depression vs. sadness: the power of mincing words

“When you’re depressed, nothing matters. When you’re sad, everything does.”
Gloria Steinem, via @spiver, aka Susan Spiver, author of The Wisdom of a Broken Heart

“So you’re feeling a sense of hopelessness,” the therapist said to me.
“No, I’m feeling despair,” I clarified.
“Same thing. You’re feeling hopeless,” she came back.
“Nooo, I don’t feel it’s hopeless, I’m experiencing despair. I feel disheartened, but there’s still hope here,” I said.
“Hope and despair are pretty similar,” she said.
“Look it up.” I shrugged. “I’m going with despair.”

(We didn’t last too long as therapist/patient.)

I relish in semantics (“the meaning, or an interpretation of the meaning, of a word.”) The more you know about the true definition of a word, the more powerful it is when you speak it. Precision is power.

Depressed and Sad are two very powerful, similar, misappropriated words. Portal words. Sacred words. And if we look more closely at them, we can claim what’s true for ourselves and set about transforming depression and sadness into their contrasting states.

Depression may be the cousin of sadness, sometimes the defended response to unyielding sadness, but it makes you feel anything but alive. It dulls, weighs, and messes with your memory of your true essential nature…which is that of joy.

I’ve been through wrenching heart breaks. I’ve left a decade-long relationship that is still intertwined with my DNA; been devastated by betrayal in business; said goodbye to overseas love that was doomed from the magical start. I’ve cried those guttural cries that dying animals make, I’ve canceled meetings because grief caught me off guard en route. I moved arthritically, lugging my heart in a wagon, to get groceries and tend to life on the surface. And through it all, I’ve felt undeniably, and intensely alive. And this, this is sadness. Acute, sometimes enduring, but always sensory and evocative, sadness.

When you’re sad, you’re feeling. Sometimes, more than you want to. You wish you could be despondent, but the sadness is sharp and it bleeds your attention from you.

Depression — a term our med-happy nation uses much too glibly — dulls one’s feelings.

Where sadness makes you feel raw and skinless, depression is like wearing a snow suit and mittens and wondering why you can’t feel the caress of life.

Sadness strips you. As I was just reminded, “Sadness is so f–king cleansing.” Depression is muddy and muffling and numbing.

Depression vs. Sadness
Each comes with different gifts, challenges and assignments
Each is a sacred state. Both divine and brutal.
But not the same.

When you respect the difference, you’re closer to the cure.

 

 

related posts
The-Upside-of-suffering-DanielleLaporte.LightWork.Episode2_EmailHeader.1200x1200

[LIGHT WORK] We can’t get to the light, until we understand the suffering.

I’ve struggled for a long time with wondering if pain and suffering were essential to growth. Are they essential to me being a more expanded, clear minded, loving, joyous, sexy human being? Do I have to hurt to get there? Well, I fucking hope not… but I haven’t figured out a way around suffering yet.

The-Upside-of-suffering-DanielleLaporte.LightWork.Episode2_Instagram.1080x1080

[LIGHT WORK] The upside of suffering… sort of.

You see, there is suffering in the sensitivity. It hurts to feel. And we’re raised to strive—to desensitize—and it’s killing us. I think the strength is in opening. That opening to feel is where resiliency is born.

[LIGHT WORK, Ep. #1] Friends, Lovers, and Therapy5

[LIGHT WORK] The union. The bliss. The bind…Friendship is EVERYthing.

I want to go deep into this conversation about creating Fulfilling Friendships. I’ve got lots to say about engaged listening, self respect, breaking up (when necessary), and celebrating our friend-loves. I’ve also got plenty of opinions and practices for self-compassion, deep spiritual devotion, healthier relationships with our damn phones, and better quality sleep.

Danielle LaPorte Light Work

[LIGHT WORK] Friends, Lovers, and Therapy

I asked about a zillion people what they wanted more of in their lives. The #1 craving, by far: more fulfilling FRIENDSHIPS. We’re connection starved, we know this. Let me give you a peek into my own circle. In this first episode of LIGHT WORK, I use my own friends as how-to examples for creating radical support and sweetness in your life.

Do not doubt the wisdom of your rage

Do not doubt the wisdom of your rage. (inspired by recent events)

Popularity isn’t always true power. Money isn’t always success. Experience does not guarantee wisdom. Question it all. And do not doubt the wisdom of your rage.

GOOD MANNERS and some wuv. We could all use more of them-feature

GOOD MANNERS and some wuv. We could all use more of them.

There are still some basic good manners that should prevail no matter our generation, station, or affiliation. Here’s what it might mean to be classy, kind, and considerate whenever you are able (and we are almost always able).

Danielle-LaPorte-Lightwork-Podcast

I made something new for you. For US.

The LIGHT WORK series will unfold over six episodes. These are girlfriend-style sermons on serving the world while staying sane, cosmic connectedness over tech addiction, self compassion and more fulfilling friendships. Poetry. Hilarity. Peeks into the personal.

Danielle-LaPorte-Light-work-Podcast.jpg

Girlfriend-style sermons on saving the world while staying sane; choosing cosmic connectedness over tech addiction; self compassion and more fulfilling friendships—from Danielle LaPorte, a member of of Oprah’s Super Soul 100 and author of The Desire Map. How can you feel more lit up, closer to what matters without losing your edge? Tune in for Danielle’s poetic and often hilarious straight-talk on self-realization.

Danielle-Laporte-LIGHTER.png-4

Update for my peoples: Clarity on my new thing. It has a name. And you may want to make some space for it.

Update for my peoples: Clarity on my new thing. It has a name. And you may want to make some space for it.

The most powerful possible Yes to women

…to the dark, the spacious, the sweet, the jaded, the women who live as certain as light rays,
who renovate broken boardrooms and policies with justified anger and overwhelming Love —
Love of inclusion, of ecology, of bone solid Truth — Love of Love.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This