Have you ever experienced NON-suicidal ideation? You know, when you would prefer to not be here but aren’t at all interested in participating in the process to get you there? Yeah… Me too. That’s not the clinical name for it, but that’s how my brain sees it, so that’s what I’ve been calling it. Digging yourself out of that hole is HARD and it can be painful. But the most important thing to remember is that digging out is POSSIBLE.
It doesn’t matter how bleak things may seem as you turn them over in your head. The voice in your head telling you that you can’t... that you don’t deserve… that you aren’t worthy… That there’s no way to get things where you want them… That voice is a LIAR. Don’t listen to it. No matter how loud it gets. That voice wants to keep you from reaching your full potential. It wants to keep you in that space where you feel paralyzed, like nothing is within your control. But there is always SOMETHING within our control. Many times, it’s not the thing we wish we had control over, but we have to see the world for what it is and not just how we wish it were, right?
We have the most control over the way we look at the world and the things that happen in it and to us. Are there aspects that are awful? Absolutely. But what about the wonderful things? The beautiful things. The things that make us laugh, and smile. The things that make us forget, even for a second, about memories that make us sad? Those painful feelings are part of the human experience, and I very much believe that we couldn’t truly appreciate the joyful feelings that life can bring without having experienced the pain we also go through as we float through space on this rock.
My hope lives in the opportunity I have to help others get through circumstances that are outside of our control. Magnifying the parts that we can do nothing about only serves to push us deeper into despair. We can’t control the weather, can’t control others’ responses to our words and actions, can’t control the structures and processes that we encounter and must navigate every day. So… what can we control? Ourselves. What we say. What we do. How we react to the things we experience. How we treat other people. No matter what the world shows me, I refuse to let it make me callous and uncaring.
People matter. Personal relationships matter. Happiness matters. YOU matter. And your happiness matters, too!
Give yourself credit for the things you do. You didn’t completely finish all the tasks on your list? That’s fine, remind yourself of the things you DID finish. When we find ourselves having difficulty getting started, we need to make sure to give ourselves credit, too. Some days things like getting out of bed, or brushing my teeth, or putting away my laundry, or eating more than once that day are the things I am able to accomplish, and THAT’S OK! It’s ok to not be ok and it’s unrealistic to expect ourselves to be “on” every single day. We’re human. Life is tough. Have compassion for each other. Have compassion for yourself.