A short and sweet blog post today
Depression in men is so overlooked. There are much less resources for us, most articles I come across are written from a female perspective with little input from men. I have even read articles that say men suffer from depression less. Bullshit! We are less heard and there is a much stronger stigma for us for reaching for help; somehow seeking treatment makes us less than men. When women speak out, they are brave, when men speak out, they are complaining, they need to be strong and keep it together. It makes me feel frustrated and angry at the time; as if our pain is less. We are in pain too, you know, we just aren’t allowed to express it publicly. I’m trying to change that. I want to encourage other men to speak out about depression and I hope some day to maybe create a support group for men with depression or a website or something because we need help too
Depression is a liar, it tells me I’m no good, when I know it’s a lie. It tells me no one likes when in reality the one that hates me the most is myself, others loves me when I can’t love myself. Depression tells me I’m stupid because I don’t learn as fast as the others, when the reality is that I’m quite bright when I’m given the write ( 😉 ) tools, that is when I am the most successful. Depression tells me not to even try because I’ll fail anyways. Well, despite the obstacles, I have achieved a lot and with some motivation a ton of determination, I can achieve even more, if I put forth the effort, I’m sure of it. Depression keeps me focused on the past and the mistakes I made, what I could have done differently, beating me over the head with cruel taunts when I need to be in the present and preparing for the future. Depression tells me, it will never get better and it will always be this way, not it won’t. I will rise above it, far into a better space where I can be at peace. Depression makes me fearful of asking for help. “If you talk about depression openly or appear vulnerable, they’ll laugh and call you weak; most haven’t, asking for help has gotten me the support I need, so another lie right there. Lastly depression isolates me, tells me I’m all alone, no one else feels this way, well, that couldn’t be farther from the truth, I’m not alone and I know for a fact there are so many out there just like me, millions. And together we can tell depression ” We aren’t going to listen to you any more, you’re a damn liar” ❤
I was driving home today and I thinking to myself; how tired I was from working non stop in the bakery; I am on the go; all day; wrapping bread, making cookies trays, placing pies in holders, placing baked items on the tables and rotating baked goods; aside from my breaks; I literally do not stop; I take a second to catch my breath and continue onto the next task. I am not complaining; I am just busy; it’s not like my old job where I checked my phone every few minutes; In fact I keep my phone on airplane mode and only check my social media on breaks. My old job I was anxious all the time and I was so emotionally drained from all the negativity; at work; now it’s more mentally draining and it’s something I have never experienced. In fact I keep my phone on airplane mode and only check my social media on breaks. Even other workers who don’t have disabilities tell me that they heard the bakery was brutal; and they have no idea that I have learning disabilities or ADHD ( Although I’m sure some suspect it); so I am really working hard.
So as I was driving I realized that since working this new job ( and working 40 + hour weeks); I have felt less anxious and depressed. Hold let me take that back; I feel anxious but about different things; I have less social anxiety or thoughts about the past; the anxiety is more about trying to keep up with a face paced environment and whether they will keep me after the Christmas season; all normal anxiety.
But it’s anxiety that I can handle and it doesn’t make me feel bad about myself; in fact I have more confidence than I ever had in my life. I have never gotten along with my co-workers and supervisors so well in a job; no one has really criticized me too much; they seem to enjoy seeing me and I make sure I say hi to everyone and they seem genuinely nice. Even a lot of the women seem very friendly with me; which is a first for me in a job situation. Obviously I am going to stay focused on my job but it does feel nice; and for whatever reason it doesn’t make me anxious; which is the past would have created so much anxiety; I am really not sure what’s happening but I seem to be comfortable around people in general and more sure of myself. I am just happier right now than I ever been at a job and I think that all the praying; the support from my friends; my writing and my growing social media accounts ( the blog included) has made me more confident in life and people around me are picking up on and responding more positively to me than in the past. I also think perseverance is really starting to pay off; I hope to inspire others never to give up. Anyways this is all I have the energy to write tonight; I have the day off and I am going to get some much needed rest and recharge my batteries. Thanks for all the support; it really makes a difference in my life.
Thanks for listening
Unrelated but music helps me to calm down; this is what I am listening to as I write this; first track is great!
Let’s try to be more kind with one another and encourage others
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I just want to first say are going really well for me right now; my new job seems to be working out; I am active in volunteering with the disabled ministry; I am reaching out to people online and the past two weeks I have been able to attend church; I couldn’t be happier right now. And on top of all these good things I have been getting a lot of praise from people at church, work and a lot of online support ( I love the comments and messages; they make my day) Also I just started making videos and the response has been positive. I admit I am self conscious about how I come across; how I speak and my appearance but people have been unbelievably supportive. Making videos creates so much anxiety for me, but I am finding that people have been beyond kind; I didn’t expect it; to be honest. And offline I am getting compliments left and right; especially about my work with the disabled ministry; a lot of parents of the young adults have been praising me and I hear good things; it makes me smile. I had no idea I was so appreciated but I try to be kind and gentle and I think they can see that.
