A few years ago I received a call from a friend who was struggling with depression. She asked if I would stop by her house for a visit. I agreed, and when I arrived I was surprised at what I saw. She had been sitting inside her home, blinds closed, in the dark. It was a beautiful day outside, but she was oblivious to this fact because she had shut out the light. She had been spending her days inside this gloomy house focusing on her pain. Is it any wonder her depression was worsening?
After much coaxing on my part, my friend agreed to a little experiment. I asked her to simply walk out onto her deck, close her eyes, and raise her face up toward the sun. “Just breathe,” I told her. I had her stay in this position for a couple of minutes. It wasn’t long before she started to smile and said, “I forgot how good this feels.” We ate lunch outside on the deck, surrounded by the sounds of nature. We could hear birds singing, feel the wind blowing, and feel the warmth of the sun filling us with much needed energy. The transformation in her mood was amazing! When we did go back inside the house, we opened the blinds! A simple act like opening the blinds or walking outside for a few minutes can give us that little lift that we need.
Sometimes we have to take baby steps out of the darkness of depression. The smallest step, like feeling the warmth of the sun on your face may make a difference. No step that is made in an effort to get well is a mistake. Every step is an important part of your recovery. If you feel the need for professional help with your depression, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Friendly, caring, understanding mental health professionals are waiting to assist you.