As anyone who has experienced depression knows it’s a range of emotional triggers; sadness, grief, anger, and hurt. It mobilizes you! You feel stuck and feel hopeless_____.
These feelings are like powerful waves. They pull us away from all that feels safe and good, away from where we can thrive. We doubt we can even survive and sometimes we don’t want to!
We can change this emotional state, this way of being! We stay in this frame of mind because we allow it to keep coming back! We stack up all the reasons for feeling as we do; justifying the right to feel as we do. The mind then thinks these are the files we think are most important, It then predicts and looks for other supporting files. We have what is called short-term and long-term memory. To have things move into long-term memory we rattle them around in short-term memory first. It all goes in! What we think and how we feel is also recorded. Think about what happens when you call up something that angers and hurts you! As you think of it what’s happening with your stomach, how does your heart feel, and your muscles tense? Likely some combo of these happens. So what is the nitty-gritty of this? It is our brains reacting chemically, sending out things like endorphins, The molecules begin to do their jobs. Knowing that it’s our thoughts that initiate the mind into taking action to do what is known as the fight and flight response does help. Because then we can look at how to change how we respond; the brain changes things up by sending out different chemicals, ones that make us feel happy and safe. How? Simply by making different, new choices; by taking positive actions. Just one change can make a difference. No one else can do it for you. The desire, the actions, and the self-talk must be your own! It’s your mind! Your body, Your life!
I spend years being unhappy. It started in childhood! I became confident with my self-talk/self-thinking. Early confidence? I learned not to trust in my parents by observing them and listening to their words and actions. When I went to bed, my parent downstairs became an old-time radio show until I fell asleep. I would hear one conversation, a parent would leave the room, and in came my grandmother, and often things were rehashed with a different twist. I saw my Dad or mother being two-faced. Later on, in life I realized as much as my opinion might be close to the real deal, I could be very wrong! I did not have the whole story or the experience! Parents I learned were on the same kind of learning curve I was on later on. I was judging according to what I knew, and my self-talk took me to where I stacked up the pros and cons I could use to understand. These experiences were my first brain files.
The flaw in family life is there are so many things we don’t know! Things we don’t know how to teach our children. This and there is a lack of time to do these things unless we make time. My parent did not know what I learned much later through classes. Growing up as I did, having a bad marriage the first time made me think a lot about communication. Later I would have an interpersonal communication class. A class that teaches you about the tone of voice, mixed messages, and body language______. Why am I mentioning this? Because these things are a big part of why we feel sad or happy! We are social beings! And what others say or do certainly affect us.
Another thought is, my parents did not think to talk about the fact that we all were individuals. That each of us were responsible for our own words and actions, much less that I could be in control of my feelings. They had never had the kind of discussions either, or if they did on some level it was not enough to make it stick. I should say that there were many good things taught, that they did do their best according to what they knew. In the end, this is what we do. We just need to fortify ourselves I feel.
I observed how my parents responded, and how others responded. I did not learn that I did not have to respond to everything, or that it was a choice. I did not learn I could say “No!” Instead, I had this need to control things, without feeling my power of self.
I did have positive people come into my life who influenced me. It helps to find that positiveness. It helps to trust and believe in one’s self. It helps to know thoughts come rolling by all the time, good, bad, and indifferent. But that it’s simply that they are thoughts and we don’t have to examine all of them, define them just because they come our way. Replacing them with new ideas and taking actions that distract the mind from them helps a lot! What happens is that we give the brain new information and it replaces those old thoughts. The more you do this, the less those old thoughts come up. This has worked for me! At this point, I feel really good! I found a new trigger I am using, and that is the program Happiness For No Reason, I found this on Gaiam TV. I watched it each day for about a week as I wanted the info to stick. It gave me what I needed to stop falling into a sense of feeling down, a sense of anxiety in my gut…unhappiness!
Best wishes! Pejj