There's been a massive upset in my equilibrium lately. And it was out of my control. I was hit hard, completely blindsided and left an emotional mess.
Why am I putting this out in the public domain?
Well, I did what we all have to do occasionally, I got help from the right people... who actually cared for me. And they got me back where I belong. And to that I am eternally grateful. You see, we will all get turned over at some point in our lives. It's how we react, and who comes out running that will really define you.
What does that have to do with inspiration?
Because I lost it all. I found myself hiding within a shell of my former self. No confidence, vulnerable and unable to think clearly. The things that usually motivate me had no impact. I was completely lost. And it wasn't nice. That, my friend, is depression.
Yeah, boo hoo. Save it for the next sap.
Hang on a sec, I got realisation. And for the first time in ages I was able to do my thinking from another place. I knew this was a temporary setback, and I realised certain things. Things like:
- No matter how bad things get, there's always someone there to help. Reach out.
- Look around. There's always someone worse off than you. Helping them will help you.
- This feeling won't last forever, you will come out of this stronger and brighter.
Depression was Taboo... but not anymore
Things are getting much better around this subject. Sure, years ago we just battled on and waited for that great healer, time, to sort it all out. But don't hide from it. Don't think it will get better by itself. There are so many people out there that can help put this temporary setback to bed. And that's what it is — temporary.
From family and friends, to professionals like doctors and counsellors. Reaching out is the important first step. I did, they helped, I feel great.
It won't happen to me!
I was cocky, I didn't look at how I was treating other people. I let things slip. It certainly was NOT going to happen to me!
In my own little world I thought I was doing ok. Beautiful family, just doing the day-in, day-out and BOOM!
I appreciate this is a strange thing to be talking about in a copywriting blog, but the truth is it will hit a lot of us during our lifetime and, if you're just a little bit aware, you could probably fix things before they start. And it might not happen due to an issue with a relationship, anything could trigger this. Family, friends, work, even the midlife things that make us wish we'd done more. Be aware.
And think about this for a minute. If this crap happens around you and your business model, it can hurt a lot. You can't afford to let personal matters get in the way. It's detrimental. Your customers know that something isn't right and it affects the way they think about you. As an employee you might be able to hide it, and workmates could cover for you. But if you're the business owner, every tiny facial expression and lack of control comes through.
So what are we going to do? We're going to do what we always do. We look at the solution, not the problem. Because one thing I realised more than ever was the fact that there is always a solution. It might not come from you, but someone you know will come up with the gold. It's time to trust, and that can be very hard. I consider myself to be one of the luckiest people in the world due to the people I could call on. And I thank them all.
Depression isn't Taboo.
It'll be hard, maybe you won't want to go on but, the truth is, there's better things ahead. I promise. If you want me to tell you something that might make your circumstances look better than you thought, try me. I guarantee an answer that'll be better than throwing it all away. Nothing is worth throwing it all away.
Yeah sure, you're a business owner, you're in charge, you're confident, nothing is going to phase you. No, no, no! Get in the real world for a moment. This sort of shit can hit at anytime. And can hit hard.
The best advice I can give (and I am in no means a professional) if you find yourself in this unfortunate position goes something like this:
- Get some time on your own to think, you need it.
- Any decision you make now could be detrimental, talk about it.
- Get help through family, friends, doctors or counsellors.
I had friends and family telling me to arrange some time to be alone and do the things I always enjoyed. The problem was I didn't feel like it. I wish I'd pushed myself harder to all that now. It's something we all need to get clarity.
In this mood you're guaranteed to make a few odd choices. Just have a think about it first. Talk with people you trust, they'll help you work things through in the best possible way. They'll have your best interests at heart. It's hard to put your trust in people sometimes. This is one of the times in your life you really need to reach out.
Who do I ask?
Some of the closest people to me advised going to a doctor as well as trying to help me themselves. It was the best thing I could've done. Left to my own devices I wouldn't have bothered. Since then, things have only moved forwards.
As long as you get the help you need, you will come out of this stronger than ever. Don't ever feel ashamed, or weak, just because the unconfident you needs somebody to help. This is an experience, and you can learn from this and grow. Come out fighting, come out stronger, make it a positive.
See you on the other side.
Ben Vaughan — Copywriter.