If You’re Feeling Anxious or Depressed, Watch This

I wanted to step outside of the dating conversation for this week’s new video.

Relationship or no relationship, the quality of our lives is the quality of our emotions. And many of us feel plagued by our emotions. Whether it’s depression, anxiety, sadness, shame, guilt, fear… we can find ourselves living in a constant state of suffering.

If you can relate to this, please watch this before you do anything else today…

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Hey guys, something a bit different this week. We actually took a clip from a live session that I did where someone asked me about dealing with depression. And I think this is going to be really helpful to a lot of you, whether you associate with being depressed, or just some kind of chronic pain, some kind of anxiety, or even just any kind of negative emotion that you feel is dominant in your life right now, and you want to have some mindsets that can help you deal with that – not just overcome, but live with those feelings. I think you’re going to take a lot from this. So check it out, leave me a comment. Let me know what you think and I’ll see you back here at the end.

Well, Mai-Mai says, “Any advice for people having depression?”

Depression is an interesting word because it’s a very loaded term, right? There’s people who are feeling depressed and there’s people that are suffering from a chronic depression. And I’m a big believer in… Whatever, whether you are depressed right now or suffering from chronic depression – which are different, right, because chronic depression not only has the weight of feeling depressed, but the exhaustion of constantly having been depressed, and the catastrophic thinking that comes from the feeling that “I will always be depressed and that this is something I’m always going to suffer with.” And that’s a really scary thing. It’s one thing to be having a bad day and to think, “Oh God, I can’t wait until this day is over.” It’s another thing to think, “This is who I am, and therefore I will still be feeling this six months from now or a year from now.”

But I do think that, either way, we have to recognize that… essentially that the idea that feelings are temporary applies on both levels.

If you’re suffering from feeling depressed right now because of something circumstantial in your life, then you have to at least stand back from that and say, “This is temporary. I am depressed right now because I’m going through a terrible breakup. This is caused by what I’m going through right now, and I’m in a season and it’s going to get better.”

If we suffer from a kind of chronic depression, in the same way that we can suffer from a chronic physical pain, we have to remind ourselves, both with chronic emotional pain and chronic physical pain, that this pain does modulate. It does change, right? It doesn’t stay the same all the time.

Sometimes I’m more depressed and sometimes I’m less depressed. Sometimes my… Whatever it is that hurts – my head, my shoulder – sometimes it hurts more, other times it hurts less. And just in that is a realization that if it modulates, if it does change, then there’s a level of power in that because in my worst moments, in my catastrophic moments, I can still remind myself that there are better hours in the day, and I can focus on making more of those.

Maybe I make peace with the fact that this is something I deal with and it’s going to reoccur. But if I felt better for an hour yesterday, then my focus should be making more of those. There’s hope in one good hour, isn’t there? There’s hope in five good minutes.

And if I can take that and work on expanding that out, and pay attention to what happened in those five minutes where I felt better. Did I exercise? Did I have a beautiful conversation with someone I love? Did I look to the future at something I’m excited about? Did I work and spend some meaningful time on a project that was important to me? Did I just do something for myself or for somebody else that made me like myself more? Those things can make us feel very empowered and can change… They may not make the depression go away, they may change our relationship with it. And in changing our relationship with it, the paradox is that it starts to lessen the impact of it.

I’m not speaking – I know that there are people for whom chemical imbalances play a role, but that doesn’t mean we have no power over those situations. We may be fighting a different battle than other people, but I do believe that there are always things that we can do to manage our relationship with something. And I think in managing our relationship effectively with something, we can really develop an incredible amount of personal power in that.

And by the way, think about that. If you’ve got something, whether it’s depression, anxiety, whether it’s physical pain, whether it’s a trauma you’re going through in your life, whether it’s losing your job this year, whether it’s going through a breakup: Think about your difficulty in your struggle. And sometimes we go very insular with that. I’ve done this, my God, I’ve done this. You go insular with your pain and you sort of go into that mindset of… you isolate. But I do think that our pain is the key to connecting with other people because there are other people going through tremendously difficult things at the same time as us. Or perhaps not right now, but they will be in a year. And all the learning we do now, all of the strength we build, all of the muscle we build in dealing with our challenge now will absolutely benefit someone in our lives. Someone we cross paths with at certain points. So you get to be heroic in overcoming, or not even overcoming, just managing your pain or what you’re dealing with. You get to be heroic in doing that because then the benefit of you managing that could save somebody else.

I’m really glad we got to do something like this this week because I think, in general, we’re at this stage in the year where most of the year is over, we’ve been through so much. We’re dealing with all sorts of fallout in our lives from this year, both external and internal. And I want to just make sure that we as a community are staying strong together. I hope that you’ll come back to these videos every week just as a shot of good feeling, practical advice, things that could help you, or just a sense of community. And I love you when you leave comments. I hope you’re subscribed right now to YouTube because a lot of you watch these videos by chance because something pops up on your screen, but you’re not subscribed. So please take the opportunity right now to subscribe.

