal training certificate, and so on.

But on the other side of that, I’m not thrilled with my everyday life, especially my professional life. I used to be proud and happy to be working in my industry (and I’ve been in the investments industry for about six years now), but things have changed and I’ve seen the darker side of it – through the way the economy has blown up in the past few years in addition to things that have happened during my tenure at my current job (which I’ve had for four years already). I’ve never been this unhappy with it.

I wonder if it’s really my circumstances or my attitude. I’m really leaning toward this being an attitude problem. I’ve been in plenty of situations in my twnety six years of exsistence on this planet where they weren’t pretty, but I was able to put it all aside and enjoy life. I just haven’t been able to do this since 2010. As of right now, I have a bad attitude and that’s pretty clear. Certain members of my family and a few friends have taken notice of it and that kills me, because that’s not me. I’m usually pretty easy going, happy but it’s been hard to get to that point again. I don’t want to push people away because I’m so negative. I need to make a change.

I have to do a total attitude overhaul. My problem right now is that I’m going through a transitional point in my life. I’m thinking that I’ll probably move out of my parents house next year, my boyfriend and I have been dating for four years already (but there’s no timetable for marriage), and I have no idea as to what I want to do with my life. For whatever reason these and other potential events/ideas have been driving me up a wall. I feel as though I haven’t done enough and that I’m not where I should be professionally, socially, etc. It’s a strange feeling, I’ve never felt such pressure before in my life.

But instead of dealing with my feelings and just being happy for what I have and all that I’ve accomplished, I don’t take good care of myself, plus I harbor negativity and it sometimes comes out when I’m dealing with others at home, work, or in a social setting. I have a loving family and boyfriend, I have a handful of loyal, good friends, I have my MBA, and I have a good paying, stable job (not interested in the job function though). Yet it seems as though for now, it’s not enough and I’m not sure why. I sound like a spoiled brat and honestly, I feel as though that’s how I’ve been acting recently and I’m thoroughly disappointed with myself.

All I’ve been saying is that “I’m going to change, I’m going to change”, but I haven’t. I’m still wakling around with this chip on my shoulder at work, I’m complaining constantly to my family and friends, and I’m just not at peace. It’s a rough position to be in and at the end of the day, it’s 100% my fault.

So where do I go from here? For one thing, I feel like I have to be honest going forward. Perhaps that’s the first step. Limiting my time of Facebook was a good starting point for that; I had to admit to myself that as much as I “didn’t care” about what I was reading, I actually did care… a lot, too much even. With that said, I actually went on the website more than once this weekend. I did a lot of cleaning up on there, I unsubscribed to most of my friends’ posts, I subscribed to some great female fitness professionals to catch some of their articles and I even went a step further. I’m not sure if I’m going to delete the account or not, but for now, I’m just glad that it’s less toxic for me now. One interesting point that came from Friday’s “cleanse” is that I unfriended someone who’ve I’ve been relatively close to in recent years. I’ve had this friend, who hasn’t really treated me like a good friend would. She’s been dating this guy and has completely ignored me unless he’s not around. She’s been pissing me off for some time, yet I’ve been too afraid to cut her out of my life because I’m just generally afraid to lose friends. On Friday though, I decided to cut her, electronically speaking. Granted, that’s not enough and eventually I’ll have to say something to her in real life, but for me that was huge. I “unfriended” her because I couldn’t stand to read her posts that bragged about her awesome life that she so happily kept me out of for no reason. I had have enough and finally did what I should’ve done a long time ago.

There are a few things that need to be changed in my life right now. First and foremost I need to be honest about how I’ve been living. I’ll admit, I haven’t been taking great care of myself. It’s been nothing insanely bad, as in I don’t smoke or do drugs. I’m not much of a drinker either. But in terms of diet and exercise, I’m doing better, but I tend to make a lot of excuses for myself when my consistency comes into question. In addition, I don’t take good care of my appearance. I have to do my skin care regiment every day, not once every few days. I need to wash and take care of my hair more, even though it’s a pain because it’s so thick and frizzy. I need to portray a better appearance every day and take care of myself. Perhaps put on a little bit of makeup for work. Wear some more jewelry. Make sure that my clothes are ironed and not all wrinkled. I think me letting go of my appearance reflects a bigger problem and that’s my attitude and indifference towards life right now.

