Everyone has felt the empty darkness of Despair, Apathy and Depression. The mental and physical lethargy and the absence of spirit make it a dangerous quagmire, difficult to escape.
Some causes and effects of Depression
- The presence of strong memories of abandonment. Poor or absent parental care. Failures even with great effort. Environments and communities in depressed states of care. Improper dependency, co-dependency, and inappropriate reversal of care-giving roles as with children and dysfunctional parents.
- Low energy can result from purely physical health conditions, self-defeating thoughts, past trauma, unsupportive or oppressive environments. When they create low energy behaviors such as neediness, blaming conditions on others, feeling unprepared to handle situations, passivity, and inertia, these further rob you of the energy and will to get what you need .
- Long-term inability to get what you need can have you abandon the hope/ belief that it will ever happen or that you are capable, or that it is possible.
- The emotions are despair and despondency. The thoughts are of hopelessness, not caring, and victimization. The physical sensations are lethargy, immobility, tiredness, the weight of the world.
- God, the World, and Others are seen as Condemning, Absent, Unavailable
- Persistent Beliefs are that Life is Hopeless and I am Helpless
The true purpose of Depression
There is a genius within Depression. When you don’t know how to progress and begin to believe there is no way, you are fixed on only the limited approaches you have tried. Clearly there is some other way forward, because many others have faced the same and won but you can’t see any solution. When discouraged, it is difficult to find the energy or enthusiasm to redouble you efforts, so you withdraw by not caring. Depression can then serve you as a “back-door” approach to accomplishing something by first giving up. In giving up you surrender the old ways of thinking and doing that clearly haven’t worked. Starting over, you may now see a new approach, or the possibility to embrace things as they are. Paradoxically, when the ego holds tight to the old ways within the depression so that the surrender doesn’t happen- commonly known as hitting “rock bottom”- one can be stuck for a very long time.
But when your “down time” is used wisely, you may rest and regain the strength you lost through ineffective action order to come back with your energetic and mental resources revitalized to play a new game you can win.
Guided Process with Apathy
- Become still with deep breathing.
- Feel the physical sensations of Depression and its locations in your body. Sense that your energy, hope, or action seems to be gone. Ask your Depression what the need is. -Distinguish your old needs from current ones. What was the unmet need that started all this? What is your need now?
- Ask if you are now ready, on any level, to identify a thought, decision, communication, or action to deal with or change something about your circumstances and could bring relief? You don’t have to do it, just recognize it.
- Or, do you need to just relax and restore? Or is the need to simply shift your focus from past needs to present, to YOU and NOW?
- All of this takes very little effort; see how you can do this work while still in a low energy state. And, the energy may shift with your perspective. Try accepting, allowing, approving, improving.
Advanced use of your Despair
Apathy has a reverse momentum of diminishing energy over time until it achieves its purpose. But with experience you will learn to feel loss of energy, determination, or hope and quickly assess the need, understand how to address it and make that change.