The biggest thing I have learnt over the years is people hear voices inside their head for all sorts of reasons. What those voices say and how much impact they have on their daily actions is the variant. For me I always believed that “voices” meant madness. I don’t believe that anymore. My story of them is one of negative influences in my childhood from a mixture of exposure to tough times, bullying at school and at home. These eventually grew into the voice of self doubt that fed my daily actions and which used to plague my thoughts during quieter times. These influences triggered in me a fight mode. Where once I had been the victim of bullying my survival instinct took over and I became one. Always attacking first so to never have to be found out on the defensive. Never following the rules as a way of ensuring I couldn’t be picked on for trying my hardest and it not being good enough from friends, the school and my hard ass step father.
The problem with wielding such fake power, is over the years eventually the voice starts to turn on you as you mature and the fights start to become less needed in your aging, quieter life. The very voice that used to spur you on. “Do it” “Steal it” “Brake it” “Rebel” “Hurt them like your hurting” suddenly became a questioning one like it never played a part in helping you survive. A terrible little backflip like a mate who dobs on you first in the face of the principle for an act you both concocted.
For me my success as a father, sportsman, business owner and healthy human in my 20’s silenced the doubter for a long time. But in my early thirties when i lost my Grandfather, Step-father, long term relationship with kids and then a business in about 4 successive years it became clear quickly that the voice in my head had just been quietly waiting for the day when it could proudly say, “Hah i told you that you were a F@#K up” “Everyone said you would never make anything of your life” “Your are exactly the loser your fake friends and angry step father said you were”.
Once my self doubt new it had my full attention the anxiety and depression planted its seed and rooted itself deep in my soul for years. Praying on any negative thought or feeling in my body and using adrenaline to amp up its affect.
One such example. “Ill go for a run because I’m feeling great” id think. Two hundred meters into it and the first of the knee pains from 2 ops kick in subtly into my thoughts and bam “Jesus you had better stop running, your so fat that if your knee gives out you may loose your job”. “Shut up” i think back as though the two thoughts are from different people. “Its just warming up” like i have to justify that to myself. A kilometer later and my heart rate is up from a hill. “F@#k dude you better not push it too hard, your old and very unfit at the moment” negative me says. “Bullshit i like the feeling of pushing hard through the pain barrier” positive me replies. “Yeah but even fit people drop dead all the time and you aren’t them” again from the grandstand comes my inner prick. So i slow my rate and almost instantly become aware of every breath of wind on my skin, bead of sweat on my forehead, change in my breathing and ache in my body. Tension becomes fear and fear becomes fuel for the doubter. By the time i get home from the invigorating 4km run that did nothing but good for my body physically, I’m mentally a mess and spend the rest of the day trying to calm my mind down. It had won again.
This is just one of the many stories id like to share about my experiences with my depression and anxiety and how I’ve managed to keep on fighting and learning as i go on how to keep myself in check for the good of my health and my family and friends.
Do you have a similar story? Please feel free to share