Another thing that needs to be addressed in my life is the “relationship garbage”. What I mean by that is all of the gossiping and poor treatment given to me and given by me. I’m not a saint. I’ve said and done some not-so-nice things and I know this. I need to change the way that I treat other people; instead of talking behind someone’s back, I need to talk and address my concerns directly to them. I also need to stop critizing and judging others’ actions and beliefs. People are going to do what they want to do and I am no one to judge.

In terms of the treatment that I receive, I need to stop lying to myself and let go of people who do not have my best interests at heart. I tend to keep people around because for whatever reason my brain associates “a healthy social life” with a larger quantity of friends rather than having quality friends. This is wrong and I know it but my thinking has clearly been so off that I’m not surprised. I’m not surprised that I’ve kept people in my life who only use me for favors, but when I need them they’re nowhere to be found. This needs to stop and I need to tell these people exactly how I feel instead of ignoring the problem and letting it fester in my head.

As you can see, I’m at a point in my life where things need to change. I can’t let this go on any longer. I can’t keep making excuses for not changing my every day life, not changing my thoughts, for not even trying. It’s been too long and I am tired of feeling so indifferent and negative, depending on the day.

Here’s hoping that tomorrow is truly a new day and I’m not just bullshitting.

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Posted by on February 12, 2012 in Changing My Situation, Communication, Life's Goals

 

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The lessening of Facebook withdrawal symptoms.

Sad to say, but I have had some withdrawal from Facebook this week. I haven’t looked at the website since last Friday with the exception of sending a message to a friend of mine and my boyfriend’s who is currently serving in the U.S. Army overseas in Afghanistan. But I haven’t seen others’ photos, status’, nothing for almost a week and needless to say it’s been an overall good experience. However, I still think about what I may be missing, but those thoughts have decreased throughout the week, which is a plus.

When I start to wonder about what I’m “missing out on”, I bring myself back to Earth and realize how much more time that I have to LIVE MY LIFE. My REAL life. You don’t realize how much time you waste on social media until you cut it out of your routine.

With this newfound free time, I’ve been visiting and reading so many wonderful blogs that I’ve found or who’ve found me on WordPress. I’ve been able to devote much more time to this blog and my fitness blog, 6 in Six. I’ve been catching up on the news and communicating more with my friends and family via traditional means (the phone, face to face, etc.).

I’ve been devoting more time to thinking about my life; i.e. what are my passions, what would I like to explore and possibly pursue both personally and professionally, etc. Granted, self-exploration hasn’t been a pleasant experience for me as it’s made me frustrated and downright depressed in the past few days, but it’s productive. It’s better than staring at my computer screen reading Facebook statuses about people who “love their lives and their jobs” or how “everything is perfect”. Because then I’m just sitting there, not being productive and probably more envious/jealous/depressed/angry than I am today. Let’s be honest, if you have to say it out loud, it’s possible that it’s not exactly true. I believe that there are people on Facebook who like to play the impression management game; they show everyone their wonderful lives, but in reality, things aren’t what they seem. Regardless of the truth, the impression or image that they reflect affects the viewer (in this case me). Even if I know something is not true, sometimes I have a hard time separating the truth from the lies, I believe what I see, and then I get anxious or depressed about how my own life doesn’t even compare. Then again, there are genuinely happy people on there, people who are like the way I used to be. Trust me, I’m happy for people who are fulfilled and pleased with their lives – more power to them. I aspire to be there myself one day, but if I ever get there again, I will NEVER brag about it, especially on a social media website. I was fully appreciative of my happiness when I had it; it was sacred to me because it made me feel genuinely good. I haven’t felt genuinely good for a long period of time in almost 2 years. Granted, things have gotten a lot better for me – I have little spurts of happiness here and there, so at least I’m grateful for that. But I still have a lot of work to do; I need to get out of “going through the motions” and really try to live a meaningful, fulfilling life.

Ever since I developed anxiety and depression in early 2010, I’ve valued happiness so much more, which is what keeps me fighting to find it again. When I was happy, I never took it for granted because I knew (and still know) others who have suffered from anxiety and depression. I never understood these conditions, I always thought that they should be easy to pull out of, but the reality of the situation is that they’re not. They require effort and lots of it.

I believe that by cutting out Facebook, I’m just putting more effort into improving my life. I’ve come this far (6 days) without the site at all. I’m seriously wondering if I should even go on it once per week anymore as my plans to not look at the Newsfeed or take a few days off haven’t worked out well. I’m over the general anxiety phase that I had on Saturday and Sunday where I wanted to look at the site so badly and didn’t know what to do with myself.

