Stop Romanticizing Depression

Stop Romanticizing Depression

It's not a game, it's real.
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Mental illness is a scary topic, seeing as there are so many of them and a lot of people suffer from one. A few things that bother me, and make me sad, is those people who take advantage of an illness and try and turn something so sad into this generational, romanticized version of something that it’s not. The generations below me, and the one that I am a part of are extremely guilty of doing this.

As I scroll through my Twitter and Instagram feeds, I see constant, "I'm so sad," "I have such horrible anxiety," "I'm so depressed" (now do not get me wrong, I tweet if I'm sad about something, but not for attention) all over it. All day, every single day. With all the mental illnesses being talked about, you don't really see people romanticizing anything other than anxiety and depression.

And for those who actually suffer from the disease (YES, PEOPLE, Depression is a DISEASE), it is kind of a slap in the face.

Mental illness is real, and it's raw and painful and it sucks. Being sad all the time sucks. Depression sucks.

What depression isn't: beautiful selfies on Instagram with a sad caption, a pack of cigarettes you smoke to be artsy, with makeup running down your face; it isn't drugs, and sex with random people to make yourself feel better; and it isn't this beautiful boy coming in to save you by saying all the right things and wiping away all of your tears.

Depression is depressing, it's loneliness when you're in a crowded room, it's never feeling good enough, it's a lot a lot a lot of tears, it's struggling to hold yourself up when everyone around you is standing. It's feeling lonely next to your parents, your best friend, your little brother.

It's a tough topic, you don't always know how other people are feeling, but those of you putting it out there, tagged with Banks, or Lana del Rey lyrics, spouting about your depression for attention: it's hurting those who actually suffer from the disease.

Depression doesn't pick you because you're rich or you're poor; it doesn't pick you because you live in a big house or a small one, or you have long hair or short hair. It will pick anyone, and anyone can suffer.

Not all of us have someone to save us like Freddie fought so hard to save Effy. (If you haven't watched "Skins: UK" on Netflix, check it out.) I'm sure there are some people out there who would do anything for someone, but most of us wake up and fight this battle alone. So if you're sitting here, playing around, pretending to be sad, hoping this beautiful boy will swoop down and save you from yourself, stand up.

Stop romanticizing a disease, and start loving those around you, because you never know if the person beside you is broken.

And if you suffer from depression, know there are millions of people proud of you, for lots of things: for getting out of bed today, for going to work today, for smiling today, because everyday is a new one, filled with a million possibilities. And just because you are sad today doesn't mean you won't be incredibly happy tomorrow. You will find your soulmate. You will eat lots of ice cream. You will make wishes on pennies thrown in fountains, shooting stars, and 11:11. And you will collect shells on the beach. You will laugh, you will cry, but you will get better.

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100 Ways To Practice Self-Care In Your Everyday Life, In 20 Minutes Or Less

Simple ways to start taking care of yourself.

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Life is overwhelming and distracting so it's easy to forget about yourself sometimes, but practicing small self-care acts is easy. Making time for yourself every day isn't selfish and is really good for your mental health. I think it's important for everyone to spend time doing things that make them happy and more calm, even if you only dedicate 20 minutes each day. Putting yourself first can lead to growth so many other aspects of your life.

Obviously, each person is allowed to practice self-care in their own unique way, but here are some ideas to get you started!