I just want to say that I am not bragging; I try to stay humble. I know a lot of us can feel unappreciated and unloved sometimes and I have felt that way all my life; so this is all new to me. And that’s the thing; like anyone else; I love compliments and it kinda sets me on an emotional high which isn’t always good; maybe it occupies my thoughts too much and I have to tell myself to slow down and take a breather and not get big headed about it. But even though I love praise at times; it also makes me very anxious because I am not used to especially when it’s almost everyday and from so many people ( some I know and some I don’t know). It makes me nervous because a part of me feels like I’m not worthy of the praise. I have felt so bad about myself for so long ( and been treated so poorly by others) that I question the authenticity of their praise. Do they really mean it? Is it pity? Is it going to blow up in my face when they find out I am not as great as they say I am? I have a past; like anyone else and I have behaved in ways that I’m not proud of; although I feel like I am a much different person these days. All this praise feels like I am in the spotlight; when some days I prefer to be in the background and yet I crave it; it’s a terrible paradox. I am hoping over time I can learn to enjoy praise without questioning it and not be as anxious when someone says ” You’re so wonderful”
So when someone praises you how do you handle it? I know most of us would accept the compliments but how do you handle it internally? Do you obsess about it? Do you question it? I used to think to myself; I would ecstatic to have all these praise; and sure it’s great but damn does it create anxiety. I am really reaching out here and looking for help because I should be happy but some days I just feel overwhelmed with it all. It’s like I woke up one day and became a different person overnight and it’s like a dream. But I will say that no matter what happens ( and if an some alternate reality I become a famous author) I never want to forget where I came from and all the people that were there for me on those days where I wasn’t getting praised and I felt like life was a battle; days that were long and exhausting. That’s all I have for today. Thank you again; I am eternally grateful for all your kind and beautiful comments and praises; you make all the difference in my life. Take care of yourselves.
With much love,
Feeling like a million bucks after a much needed haircut
Come on, David, another post about social media, really? I know, I know, this time will be different; I promise. I want to take the time to talk about making social media a more positive experience. I use social media a little too much; I have lost count of how many times I hit that Facebook button on my phone; and the agony of not seeing notifications; especially after posting my latest blog and the disbelief that someone wouldn’t want to read a long blog post about my innermost thoughts; how dare they? I am kidding of course but I use to think that way and I try to take a different approach these days. I have come to realize how incredibly self centered that thinking is; I feel like social media gives us the impression ( and by us, I mean me) that we are the center of the universe and all of our followers are waiting on pins and needles for our next post; because it’s so brilliant, right? While we all love feedback; it is equally important to make your social media about encouraging others and uplifting them; because social media can be such a negative place; full of political arguments, hate speech, meme after irrelevant meme ( I know I am guilty of this) and just general nonsense. I want my posts to be positive and encouraging; maybe lift someone’s spirits and use my writing to help someone who is struggling like me. I know that when I am down and people encourage me on social media; it really makes a difference And when it comes to my writing; I try not to worry about how many likes or comments I get; I just hope someone out there is reading it and it is affecting them in a positive way; I hope they can relate and it helps them somehow. I smile when I think that sharing my story might give someone hope.
So I spend most of my time on social media; making positive comments; listening when someone is sad and cheering when someone is doing well. I try not to argue with people or get into negativity anymore ( the keyword is try because I’m have made mistakes and I’m not perfect). I just make a point in trying to brighten people’s day; I realize that sounds kind of cheesy but it really helps with my own issues of depression; when I get out of myself for a second and say a kind word to friend on social media. I was thinking about how there isn’t a day where I am not trying to encourage someone or try an make their day better and in a sense I have always been that way; I try to be sensitive and it really is a gift ( although some days it feels like a curse). All my life I have tried to be kind and social media is no different. And maybe for some being nice all the time can seem annoying or I overdo it but I can’t bring myself to use social media to bully or hurt others. I have been bullied all my life and I want to be the antithesis to all of that; a positive force in a cold world. I think I am rambling but you understand my point. And I use the blog in the same way; I try to uplift others and it’s beautiful. We all need encouragement; if everyone took the time to be kind and gentle every day; we’d be at peace. We don’t have to embrace each other but we have respect for one another and our differences. So I will continue my mission to make this a kinder world and I hope you’ll join me
Love your friend.
