I have good news for you. You do not have to carry that familiar blanket of depression around for the rest of your life.
Do not buy the lie that depression will always be with you. When you come down with a cold or flu, you don’t expect to have that ailment for the rest of your life. In the same way that you take care of yourself when you’re fighting a cold or flu, with the expectation that you will get over it and move on, there are things that you can do to alleviate depression or get rid of it entirely. I know this is true, because I’ve done it.
I learned how to fight (and win) depression while going through abandonment, neglect, abuse, and poverty. The evidence of the effectiveness of the 30 things I learned about trading depression for happiness is my life—a life of going from profound sadness to authentic success, which I define as having a balance of healthy relationships, good physical and mental health, peace, joy, and enough financial prosperity to fulfill our unique purpose.
Dr. Andrea Ganahl, a psychologist who specializes in treating anxiety and depression, says that depression is one of the most treatable mental health issues. There are specific things that we can do when we feel it coming on or when we know that a triggering event is coming up. And there are things that we can do every day of our lives that help us build up an immunity, if you will, to those feelings of depression.
When I decided to share how I successfully fought depression, I knew that I didn’t want it to look and feel heavy, like depression feels. I wanted it to look exactly the opposite. So I wrote about happiness, and my publisher gave the cover a bright and cheerful look.
I knew that what I shared had to feel “doable,” and the actions to take had to be one manageable day at a time rather than an overwhelming, unrealistic transformation. I wanted it to include a mindfulness meditation to keep us from sliding back down into the darkness that rises back up around birthdays, holidays, special days, and triggering songs, smells, locations, and events, and tries to pull us back down into its comfortable embrace.
So I wrote 30 Days To Happiness with the 30 things that I learned to do to intentionally, actively fight depression and keep it from coming back and taking over. Each of the 30 things is simple, free, and easy to implement. These are common sense actions that anyone can take. All thirty actions can be summed up in one overarching goal that seems to be a fairly well kept secret.
So, what’s the big secret? The secret of fighting depression, and WINNING our way to genuine, sustainable happiness, is to learn to take control of our thoughts, our feelings, our attitudes, our words, and our actions.
I have experienced debilitating depression, so I know how daunting a statement that is, especially when you’re feeling a weight of hopelessness that holds you down so that you can’t even muster the determination to get out of bed. It took me many years, but I learned how to do these things, and I know that they work. This little book shares every one of those things that changed my life in a way that helps others master these things in 30 days rather than the 30 years that it took me to learn them.
What I’ve shared is precisely what has worked for me. And based on the feedback I’ve received from people who
have read the book, including from Ellen DeGeneres and many of her “Kind Box” subscribers in which the book was included, it works for others as well.
My fight against depression began with my first book, From Foster Care To Millionaire, in which I finally cast off the shame and embraced my story of being abandoned and abused. I shared a little of my story, but more importantly, I shared how I made it from the depths of sadness to a sense of joy that is difficult to fully articulate. After writing that book, I realized that I needed to say much more about authentic success (not just financial prosperity). I knew that I had to talk about the immeasurably valuable and highly transferable character traits of successful survivors of trauma. I wanted to give the easy steps to live the awesome life we are capable of living, tell how to actively fight depression, and how to live a life of kindness, and finally, how to go from success to significance by using our strengths, talents, and learned abilities in doing what is “no big deal” for us—I call it putting our love into action.
Thirteen books later, I’m hoping that the easy-to-read library of resources that I’ve shared helps others to understand that they have natural talents, character traits, learned abilities, and coping skills that they may not even be aware that they have. Once we grasp the courage, tenacity, resilience, resourcefulness, and so much more, that we acquired through our difficult experiences, and understand that those are all assets that we can use to create personal and professional success, we begin to believe that we actually do have immeasurable worth and value. It is then that we stand up straighter, become more bold, and begin to take steps toward our destinies.
You CAN fight depression and win. You CAN create happiness. I hope that what I’ve shared helps you. If so, please share your success tips with me at www.facebook.com/rhondasciortino.