Advice · Mental Health · womens health

The Art of Taking Care of Yourself: For When You Can’t or Don’t Want To

I know exactly how you feel. As I type this I’m lying in bed overthinking, feeling overwhelmed by life and everything in it, and just wanting it all to stop.

In The Future, a poem by Neil Hilborn, suicide is described as “a glowing exit sign”. Since I heard that term three years ago it stuck with me. People tend to look at death as something scary – and it certainly can be – but sometimes for someone with depression or any number of mental illnesses it can easily become this idea that you turn to for comfort when you just want to be done. A glowing exit sign you consider in your mind when you want to rest and you don’t want to have to feel anything anymore.

This is often when self care takes a hard backseat. Drinking more water isn’t going to cure your depression. Making yourself a real meal might as well be climbing a fucking mountain (especially if you have a literal mountain of dishes left in the sink). All the go-to self care tips: treating yourself to a warm bath or a short walk, stretching, exercising, calling a friend or family member, doing something you enjoy (when let’s be real, often nothing feels particularly enjoyable when you’re depressed), and the general “think positive”, “inspirational” adages fall to the wayside. How can you do these things when life feels meaningless? When you can barely muster up the energy or enthusiasm to get out of bed or off the couch?

The answer is, simply, that sometimes you can’t. And you know what, that’s okay. It sucks to be there, but it’s okay. If all you can do today is anything that rails against that glowing exit sign (including doing absolutely fucking nothing), that’s what you should do. Take your time. Give yourself time. And if you can pull yourself up just enough to make that meal, to do little things around the house, or to message a friend, do it. But please don’t rebuke yourself if you can’t. You’re still here and, I promise you, that’s enough.

Try to be nice to yourself, and take care of yourself the best way you can today. I’m with you.


Suicide Prevention Lifeline



The Art of Taking Care of Yourself: Treat Yo Self (Right)


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