The darkness of Depression is coming. I can feel it in my gut. I’m so used to this feeling. We’re old friends.
Sometimes I’m able to tell her to piss off, that I’m busy, that she can come again another time (because she’s always going to come again another time).
Sometimes I let her in for a bit, we catch up, and she’s on her way again.
Sometimes she promises a short visit, but ends up bringing all her baggage and staying with me for months. She’s a filthy guest. She never leaves things the way they were before.
She’s kind of a bitch in that way.
But we’re almost like family, and she is never too far away. She’s decided to come for another visit. I know it. I don’t know how long she wants to stay for. I don’t want her to stay at all, but I’m not sure if I can convince her.
It’s been a really good two Grey years. An actual small business, two international moves, a new dog. The business has been one of the greatest “F you”s to Depression that I’ve put out. My little business has involved a LOT of active intention searching, and hustling, and getting shit done. A lot of shit. Great shit. I’m really proud of Level Up, Get Messy, my design work, and even of my Etsy shop (specifically, realising it no longer represented me and putting it on hold until adding the products that did).
But the thing about FUs, is that when Depression comes, it’s the thing it’s going to hit hardest. Depression makes checking off “email X back” become “climb Kilimanjaro”. This makes work <sarcasm>great</sarcasm>. When you are a solopreneur, Depression is a whole nother ball game.
When you’re working for and by yourself, you have a lot of quiet time to think. You have a lot of hustling and you’re very, very much in control. It’s brilliant for work. It’s not so brilliant for Depression. Depression turns the thinking time into anxiety time. Hustling now goes against the flow instead of with it. You have no control.
I am so wary of every emotion that I feel. I used to be petrified of Depression, but I’m not anymore. I’ve put really great systems in place and isn’t that what systems are for? The bad bits, not the good ones, are where systems shine.
I’m not sure how I’m going to convince Depression not to stay for long, but I’m sure as hell going to try.
How I’m fighting Depression as a solopreneur
- follow my own advice in Level Up (and continue noting what I’ve learned)
- play Shia LaBeouf’s motivational speech on repeat
- trust the systems that I’ve put into place
- completely rely on my to do list system
- go with the flow
- take each day as it comes. focus on the day, not the year
- if the day is overwhelming, focus on the hour, focus on the task, keeping breaking it down until it’s too small to fail
- break to do list items into such small pieces that it barely seems like progress at all (but still is progress)
- morning pages
- harness the darkness into art
- remind myself of my “why”
- be okay with not being okay
- make myself happy
- be kind to myself
- buy myself flowers
- if all else fails, aim for a non-zero day
The darkness of Depression is coming, but I’m ready for it.
PS: If you’re currently in the darkness, send me a mail. I know what it’s like. I’m here for you.
If you’ve fought the darkness before, what worked for you? Please share.