Depression or lost mojo?
Last week my friend Dr. Lissa Rankin was inspired to write a post called The Difference Between Depression & Losing Your Mojo because a friend of hers recently lost her ex-husband to suicide. The suicide topic hits close to home for me and I’ve been following the post and comments closely.
It’s ok, she’s a doctor!
My pal Lissa is a medical doctor, mom, wife, groovy artist and the founder of a movement she calls Owning Pink. As a physician she’s got the credentials (unlike moi) to dish out medical advice about depression.
As a hater of the color pink, some of my long time Giggle On fans may be wondering why I’d be friends with someone who strongly identifies herself with the color pink. I mean, I really hate pink. Ewww, yukk and please don’t be touching me with your pink stuff. *laughing*
As much as the color pink makes me want to hurl chunks, I’m not going to close myself off to a wonderful person just because she embraces her pinkness. Lissa provides services and support to women all over the world. As a physician in a difficult medical environment, I admire her willingness and dedication to educate and empower others. YAY LISSA! Besides, she embodies the “Don’t Give Up. Giggle On!” spirit – I could never turn that away!
According to Lissa, you know you’ve got mojo when you’re healthy, in touch with your spiritual nature, expressing yourself creatively and your life has purpose.When you have mojo you believe in yourself and that makes others believe in you too. [Sounds a lot like the Giggle On philosophy and I dig that.]
Losing your mojo is a lot different from major depressive disorder. Depression steals your mojo and who wants that? Long live mojo!
According to Lissa (and the DSM IV criteria for Major Depression) the Signs and Symptoms of Major Depression are:
- You’ve lost the ability to experience joy, even when you’re doing what you most love (we docs call it anhedonia & it’s one of the most reliable symptoms of serious depression). If you can’t find pleasure in what used to reliably make your heart sing, chances are you’re depressed.
- You feel depressed most of the day, nearly every day.
- You’ve lost weight without dieting, or you’ve gained weight.
- You can’t sleep, or you sleep all the time.
- Others notice that you’re agitated or you’ve dramatically slowed down.
- You’re fatigued nearly every day.
- You experience feelings of worthlessness or guilt nearly every day.
- You have trouble concentrating or you’re indecisive nearly every day.
- You keep thinking about death, have recurring suicidal thoughts, or have a plan for suicide.
I have a lot of personal opinions about treating depression, improving your mood, taking medication, dealing with physicians and experiences with suicidal thoughts. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms PLEASE get help.
Lissa also encourages her readers to ask for a helping hand. She says:
“Make sure you find someone loving and compassionate to help you sort out what’s going on, not just someone who’s going to drug you without getting at the root of the whole you. Treating depression is a whole other topic, but make sure you get someone who looks at the whole picture of who you are. For tips on how to fight depression naturally, read Natural Medicines for Depression.”
Lissa, thanks for the great post, for the shout out and for moderating this important discussion about depression, lost mojo and suicide. Raising awareness not only saves lives but it improves the quality of lives.
Don’t Give Up my friends!
Find a way to treat your depression, locate your mojo and Giggle On!
Post script: Here’s Lissa’s review of my e-book, Suicide Sucks.
If you or anyone you love has lost a loved one to suicide, Christa Scalies’ e-book Suicide Sucks is a must-read. With humor, pluck, wisdom, and plain old good sense, Christa, who lost two dear friends to suicide before becoming the go-to advocate for using humor to help survivors of suicide heal, shares what she has learned in her own journey back to happiness. With 10 actionable steps that will help you get your giggle on (did someone say “whoopee cushion?) while helping you recover mentally, physically, and spiritually, I highly recommend this resource to anyone suffering from the aftermath of suicide. While this book uses humor as a tool for healing, it doesn’t make light of the fact that suicide is no laughing matter. With gentleness and a heaping helping of love, you’ll feel nourished, supported, and so not alone in your healing journey. I only wish such a resource existed when I lost my young cousin to the tragedy of suicide… - Lissa Rankin, MD, New York Times bestselling author of Mind Over Medicine