Life After Anti-depressants
As you may know I’ve been weaning off my anti-depressants since the latter part of 2017. I’ve been on them for 26 years – since I was 17! I’ve tried to come off them many times before and each time I had a relapse. I had a relapse this time as I mentioned in my previous post Coming off the meds (again!). The difference is I was able to work through my feelings using my toolbox of Happiness techniques. I continued to cut down the meds and I took my final dose a couple of weeks ago. I must admit I’m feeling pretty chuffed and proud of myself.
As well as using my Happiness toolbox, I’ve been taking other measures such as improved eating habits, increased exercise and most importantly, plenty of downtime and putting myself first. A lot of these things cause a virtuous circle: feeling happier means that I’m more motivated to lead a healthier lifestyle, feeling healthier helps me to be happier.
I like to think I’m a fairly happy and bubbly person. I was worried this was a result of the anti-depressants and concerned that I would become miserable and grumpy when I came off them. I am pleased to report that I’ve been able to maintain by positive stance although I have been very emotional and a little bit angry.
I think it’s good that I feel emotional. I feel more real; more alive. I’m sure these emotions will balance out in time. It’s a different feeling to feeling depressed. I believe the anger is also healthy if managed in the correct way. I understand that depression is repressed anger so as the depression heals, it’s probably normal for the anger to also come up for healing.
How I’m dealing with the new emotions
Acknowledge the feeling
When the emotions or feelings come up I am acknowledging them and accepting them. I thank the feelings, send them love and forgive myself.
What do I need to learn?
I ask myself what the lesson is in these emotions. I take full responsibility for these feelings and for their transformation. Our environment is a mirror of our life so if something is causing problems it’s a signal there’s something wrong. For example, I’ve had a lot of anger come up in the last couple of days. I realised that it’s because people have been taking advantage of me and I need to set firm boundaries and be more assertive.
How can I heal these feelings?
I think about the range of tools I have acquired during my Happiness journey so far and use them accordingly. My favourites are Tapping*, Ho’oponopono* and my Buddhist* practice. Tapping is particularly good for releasing anger.
It is my intention that my journey and experience will help you on your own journey. Look out for Happiness Club workshops coming soon. You can also book a 1-2-1 happiness consultation with me.
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*Tapping is a technique learned from TFTVal. I’ll be writing about Ho’oponopono in a later post. I am a member of the lay Buddhist organisation Soka Gakkai International (SGI). I’ve written about this in previous posts and I’ll be writing more in the future.