At last night’s meeting, Carol Rickard, LCSW, laid out her Wellness Blueprint—a set of tools to reclaim and rebuild your life from depression. Those who believe that medication on its own is sufficient, reckons Carol, are mistaken. Essential it may be, but relying on medication alone to bring you wellness is like expecting to maintain your balance on a chair—with three legs missing. You must build a foundation—add legs to the chair—to maintain balance.
Adding outpatient follow-up, sobriety, and structure to your life can complete the foundation, but the more supports you employ the better. Nutrition, exercise, support (from loved ones and friends), socialization, coping skills, communication, spirituality (anything that creates a sense of peace), leisure, acceptance, and self esteem can be employed to lay a solid foundation for wellness.
Stress, when it piles up, becomes overwhelming. Deal with it by giving yourself permission to feel as you do and then act: seek help, prioritize and be realistic.
Be mindful of your wellness. When starting to go down it is important to intervene before that slide picks up momentum and becomes harder to stop. Focus on today, not the regrets of yesterday or the challenge of tomorrow.