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The fiverr forum might not be the place for this topic, but I want to give it a try. I've seen a lot of experienced, bright people on here and I could use some advice. This post might be a heavy one, so, please, read it at your own discretion.

I'm a 25 years old aspiring artist, freelancer and Applied graphics student at Vilnius Academy of Arts. I have a chronic sadness that I've been battling for a long time and I'm not ruling out the possibility of it being a major depression. I was watching a lecture about depression by professor Robert Sapolsky at Stanford Univeresity the other day and one remark in the lecture stuck with me. The professor noted that simply put, "people with depression are unable to appreciate sunsets." After some self-reflection I have realized that the way professor described depression almost describes my everyday life. I simply am not able to appreciate and enjoy the things I used to and I find it very hard to be happy with myself, which was not the case in my high school years. I also often find myself being emotionally unstable, needing to calm down and collect myself, especially in public. I am unable to get rid of the feelings of worthlessness and being a burden to others. I find it hard to appreciate my own effort even when other people do. I feel ashamed of myself and I push people away, sometimes unconsciously and sometimes with intent. I also find it very hard to trust my parents and therefore I restrict myself from sharing struggles or little joys with them. And this really hurts me as I feel like it's me against the world most of the time. I'm sorry if this was a heavy read, I just felt like I could really use some advice or suggestions.

I know that there are people here who went through similar struggles or something a lot more severe. How do you deal with tough times and stay focused & productive?

Thank  you.

 

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Your words have touched my heart. Life is like that. You have to live in a difficult situation if you want to live in this world. I think you must trust people. Also, you share the joy with others, I hope you can overcome your sorrow and frustration. It will make your life beautiful. Never feel weak. Believe in yourself. Never look at the better life of others. You will not find happiness in it. The most important thing is to have faith in God. He will never leave you. This is how I deal with difficult situations in my life. May God help you.

Edited by mdminhaz05
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6 minutes ago, mdminhaz05 said:

Your words have touched my heart. Life is like that. You have to live in a difficult situation if you want to live in this world. I think you must trust people. Also, you share the joy with others, I hope you can overcome your sorrow and frustration. It will make your life beautiful. Never feel weak. Believe in yourself. Never look at the better life of others. You will not find happiness in it. The most important thing is to have faith in God. He will never leave you. This is how I deal with difficult situations in my life. May God help you.

Even though I find it difficult to do many things you have mentioned, I appreciate your advice. Thank you

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49 minutes ago, gajuseidi said:

How do you deal with tough times and stay focused & productive?

Thank you for being so bold to share your feelings with us. 
Facing hard times or sadness is surely tough. But depression is on another level. You nailed it pointing out that's you against the world. Sometimes I also felt that was me against myself, my worst enemy. 

I can't recommend a way out nor a miracolous lifestyle. The only thing that keeps me balanced it's the Mindfulness Meditation. It is not about religion and it fits almost everybody. Give it a try. It gave me some useful tools to keep going. 

Practising breathing exercises help me to stay focused and don't drow in negative thoughts. A quick exercise - 3 minutes - is a good way out of anxiety attacks.

You can find more information online. I also know that there are courses teaching this kind of Meditation. 

Side note: Even if you feel that is useless or that nobody can understand what's going on, try to rely on your family and friends. Don't worry about being a burden or that they can't really help you. Put your thoughts in the daylight, so they won't harm you.

 

Edited by alphagev
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43 minutes ago, gajuseidi said:

How do you deal with tough times and stay focused & productive?

Therapist. 

Also, training myself to learn and enjoy little things. ‘Cause if you have a tendency to get stuck in negative thought cycles, in theory, a minuscule thing like a good cup of coffee can break the cycle and snap you out of it for some time. It’s a good exercise. 

You can also try and pinpoint the moment when you first felt the way you do. What was happening in your life at that time, who came or left your life then, etc., etc. Sometimes the feeling of overwhelming hopelessness and everything else that comes with it appears when we feel trapped in our circumstances and can’t yet identify that single irritant, that thing that we want to change or be gone from out lives. It takes some digging, though. It’s like going to therapy for those who can’t fathom going to therapy. 

I hope you feel better soon. 

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1 hour ago, gajuseidi said:

How do you deal with tough times and stay focused & productive?

This is a broad topic. Every person has their own "therapy".

For some people it's actively going to a therapist. For me, I focus a lot on my hobbies. I enjoy some videogames, especially role playing games that send me to other worlds and remove all the stress. There's also reading, music, etc. Whatever makes you happy. 

