View Full Version : Depressed

09-30-2003, 04:57 PM

I need some helped I was laid off from my job September 19 was my last day.. I was a graphic designer...since then I have been really down and have no motivation at all to do anything!!!! Please help me what can I do to get out of my slump...I need to create my portfolio so I can start looking for another job but all I can do is lay in bed. I have no confidence in my self any more. I was a graphic designer for 3 years doing mostly computer related artwork (websites, graphics etc) So I basically havent painted or drawn by hand in almost 3 years and the thought of doing it now is scary...I am afraid to make a mark on my paper!!

Any suggestions?

Thanks for listening

Cathy Morgan
09-30-2003, 10:08 PM
Starting from where you are now, it seems to me that you could use some personal assistance - a psychological jump start, so to speak. If you don't have the energy to get out of bed, maybe you have a phone next to it? If you feel too unlovable to call anyone you know, try a crisis line. The fact that you wrote this message is a great sign. You either got up or you have a good laptop computer.

Jump starts can come from a lot of sources - a job search support group, a community mental health clinic (free counseling - don't underestimate the power of someone listening to you as if you matter) - an artists support group - an artist partner or ANY partner whom you call once or twice a day to check in with action plans and what you did.

So that's my main suggestion - to ask someone, somewhere, for a jump start. Then you can work on how to keep your battery charged up.

Rose Queen
09-30-2003, 10:36 PM
I agree with Cathy's assessment. I know exactly how this feels (although not from the same source) and you cannot get out of this funk by yourself. But you have to be the one who reaches out. You probably still have medical coverage for another month or so, so call your doctor and ask for a referral. Medication may be indicated in the short term, so please don't fight it. Once you start moving those feet, it gets easier and easier to put one in front of the other and get on with life.

Please let us know how you're doing, will you?

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Eugene Veszely
10-01-2003, 12:10 AM
I dont know if I can help you, but I do know how you feel. I used to get very depressed but not long ago I thought "I am too smart to get depressed" and something changed inside me and now I feel much better.

Also do something, anything , action is a great help for getting out of depression and negative thinking :) I know !!

10-01-2003, 03:45 PM
I've been on and off of medication for years, for various reasons, but it runs (rampant) in my family.

Being immobilized like you are is bad. Feeling suicidal is worse. Don't wait for that, get to a doctor, even your family doctor and tell them your situation. Medications can save lives these days, and help you get started again.

It hard to realize it, but the well meaning souls asking you to cheer up or tighten up, or get real, are no help at all. Getting moving (physically) is, but what you need right now is hope. There is hope for you and your physician can help you. Be patient and keep posting, keep communicating. We are all pulling for you.


10-01-2003, 11:18 PM
It's unfortunate but alot of people seem to equate self worth with what they do for a living rather than what they are....when all your self confidence comes from job success, you are bound to have problems like you are having now....
Please see a good psychiatrist...even if you can't afford it. Your regular family doctor doesn't have the in depth knowledge needed to treat depression and a psychologist, since he can't prescribe medication, will usually try to treat you with word therapy alone....take it from someone who has grappled with depression and anxiety for thirty years and finally found there was real help for it....if it is truly clinical depression you cannot talk yourself out of it, it's like saying a diabetic can talk himself out of taking his insulin.....go to a good shrink, see what he/she thinks and if medication is prescribed, take it and take it as long as recommended....it might take a while to make you feel better but it will in good time, and then you will be able to do all the things that seem insurmountable now....best of luck.

10-02-2003, 03:35 AM
Hi Corrinelo,

I looked at the drawing of your elephant and calf. You can draw. You refer to being a graphic designer in the past tense, as though the loss of this job means you no longer are a graphic designer. That isn't accurate. You are still a graphic designer no longer working at your past job.

Therapy is certainly an option to bring yourself out of this funk as is medication as an adjunct but you've already gotten some sound advice about that in this posting so I'll not underscore those remarks. I don't know how big an issue money is at this time. You didn't stress this which is good in that you are concerned for your personal emotional well-being. Another good sign is that you consider art to be a vital part of how you view yourself.