Why would I want to relive that start all over?

Maybe I’ll see how long I can holdout for and if I’m feeling brave enough and ready, perhaps I’ll finally delete my account.

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2012 in Changing My Situation, Facebook Rants

 

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I need a change of pace.

I sat at my desk at work today and was bored. I am just plain bored there. I’ve been getting better at telling myself that I’m only staying there until after my boss’ baby is born, then I’m restarting my job hunt. Some days just get hard to sit through though, especially since my job is rarely intellectually stimulating and I get little to no respect.

In the meantime, I’ve really been trying to change things up in my life – I’m training with a personal trainer three times per week, I play volleyball once per week, and I’m a member of a women’s volunteer group that meets a few times per month. So far, doing all of this has certainly helped, but I’m still not fully happy. Before my anxiety and depression blew up almost two years ago (wow, time flies), I was always happy regardless of my situation. I was courageous and had lots of faith in myself and the world at large. I’ve been a lot better, my depression is gone and my anxiety is phenomenally better, but I still have to fight to relax and just be happy and enjoy.

I feel as though my job is the one thing that’s really holding me back at this point. I want more flexibility and I want meaningful work. The day-to-day boredom is mind numbing and I want to be excited to go to work in the morning. In theory, I’d really like to start my own business, but for now, at 26, I’m just focusing on having steady employment within my field. However, for now, I’ve made the decision to stay put and do the right thing for karma’s sake. I also needed a break from the job hunt – looking for a job in investments is difficult in this economy.

In a selfish way, I hope down the line that my patience pays off and I am rewarded for helping my boss out.

 
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Posted by on February 1, 2012 in Changing My Situation, Life's Goals

 

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Thoughts a few days post-Facebook purge.

In all honesty (I’m kind of ashamed to admit some of these points), I had a variety of emotions after I had basically chopped my Facebook friend list down significantly to 207 friends. A part of me felt strong and empowered that I was finally able to take, for lack of a better term, “drastic action” (overdramatic) after so much internal conflict (over a social media website, who knew?). On the other hand, I got a little anxiety thinking about how much I was going to miss and questioning whether or not I have offended anyone by my actions. Sounds a bit off, right? I think it does. Why would I get this upset over virtual reality?

However, as I’m sitting here typing this entry today, I’ve been thinking that all of these emotions are the result of deeply seeded personality traits/attitudes/issues that I have in physical reality. Even though I didn’t speak to most of the people who I unfriended, I had a hard time cutting them out mainly due to my curiosity over how other people are living their lives, which in itself is a huge problem. My comparing my life to others has certainly contributed to my anxiety and Facebook really fed into those comparisons. It gets exhausting getting anxious and/or depressed because you saw a girl that you went to high school with get engaged, married, buy a huge house, have a baby and become a stay at home mom. Or when you see pictures of groups of people travelling or having a party, having a seemingly exciting and adventurous social life and you start questioning your own life and whether or not you’re “living it up” as they say. Clearly I’ve had these thoughts, therefore bringing about this Facebook cleanup for my own sanity.

Another thing that I thought about was whether or not I would offend someone by unfriending them. In the real world, I have an unhealthy obsession with being friends with everyone and being a people pleaser because I’m afraid to lose friends. There I said it – I sometimes stay with certain friends and make attempts to reach out even when it’s not reciprocated or I’m being treated badly. I don’t know why, but I feel like I can’t fully depend on myself yet (I used to before I developed anxiety), so I chose to keep anyone and everyone in my life even though I know that there are friends I should probably dump. That’s a confidence issue that I’ve been working on in therapy and will continue to work on as time goes on. Not that I was personally hurt when all 500 “friends” of mine didn’t write “Happy birthday” on my “wall”, but when a handful of people you’ve known for years miss or ignore your birthday on such an easy platform (i.e. login, write happy birthday, logout) and don’t even follow-up in any other medium (phone, text, e-mail, etc), that’s when I get offended. I tend to take things personally and that is always something that would make me feel down, yet I never call out people on their actions. I stay quiet and wait for things to blow over in my head. By deleting people off my friends list, I feel as though I’ve made a concerted effort to push myself to do what’s best for me regardless of what other people may think.

