How to Get Unstuck: Pinpointing the Lies that Hold you Back
I have to admit, I’ve been in a funk for the past several months. It only makes sense–we have made a few micro-moves as a family, into homeschooling, a new routine, and I have yet to find a new normal as a WAHM. Depression tends to hover during periods of uncertainty in my life.
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FEELING THE FUNK
Depression–for me–has been a signal that my life is out of balance, that something is not working as it is intended, and that adjustments need to be made. PRONTO.
Mental illness often comes with physical symptoms, just as any physiological illness does. Depression also comes in various degrees of permanency, and in this post I will speak on what I know–which is a temporary, circumstantial condition. Since I don’t have experience with chronic depression (dysthymia) or bipolar disorder, I will not attempt to speak on those issues.
DISCLAIMER: I am by no means a licensed professional. If you have a chronic mental illness, please seek professional guidance.
It (depression) began with a sense of apathy–a low humming sensation in my brain. I found myself on autopilot, with a daily goal of basically surviving. I gradually became numb to the things I had enjoyed not too long ago. I woke up later and later each morning.
I lost my desire to create or bake. Writing felt like a chore–just like everything else. I became short with everyone around me–my children first, and then my husband. I ate and drank just to feel something.
I tried to pray, but felt miles away from God. The words felt lifeless as they came out.
I found myself lonely, but then I also hid from my friends intentionally. My life was unraveling, and my pride refused to let anyone see me like this.
Depression is like a virus in which the enemy tricks you into feeding yourself lies. Your mind is filled with negative, disparaging thoughts that affect your emotions, leading you to feel like crap for weeks or months on end.
The devil on your shoulder whispers a steady stream of insults: you blew up again? you suck as a mom… you’re worthless… no wonder you don’t have many friends… feeling ignored by your husband again? maybe you should lose a few pounds… there are enough problems in the world.. God doesn’t need to hear you complain again.. you call yourself a Christian?Depression is like a virus in which the enemy tricks you into feeding yourself lies. Click To Tweet
THE DEVIL IS, IN FACT, A LIAR
In psychology, these insults are called negative self-talk, or automatic negative thoughts. Basically, you have an enemy who will stop at nothing to assure your demise. His strategy is to attack your mind–the control center of your being. All he needs to do is send you a “virus,” and get you to run it by perpetuating the lies.
During my girls’ trip last fall, I came across a book called Kill the Spider: Getting Rid of What’s Really Holding You Back by Carlos Whittaker. Whittaker writes that every person uses a number of coping mechanisms, which he calls cobwebs. According to the book, our cobwebs can be traced to a spider–or a lie that we believe that keeps us stuck in anxiety, depression, or tangled up in addictions and codependent relationships.
As a follower of Jesus, it is so important that my identity is rooted deeply in Him. What Jesus thinks of me has to matter more to me than what society thinks if I am going to be an effective beacon of His love. You cannot love others well if you do not love (or accept love) yourself. There are many sneaky lies that drown out the voice of love. Kill the Spider is a guidebook to help you identify the lies that hold you back from truly abundant life.What Jesus thinks of me has to matter more to me than what society thinks if I am going to be an effective beacon of His love Click To Tweet
My most recent bout of depression was triggered by a homeschool routine that wasn’t working for us. The enemy of my soul whispered failure over and over again until I allowed his words to define and disarm me. This went on and on, until I reached a breaking point.
A friend of mine called me one evening, and the floodgates opened. She listened, prayed with me, and helped me find a counselor to talk to. Thank God for good friends. When you are under the spell of depression, reaching out for help is often the last thing you want to do, though it is one of the most important things you can do for yourself.When you are under the spell of depression, reaching out for help is often the last thing you want to do, though it is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. Click To Tweet
My friends, after a few weeks of counseling, reading, and prayer, I am happy to say that the fog is finally lifting. It wasn’t enough for me to simply find the lies. I needed to make a decision to stop believing them and to fill up on God’s truth.