I have always loved having my own blogs, free websites, profiles and all since I was a young teenager and was first introduced to the internet.
I used to use America Online /AOL free homepages and profiles to write all about myself and promote what I loved, usually tv shows, friends, and silly teenage stuff I was really, really into back then.
I created as many as I could about any topic under the sun.
But I usually never stayed with one blog or website too long.
Since I had no credit card and no money and the hosts were free much of my exercise over them was very limited.
Then a few years ago I became extremely interested in the topic of Personal Development.
I have always been one to think positive more than negative when I wasn’t depressed and I have always liked the idea of self help topics.
But some years ago I came across a facebook page (Personal Development and Inspiration) promoting the blog by Justin Tillman previously at JustinTillman.com now http://www.theuncommonlife.net/
And it touched and inspired me so deeply.
I became more aware of the impact personal development and self help books, blogs, topics, websites, other people’s life stories…can have on us if we only let them.
I read Justin Tillman’s blog and facebook statuses and everything I could, written by him, and it opened me up to the world of true positive thinking as a way of life and an intentional developed habit and working on the self to create the life of your dreams. His life inspired my life. His self acceptance deeply touched me and motivated me to accept parts of myself I was so unwilling to accept. Even if you’re already a mostly positive and happy person, whether or not you struggle with a mental health condition, personal development as a subject can really help you.
Many people reject it and think it’s silly or common sense or only for people with very serious problems, or only for the weak.
None of this is true.
Anyone can benefit in different ways and to different degrees and I find it quite inspirational and uplifting to read or hear positive things even if it’s something I already know or heard before. Friendly reminders every now and then are great.
I believe maintaining healthy self esteem and maintaining inspiration and motivation and an extra positive attitude is somewhat similar to learning a new language.
You have to keep up on it to make it useful to you a long while later. When you take a language course, it’s not realistic to learn the language and never use it or practice or keep up on it and expect to remember it flawlessly years or maybe even months or weeks later. You’ll soon forget.
And so it is with personal development practices.
You have to consciously and intentionally work at it if you genuinely want it to always stay with you and be a part of your life.
“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” – Zig Ziglar
Personal development techniques have to be learned, practiced, and strictly and seriously applied though before they can be completely effective for the long term.
You really can’t just skim through a book, take it lightly and just forget it and then claim it’s stupid or don’t work. Well, you can but that’s not a good idea. You have to use it to the best of your ability for it to help transform you.
Self help books and blogs, just like psychotherapy sessions and therapists won’t change your life just by themselves, YOU have to work along with them and the choice is ultimately up to you, no one else.
No one can change your life except for you but people and things can help greatly along the way. They can be crucial to your healing.
I read self help books and have been in psychotherapy sessions for a while and noticed that they did help me a lot but it’s not until one moment of despair when I decided I could take no more, contemplating ending my life, that I turned the other way and really decided to take charge of my own life, my own mind, my own self that those books and therapy really changed me for the better.
I gathered up every personal development book I had and bought more and I searched the internet for any blogs, websites, people, e-books, anything that could help me help myself and I have become more receptive and practiced and applied more and practiced more mindfulness meditation and practiced every technique I have ever learned that I felt would work for me and it helped me incredibly and still does til this day.
For once I felt compassion for myself that I felt for others and I knew that it’s up to me to be sure I don’t lose my life to the pain and despair of depression and physical pain.
I was bursting with joy and amazement for everything I knew and learned and with this newfound light and awakening inside and I wanted not only to help myself but to share all this with as many people I possibly could whether they have severe mental health issues, minor stress problems, or just want to make some things in their lives and the lives of others, better.
I posted stuff on facebook in hopes to help people learn what I have learned and experienced. But what I really wanted was a specific blog dedicated to mostly positive, inspirational, personal development stuff.
I tried weebly, yola, blogger, and many others that just are not compatible with my mobile phone which is what I’m always using. I don’t usually have computer access.
I would get discouraged and give up.
And one day a facebook friend of mine suggested I write an ebook or create a facebook like page or a blog for this.
That gave me motivation to try again and I somehow came across a wordpress blackberry app.
I installed it and it doesn’t work on my phone but it led me to realize that while it can be difficult and frustrating at some points, internet wordpress works on my phone without the app, to a certain point.
I can’t do everything I can on a computer and it’s kind of slow when I’m posting but still works and is very worth the trouble it sometimes causes.
I want to and plan to start posting here more.
The thing that usually stops me is the slowness and partial incompatibility with my phone and wordpress. But this blog is actually one of my biggest dreams! Lol it may sound stupid to some.
But I have always for sooo long wanted an online blog to make a collection of all my personal development ideas I have come up with and learned and read, my own and other people’s. And here it is!
