There are so many things that we’re used to feeling bad about, and this may be because we’ve been told early on to feel bad about them or just picked up this social norm as we grew up. It can mean a variety of different things for any of us.
But were you ever taught to feel good?
We may feel bad about ourselves at this moment in time, about who we are as a person. This may include thinking that we’re not good enough or that we need to become someone else in order to feel good. Not feeling good can also be the result of mistakes we’ve made. We may feel extremely anxious even before trying a particular thing because we fear failure. We may beat ourselves with all these thoughts day by day and may be left with the question: “Why don’t I feel good, ever?”
Negative emotions may be more persistent than positive emotions, but that doesn’t mean you have a disorder. Knowing the difference between feeling bad and having a mental disorder is important and can be the first step towards feeling better. Depression has been found to affect more than 16.1 million American adults in a given year, whereas anxiety affects 6.8 million adults, yet only 43.2% seek treatment for the same.
Being part of these statistics, or not, makes a big difference.
Am I Depressed?
What exactly does it mean to be depressed? Can it explain why I don’t feel good about myself? What do you think goes inside a depressed person? Feeling depressed goes beyond normal sadness; it can become an all-encompassing disorder. How do you know whether you or someone you know is suffering from this disorder?
Depression symptoms can begin with neglect of friends and hobbies. The things you enjoyed before, such as going out for lunch with your friends, may not interest you anymore. This reflects a loss of pleasure from activities that would usually be fun for you.
Sleep patterns are very important to our mental health. Often, changes to our sleep patterns are one of the signs that we’re suffering mentally. This is particularly important because an irregular sleep pattern can make depression worse for you. Drastic changes in your appetite can also be a sign of depression.
Significant changes in all areas of your life can make you question your sense of worth. If you feel like there’s nothing positive about you, or you always tend to put yourself down, it could be due to depression.
Feeling depressed can also take a toll on your hygiene. You may not even feel like brushing your teeth or taking a bath since everything seems to be very exhausting. This may get on your nerves and your mood would generally remain irritable.
If you feel you strongly relate to any of the signs mentioned above, you should seek therapy.
Am I Anxious?
Imagine that in a few days you’ll have to give a very important presentation in front of your colleagues. You feel stressed about it, but after the presentation, you feel much better. For some people, this stress might not go away or even be caused by any specific event. It’s just sort of always there. This anxiety may get worse over time and cause chest pains or even nightmares, making you wonder things like, “Why don’t I feel good anymore?”
Sometimes the anxiety can be so severe that it may cause you to feel stressed about everyday things, like going to school or work, or even talking to a friend, money, family life, and relationships.
Even if you’re aware that your anxiety is excessive and unreasonable, you may still feel that it’s out of your control. Other things you might experience are feeling on edge, restlessness, or irritability, which may lead to physical problems like difficulties with digestion and sleeping, and even muscle pains.
The symptoms lie on a continuum and may improve or worsen from time to time. However, if you notice these symptoms affecting your everyday life and your ability to function well, online counseling will teach you skills and techniques to take control of your anxieties.
Neither Depression nor Anxiety – So What Is It?
One of the first steps of dealing with negative emotions is to fully recognize their presence and to allow yourself to fully feel the emotion. This may sound counterintuitive, but avoiding your emotions will not result in feeling good. Attempting to suppress negative emotions can backfire and diminish your sense of happiness.
According to recent studies, negative thoughts are vital for one’s well-being. Without negative emotions, we can’t evaluate our experiences or experience a true sense of satisfaction. The logic is simple: if we don’t allow the lows, the value of the high becomes lessened. Negative emotions are also the prime indicator of a possible problem you should be dealing with.
Loving yourself may sound simple, but we all know that it can be hard sometimes. It can often be a rollercoaster ride between feeling good about yourself and wishing you could change. There are so many things that impact your self-image, and some of these may not be positive. Social media may also set false expectations and ideals in us.
If your self-worth is low, then it is the right time to seek therapy.
How Do I Start Feeling Better?
To feel good about yourself is to love the person you actually are, inside and out. If you want to feel good about yourself, you can start by identifying the thoughts, emotions, and behaviors that might block you from doing so.
Assessing your expectations
When assessing yourself as a person, try to look at yourself realistically. You are more than just a list of all your accomplishments; you are a complex person with hobbies, a personality, and so much more. We often set the bar too high for ourselves, and then any achievement or progress is not considered worthy enough. Having realistic expectations helps reduce stress and anxiety related to unrealistic ones and helps you feel good overall.
Depression symptoms can make you feel stuck for days. You may try to find a way out but at the same time also feel tired while doing so. Feeling good starts with taking small steps, one at a time. You can start creating change by introducing new hobbies into your life, breaking the monotony. Change is the only constant in life, and you can incorporate this at your own pace of living.
Accepting and tolerating
Sometimes, our mental health can benefit from accepting the emotion that we’re feeling without resorting to negative coping behaviors that make our condition worse. You have different tolerance for different negative emotions, such as sadness, anger, and fear. Allow yourself to experience the negative emotions, and don’t be afraid of them. To feel good, you must accept that feeling good is not a constant state.
Sometimes, we can manage our negative emotions on our own. At other times, negative emotions require the need of external support. Online therapy helps you achieve a balance of emotions and understand the roots of emotions and recurrent emotional states. Some therapies, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, help you feel good by shifting the focus from negative feelings and thoughts to more positive ones. For example, shifting your thoughts from “I am useless” to “I am able to see positive qualities in myself.”
Online counseling can be very effective in dealing with depression or anxiety, which can feel like a deep, dark hole from which there’s no escape. We all have our periods where we feel down or blue. However, if you think these feelings affect your emotional, physical, social, and cognitive well-being, then trying therapy may be the best available option for you and can help you feel good.
In online therapy, the therapist will also help you correct mistaken beliefs and change unhelpful patterns of thinking that fuel mental disorders. By understanding the severity of your symptoms, the therapist will teach you coping skills and self-care skills and coach you in using them effectively.
Starting to Feel Good?
You don’t need to see yourself in all of the aforementioned signs to feel bad, but if your experience matches most of them, it might be time to reach out to a mental health professional. Fortunately, we at DoMental are ready to help you find an answer and a solution too. With therapy, we can help you feel good again.