My depression toolkit

Could depression’s pernicious traits have a positive side? I wouldn’t have thought so a while ago but I’m working on reframing the role that depression plays in my life. As a result I’ve repurposed the rumination, sadness, anger, frustration, fatigue and social isolation that define depression for me into actual tools that I can use to dig myself out a hole.

Here’s how:

Rumination: rather than trapping my head in a running loop of negative thinking I will use this trait to tenaciously persist until I think of a solution to what is bothering me.

Sadness: I can hold my grief for a while, allowing empathy for myself and others with depression to grow.

Anger and frustration are motivators. Frustration arises when I care a great deal about outcomes. I can acknowledge and appreciate that I am a caring, helpful human being and then let go of things over which I have no control.

Fatigue is an early warning sign that tells me I need to take better care of myself.

Social isolation has taught me to be comfortable in solitude which is essential for self reflection. I rarely feel lonely when I’m alone.

So this is what my growth looks like at this point. If you have a messy head like mine, I hope that sharing this has helped. Have a great week!

Thank you to the good folks at Thought Journal for being the first to publish this article.

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