If your heart is broken, you’ll find God right there; if you’re kicked in the gut, he’ll help you catch your breath Psalm 34:18 (The Message)
On the surface, attitude is the way we transmit our mood to others. If we are feeling good, we likely will show that to others by the way we interact, both verbally and non-verbally. So too is the fact that if we are feeling angry or depressed, that also will come across in our attitude. Now, what attitude do you think people are drawn to?
Of course, people who are upbeat, smiling and friendly are natural magnets for others. On the other hand, there are many people who struggle with depression who are NOT feeling upbeat and positive. They struggle to put on a smile, engage others, or maybe to even offer a few words to others. They are feeling depressed, and find that it is an effort to just get out of the house, much less engage other people.
People who are depressed tend to isolate from others. Unfortunately, this can bring on a spiral of social isolation which just adds to the depression. Further, if a person who is depressed tries to keep “faking it” to fit in, this becomes not only wearisome, but disingenuous. Putting on a mask to be with other people is a burden that does not get easier with time. It is just that- a burden.
It is not a simple matter of merely advising a person with depression to “just shake it off”. If it were that easy, no one would be depressed. Rather, people who are depressed need understanding and connection from safe and caring others.
Tomorrow, more on this.
Prayer: Lord, give us sensitivity for those around us who suffer, Amen