“One of the most important things you can do on this earth is to let people know they are not alone.” – Shannon L. Alder
Both as a man who has suffered from a mental illness and as a blogger who actively writes about it, I’ve been asked by many supporters how to navigate the dark waters of their loved ones’ depression. These caring individuals are often at a loss, not knowing how to reconcile relationships, adequately communicate their love, or feel like they’re making any impact against the hardships of their friend or family member. The fact is, depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses can drain the life out of more than just the sufferer. How does one help?
Perhaps you wish you could shake them by the shoulders and look in their eyes before you smack them across the face with a love paddle to help them see their amazing value in this world. Maybe, overwhelmed by the task at hand, you think your support needs to be extravagant or heroic. But, more often than not, communicating care and making an impact in a life can be as simple as a quick text.
Whether you are a supporter or a sufferer, this Quick Tip is for you: send an out-of-the-blue caring text to a friend or family member. For the supporter, this is a tangible means of being proactive in support without overburdening yourself. For the sufferer, it is a practical step outside of depression and a chance to show another you recognize their efforts.
When I have been in the depth of depression and anxiety, I convinced myself I was alone, uncared for, and worthless. A random text from someone I loved contributed a giant boost of positivity to my day, and shined light into a dark place. A stupid gif, meme, or joke can crack a needed smile on a sullen face. An encouraging quote or shared piece of wisdom can be a spring of inspiration in the desert of depression. And a thoughtful and genuine personal message can make all the difference, even if it’s short and sweet. Most times, those are the best.
The text doesn’t have to be long; it doesn’t have to carry the spiritual worth of a Mother Theresa quote or 100% alter the attitude of the recipient. The value of a quick text is in the heart of the message which communicates, “I’m thinking about you. I care for you. I love you. You’re not alone, my friend.”
Send a quick text to someone right now! I dare you.