With that said, some simple (and keep in mind that most solutions are simple . . . and the hardest things to do) suggestions would be along these lines. 1) Do something tomorrow which is different from what you did today, just one thing. After all, you are guaranteed that nothing will change if nothing different happens, and if you don't make that difference, then you are a sitting duck for some outside influence to make something different happen. This takes away your control of the situation. 2) Start talking with yourself on paper, canvas or whatever medium with which you are comfortable . . . not in words, but with your ideas, your sorrows, your fears. It is very true that we are what we fear, especially in your circumstances. You cannot change until you first know what you are and this type of work can give a face to your gloom. This step, in particular for me, was very important during a time of crisis.

It sounds as though you have too many positives going for you to be stuck in this muck for long. Thank you for sharing in this forum. Your pain is personal and yet familiar to so many, especially artists. Please keep posting your work. From what I can see, this saloon is always open!

10-02-2003, 11:37 AM
probably wont sound that helpful, but just get a pencil, and doodle, just scribble, or write or whatever.
all drawing is is holding something that makes a mark, doesn't have to be the best mark ever made in the world, it could just be a squiggle, a line, whatever.
have a doodle

Cathy Morgan
10-02-2003, 12:49 PM
Originally posted by taffetta
probably wont sound that helpful, but just get a pencil, and doodle, just scribble, or write or whatever.
all drawing is is holding something that makes a mark, doesn't have to be the best mark ever made in the world, it could just be a squiggle, a line, whatever.
have a doodle

I agree with this suggestion wholeheartedly. A really soft pencil is ideal - or even india ink and a sumi brush. Just let your hand go and watch what it does. Do lots of these. The feelings that have been trapped inside, fermenting and bogging you down, will come out onto the paper where they don't harm you any more.

10-03-2003, 05:36 AM
Hey, I deal with situation such as this everyday. Both personally with myself and with others as I run the local depression and bipolar support group here in town.

If you feel that the situation has triggered a depression of a clinical state, then a doctor would really be in order. However, unless it is a continual clinical problem, this may really be a course of action that makes the situation even messier. Even in cases of extreme clinical depression, medication is only functional as a tool when used in conjuction with good psychotherapy.

Everyone goes through times when they get into a slump such as this. It basically boils down to the fact that life seems to have derailed for the moment. But that there exactly is the key, "for the moment." The brain actually settles into modes of operation that it gets used to. The daily routines and such that composed your everday inspiration and motives for so long is now gone. So when it comes to summinging up inspiration again, a blank is drawn.

I have really had to learn how to deal with this having suffered through some severe times with my bipolar. There would be times in my life where I would go years, then suddenly my personality would change and my emotional vocabulary would seemingly just disappear. Then I would have to learn social interactions and feelings all over again. There would be memories that I constantly find out were never real.... just all kind's of stuff that would totally derail all that I knew to be.

What gets me through this all though, is to think of each new day as a fresh start. Another chance to start over and make the best of what has been handed to me. I try to accept and move on from the past, determined to make the future the best I can.

Psychologically speaking though, there is a few things you can do to help with the biochemical side of feelings of depression. Get sunlight, it stimulates the production of serotonin which is a neurotransmitter linked to depression. Dont' sleep too long, excess sleep can be depressing. Eat good, a healthy diet is one of the most important things in stress management and fighting depression. Exercise if possible, it gets blood and oxygen moving through the brain, it also helps to relax the brain and to sleep better at night, as well as manage stress responses.

Be very weary of herbal supplements, some can work miracles while some can kill. St. Johns Wort for example, excellent anti-depressant, however can make a bipolar suicidal/psychotic (this from experience). I have found Fish Oil (omega-3) supplements though to be very safe in almost every circumstance, and very effective as a supplemental aid to fighting depression. This both from personal experience, others noted experiences, research, and quite a few doctors recomendations.

Take Care,

- Adam

10-03-2003, 11:39 PM
Hi correnelo.

I hope you're doing ok. There are a lot of resources available to you. Suicide hotlines, depression self-help groups, and trained professionals. Please take advantage of one or all of these and let us know how you're doing. :)

11-26-2003, 11:33 AM
#1 -- You are not alone.

#2 -- You may have lost your job, but you have not lost your power, talent, worthiness.

#3 -- Accept the loss and take this opportunity to start a new life, or improve on the one you already made. You have to accept it, first, in order to move forward (don't allow yourself to wallow in it). Then you will get the energy you need to go on. Maybe something better is meant for you.