There was a time in my life where I went wherever the wind took me; without a sail directionless; circling the river; stagnant; watching the other boats pass by me while I stood still in frustration.. I sat on that river in a creaky boat with a hole in it and water leaking in my little boat without an oar to paddle myself of my predicament.I had no life jacket and the fear that the storm would knock my little boat over and I’d drown in my own sorrows; caught in a sea of salt water and fish who were all too easily amused by the mess I was in.
But somehow I managed to swim to shore and find myself a new boat; brand new; no damages to be seen. I have a sail and finally some direction in this river of life. I take comfort in the life jacket I have around me and an oar to help guide me out of this river into some place new. I’m above water and nice and dry in the morning sun; smiling knowing I’ve got this. It’s easy sailing from this point. Straight ahead….
My birthday just passed and I’m a year older; the sunshine is shining on me; it’s far less colder; with an air of confidence; more bolder. It’s been an amazing year; overcoming so much fear; goals that seemed far away; now feel near; i stand here a different man; I feel like I can finally say that as a person I’m growing and I’m showing signs of progress; I take comfort in knowing that things are going to be alright and I can see that there might be light at the end of the tunnel if I keep moving forward; toward where I need to be; it took me a while to see but now I get it. And on a positive tip I wanna flip this negativity I have had around because I’ve found when I can smile more ;life is just better and isn’t that what living is for. You got the best make out of your day and make sure if everything you say are blue skies instead of clouds of grey because that is how I want to spend my birthday.
I have lived with negative thoughts all of my life; I’m ugly; I’m stupid; no one likes me; a constant barrage of beating myself up; often for the smallest things; it’s all anxiety. But while I am still anxious and struggle with overthinking and over-analyzing every social situation ( especially at work); I have been slowly developmentally a different voice in my head; one that is kinder; gentler and more positive about myself. I am not quite sure how it changed but I haven’t read any books or gone to any seminars. I have more read more articles about positive self-talk over the years than I care to admit and my thought process continued to be negative; it’s like it was ingrained in me. Anyways I have found myself giving myself positive affirmations lately like “Hey dude you’re smart and funny; caring, you can write and are creative, you have a big heart and a whole lot of people out there who care about you and you’re not bad looking ( lol that’s a half truth). But in my rough moments where I feel mistreated; I literally list those things in my head to remind myself that I am not a bad person and the actions of others towards me are a reflection on them and not me. I know who I am and proud of that person; if they can’t see that; I guess that is their problem. It’s incredible to me how I developed this positive self-talk; maybe it’s the writing; I finally have a platform where I can safely talk about my feelings and people are responsive. Maybe it’s connecting with old friends who have encouraged mea nd made me realize that while there are those who try to put me down; they are many others who care deeply; they understand me and give me so much encourage; to the point where I feel overwhelmed because I am not used to it. There is this surge of confidence where I just tell myself ( when bullied at work, yes I still get bullied) I’m bigger than that; I don’t have to react and I continue to encourage myself with positive talk and it really works!. I used to think it was all crap until very recently; I think we all have positive attributes and if we look hard enough we can find them. Can you imagine if everyone used positive self-talk and how much better this world would be if people were happier overall and treated others with respect instead of negativity?
I am going to end this little blog but I wanted to tell a story about something that happened yesterday. I was in the warehouse at work trying to open up boxes that had come from the truck. My store manager runs in and starts going on about a customer picking up in item and where was it; he was confusing me because I had no idea what he was talking about. Oh and let me say that I can’t stand this guy; he is so negative and he tries his best to intimidate everyone; including customers. He needs to be in control and everyone and everything and for a long time I thought I had done something wrong and that’s why he didn’t like me. Anyways, I go to help the customer to clear up the confusion. My manager s saying something about we don’t have his item and we can’t help him. So I calmly asked the customer for the phone number attached to the account; he gave it to me and voila!!; his account pulled up; letting me know that the package was there. I found the item and apologized for the miscommunication; he replied that I was really nice and that it was my store manager he was angry with. He thought he was rude and a smart-ass; basically accusing the customer of stealing ( in his words). At that moment I realized that all this time I questioned whether I was a bad worker; or someone not to be trusted. All this negative self talk; like I was a terrible worker and was just inept; that’s how he made me feel. When the customer complimented me like that and said nasty things about my store manager; I felt vindicated; like it wasn’t me, you know; it was him.
So we can’t let allow us to put us down; in turn beating ourselves up or see ourselves as less then; we are worth more than that. We have to love ourselves; and say fuck what other people think because they don’t know the whole story. It’s a pretty liberating thing; this positive self talk. And I am no expert; I just speak from experience. I suggest to anyone who has anxiety and depression like me to just write down things about yourself that think are positive; and list them every day when you wake up; live it and don’t let anyone drag you down.
As always thanks for listening,