Reconnect With Self

I recently read this article

Is everything you know about Depression wrong? – Article by Johann Hari

“If you are depressed and anxious, you are not a machine with malfunctioning parts. You are a human being with unmet needs. The only real way out of our epidemic of despair is for all of us, together, to begin to meet those human needs – for deep connection, to the things that really matter in life.”

This resonated with me so wanted to say something about it.

I was struggling / pill popping for years on instruction by my GP (and diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder) until one day 3 years ago I decided to stop, look deeper into the cause and take control of my life. Sometimes I lose that control, and before I know it I’m back in the pit of despair (as I am now at the time of writing this), feeling as though I’m not in the right place, with no real connection with anyone, resenting friends and family and wanting to isolate myself further from them. Although I am here right now (and have been for the past few days), my little voice has just reminded me that it is not the lack of connection with others that is causing me to feel this way, it is the lack of connection with my SELF. If I were truly connected to my SELF I would feel content, joyful and energised, with no bad feeling about myself or resentment towards anyone.

The question is how does one reconnect with SELF?

Its hard writing this and thinking of things while I am feeling like this, so I’ll try to imagine the last time I felt well, joyful and energised.

What was I doing?

  1. I was writing every morning
  2. I was getting dressed as soon as I woke up
  3. Walking to school
  4. Eating Breakfast
  5. Drawing, drawing and drawing
  6. 2 hours per week volunteering – helping others
  7. More drawing, drawing and drawing
  8. Facilitating Workshops

Now writing this you could say that during that time I was distracted from my own mind. This is most definitely true and a good thing as I’ve come to realise that being constantly connected to my mind can bring on over thinking, which leads to anxiety which then leads to depression, fatigue and feeling of complete disconnection. Doing what my soul SELF loves – drawing, writing and helping people is what keeps me alive physically and mentally – not doing these things turns me into an empty shell that has trouble existing.

How does waiting make you feel?

Waiting can sometimes be boring, it can be frustrating, it can stir up feelings of worry and anxiety, especially if you have somewhere to be.

This was a place that I used to find myself in quite regularly, until I learned to let go of the things that were beyond my control.  Learning to meditate helped this process. It enabled me to calm myself down while waiting, realising that there was nothing I could do to hurry the wait but clear my mind and avoid the worry thoughts that would inevitably kick start anxiety.

Always having a notebook and pen to hand helps. It allows an escape from the current ‘real life’ situation into that of my creative imagination, which in turn creates more creativity, rather than anxiety!

 

These images are the first of a series ‘While I Wait’, drawn while I wait. The one on the right was waiting in a boring, bland, soul less Doctors surgery, the other was drawn while I was sat waiting in non moving traffic for 2 hours.

I hope they inspire you to think about what you could be doing while you wait –  and allow you to focus on something that is good for your mind and your overall well-being.