Change can be positive. It can get you out of a slump that you didn't know you were in. Try to think positive thoughts.

They tell people who are grieving to "do the next thing" and to keep going, and every day you will get further and further away from that difficult time.

Find out what your next thing is. Put your energy into deciding what your best next move is, what you want. Draw anything -- keep working no matter what. Now is a perfect time to focus on yourself, your hopes, your dreams, your future. Work on your resume. Check out classes. Join a group that could boost your career.

Watch for opportunities.

We'll be thinking of you and supporting you all the way.

12-03-2003, 11:19 PM
I dance for 5 minutes then I lie down for 5 minutes and I do this 5 times.

It takes about an hour and leaves me refreshed and relaxed for two days.

Then I do it again.


PS: the 5 minute dancing excites and delights me and the 5 minute lying down relaxes me. Then I repeat this 5 times which seems to set up a refreshing and relaxing metabolic wave. I only do this every second day so it won't become a chore and I come to it fresh every time.

It doesn't seem to have any bad effects so if I were in trouble I would do it three times a day, say for six days, having a rest on Sunday.

12-04-2003, 07:51 AM
Hello Corrinelo,

Alot of great advise so far, But I'd like to add my 2 cents worth in here for ya too LOL. I'm not one that favors the medical side of the issue personally...I live with a bi-polar wife, and a A.D.D. son, and I'm a recovered alcoholic. So I've seen many bottoms.

First thing you need to do is make a list of goals..write them down. short, mid, and long term goals. What do you want to accomplish?, what do you need to do? These type things ...make a list of them. I've found that I'm more creative when depressed as far as writing goes. (everyone gets depressed) that's normal. I don't see doctors and I'm not on any meds.

I've found in my life time that even the worst things are a blessing in desquise, And when you think you have it bad..someone has it worse.
Example of a bad day (true story..mine):

I get a call from my wife at work @ 10:00am ..tells me she got fired from her job..(her boss had been riding her for months and being bi_polar she snapped and jerked her boss up) got fired LOL, Then she calls me @12:30 and says we got a foreclosure notice in the mail for our house...we were behind on bills. I tell her no problem ..we'll get by. At @2:30 that afternoon, I get called into the office and get laid off. LOL Needless to say I got sorta forced into going bankrupt that day..which I did file for the next day. But I kept the house ...got my job back several months later and my wife ended up getting another job.

I was a forklift mechanic in a carpet mill for 6 years... I got into a fight with a co-worker (long story) LOL But by getting fired it opened the door for me to go to work for a forklift dealership. I've not had a problem since on finding a job. Just as you, now have 3 yrs experience on the job, Time to step it up ...go for that bigger company, or that other position you may have been thinking about, You are really lucky at this point, for now you're not stuck in that everyday rut of that job...skies the limit for you to be able to go out and do what you want. You have freedom to get those things done that you've been putting off in the past because of your job. Take that trip, go visit family, market your artwork, go back to school for more training in a related field.

You'll be ok...start with that list ..then go for it...the list will give you direction. This is the first day of the rest of your life...old saying , but a good one. Good luck to ya..and if you are still depressed and need another booster story..let me know ..I have plenty LOL Brad

12-04-2003, 07:41 PM
Brad what a day!
Corrinelo I am a firm believer in "Where there's a death there is ALWAYS a resurrection." I think Brad's story was a great example of that!
There are lots of sayings that are similar 'When one door shuts, another opens'.
As it has been said that each day is a brand new day. It is also a brand new adventure. It's a case of making that decision to pick ourselves up and run the race set before us. Lots of word pictures, I realize, but that's what my mind is full of to keep me putting one step in front of the other.
Quite a number of folk here in NZ start their own businesses from home. Why not be your own boss?
Are you living on your own? Are you eating? If you aren't, stock your freezer with ready-made meals. I am skinny and if I get depressed I stop eating, so these meals keep me going... (I tend to dance to a different drum beat to everyone else).
All the very best to you,

12-05-2003, 09:56 PM
I hear your pain and frustration

There are different kinds of depression....yours sounds "situational"...which means it has a cause

It is also called "GRIEF"