1. Do something new. 

2. Make a list of things you need to get done that week. 

3. Drink some hot tea. 

4. Go for a walk on a scenic trail.

5. Paint your nails.

6. Have a good laugh.

7. Buy yourself flowers.

8. Light a candle.

9. Do some tidying up.

10. Don't feel bad for saying 'no.'

11. Listen to music.

12. Slow down.

13. Drink a smoothie.

14. Run mindless errands.

15. Write down your goals for the week.

16. Talk to someone about the future.

17. Wake up early and get coffee. 

18. Take care of a plant. 

19. Take a bubble bath. 

20. Give yourself a compliment.

21. Give a stranger a compliment.

22. Watch a movie.

23. Put your phone down.

24. Declutter your personal space.

25. Go to bed early. 

26. Pray or meditate. 

27. Go for a drive. 

28. Make it a habit to stargaze. 

29. Read a book. 

30. Read poems. 

31. Sing loudly. 

32. Make a list of things you're grateful for. 

33. Drink a lot of water. 

34. Put on make-up for no reason.

35. Watch funny videos. 

36. Take a deep breath. 

37. Distance yourself from negativity. 

38. Unfollow people you don't care to follow on social media. 

39. Have a pajama day. 

40. Read an inspirational book. 

41. Call your parents/ loved ones. 

42. Donate old clothing. 

43. Dedicate a day out of the week to not eating meat. 

44. Do a fun craft or DIY project. 

45. Put on a face mask and relax. 

46. Do a small workout. 

47. Take a power nap. 

48. Listen to a podcast. 

49. Open a window. 

50. Open your curtains in the morning to let in natural light. 

51. Make your bed. 

52. Cook dinner instead of eating out. 

53. Play/ cuddle with an animal. 

54. At the end of the day, think of all the positive things that happened.

55. Moisturize. 

56. Buy a comforting blanket. 

57. Give someone a hug. 

58. Create a vision board. 

59. Have some alone time.

60. Enjoy the sun on your skin. 

61. Dance like nobody is watching.

62. Walk in the rain every once in a while. 

63. Drive with the windows down. 

64. Give someone a gift for no reason. 

65. Get a massage. 

66. Do something that gets your adrenaline running. 

67. Spend the day at the library or a book store. 

68. Organize your work space/ binders. 

69. Spend a weekend in. 

70. Recognize hard work and reward yourself. 

71. Sign up for a work out class. 

72. Eat lunch with a friend. 

73. Spend the day helping others. 

74. Get your hair done. 

75. Have a good cry. 

76. Use sticky notes. 

77. Color code your planner. 

78. Print out pictures and hang them up. 

79. Hang motivational quotes on your mirror and read them when you get ready. 

80. Do random acts of kindness. 

81. Buy fuzzy socks. 

82. Redecorate or rearrange furniture. 

83. Be present. 

84. Set a new years resolution. 

85. Make a bucket list. 

86. Stretch in the morning. 

87. Watch an interesting documentary. 

88. Make a music playlist.

89. Watch the sunrise or sunset. 

90. Explore somewhere new.

91. Be slow to respond to negativity. 

92. Have a game night with friends. 

93. Buy concert tickets. 

94. Have a nightly routine before bed. 

95. Eat your favorite dessert. 

96. Do something you've been putting off. 

97. Invest in essential oils. 

98. Manage your finances. 

99. Buy a new outfit. 

100. Make your own gratitude list. 

Try at least one of these every week and see how you feel! I guarantee you will notice a difference in the way you are living your life.

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Being Sick In College Is The Absolute Worst

College is hard both in health and in sickness...but especially in sickness.

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As a first semester freshman, the transition into college was hard, but there was one thing I was not prepared for at all: dealing with college when you're sick. Especially now, it's finals week, everyone is stressed out, tired, and very prone to illness. Despite my hardest efforts to stay healthy (drinking lots of water, taking vitamin C supplements, washing my hands, etc.) I still managed to catch what everyone's been throwing around, and it is the worst.

Not only do I feel incapable of going to class, since my whole body aches, I just feel like sleeping all day, which means none of the work I need to get done is getting done. This would've been difficult during any other week, but it being finals week, I have more papers and quizzes and tests to complete than ever. I'm sure many college students can relate when I say: I just wanna go hooooommmmeee!!!

On the bright side, I also have amazing friends who are helping me out. In college, since everybody's going through the same struggle, I find that there's a greater sense of family here. A friend from my English class sent me some more Emergen-C, and one of my BFFs did a CVS run for me. So although I miss my mom's homemade soup and warm hugs, I can take comfort in knowing that there are people here who care about me and want to help me get better.

So to all my fellow sickies, a few words of reassurance: We only have about a week left to go, we can totally do this!! A few exams and papers got nothin' on us, we're tough and smart and capable!! If you need to take a sick day, please do. Nothing is more important than your health and well being, not even grades. Take some medicine, sleep it off, and get stronger tomorrow! Make sure to drink lots of water, and try to eat something, even if it is just dining hall grilled cheese (Linkins Dining Center, I'm lookin' at you!) Persevere for a few more days, and we'll all be back home, chilling on the couch, and getting yelled at by our parents to do our laundry in no time.

Sending you all love and positive vibes for this finals season!

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