Anxiety and Depression
By Ray Terris
I did not intend to write anything about anxiety and depression
in a website about success. However when I realized how prevalent they are in
todays society I knew that I had to offer some help. Depression hurts people of
all ages. I am not a medical doctor and if you have chronic depression you should seek professional help.
Causes of Depression
There are many causes of anxiety and depression, they are
usually based on the pressures that other people and society put on us.
Adolescent depression is far too common. Young people particularly try to please
their peers and the adults around them. From a very early age we are bombarded
with other peoples ideas and expectations and made to feel that anyone who does
not meet their standards is somehow a failure.
You have to have a good education, you must pass these exams,
get a good job, make lots of money, find a mate, get drunk..... "You cant do it?
What a loser." Education, money and so on can be important but happiness comes
It is a wonder that anybody gets past puberty with any sanity
left. We have to stop driving our young people crazy. I really do not believe
that life is supposed to be some sort of rat race competition. We should be
teaching our children, and ourselves, that life should be an enjoyable
What is the point of pressuring a teenager to become this or do
that, you are going to drive them into so much anxiety and depression that life
is not worth living. Too often their solution is suicide.
Depression Self Help
Step one: You are not a loser, put that firmly in your
head. You are a miracle of creation, you survived birth, you have survived this
long and there is nobody better at being you than you. Nobody should have to
live up to someone else's expectations, let them live up to their own, you have
your life to live. This does not mean that you should not listen to advice or
suggestions, you can learn a lot that way, but be your own person.
Anxiety and depression are introversion, looking inwards, it is
time to come out. So here is how to go about...
Anxiety and depression hurts, it is not a nice place to be, you
have to fight back. One of the nasty things about depression is that it makes
you not want to do anything, except give up. Get tough with it, adopt the
attitude that you are not going to let anxiety and depression rule you. Fighting
depression is not always easy but it can be done.
It will not be easy to get started on the steps below but once
you do, things get easier almost instantly. Have faith in yourself and take half
an hour to get started, you will see that it does work. A little push now or a
lifetime of misery later.
My Depression Cure
When you wake up, say out loud "Hello world" and smile, even if
you have to fake it at first. Admire the day, even if it is raining appreciate
that the plants need watering.
Go to a park or country setting and look around. Find a tree and
take a good look at it, feel the bark and leaves, push on it to feel how strong
it is. Then tell it that it is a good looking tree. Then look at some birds,
animals and plants, notice something that you could like about them and
compliment them on it.
I know that this sounds silly at first but a little silliness
goes a long way towards curing anxiety and depression, making a life brighter. People will sometimes tell me
that I am weird, I agree with them, I would hate to be normal. The normal in our
society is rushed, worried and depressed, why be normal, be extraordinary. You
should not go out of your way to be different, just be yourself.
The Game of Life
Find some goofy things to do. Have a water fight, roll down a
hill, be 'childish'. Laughter is a good depression cure, it is very hard to stay
depressed when you are laughing.
I remember in my late teens I had two friends who would act
silly with me, just harmless playing around. There was one occasion when we were
at the beach and there was a summer thunderstorm, everybody else ran to take
shelter in a small cafe. We stood outside, linked arms and started dancing and
'singing in the rain', waving at the others through the window. A police officer
came over and asked "having fun boys?", my friend said "Yes sir, we sure are."
The policeman laughed and said "Good for you, keep it up", I think we brightened
up his day.
The one thing that I noticed was that some of the people were
giving us nasty looks and some were laughing at us. Three young ladies came out
and joined us in the rain dancing, it was great. I realized that most of the
people in the restaurant were actually jealous, wishing that they could let
loose, I felt sorry for them.
You can have fun with just about everything, some things are
important but they do not have to be serious.
All Things Pass
In my final year of school in England we had to take some exams
called GCEs, General Certificate of Education from the University of London. We
were led to believe that to have a good career you had to pass some of these. I
was terrified of taking exams and they were a huge problem to me. The night
before the first exam I was so worried that I went outside and started crying
(Huh? guys aren't supposed to cry). It was obviously the end of the world.
When I looked up at the stars they did not seem worried, nor did
the trees, they would still be there. This calmed me down, I realized that they
were just tests, something to challenge me. If I passed or failed no big deal,
life would go on. I am sure that if I had gone into those exams terrified, as
many did, I would have failed them all. I passed all four exams that I took.
Looking back now, I know that passing those exams made
absolutely no difference in my life for the long run. Yes I did get a 'good'
job, it was so boring that I quit and went out to do what I wanted to. I have
never regretted it.
Anxiety and depression hurts, give them up and start enjoying
life the way you want to, regardless of what other people might expect of you.
Yes take responsibility, be a good citizen, because anything else will cause you
grief, but do it on your own terms. For even more on this look at
Check out my other pages on
and when you feel ready for it check out
How to set Goals to give your life direction.
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