Gratitude vs Depression vs Anxiety


I have participated in Ten Things of Thankful for a few months now. Sometimes when I realize it is time to write the post I am at a loss. The things that stood out the most were the things that went so very wrong.  Things that annoyed me, frustrated me. Things to be thankful for or grateful for, not so obvious. I started just writing down something every day. It wasn’t immediate but it slowly has turned me around. I still have my days that my first response is to be grumpy and grouchy and anti-social.  It is especially easy when it is grey and overcast and nasty out. Sometimes I can in the midst of things going wrong, find the good.  I might not be happy about it but I can admit that there is something good in it. Some times I am not feeling thankful for it or even grateful for it. Just acknowledging it is the first step.

The really magical part is, reading the other blog posts. People with harder struggles then me are finding good. It really does help my depression. It’s like it forces me to think and depression doesn’t really like it when you think. Depression just wants you to listen and believe. Anxiety likes to be irrational so it too doesn’t like you to think. When you start thinking, even if it is just acknowledging what you do have, depression and anxiety have less power.

Remember that game at the arcade. Whack-a-mole. That is what it is like fighting depression and anxiety.  Sad thoughts whack. feeling helpless whack. lack of motivation-whack. whack. whack. Oh no one is  poking up. Sigh of relief. This is it. I get to rest now. I beat it. Then suddenly five moles pop up.  Sometimes I find myself angrily whacking it thinking. THINK HAPPY THOUGHTS. It works sometimes but what works best. A deep breath and then calmly thinking of good things.  It is really hard to do that second part though. I still get anxiety that spikes my heart rate and causes chest tightness and can’t breathe and omg all the things. It is really really hard to force myself to breath. To speak over the irrationality of the anxiety.

The key for me is to write a thankful each day. Even if it is at the end of the day right before I go to sleep. I did it. I found one. I am victorious over depression and anxiety just in that one thought. That is how I have clawed my way out. One thought at a time. Repeating things over and over to myself until I am so sick of it that anxiety has no power over me on that subject. Sometimes it is watching my daughter on the playground. She will not fall she will not fall she will not fall(anxiety flash) no she will  not fall. But that didn’t happen. She did not fall she did not fall. Constantly telling my anxiety it is wrong.  When things do happen that I actually worried about, I have to remind myself I did what I could. I will learn and move on. I will not dwell. No I will not dwell. WHACK WHACK WHACK stop it. I will not dwell.  The more I do this the more I have been able to tell the difference between intuition and anxiety. When my anxiety is high, I have a hard time with intuition. I can’t think with my gut at all when anxiety is around.

It also helps to write what went wrong and then write but this happened because of that so this is good. Writing what went wrong and finding the silver lining is another whack.

One positive thought at a time, I am winning. One positive thought at a time, I am thriving.

In another step out , I will be participating in BE THE VILLAGE 1000 voices of compassion #1000speak

 1000 voices from all  over the world, on the same day flooding the internet with good, positive posts. Posts about Compassion, Posts about kindness, Posts about self-compassion. Posts about caring for others, caring for the environment. Posts about Non-judgement. Spreading love all over the world. This will happen on February 20th 2015.

You can participate even if you are not a blogger! Follow the hashtag #1000speak  comment, share, like, favorite. The main point being to interact!

If you are a blogger and would like to be part of the 1000 you can request to join here.


10 responses »

  1. I love this so very much Erin. I woke up today in a very dark place… so so tired of dealing with the pain from surgery and hobbling on one leg for weeks now. I wanted to scream and cry and go back to bed and honestly? Not get out until march.

    But I couldn’t. I tried…. My oldest made her way in, and I’m glad she did. We prayed and I kissed her. By then I would have been downstairs scootering and stretching to get her breakfast made and lunch packed…. I just didn’t have it in me. Today.

    She took it on her own, bless her heart.

    But my boy couldn’t do it alone. And after hearing him beg for me to come down and poor his milk that was way too heavy, and get his cereal- he couldn’t reach… I pulled and pushed my way down stairs and I swear I felt like my body was 500 pounds…

    So heavy. So hard. I just wanted to cry.

    And I did.

    I guess I’m sharing this because it feels like your place is a safe place to do it. That says a lot about you, your writing, and the gift you offer here for all.

    God bless you Erin.

    I think you would appreciate the two posts I wrote about struggling and managing pain- since you have to constantly do this. I won’t link drop- but head over and you will find them!! Managing pain- and Wider Lens.



    • It is so hard. I am extremely thankful my daughter is old enough to mostly do these things herself. I have started a meal prep day and it has made this week go a lot smoother.

      Thanks for Reading and Commenting!


  2. Erin, your honesty about the things you struggle with is always so great. Keeping those feelings inside do us no good at all. Hang in there and keep looking for those linings! The thankful a day is a great idea – it keeps you going all week and makes the task of The List so much less daunting, especially in those weeks where things feel like too much. And just thing – then your TToT post is practically written!
    This is now the third place I’ve seen the Compassion thing – I need to get myself moving on that.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Gratitude vs Depression vs Anxiety | Bipolar Bekr

  4. I need to apply this as my daily mantra, Erin: “One positive thought at a time, I am winning. One positive thought at a time, I am thriving.” Beautiful! Thank you for sharing your voice with the world.


  5. Pingback: #1000speak Finding our way back. Join Us. | chronicallysickmanicmother

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