There are few things more toxic to my wellbeing than having no motivation or desire to experience, do or achieve. And for about a year I had become a tired, worn out and generally unpleasant person.
I’d started spending my weekends on the couch watching mindless tv, not wanting to go out or see other people (save the delivery man bringing pizza). It started out small, gradual, non-problematic. It wasn’t something you’d notice until you noticed it. Next thing I knew, I was constantly feeling tired, with no desire to leave the house or go to work, like no amount of sleep was enough.
Now, that said, there’s nothing wrong with staying at home and watching mindless tv by yourself. Sometimes you just need to do that. Because humans suck.
But that had become a habit which prevented me from doing the other regular stuff. I stopped going to the theatre, stopped going to those events I was invited to, stopped being a functioning social being. And being social was/is really important to me. It’s part of where I get my energy and drive from, where my inspirations and ideas are born. I love talking to people; conversation excites me.
It was only at the beginning of this year after “coming out” to my friends and family, and living openly as a transgender woman, when I realized that I had been in a serious depression for the longest time. I’d always been good a problem-solving issues in my life and knowing and relying on that skill actually worked against me in this instance. Because when you’re good at fixing your (and other people’s) problems, it feels like you’re on top of things. But then suddenly you’re not. And that was disorientating and scary.
A large part of my anxiety had stemmed from living a double life, from “lying” about who I was, both to my friends and family, and to myself. This relates to what I wrote about yesterday so you can read more about it here… DAY 3: DOUBLE
I didn’t go to any form of formal therapy. But just having someone I could talk to about the things that were swirling around in my brain helped me process.
But that’s how I function best. I need to talk, out loud. Other people deal differently. Some are surrounded by too many people and need to decompress by not being around anyone. So lying on the couch and watching mindless tv is a valid way of coping and processing. Some people need to go to formal therapy, and that’s also okay. Because everyone is different and experiences things uniquely, there is no “one size fits all” solution. Finding constructive ways and means that work for you, personally, can be a big help.
It took me a while to unpack and dismantle things. I still don’t have everything figured out, and still panic on the odd occasion, but embracing myself by understanding my issues and developing skills to manage them is a good place to start.