It is ok to feel bad about loosing a job, a friend, a lover, a lifestyle

So decide how long you need to grieve....and then stop and move on

IF YOU CANNOT...thenit's more than the situation and you may need some help

It's OK to feel crappy when life hands you a bad lump...it's not ok to stay there forever

12-10-2003, 06:07 AM
Have you considered starting up your own business online? you said you have done website graphics ect? could be a great way to get you thinking of different ways to earn a living. You could also use it to display any artworks you have. Who knows, you may sell some!! They say taking action creates motivation, not the other way around. Make a plan for yourself, and set goals, you might be surprised how easy it is to achieve them, but most importantly look after yourself. :)

12-19-2003, 01:19 AM
well original poster come back and tell us more about how you are feeling now. I am interested --- I am a graphic designer too (with a typical love/hate relationship to it) and I am just wondering why you want to do things "by hand" now--- (you have no doubt been almost exclusively computerized in your work prior to being laid off) interesting that you want to do "regular" art now--is that what I understand? Yep! art is therapeutic!! do I detect that perhaps graphics isn't where your heart is and that is why there is no mention of beating the pavement to find another graphics position?

12-19-2003, 11:27 PM
sending you a hug- I know whare you are and I hope you find a way up soon-:)

01-06-2004, 10:55 AM
There are basically 2 types of depression
1) normal reasonable situation depression, where you can make yourself pick up and think I am moving this foot in front of the other until you are walking.
2) unreasonable clinical depression, where there is no reason you can not function normally, which is often simuliar to diabetes in the fact there is a chemical in the body that is not working properly.
I am not saying that clinical depression can not be brought on by situation depression it often happens that way.
Losing a job is a fair reason to be depressed, it also makes it difficult to just go to a doctor and run up bills that will cause more stress.
So my advice is to for one week get out of bed make up the bed take a shower and get dressed. These 3 things alone will put you in a better state of mind. After you get dressed do at least one thing that you were not able to do working full time. Progress to being around people as quickly as you can. If this does not pull you out of the slump you may need to go to a local Mental Health facility that can help you with getting asssistance in getting treatment. Often it is hard to get the nerve up to say I need mental help but there is nothing to be ashamed of.

01-06-2004, 05:49 PM
I spend a lot of time wondering if I am depressed-it is depressing...I tried meds once and it made me even loopier than am now- so I haven't tried it since. I weather the highs and lows and actually find the ride more interesting than being level and flat, but maybe i am not clinical, just artistically emotional... whatever. Today I felt a bit aimless, avoided my studio , but exercised and went to starbucks afterwards and wrote and sketched in my journal- it felt good! I just draw random things and use a tiny watecolor set to color them in. It felt like a date with myself- and i want to do it more- instead of rushing from thing to thing. I hope you are feeling better- I really appreciated hearing all these fine folks's replies-it helps me too! Good things will come to you-sending you a hug.

Bad Dobby
01-11-2004, 04:22 AM
This thread is so affirming of the great supportive community here.

It seems that there is an abundance of depression right now ... so you are certainly not alone, even though it may feel that way. Depression at times confirms that we are vulnerable human biengs that can feel, sort of a good thing. The alternative is a cold machine. It may be that the source of your depression is not the job loss at all, possibly it is just the last thing that you can attach your feelings to.

Are there any nonprofit organizations that could benefit from your services? Usually there are .. that need Websites, logos, or other graphic needs. By helping them, you can help yourself. Get back into the flow of having projects, and meet new people. Opportunities might arise jsut by getting out there. Plus, you build your portfolio and make it stronger.

Aside from that, many cities all over the world have a chapter or several chapters of "Re-evaluation Counseling" groups. This is an organization of peers that counsel themselves and grow personal skills for living with meaning. Through peer counseling, you can maybe get to the source of your depression, meet even more people, and learn how to cultivate a more dynamic, zestful life. I stumbled into Re-evaluation Counseling when I was a Community Facilitator in Santa Fe, and it is life affirming and changing. Here is there Website if interested, http://www.rc.org/ ... If there are groups in your area ... it wouldn't hurt to attend one session. There is contact info at the Website.

We all get into a funk, at that is OK. But you also have to be the one to take a few steps to get back into the flow. I wish you the very best with moving forward.

01-11-2004, 09:00 AM
This was written such a long time ago with no response from you. I really hope things did get better for you. I hope you will let us know soon how you are doing!