I need to stop caring about what other people may think; of me, my life, etc. That’s not to say that I need to act like a bitch as that’s certainly not my intention, but I need to speak up more and live my life for me. On the other hand, I read way too into things, take things personally, and in reality, few people actually care about what I’m doing. No one is watching me as we all have our own lives and things to worry about.

And somehow I seem to forget that sometimes.

 
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Posted by on January 4, 2012 in Communication, Facebook Rants

 

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Christmas: Fun, but not perfect.

Christmas provides such a strange dichotomy for many people, myself included. The thought of decorations, time with family and friends, giving presents makes me giddy, yet at the same time, the ideas surrounding Christmas (i.e. perfection and happiness all of the time) make me feel less than adequate. Don’t be fooled, I do love Christmas, but I guess as I get older and see that things aren’t perfect (i.e. my family, etc.), it gets me thinking. I think when I was a child I believed that everyone was happy largely due to the fact that I wasn’t exposed to more adult themes such as depression, drug use, etc. that existed in my family. I only found out about these things later in my life and now this knowledge makes reality, especially around the holidays, a bit harder to swallow.

After I developed anxiety and depression (again, it’s for the most part, controlled or even gone), my ability to focus on my own life and not compare it to others’ has been a bit of a struggle. Last Christmas was my first Christmas with those issues and it wasn’t pleasant as they were running rampant at that point. This Christmas is so much better, but I suppose that my anxiety gets the better of me nowadays and makes me question whether or not I’m “doing things right” or what others would think of my lifestyle. Sounds weird, right? YES because IT IS WEIRD. Granted, there are some things going on, including having a small family and a great-uncle who has Dementia, that can contribute to off feelings at this time. But there is a lot that I have to look forward to and enough people who I have to be grateful for. It’s just hard controlling these feelings sometimes, especially at a time where people are supposed to be living this idyllic holiday season with nothing but positivity abounding as per society and consumerism.

Amir A. Afkhami, a blogger for Psychology Today, explains this as the “Christmas Blues” (the namesake for his entry): http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/global-mental-health/201112/christmas-blues

His advice:

“It is important for individuals to acknowledge the difficulties during this period: seek professional help with severe Christmas depression when needed. However, staying active and not isolated, reducing alcohol consumption and being aware and mindful of difficult family dynamics can lessen holiday blues. Most importantly, remember that the advertising hype and picture perfect imagery is fictional; don’t let it define your experience!”

It’s great advice that I think resonates with many different people.

On a funnier note, the holidays also bring about bragging via Christmas letters. Now I’ve never been the victim of a Christmas letter, nor has my family (I guess we can be grateful for having friends who don’t send out such things). But I know of people who’ve sent them out and how pretentious these letters can be. Dr. Mark Sherman examines them in his hysterically funny blog entry: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/real-men-dont-write-blogs/201112/our-life-is-perfect-and-yours

This is probably the predecessor to the Facebook epidemic that we see year round now. Life would be so much easier for everybody if people would just stop bragging. Perhaps we can celebrate one another’s achievements and support those who’ve gone through rough times. Even just sharing real news, not just the good stuff, would help make things better for everyone in the sense that people would finally see that they’re not alone in their struggles whether they’re financial, family related, etc. Although, I’m not sure that I’d need to know everything that went wrong…

“On a sad note, we had to put Puddles to sleep. They say you don’t get attached to hamsters, but take my word for it, you do.”

I just had to laugh at that.

I hope that everyone has a wonderful holiday season – whatever holidays you do celebrate! I chose to share my feelings on how I view the holidays not to be sad or morbid (as for the most part, I’m really enjoying myself this year) but just to throw it out there just in case someone else feels the way that I do and needs to know that they’re not alone.

Perhaps my sharing can help.

 
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Posted by on December 23, 2011 in Family

 

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I turned down the offer.

I was offered the job yesterday. However, it was a terrible package and I decided to say no. I’m glad that I was able to think about this rationally and back off.

Beyond that, my health blog, 6 in Six (link to the right) is going strong – 7 days! I’m excited that I’ve stuck to it so far!