That's what helps me when it comes to tough times. When it comes to staying productive.. that varies as well. Instrumental music helps me focus a lot. And honestly, it all comes down to staying organized and taking breaks. 

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8 hours ago, mdminhaz05 said:

Your words have touched my heart. Life is like that. You have to live in a difficult situation if you want to live in this world. I think you must trust people. Also, you share the joy with others, I hope you can overcome your sorrow and frustration. It will make your life beautiful. Never feel weak. Believe in yourself. Never look at the better life of others. You will not find happiness in it. The most important thing is to have faith in God. He will never leave you. This is how I deal with difficult situations in my life. May God help you.

Right

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11 hours ago, alphagev said:

Thank you for being so bold to share your feelings with us. 
Facing hard times or sadness is surely tough. But depression is on another level. You nailed it pointing out that's you against the world. Sometimes I also felt that was me against myself, my worst enemy. 

I can't recommend a way out nor a miracolous lifestyle. The only thing that keeps me balanced it's the Mindfulness Meditation. It is not about religion and it fits almost everybody. Give it a try. It gave me some useful tools to keep going. 

Practising breathing exercises help me to stay focused and don't drow in negative thoughts. A quick exercise - 3 minutes - is a good way out of anxiety attacks.

You can find more information online. I also know that there are courses teaching this kind of Meditation. 

Side note: Even if you feel that is useless or that nobody can understand what's going on, try to rely on your family and friends. Don't worry about being a burden or that they can't really help you. Put your thoughts in the daylight, so they won't harm you.

 

A lot of people have suggested meditation, it seems quite intimidating, but I will look it up and give it a shot. I have started to workout quite regularly and I have to say that exercise really helps uplift my mood and it also helps with self-confidence. I do have a few people I can talk to, so there's that, although I think it's a bit late to rely on my family, I've been let down way too many times and it's not like I was not trying. Thank you a lot for your kind response.

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11 hours ago, lenasemenkova said:

Therapist. 

Also, training myself to learn and enjoy little things. ‘Cause if you have a tendency to get stuck in negative thought cycles, in theory, a minuscule thing like a good cup of coffee can break the cycle and snap you out of it for some time. It’s a good exercise. 

You can also try and pinpoint the moment when you first felt the way you do. What was happening in your life at that time, who came or left your life then, etc., etc. Sometimes the feeling of overwhelming hopelessness and everything else that comes with it appears when we feel trapped in our circumstances and can’t yet identify that single irritant, that thing that we want to change or be gone from out lives. It takes some digging, though. It’s like going to therapy for those who can’t fathom going to therapy. 

I hope you feel better soon. 

I have pinpointed a few issues that are giving me the most grief and I'm slowly working towards fixing them and improving myself. It's just that the road leading there is long and it gets really tough sometimes. I might consider therapist if it gets really bad. Thank you for your kind advice and support, I really appreciate it.

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11 hours ago, donnovan86 said:

This is a broad topic. Every person has their own "therapy".

For some people it's actively going to a therapist. For me, I focus a lot on my hobbies. I enjoy some videogames, especially role playing games that send me to other worlds and remove all the stress. There's also reading, music, etc. Whatever makes you happy. 

That's what helps me when it comes to tough times. When it comes to staying productive.. that varies as well. Instrumental music helps me focus a lot. And honestly, it all comes down to staying organized and taking breaks. 

Thank you Donnovan, I appreciate your suggestions. For a long time I have been finding solice in painting, but it got to the point of almost destroying me in a way and I have not touched a paintbrush in a while. I know I will always be creating something in any form, I just feel like at this time I should focus all my attention to building a foundation under my feet. Although it is worth it to make some time to myself, I find it hard not to judge myself afterwards for not being productive.

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17 minutes ago, gajuseidi said:

Although it is worth it to make some time to myself, I find it hard not to judge myself afterwards for not being productive.

Always focus on yourself first, as a freelancer. I've been doing this for almost a decade, and if you don't take good care of yourself, you break down fast.

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39 minutes ago, gajuseidi said:

it seems quite intimidating

At first I felt the same. But you'll learn that there is no right or wrong in meditation - and, especially, no failure.
I hope you'll try it. However I wish you all the best. Keep in touch

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13 hours ago, gajuseidi said:

How do you deal with tough times and stay focused & productive?

It's brave to speak up, thank you. You describe feelings, moods and emotions that so many people experience or have experienced. Myself included. We can relate to the feelings but the causes of them are individual. If you feel this way about life and about yourself it's OK, but you feel that way for a reason(s) that isn't your fault. Low self esteem and feelings of worthiness are not our natural state. I've been through therapy, I believe everyone could use at least a few sessions, I mean, look at world we grow up in. There's nothing "wrong" with you. You can take responsibility for your healing. 

