How Do You Know If You Are Depressed?
SADNESS. Tears are detox for the soul and the purest form of contact with yourself. Crying is cleansing, beautiful, raw, true and pure. Crying is also releasing—like rinsing away a sense of separation and fragmentation—to feel whole again. It also means that you have compassion for yourself.
Unfortunately, we have linked crying with weakness and this often makes us feel bad instead of good when we cry; which in turn, may have caused us to stagnate unresolved grief within that weighs us down, more for the shadow side to hold on our behalf. That prevailing sadness makes it difficult for us to feel joy and zest for life. This sadness, if there long enough, can lead to an internalized anger at nothing in particular—we call that depression. Depression is anger turned inward to ourselves. We therefore need to do some work to release the grief and sadness that we have gathered within ourselves.
We will now try to guide you through this complex and difficult situation.
Behavior linked to stagnant grief / depression
- Off / Isolated
- Lack of Energy-
- Distanced / Unmotivated
Have you ever woken up happy in the morning but around lunch started to feel lack of energy and depressed without anything really happening or affecting you?
Our inner critic, whom we have previously come to call the radio. often leaves behind a heavy feeling. It strikes us because the radio sound shouts out at us that we are not enough, because we have done something wrong, because we cannot cope with ordinary things that others seem to do in their sleep. It strikes at us because we are bad parents, that we should perform better and that we will not be able to fend for ourselves. It reminds us in various ways that we are not strong enough, conscious enough, smart enough, unique enough or special enough. Yes, the list is endless.
The radio in our heads has been active for most of our life and it encourages us to do something – to train more, work harder, look better, etc. At the same time as we get more and more tired as it becomes more and more critical. We cannot keep up with the radio’s encouraging pace. We fail. We give up. The radio continues, it triggers our guilt and shame and we continue to do as it commands. The radio, that is, your thoughts, however, does all this because it thinks it is protecting us from being rejected, judged, frozen and left, and so on. The Radio becomes harder on us when we are popular, well-liked and loved. It will encourage behavior that seeks reward. What we call the Radio is usually called the Ego. If we succeed in following Radio (the ego), the result will be a dopamine rush that is pleasurable. If we do not succeed, we will become listless, sad and in the end perhaps unmotivated; we lack energy and shut down. Maybe for a day, a week or over time maybe longer. This in turn might lead to feelings of abandonment. catch 22, again!
The radio and the ego only want to help us avoid being rejected. It wants us to allow it to rule. We listen to the Radio and act on it and this in turn leads to us getting an even bigger Ego, ie protection. When we come to rely on the Ego (which is what it wants) to constantly give us those feelings of reward and pleasure, we no longer consciously decide our own path.
So what do we think of those with a big ego? We may not keep them very close to us? Maybe it’s not even possible to get close to them? They are, however, aspects of us. They are US. So we do not like ourselves when our ego blossoms. We thus gain self-contempt.
The Radio exists to inform us, but over time we have allowed it to assume control of us and we started to believe everything it tells us, but now is the time to begin to understand it and regain control of ourselves.
Being rejected is one of the most painful things we can go through. When someone says no to us when we want them to say yes. Being accepted is one of the deepest needs of each human being. Knowing that we are lovable at least gives us a chance to try to get or earn love. Being rejected momentarily tells us we are unlovable and that we will be lonely and alone forever.
The radio is quick to point out; He / She does not see your value! Maybe that means you have no value? When someone says no to you and separates from you, it hurts because it feels like a part of you is separating from you. You thus become fragmented. It reiterates the fear of being unlovable and therefore undeserving.
When we feel lonely and do not belong to a family (or can belong), the need to belong can be extra strong. So strong that we do anything to fit in. Yes, so much so that we go beyond our own needs and lose our authenticity. We see this in jobs, circles of friends and in relationships. The need to belong is the second deep need of human beings. Belonging means that we are acceptable and possibly eventually lovable.
Fragmented means divided
We have previously described that part of you has a childlike understanding and another part of you has a more adult approach. We therefore call these the Child part (the subconscious) and the Super Parent (the conscious (or waking mind). These form an internal family. “Super Parent is, however, only an ordinary immature adult before he has trained a Super Parent power” When you are rejected, the following usually happens inside you. The adult separates from the child. It thus abandons the child’s needs and values. We do this because we believe that rejection has something to do with how we ourselves are and that we need to change.
The inner child is more hurt by you (the adult) abandoning and rejecting it, than by the external abandonment.
Your childhood wounds get triggered. Since the child’s greatest need is closeness, acceptance and belonging, rejection becomes one of the child’s greatest pains and fears. We have therefore created lots of protections and survival strategies to prevent ending up there again.
Isolation, do not take any risks, do not do what we dream of, find a new partner before we end the current one. Tell us about our shortcomings before anyone else sees them, reject ourselves before anyone else does. We can even unconsciously flee from love and feel disgust, be indifferent, unmotivated, lack of interest due to protection from being rejected.
It’s always about wounds from childhood
You may have heard psychologists, therapists, spiritual leaders and coaches talk about childhood and its impact on us billions of times. Or you’ve never heard of it before. The common truth is that our wounds, protections and behaviors come from the age of 0-9 years.
Acceptance – The solution to all your problems!? With a trained Self-Acceptance Muscle, you can deal with heartache, rejection and being abandoned. You are okay with feeling sad and you can feel joy or other emotions at the same time. The grief cannot overrun you. Self-acceptance allows you to see yourself and your journey clearly and it also puts the Radio (Ego) in its rightful place of informant, not boss.
If you need to train this muscle, The EQ GYM has a free workshop on this topic on Sunday with a meditative exercise. Feel free to join us and get a stronger self-acceptance muscle at the same time.
This is a guest post. Any opinions expressed are the writer’s own.