Mental Health Monday: Fake it ’til you make it

Every 1st and 3rd Monday either Liz or Stephanie will host a link up for others to share their experiences with mental illness – either from their own experience or from the experience of helping and walking with others.  Our goal is to reach out to the world and let people know that they are not alone in their struggles.  You are never alone.  Join us – link up, visit new blogs, support others.

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When you struggle with depression, there’s a lot of “faking it” in the digging yourself out of the deepest darkest hole recovery process.

It’s not like you wake up one day and suddenly feel 100% “normal” (what’s that feel like again?). It’s more like you keep forcing yourself to go through the motions until one day, you don’t have to force yourself anymore.

When you are at a particularly low point, you don’t want to do anything; I mean, NOTHING. It’s not merely, “Oh, I feel super lazy today.”. It’s literally, “Oh God, my body feels like it’s filled with lead and there’s absolutely no possible way I can get up and do anything today.”

Faking it is getting out of bed anyway.

Faking it is getting out of your pajamas and putting on regular clothes (shower optional).

Faking it is brushing your hair and putting on makeup (if you normally wear it on a good day).

Faking it is remembering just one thing that you enjoy and doing it, even when it’s the absolute last thing you want to do.

Faking it is turning a nothing day into a something day.

(Andie at Can You Stay For Dinner? wrote an excellent post about ‘nothing days’; I mentioned it on Friday, but wanted to link it again for those of you who are not regular readers.)

When you fake it long enough, you will start to believe it and you will be able to drag yourself up from the hole you’ve been in.

If you’re thinking to yourself, “Whatever. I’ve been faking it for as long as I can remember, and I’m still miserable,” dig deeper.

Remember how much you loved turning your music up as loud as you could stand and singing your heart out?

Remember how you used to love going to a coffee shop with a good book and reading for hours on end?

What about when you would go on a solo hike on a trail at the park?

Remember just one thing you know you truly enjoyed, one thing that never failed to make your heart happy, and do it, just for you. Make the time. Be a little selfish.

You deserve it.