Defeating the Demon of Depression

What's the true meaning of life?

It’s life.
Keep living.

 Image source:  Pinterest

Image source: Pinterest

Depression in the Family

Depression runs in my family. Many of us have been treated for depression, had counseling, and used anti-depressants when necessary. I was depressed for many years myself, but nobody knew it but me. Over the years, I learned how to deal with my own depression in an assertive, proactive way. My oldest son, Jonathan, committed suicide when he was thirty-five. Because of this tragedy, I want to give other people who are depressed renewed hope in the future. If this article can save even one life, it will be worth all the years I’ve spent writing down my thoughts and developing my self-help programs.

There is no easy cure for depression, but I believe if a cure is ever to be found that it will require coming at the problem from several different angles. What works for one person will not necessarily work for another person, but it’s important to keep seeking relief for yourself or your loved ones who might be suffering from depression right now.

In this article, I share what works for me. It is a new way of thinking and living life. The self-help program I developed, the 13 Choices Happy Life Program, may have all the necessary tools you need to finally be free from depression, but it may not. You might also need medication, counseling, support groups, or a short-term or long-term care center or hospital. Whatever you need, be your own advocate and get it. You must take care of yourself. No one can do it for you. These ideas work for me. I hope they work for you.
 

Recognizing Depression

The holidays are coming up. Everyone seems to look and feel so happy and excited—except you. You are depressed.

Sometimes you go through the motions and pretend to be happy so you can fit in with the crowd. Other times you can’t get out of bed in the morning and use the excuse of being “sick” so you don’t draw attention to yourself.

In reality, you are sick. Depression is an illness that is not well understood by professionals or non-professionals alike, but if you have it, you have it. There are varying degrees of depression from mild to severe, and wherever you might be on this spiraling downward spectrum, it affects everything you think, say, and do.

I suffered from depression for many years. At first, I didn’t know I was depressed. I thought everyone just pretended to be happy like I was doing. But then in the 1970’s, I started noticing frequent articles in newspapers and magazines about the mental illness of depression. As I read these different articles, I started thinking, “Oh my goodness! This is talking about me.”

For many years, I tried to analyze when my depression began. I was finally able to pinpoint a specific, traumatic event when I was six years old that changed me from a happy child to a depressed child. This led to a chain of events that altered my future life in many subtle ways that were unnoticeable to those around me. I lived an outward life of smiles and pretended happiness most of the time, but inside I suffered from many insecurities and low self-esteem. I didn’t know I was depressed at the time, but I was.

Depression is real, but there is something you can do about it.

I’ve been working on my 13 Choices Happy Life Program for over twenty-five years. When I follow this program myself, I feel happy, productive, and purposeful. When I stop following it, my old depression gradually returns until I feel lost and confused. I then must struggle once again to find my way out of the dark fog of demoralizing demons in my mind and stressed-out life.

I don’t use the term “demons” lightly. When I am depressed, it seems that evil spirits take over my body. This is a Christ-centered program because I know from my own experience that Jesus Christ can cast out evil spirits and bring peace and serenity back into my life once again.

If you don’t believe in a God or Jesus Christ, you can still benefit from this book. Take the parts that make sense to you and implement them into your life right now. Maybe later you might want to choose to investigate the question of whether God is real and there for you or not.

If you are depressed, I hope you will start doing 13 Choices Happy Life Program today. The worst part about depression is that you feel so totally out of control. You feel like a puppet on a string being jerked up and down by everyone and everything around you. But it’s now time to cut the strings. You’re not a puppet. You don’t have to keep doing the same things you’ve done in the past. It’s been said that insanity is doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results. That never works. It’s time to get your sanity back. You can change. That’s the most important thing I want you to know. You can take control of your own life!
 

Suicide is Not an Option

I want to encourage everyone who is reading this article to make a commitment to not even think about committing suicide. Whenever the thought pops into your mind, immediately get rid of it. Get up, go outside, take a walk, call someone, do something different to change your environment and the negative energy around you that is bringing those thoughts into your mind.

Trust in your Heavenly Father and Savior. When it’s really your time to pass on to the other side, then you will be called home. Through illness, accident, or sometimes simply falling asleep, people pass on to the other side naturally—the way it’s supposed to happen.

Until that time comes, you must believe that you have a divine purpose to accomplish on this earth. No matter what your circumstances are, there is someone out there somewhere who needs something that only you can uniquely give. Find out what your unique gifts are and start sharing them today. You are special. You are needed by someone. Hold on to a resilient hope in the future and keep giving unselfishly of yourself day after day after day. Do the best you can with what Heavenly Father has given you. It is enough.

What is the true meaning of life?

It’s life.
Keep living.


Jonathan’s Song

Shortly after my son Jonathan committed suicide, the words to a simple little song started coming into my mind. I felt like it was a message from Jonathan trying to tell others to NOT do what he did when he took his own life. Please meditate seriously on the lyrics to this song. Truly, there is always a reason to live. Our Savior wants you to live.
 

A Reason to Live

VERSE 1
On the other side, the Savior stands
His love is given with outstretched hands
But you can feel Christ’s love today
For His love for you never goes away . . .
There’s a reason to live!

CHORUS
A reason to live . . .
A reason to live . . .
With faith in Christ who saves us all,
Our Redeemer and Friend will hear your call.
There’s a reason to live!

VERSE 2
Sometimes you feel so all alone
Your pain is deep, and no one knows
How bad you really hurt inside
But pray for Christ to be your guide . . .
There’s a reason to live!

CHORUS
A reason to live . . .
A reason to live . . .
With faith in Christ who saves us all,
Our Redeemer and Friend will hear your call.
There’s a reason to live!

VERSE 3
Hold on to hope for one more day
With faith in Christ you’ll find a way
To solve the problems facing you
And make your hopes and dreams come true . . .
There's a reason to live!

CHORUS
A reason to live . . .
A reason to live . . .
With faith in Christ who saves us all,
Our Redeemer and Friend will hear your call.
There's a reason to live!

There’s a reason to live . . .
Our Savior wants you to live . . .
Choose to live!


Hold on to Hope

As I said before, you need to catch a vision of why you are needed in this world. It is true that this world is often a depressing place, but there is also much good in the world. We need more people to fight for the good and overcome the evil. When you are free from your own depression someday, your eyes will be opened to the needs of others and how you can make a difference in their lives. We didn’t come to this earth just to live for ourselves. We each came here with a divine mission to perform. Get on your knees and ask God what your mission is. When you finally get your answer—and it may take many fervent prayers before this becomes clear to you—then you will be able to leave your past behind and be the person you always felt deep inside that you really could become. You will be a confident, competent, caring person who is helping to make this world a better place for everyone.