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Finding Your Attack Method Against Depression

For 20 years I have battled depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). I’m now 25 years old, a mother of two girls, and a wife. Giving advice and helping others has been my thing since I was 16. Now I’m not a therapist, but over the many years, I developed a way to fight back.

Obviously there are days where it gets to me. Where I lay in bed all day, cry, feel worthless, and sometimes I have a full relapse and scratch my wrists until they’re raw. That’s OK. I need those days. I let it have its turn.

Over the years, it’s taken much practice. I have my armor to protect myself from the triggers: my makeup, my favorite necklaces to play with when I feel it bubbling up, my art supplies to distract me from the harsh realities of life.

But then I also have my sword. This has taken much practice and a lot of people to make happen. When my depression starts bubbling up, I try to do the opposite of what it wants. No matter how difficult it is. It makes me want to lay in bed and sleep all day, so I get up and get moving. Sometimes just a walk, sometimes playing at the park with the kids, anything to fight that off.

My biggest advice for anyone is to know your best attack method is all designed around you. My aggressive personality makes it better for me to imagine a sword in my hand and be more stubborn than my depression, and decide when it’s OK to have a “down day.”

But it’s also OK to be gentle with it and nurse yourself back into your life. The biggest challenge is deciding how to fight back. Knowledge is key. Know yourself, understand your triggers, get your armor, but don’t forget your sword. Don’t forget your attack plan. No matter what method works best, keep trying.

Know your enemy, develop a strategy, attack when you can, retreat when you need to, push back from another angle when you are able to, and know you have an army on your side. You’re not in this battle alone.

Fight on.

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Thinkstock photo by Estellez

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