Like I said before, it’s not the prettiest or well advanced but it’s everything I dreamed of.
I have known people who gave up on therapy and personal development books and materials saying they weren’t working.
Therapists, doctors, medication, books, life coaches cannot cure you and will not cure you alone. You are the main one that has to get yourself better.
They are not in your head or your body and they don’t know you like you know yourself and they never will. They can know you well but only you can solve your problems completely and in depth.
Only you have control over yourself. And only you should.
I promote personal development books, blogs, websites, and psychotherapy but I know we are the main ones responsible for ourselves and have to work along with those things.
My depressive disorder while extremely devastating and agonizing has turned out to be the catalyst for my positive transformation.
I was a happy and positive little girl before my depression hit at a very young age. Very easy tempered and joyful and grateful and I loved me for me. But after a few years of depression, even when my depression would lift for a while, I got into the habit of thinking and acting like a depressed person, like a zombie. I still had days and moments of happiness but depression and depressive-like ways mostly took over but then after many years of worsening this depression motivated me to more than ever want and attempt to make a change for the better.
I believe if I never developed depression I would have grown into a healthy, happy, more positive than negative adult for the most part but still not as well off and happy and positive and grateful as I am now because I would have very likely not worked to even better myself.
When people are already happy and healthy they often don’t think they can get any better but sometimes they can!
Even though I still struggle with severe depressive episodes, it’s not as frequent as before and in the middle, my happiness is genuine.
I have learned so much and while I would never go out looking for pain and depression, I have made the choice to view my depression as a gift, as a blessing because it motivated me to make a change.
It’s just like when a person is diagnosed with a long term physical illness and works so hard on health and becomes healthier than even that person was before the illness hit and healthier than even people who aren’t sick!
It’s extremely difficult because depression takes away everything. It takes away pleasure, inspiration, motivation, desires, abilities to function in different ways, it takes away our sense of self and even the will to live.
Often physical illness and pain motivates people to want to survive, to want to do all they can to get better and live; it pushes people to give all they have. But depression is quite the opposite. It often makes people just want to give up, give in, quit, come to an end. There is often no will to survive with severe depression. There is no desire.
But it’s possible to push through and come out on the other side into the bright light.
I used to loathe myself and my life and I had no hope for my future and no sense of purpose and believed I never would and some days I never even wanted a reason or hope or happiness or relief. I just wanted an end.
My life is very different now after I learned how to help myself. It’s sunnier and brighter and better.
I can’t say with certainty that my depression will ever completely go away for good. I may always have recurrent episodes.
But they are not as frequent and usually not as long as they used to be and now I have no depression in the middle of them like I used to and I can handle episodes better because of my strengthened positive/gratitude thinking habit.
And I can now often detect an impending episode and divert my thinking and prevent it before it turns to a full blown episode that I can’t pull myself out of.
Sometimes it would seem like my depressive episodes would hit for no reason at all. They would just come out of nowhere. And sometimes it seemed as if my own negative thinking would bring them on. I never had a real bad habit in general of negative thinking but just like people in general, I would on occasion get caught in a trap of negative thoughts about myself and certain situations. And when this would happen, it sometimes would bring on an episode.
So now I’m extra, extra careful to consciously watch my thoughts.
When I started to get truly happy in the middle of episodes I kept believing I would never again have another episode but I always did. I would suffer heartbreak after heartbreak because I truly belied I was “normal” like a person blessed to not have episode after episode every couple of months but then another shattering episode would hit hard. I wouldn’t accept this. I wanted all or nothing.
I wanted my depressive disorder to be a thing of the past, to be a memory, not my current reality, not my current truth.
Severe long term depression runs in my blood. It runs in my family.
But I have come to accept and tolerate that maybe my depression will always be part of my life. I won’t always be depressed at every second or everyday or every week but it will always come back maybe but it will always end. And it’s worth holding on and living through the depression.
Acceptance has liberated me and I have better coping mechanisms to handle the episodes than I used to.
During one of my hospitalizations for depression, a psychiatric technician told us to find and embrace our inner sun and let it shine through.
I love that. ❤
I may write of my experience with depression and psychosis in this blog somewhat often but it will never be to dwell on or curse it. Only to bring hope to what so frequently feels like a hopeless situation for so many. To bring light to the darkness. I write of it to show how it is possible to recover for the most part and muster up strength and courage and to bring what I have learned into writing and help others who may benefit.
But I promise my posts here will not always be about my depression. 😉
I hope anyone struggling in anyway will find hope, strength, consolation, and the inspiration and motivation to keep going even with the pain.
It’s worth it. ❤ 🙂
“I used to sit under a gloomy cloud of gray
And now the sun is shining and it won’t go away ” ~Jill Sobule