Today, I’m going to mention a bit more about some of the hurdles of depression that I am currently going through. But more specifically, I want to mention some things that help through the times of darkness.
I recently made improving my self-esteem a priority, something which I intended to do much earlier but always conveniently had the excuse not to do. However, when I read through my draft of “One Hundred Days of Mist”, I found that it had an intensely therapeutic aspect. Something about reading the words that I wrote back that made it stronger than me merely repeating the words back to myself.
It had to be something simple, something that was easy to do and require very little in terms of stuff. So, I skipped over more elaborate exercises like visualization boards.
I made a quick Google search and found something promising. I decided that I would perform the CBT self-esteem inventory, but with a bit of a twist. I would make them multiple times. Part of that is the aspect of repetition.
It was admittedly kind of cheesy to start writing down the strengths and weaknesses. Some were things that I was familiar with, thoughts that came to mind with little provocation. Ruminations of past failures, recollections of affirming praise that I either told myself or heard from others.
As of now, I have done this exercise twice. Some things repeat, but I try to mix it up just enough so that it requires me to think a bit. There was an interesting point where I took the approach of “nothing is too small to list”. Some minor things, details about myself that I don’t often praise. But that’s part of it as well. They were things that were small, so they were often ignored. But they didn’t deserve to be.
There is additional value of showing this to an understanding friend, one who can hold you accountable to completing this exercise. I am fortunate to have such a friend, who not only reads what I put down without judgment, but also reminds to fill these out on a daily basis. Someday, I believe that I’ll get to the point where I can just say these things in my mind and not have to write them down. But for now, I’m glad that I’m taking the right steps.