I’ve been trying to come to grips with the recent suicide of a family member. He became depressed after separating from his wife some years ago. We all thought that he would eventually get over it. We were wrong.
Many of us have experienced the agony of breaking up with someone special and I, for one, can absolutely relate to the feeling of despair that sets in. But in my case, up to now, I was always able to pick myself up and find reasons to go on with life. So why can’t everyone do this?? As with all things human, there’s never a simple answer and depression is a particularly complex topic. While there may be some people who are so afflicted by depression that drugs or physical intervention are necessary, I think that most of us are somewhere in the middle of a large spectrum of levels of innate happiness. Kind of like a happiness or life gratification scale. Those on the low end see little point in going on and those at the high end have a tremendous enthusiasm for life. I believe that where we fall (on average) on this spectrum is part biology and part the choices we make in life. Of course I can’t help you with the biology part – you are born as you are. However, I do believe that it’s possible to take steps to nudge yourself up at least a bit on the happiness and life gratification scale. Yet we’re almost never taught how. So here are a few of the methods that I’ve learned and apply in my own life, and which I’d like to share with you. And while some may sound easy, it’s the discipline of keeping them up that is the hard part. Continue reading