Finally, some really interesting news in the mainstream media regarding birth control, in particular, Yaz. Last night on ABC World News the dangers of Yaz were discussed. I’m glad that this is getting out in the public now. Women need to be made aware and educated on what they could potentially be doing to their bodies either on Yaz or any other hormonal birth control pill or method (IUD/implanon/patch). I feel as though the onset of depression and anxiety that I had almost two years ago while on Yaz was a blessing in disguise. Perhaps it was my body trying to warn me that worse things could happen down the line if I continued to ingest the pill? I’m just glad that I listened to my body – as of December 7th (I know it’s already early December 8th as I write this) I’m pill free for 8 months. I feel more and more like myself with every passing day. I’m lucky that I got off before anything more severe happened to me and I hope that more and more women will do the right thing for themselves as well.

Watch this: http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/video/birth-control-pill-yaz-dangerous-women-15100854

It’s amazing that Bayer and other big pharmaceutical companies get away with this. Shame on them and shame on the U.S. government/FDA.

 

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Recognition of the dangers of synthetic hormones in the media.

A friend of mine from the Aphrodite Women’s Health Forum, Lauren G. (thank you!), sent me and a few other ladies a link to a very interesting article from the UK’s Daily Mail today.

How the Pill messes with women’s minds

This article discusses the erratic behavior and emotions that some women who were taking hormonal birth control experienced. Emotions ranging from extreme anger to depression. I myself experienced both of those in addition to crippling anxiety. This is very real; I really cannot stress this enough. I also want to say that it doesn’t happen to everyone. However, just because these women are the minority of pill users doesn’t mean that you can dismiss the possibility of these side effects occurring as a result of ingesting synthetic hormones. I hear the argument that there is no firm evidence that these hormones are the direct result, but there is no proof that they aren’t the cause either. Same holds true for synthetic hormones being linked to breast cancer and infertility. Many will argue that the pill (or ring/implant/shot) doesn’t affect fertility nor does it cause cancer, but there’s not enough evidence to prove that these chemicals don’t cause these issues for women.

If I may, I’d like to rant for a moment (these are strictly my opinions): Wake up, women of America and the world. We are guinea pigs for “big pharma” and they don’t give a shit about whether or not you go through hell due to their products. It’s all about the bottom line on their financial statements; not your health and “sexual freedom”. When I got off of Yaz after enduring severe panic attacks, anger and depression so bad that I thought about KILLING MYSELF, I called Bayer. I told them what happened, I filed a complaint with them. The response? “I’m sorry to hear that.” YOU’RE SORRY TO HEAR THAT?! What a joke. Don’t you think that’s it’s odd that more and more young women, in their 20s and 30s, are having more infertility issues, more miscarriages, and more occurrences of cancer than any other generation? Look at Giuliana Rancic (American television personality) – a seemingly healthy 36-year-old, who’s been having infertility issues and filling up her body with synthetic hormones in order to have a baby. She just announced this week that she’s been diagnosed with breast cancer. To say that the pill and other forms of synthetic hormones don’t contribute to these and other conditions is ludicrous. You’re pumping man-made chemicals into your body for God knows how many years. There is not enough historical data on the pill to prove or disprove any of these issues. All I know is that I’m lucky. I’m lucky that my body signaled to me that something was wrong. For all the trouble that I went through with the depression/anxiety, it was worth it to learn that the pill was bad and that I needed to get off of it. I listened to my body and in turn, I’ve been feeling so much better. Lord only knows what would’ve happened to me down the road if I ignored my body and continued on the pill.

Finally, someone in the mainstream media is writing about this. Someone, in this case, the author, Ms. Jill Foster, is calling out hormonal birth control. Usually, many articles about the pill sing its praises and downplay any possibility of women being affected by it negatively. I live in the US and I have never come across an article in a popular publication that discusses the negative side effects of the pill. It seems as though the pharmaceutical companies have a global strangle-hold on the media; for whatever reason, stories of women going through everything from nausea to suicide and everything in between at the hands of hormonal birth control are swept under the rug. I myself had to dig deep and search the internet to find other stories from women who experienced side effects. These are the websites that I found to be extremely helpful:

Aphrodite Women’s Health Forum

Ditch the Pill

Yasmin & Yaz Survivors

Ask a Patient – Yaz (you could look up any birth control pill on this website)

Yaz Forum

If you feel like something is wrong, more than likely it is. Your body will tell you when there’s a problem and you need to take control and listen to it. Talk to your doctor and discuss your options. We were not meant to mess with our bodies’ natural hormones and fluctuations.

My mom told me years ago not to go on the pill because it can cause many problems for women.

I should’ve listened to her.

 

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