Meet today’s guest blogger, Jeanette Levellie. You can read more about Jeanette at her blog ‘Wings of Mirth’.
When depression knocks on my heart’s door, do I run away? You bet. These are the places I run to, where I find my best weapons for overcoming despair:
1. I run to the Bible, especially the Psalms and the New Testament epistles. Although King David was referred to as “a man after God’s own heart,” he often asks the Lord to deliver him from his misery. I find it comforting that even the most spiritual of leaders fought with depression. But he knew where to go to find comfort and wisdom. I enjoy the letters such as Romans, Philippians, and Colossians written from Paul to early churches because they are full of hope. They also tell me what God thinks of me. And that helps me gain a more positive perspective.
2. I hop on my exercise bike and put some praise music on. As I pedal away my sorrows and listen to songs about how good God is, those endorphins start working. Within a couple of miles, my mental state gets a vitamin shot. My energy is renewed and my thoughts gain clarity.
3. I find a place to pray. It might be the bathroom, my car, or my journal. I pour out my heart to Jesus and ask him to fix me and my problems. I often say, “Lord, I need some encouragement today. However you want to send it to me is fine—a person, a book, a song, whatever.” I try not to put high expectations on people to lift me up, but look to the Lord for help. He knows why I’m broken inside, and how best to fix me. He often surprises me with a unique answer to my prayer of “Help me!”
4. I rummage through my movie cabinet and pull out a funny or romantic movie. Losing myself in someone else’s nutty or convoluted problems is a great way of escaping a sometimes harsh reality. Laughter releases the same endorphins as exercise, so it’s a wonderful way to overcome pity and anguish. I prefer movies with happy conclusions, so I can feel satisfied and hopeful when the story is done.
5. I reach out to others. I can always find someone going through a worse time than I am. Always. I might visit a nursing home and talk with a few residents—even if I don’t know them—send a card to my widowed mom, buy a gift for a my husband, email a friend, anything to get my mind off myself and my problems. It amazes me how therapeutic helping others can be. And most people are so grateful; I end up feeling like a princess when I show love and generosity.
The fact that I’m a humor writer doesn’t exempt me from depression. Many writers and artists of all kinds fight that dark demon. But I’m learning that I don’t have to live in a pit of despair. With God’s help and some healthy habits, I can gain victory!
Thanks Jeanette! These are five worthy escapes. Thanks for sharing them with us. And here’s a plug for your book. If you want to know more about this delightful book, check it out on Jeanette’s blog.
WHAT ABOUT YOU? Do you have somewhere to run to or someone to run to in order to escape from you depression?
I am so glad you dropped by today!
Join me again at ‘Depression Getaway’ and together we will…
…live, care, laugh, share, learn, discover, forgive and recover.
Don’t give up, I’m praying for you!