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Physical exercise can be good also. I learned that from Linda Hamilton of all people. She once mentioned that despite her mental health struggles, she was most stable pre- and during Terminator 2 shoot because of how much physical training it took. 

Dark thoughts can take you sort of out of your body and the physical strain brings you back in, in a way. It’s also a new routine and new people around which can also help if you feel like you're stuck in a state you don't want to be in. 

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Hey, thank you for sharing such raw and deepfelt feelings with us. Everyone has definitely gone through a rough patch in their lives, especially nowadays with who-knows-what is going around in the world. We may not completely understand how you feel, but your feelings are valid. This is a safe space and feeling that way is not your fault. I hope you find some comfort in sharing your story with us. 😊

I find daily reflections/meditations in the morning and the night very helpful. The busyness of the day sometimes gets you off track and fills you up with so many different thoughts. I have found reflections/meditation time helps realign myself in to my I like to call a "zen" state.

I'm also very fond on "Stoicism", a school of philosophy which teaches some sort of mental toughness to overcoming destructive emotions. This was after I've read Meditations by Marcus Aurelius. 

As others have mentioned, doing activities you like or want to learn to do is a great thing to keep your mind busy and productive. 😁

You may want to reach out to a professional if you feel like it's completely bothering you or if you've tried everything and you'd want something new. An excellent professional will be able to understand your situation better and work with you to address any underlying problems. There is some brain chemistry involved in what would clinically be called as depression, and more often than not medications can help and a lot of people respond well to it. But everyone is unique, your story is always uniquely yours. You are free to make your own choices.

I hope you find the peace your heart and mind seeks. Sending you virtual warm hugs, a cup of coffee and a cookie! 🤗🍪

Edited by theratypist
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Thank you for your brevity and sharing with us. 

The first approach is SHARING - a problem shared is a problem half solved, that´s what our mother taught us. I assume you already feel better by just sharing with us here.

When I face tough times I just create a world of my own. Do anything that makes me happy without actually caring what others think. I work out, listen to very loud music, go for a jog, sometimes I just let myself feel it to the brim until it vanishes. Kindly try to do what you find relieving, something that works best for you.

Once you feel a bit calm its time to face everything head-on. Face your demons with courage, you have to hold your head high in this phase or else you´re back to the drawing board.

21 hours ago, gajuseidi said:

After some self-reflection I have realized that the way professor described depression almost describes my everyday life.

As important it is to listen to all the voices around you, its is destructive in equal measure. Everything may seem to describe your situation and as a result it worsens it. Block all the negative energy from the internet and social media. SITUATIONS ARE DIFFERENT so do not compare.

It stimulates more fear and demeans self esteem. You look down on yourself instead of cheering yourself up - appreciate yourself.

Lastly, F*k the pain, F*k the sorrow, F*k the shame.

It is going to be ALRIGHT!🤗

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On 7/26/2021 at 1:25 PM, alphagev said:

At first I felt the same. But you'll learn that there is no right or wrong in meditation - and, especially, no failure.
I hope you'll try it. However I wish you all the best. Keep in touch

I will try it, I've heard a lot of people saying that meditation has helped them. Thank you for your kind words 😊

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On 7/26/2021 at 1:37 PM, leannelrivers said:

Low self esteem and feelings of worthiness are not our natural state.

The more I analyze my past and my surroundings, the more I agree with this statement. It's not a natural state even though I almost got used to it.

 

On 7/26/2021 at 1:37 PM, leannelrivers said:

I've been through therapy, I believe everyone could use at least a few sessions,

I have been reading more and more about psychotherapy, sort of easing myself into this practice and methods that are used. For now I'm trying things I could do at home or just with what I have, since I don't want to spend on therapy yet. But it is on my mind.

 

On 7/26/2021 at 1:37 PM, leannelrivers said:

There's nothing "wrong" with you. You can take responsibility for your healing. 

Thank you for your kind words, I really appreciate it. Sometimes I do wish I was more "normal", but then again, I quite quickly realize that I am who I am and I'm just in a tough place in life and somehow, no matter how much enormous effort it will take, I will get through. Thank you.

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On 7/26/2021 at 2:04 PM, lenasemenkova said:

Physical exercise can be good also. I learned that from Linda Hamilton of all people. She once mentioned that despite her mental health struggles, she was most stable pre- and during Terminator 2 shoot because of how much physical training it took. 

