Updated: Mar 27, 2020
Thank you to our second contributor to the Happy Thoughts Academy Blog.
It's a brave and courageous act to open up, this will hopefully help your journey and so many others. Thank You from the Happy Thoughts Academy Team.
What is the mental illness that you have or are suffering from?
Anxiety and depression
Do you know where or how this started?
My anxiety really started as a child, I am unsure of an exact reason or time but I would always be sick with anxiety whenever any school or sporting event was up and coming and any birthday parties or events would always effect me. I often talked myself out of participating with sports and always made excuses to stop me having to go to parties or social events. Looking back on it this is such a regret as I missed so much growing up.
My depression only started around 10-12 years ago. I felt it was many small things that added up rather than a single issue. I had money issues and did not like my job or where I was headed, I also had several bad sporting injuries which to this day have stopped me playing football, my first love, and really being able to be majorly active. I felt like I had lost the things that made me happy and lost control of my life in general. All of a sudden I was unable to get out of bed or feel that I could function. Whilst these feelings had come and gone historically all of a sudden I had days, weeks or more with this constant feeling of being worthless and unable to really function at all.
How does it affect your day to day life, including your relationships?
Most days I can keep it within myself, I know that is not the answer and not to the point that I am burying feelings but often it overwhelms and manifests in me being very short tempered and difficult to talk to, especially to those close to me. Some days I really have no will to be bothered with, well anything really. I find it difficult to motivate myself and find the smallest of issues and challenges get on top of me. Things are improving massively after some big life changes however I still get the feelings occasionally that I am letting myself and others down and “failing” in life with where I am now and where I want to be/feel I should be. These feelings make me not only think, “what are you doing”, “how are you in this place” but also if I feel this way about myself then how can those who love me possibly not think the same?
Do you feel you can be open with everyone with what you are going through?
You could call it lucky, or not, but many of my friends and family have suffered much like myself. Whilst I often feel that I do not want to burden others, especially those with similar feelings to me, once I begin the conversation and voice my feelings and also the reason behind them to those I am close to it really helps. Its strange, I know these people in my life feel the same and have felt the same but it often makes me feel I am the only person in the world that is struggling, even though it is so clearly not the case.
Do you have any tips or tricks to stay on top of your mental health?
Fitness is a huge help, whilst I cant play football anymore I always felt much brighter and in control whilst using the gym or even having a swim. Completely opposite to when a child my anxiety never manifests with going out these days, I love socialising and being around my friends, reliving the old times and having a laugh, and being around the people I love. Whilst it isn’t a wide prescription a Sunday morning walk with someone I love has been an inspiration to me, making me appreciate the love and positivity I have in my life and also seeing how beautiful the world can be and the life you live.
Thank you so much for sharing your experiences with everyone. Please check out our resources and external links pages to see if there is anything that may help you.