Self-Love in Response to Sadness and Depression

By: Loolwa Khazzoom, Founder, Dancing with Pain

July 27th, 2009 • Mind-Body MedicinePrint Print

A couple of weeks ago, I was feeling really depressed and not understanding why. I also was feeling slightly ridiculous for feeling depressed, because I’ve got a slammin’ life.

Not only do I have work in this economy, but it covers the cost of living for myself and my mom, even with all my outrageous health care costs; I’m paid to pursue my various passions; I have a flexible schedule that works around all my health conditions and limitations; I’ve got a platform for pontificating on life and actually being listened to; and I’m living in a rooftop sanctuary that I adore. Oh yeah, and I get to hang out in my pajamas all day long. So what the hell was I all mopey about?

I often slip into this thing of berating myself for my sadness or struggles. That’s because I am very aware that relative to most people in the world, I live an easy, privileged life, even with all my struggles, and I am deeply grateful for the bagillion blessings I have. So when I feel unhappy, I usually judge myself as a whiny middle class Westerner.

My friends tell me, though, that it doesn’t matter how I’m doing in relation to others; that it is perfectly legit to feel sad or depressed about my own struggles. I really appreciate hearing that. Furthermore, says a friend of mine who has chronic depression, judging my depression really doesn’t help change the reality of what I’m feeling.

Getting past my irritation and judgment about my feelings enabled me to understand what was going on, then take action to solve it. What’s more, it’s really important to me to stop indulging this hyper-critical voice in my head. Instead I want to pump love and compassion into myself ’round the clock. Among other reasons, I believe that love is the most powerful cure-all that exists, promoting overall health and wellness.

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