And for those of you that want to be part of a more intimate community I have, I also have a private community called my Love.Life membership. And there I’m with people every month, not just helping them with their love lives, but answering questions about life in general, creating a real solid sense of community every month, and just giving people coaching. These are videos, but there is coaching. So if you want to come join us on that, you can come and join for a free trial at AskMH.com. We’ll put a link up here.

And other than that, thanks for watching. I really hope that you feel strong right now. And if you don’t feel strong, know that it’s okay to not feel strong. We’ll work through those feelings together. I love you guys. I appreciate you. And I will see you next week.

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23 Replies to “If You’re Feeling Anxious or Depressed, Watch This”

  • You are a phenomenal human being. As a psychologist and coach myself, I thank you for everything you do for others (including me). I have been following you and purchasing your programs for years now. This video was timely and I will pass it along to a few people who need it.

  • Thanks Matthew, we definitely need videos like this right now! Such a difficult year, for many it’s been desperate with no fault of their own, losing jobs, businesses and loved ones and not even being able to be with loved ones. Please share more videos like this. Always love to see your face and your positivity and single or not, life is tough right now for everyone.
    Lots of love back at you too xx

  • Thanks for sharing this, Matthew. Being alone and broke on Thanksgiving this year was hard. I really appreciate your words of encouragement.

  • Well said Matthew. I’ve been affected by so many challenges. Many thanks for your video. There is truth to this. Currently, my situation is circumstantial, looking forward to better times. Love you my friend.

  • For most of us, this year has been about Loss. Loss of freedom, loss of time, loss of physical security, loss of income, loss of social interaction, and for those of us who are especially unlucky, loss of health or the loss of loved ones through death. Joy is quite hard to be found at the moment, despite the World being as beautiful as it has ever been. As you say in your video Matthew, we just have to hold faith with the temporary nature of all things, and keep the faith that “This too shall pass”. Thank you for your comforting words.

  • Dear Mattheu,
    I love your videos relatedto relationships. They are very informative and productive , however, as much as this one is a great support video , let me tell you something from a clinically depressed person’s point of view.
    When you are in that dark corner, doesnt matter what anybody says because your mind focuses 100% on the downfall of you in every level. No words, no exercise , nor anything can pull you out of it…. I spent a life time working on my dark clouds…. the only good is that I recognise the signs so I know I have to do something about them. That’s where videos like yours come as a help…. I surround myself with positivity, encouraging projects…. as much as most of us manic depressed don’t just change their thinking over a video, it is very nice to see that some people address it. Please do this once in a while….

  • NOW IF WE ARE SPEAKING OF WOMAN IN PARTICULAR, as we typically near our 40’s, the one intense variable that can bring on depression, is our fluctuating hormones, quite usual as part of the “Peri-Menopause ” phase. It is different for every woman, but important to identify. It can be debilitating, like the dark season of our soul, sleepless nights where your body simply will not turn off….very tough too be going thru during a stange time like this. Mine hit me when I was 45.

  • “depressed’ is ‘pushing down’ … it can be frightening to acknowledge and face the feelings AND the only way OUT is THROUGH … cry, shout, dance, power walk – MOVE it out of the body.

  • I love this video, and the fact that our pain can connect us with others and help them. Thank you Matthew, excellent content :)

  • Matt, thank you so much for your raw honesty in this video. I see you as an expert in so many ways, and it’s inspiring listening to you work on becoming expert at being imperfect. I tend to have very high expectations of myself, particularly when it comes to being of service to other people. So often in my mind, I don’t measure up to where I wish I were. For so many people also, in dating, there’s this striving for perfection, being the perfect future partner in order to attract a good mate. What’s at the core of your message today is self-acceptance, and it dovetails so beautifully into what you taught us in Florida. Your ability to take a step back and look at things rationally helps me do the same! I love this direction of the video, and I would welcome more videos that have to do with development of self. We so often look for satisfaction in the next relationship out there that is going to “make us happy.” But building the types of skills that you are building ultimately help us more in the long run to create that happiness in our lives, even when it is full of all types of moments of ease and dis-ease. Thank you, Matt!

  • Lovely Mat :) Thanks so much
    Something that I also found has been helping me a lot is practicing cheerfulness and thankfulness. I read in Proverbs in The Bible that says: “The days of the afflicted are filled with evil, but he who is cheerful has a continual feast.” So practicing things to be thankfulness and also practicing smiling and being cheerful. That has really been helping me mentally and changing mood and brain chemicals.One of my friends, she is very very good at that because she went through something hectic and been finding things challenging and been super cheerful and happy and enjoying life and trying to have fun and be cheerful and that inspires me too.

  • I really liked what you said about how the tough stuff we go through, the tough things we overcome on our journey will make it possible for us to help someone else at some point later in our lives when others are struggling. It’ll make make us more compassionate and understanding. At least it was what I took from it. :)
    Thank you so much, that was super inspiring.

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