Mental Health Minute: On Depression

I think the saddest people always try their hardest to make people happy because they know what it’s like to feel absolutely worthless, and they don’t want anyone else to feel like that. 

Robin Williams
Photo by Nik Shuliahin on Unsplash

Hey, hey! Thanks for stopping by. Trying to incorporate some new types of content onto my website that’s relevant to my everyday life. Thought I would start taking some time occasionally to write about some mental health topics, because mental health is one of my passions. And helping people work through some of their struggles with mental health by meeting them where they’re at is what I try to do in my every day life at work.

Full Disclosure: Whatever I write on my personal blog is never meant to replace professional medical advice or circumvent talking with a mental health professional in person or on a professional platform online (like BetterHelp, Minded, etc.). If you’re struggling with symptoms related to your mental health, please reach out to the appropriate avenues that can help you–whatever that looks like for your situation. If you’re struggling with thoughts of wanting to self-harm or thoughts of suicide and you’re afraid to reach out to someone in person, you can reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255. It’s staffed 24/7, and you can speak with someone anonymously.

Depression negatively impacts the way people think, feel, and act. It can cause individuals to have feelings of sadness, and lose interest in activities that they once found enjoyable. In general, it’s common for people to have days or even multiple days of feeling down in the dumps or just “off” from how they normally feel and act; however, by definition, depression is experiencing some or all of the following symptoms for two or more weeks:

  • Feeling sad or having a depressed mood
  • Not enjoying the things that you usually enjoy or losing interest in doing those things
  • A change in appetite or change in weight (gaining or losing) without an intentional change in diet
  • Feeling fatigued or without energy
  • Sleeping too much or not sleeping enough
  • Feelings of guilt, hopelessness, or a sense of worthlessness
  • Thoughts of suicide
  • Struggling to focus or concentrate

There are all kinds of things that go into diagnosing someone with depression that I won’t go into here (because….I’m calling this Mental Health Minute, not Mental Health Hour), but the point is–if you feel like what I’ve describe above might be relevant to what you’re experiencing right now, or if you think you know someone that fits the description above, it’s worth talking to someone about it.

Your primary care physician can be a good starting place–but I can’t recommend enough getting in touch with a counselor if that’s within your means. Your primary care physician can rule out medical-related diagnoses that can cause an onset of depression, so it is a good place to start, though.

Below are some resources that are worth a read if you’re looking for more information about depression:

If you know someone who’s depressed, please resolve never to ask them why. Depression isn’t a straightforward response to a bad situation: depression just is, like the weather.

Stephen Fry

Stay safe and healthy. Be kind. Be you.

~Joshua

Reference: American Psychiatric Association – “What is Depression?”

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