Dark thoughts can take you sort of out of your body and the physical strain brings you back in, in a way. It’s also a new routine and new people around which can also help if you feel like you're stuck in a state you don't want to be in. 

Just yesterday I had a great workout! Sometimes it's hard to make myself exercise, but it's always worth it. And I can say, that yesterday was a good day. Today as well, actually. Exercise really helps clean up my thoughts and as I get physically tired, I have no energy for dark thoughts before sleep 😄 Thank you, Lena.

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22 hours ago, theratypist said:

Hey, thank you for sharing such raw and deepfelt feelings with us. Everyone has definitely gone through a rough patch in their lives, especially nowadays with who-knows-what is going around in the world. We may not completely understand how you feel, but your feelings are valid. This is a safe space and feeling that way is not your fault. I hope you find some comfort in sharing your story with us. 😊

I find daily reflections/meditations in the morning and the night very helpful. The busyness of the day sometimes gets you off track and fills you up with so many different thoughts. I have found reflections/meditation time helps realign myself in to my I like to call a "zen" state.

I'm also very fond on "Stoicism", a school of philosophy which teaches some sort of mental toughness to overcoming destructive emotions. This was after I've read Meditations by Marcus Aurelius. 

As others have mentioned, doing activities you like or want to learn to do is a great thing to keep your mind busy and productive. 😁

You may want to reach out to a professional if you feel like it's completely bothering you or if you've tried everything and you'd want something new. An excellent professional will be able to understand your situation better and work with you to address any underlying problems. There is some brain chemistry involved in what would clinically be called as depression, and more often than not medications can help and a lot of people respond well to it. But everyone is unique, your story is always uniquely yours. You are free to make your own choices.

I hope you find the peace your heart and mind seeks. Sending you virtual warm hugs, a cup of coffee and a cookie! 🤗🍪

I actually have got some great suggestions in this thread that I am very grateful for. At some point I have tried a "diary of thankfulness" method of self-reflection. In this diary every evening I would write things that I was grateful for that day. I kept doing it for a little over a month and I found it very calming and meaningful, I might pick up the diary again.

Also, I will note this book into my book list, sounds like a great and meaningful read. 😊

Thank you for your kind words and support, I really do appreciate it. I'm sending virtual hugs your way as well! 🤗😊

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16 hours ago, muriithikelvin said:

Thank you for your brevity and sharing with us. 

The first approach is SHARING - a problem shared is a problem half solved, that´s what our mother taught us. I assume you already feel better by just sharing with us here.

When I face tough times I just create a world of my own. Do anything that makes me happy without actually caring what others think. I work out, listen to very loud music, go for a jog, sometimes I just let myself feel it to the brim until it vanishes. Kindly try to do what you find relieving, something that works best for you.

Once you feel a bit calm its time to face everything head-on. Face your demons with courage, you have to hold your head high in this phase or else you´re back to the drawing board.

As important it is to listen to all the voices around you, its is destructive in equal measure. Everything may seem to describe your situation and as a result it worsens it. Block all the negative energy from the internet and social media. SITUATIONS ARE DIFFERENT so do not compare.

It stimulates more fear and demeans self esteem. You look down on yourself instead of cheering yourself up - appreciate yourself.

Lastly, F*k the pain, F*k the sorrow, F*k the shame.

It is going to be ALRIGHT!🤗

Thank you for all the motivation and support, I really appreciate it. I'm improving on picking myself up sooner and sooner every time after having a very rough apathetic period, so there is progress even if it's sometimes hard to notice it. "SHARING - a problem shared is a problem half solved" - I really like this idea. I'm really glad I've shared my situation here, I feel like it was not only useful, but also meaningful hearing from people, who also went through tough periods in their lives. It somehow gives me strength and hope that I can do it as well and that there is a way out, there is a way through all of it. Thank you once again ❤️

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On 7/26/2021 at 11:42 AM, gajuseidi said:

A lot of people have suggested meditation, it seems quite intimidating, but I will look it up and give it a shot. I have started to workout quite regularly and I have to say that exercise really helps uplift my mood and it also helps with self-confidence. I do have a few people I can talk to, so there's that, although I think it's a bit late to rely on my family, I've been let down way too many times and it's not like I was not trying. Thank you a lot for your kind response.

I also recommend meditation. For me it is Vipassana. (google it, they are free retreat in all countries)

Some may prefer less static methods such as qigong. Your best bet is to try a method and see what works for you. The benefit brought or not is felt from the first hour of practice in my opinion.

😁🙏

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