When I got home from college after dropping out my junior year because of depression, I didn’t want to get out of bed. But my parents wanted me to, so I just transferred myself to the couch in the living room. Sometimes I would turn on the tv and watch marathons of Chopped, but mostly I just sat there and thought.
One day when I was lying on the couch not wanting to do anything, I figured if I was going to be out of school for a long time, I might as well do something productive with my life. I looked at my options. I could do some kind of online college class, go to in-person events just to get out of the house, or pick up a hobby. But none of these things made me happy, and my depression seemed determined to keep me drowning under the waves.
There was something that was my thing, and that was entrepreneurship. No matter what kind of day I’m having, the mere mention of startups still perks up my ears. I had been starting businesses in some form or another ever since I was a kid, and despite everything, this passion has never wavered.
So I started thinking of ideas, seeing which ones could become viable businesses. I spent my days glued to a wide purple notebook, pen in hand, sometimes moving from the couch to the table on our back porch in the mornings. If I was up early enough, I’d watch the sun come up. It was there, in the still mornings, that I learned about life and started to piece back together mine.
And as time went on, the depression started to lift. I was making more progress in my recovery, and the good days were more frequent than the bad. I started a couple different businesses, eventually settling on a web design business, and did a lot of experimenting and changing my ideas, and after a while, things started to work.
That business I started? Was the catalyst for my recovery. It was my reason to keep going. I knew that if I ever wanted make it as an entrepreneur, I had to get better. I didn’t become happy overnight after that, but it certainly helped.
After that, things did get easier. I found I had more energy to do things like go running and meditate and spend time in nature. These things, in turn, helped my mood even more. I started eating better, expressing gratitude, working on my negative beliefs and self-criticism, doing forgiveness work, and trying out every trick in the book to see what would help my depression.
After a while, I figured it out. It took a long time, more than a year, but eventually I figured out what I had to do to be happy and to stay out of the clutches of depression. And it actually works. It still amazes me to see that taking a few quick actions every day can keep me genuinely happy for the long term.
But this journey was incredibly difficult, and frustrating, and I didn’t have a lot of guidance about what to do. It was very lonely, and I wish someone who had already been there could have taken me by the hand and said, “Here’s what you need to do to get better.”
That’s part of why I started Resilient. I’m not a therapist, but I want to help you be happy again because I’ve been where you are. I have the personal experience of recovering from depression to be able to teach you everything I know, which I’ve learned over the years from reading dozens of personal development books, attending hours of therapy, and going to various psychology and self help classes.
One of the classes we offer on Resilient is called the 30 Day Negativity Detox, and it’s what I do on a regular (sometimes daily) basis to stay happy. You may have seen me mention this in some of our previous blog posts – a lot of them were actually from this class (I gave you some of our best material for free :)). It’s the things I did during my recovery that actually worked, and it’s a 30 day email series that goes step by step through what you need to do, one day at a time. You don’t have to be depressed for the rest of your life (because that would really suck, wouldn’t it?). Even if you work on this a little bit, things will get exponentially easier.
So this is your invitation to check out the 30 Day Negativity Detox. If you have a lot of negativity in your life, you worry all the time, you feel depressed, or you just feel like life generally sucks and you don’t really know why, getting rid of all the negativity in your life would definitely help you out. One of the first things we do in this class (spoiler alert!) is to find your reason why you want to recover. If you can find a compelling reason why you want to get better, everything will be so much easier, and it won’t feel like you’re fighting an uphill battle anymore.
If you want to recover and don’t know where to start, this is a good place to start. Because before you start to get happy and try to be optimistic and positive about everything, you have to detox from all the negativity that’s currently in your life.
One day at a time, you can do this.