Welcome to my Never Quit Climbing blog

A practical, inspirational blog designed to encourage and give hope to people who are climbing mountains of rock and granite or ones life has put in their way.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Making A Difference Makes A Difference

Mark suffers from significant depression. It's not all his fault. Much of his down-ness is a result of clinical, physiological factors. Nonetheless, he feels lonely and discouraged most of the time. He thinks he's been a failure with his kids who are now adults.

I don't think a day goes by when Mark isn't confronted by the blackness of his despair.

And yes, Mark needs medications prescribed by a psychiatrist and has tried most of them, if not all. He's currently trying a new electronic stimulus regimen that has shown some promise. I wish him the best in that.

However, it's important to know that there are typically parts of depression that those who suffer can do something about, even those with cases as severe as Mark's. No, we can't treat the biological factors but we can do something about those symptoms that come from a different place - our mind.

And one of the prevailing thoughts of people who are depressed is that they simply do not matter any more.  They've come to believe that they serve little to no meaningful purpose in this life and that nothing they do any more really makes a difference. And of course that kind of thinking only fuels their depression rather than helping it.

So what does someone who thinks they don't matter any more do? They act in ways that matter.  Or as the title of this article suggest, making a difference makes a difference!

How can that happen if you or someone you know is depressed?  Go back and take inventory of your gifts, talents and resources.  Remind yourself what you still have to offer others.

Second, start using those resources to serve someone else. Depending on your condition you may have to start simple and small, but start somewhere. Volunteer at your church or a nearby shelter, do something kind for a neighbor, offer to assist at the school or just intentionally do something extra special for your family.

Third, chart your progress. Journal, keep a notebook, meet with a counselor, or whatever but periodically take note of how you  have moved on and what you have done for others.

Start making a difference again. Build into someone else's life and get the attention and focus off of you. Because making a difference now will make all the difference later.

1 comment:

  1. Gary, thank you for this post. As one who has wrestled with depression over the years, I have found what you suggest here to be so true. If we can get out of our heads long enough to find our gifts and embrace them, we can then open our embrace to give from our truth. The result has been, for me, a growing feeling, a KNOWING of my worth and value in this life. We are all worthy of love and the good that is right here, right now. "...for it is in giving that we receive."