Do you think that there is something wrong with you when you are depressed? Suppose you are depressed because there is something right with you.

Possible?

Depression And The Aching Heart

What is the message of depression?

Often when we think of depression we think of loss, disappointment and other feelings connected to our external lives.  That is actually what it is. John Douillard so eloquently says in his article on depression on the Kripalu website, we operate from our hearts when we are children until someone hurts us and if we are sensitive the hurt is especially grave.

When we are young we are naturally heart centered, which means that we embrace the world and everything in it as our home.  Animals operate this way all the time. When we are hurt by others, our heart and real self have been essentially devalued, and we feel an acute sense of loss. The loss we feel is an important one.  What we have experienced is an important rejection and a rejection of what is important.

For most people, the rejection results in the creation of their “commercial” self, the self that is what is desired by others.  That way we will not inconvenience anyone with our real self. Part of us wants to revolt, and another part of us recognizes that we need others to survive when we are young.  And so our mind acts to keep us in a safe, unthreatening place, and we become half of what we could be – at best.

How To Treat Depression With Ayurveda

Ayurveda treats depression differently and in doing so helps highly sensitive people see their symptoms in a different light.  As John Douillard says,

“Simply put, depression occurs when a person loses access to the essential Self as a result of this barrier. For a sensitive person, who by definition has more innate access to the heart and soul than most people, to lose this deep access is quite tragic. Fatigue is the first physiological response to a mind that has driven the body into exhaustion in the name of control and self-protection. Anxiety is a result of this exhaustion because the body and mind need energy and reserves to calm themselves down, stabilize moods, and initiate sleep. As the exhaustion persists, the body and mind ultimately become depressed or physiologically exhausted. The good news is that healing the cause of anxiety and depression is not a painful process of endurance and strain; it is a joyful discovery of your true, abiding nature.”

Ayurveda offers meditation, lifestyle support and herbal relief for all forms of illness. The best feature about Ayurveda is that it customizes natural treatments to suit the individual so being highly sensitive is not considered a fault or problem. It also treats the whole person which means you are not always dealing with the consequences of one failed medication after another.

Respect Depression

I think it takes courage to allow yourself to feel depressed in a world that demands that you behave otherwise. We are well informed about how much there is to be depressed about. Being depressed lets you listen to your precious inner Self that wants to be heard, that wants to help you live well. Your inner Self is your natural source of protection, you inner and outer guide, your Soul seeking to live fully. Your depression is your natural response to the full living you are being denied for whatever reason. It is a message that you need to go in a different direction.

If depressed HSPs can come to see their depressive symptoms as a call from their true Self, and even their best self, then they may be able to find compassion for their condition and start to gradually welcome that true Self into the world.

Change to a more suitable way of life takes time. It is a gradual process. So respect your depression as a sign that change is necessary. Let your inner knowing speak to you and gently follow it to a new and better place.

About Maria Hill

Maria Hill is the founder of Sensitive Evolution. She is the author of The Emerging Sensitive: A Guide For Finding Your Place In The World. In addition, she has created the immersive Emerging Sensitive Program of "sensory processing yoga" using frameworks to help sensitive people master their sensitivity and turn it into the asset it can be. She also offers the Emerging Sensitive Movie Club focused on movies and discussions about living in the world as a sensitive person and navigating the challenging cultural shifts of our times. She is a longtime meditator, reiki master, student of alternative health and Ayurveda. Maria is also an abstract painter whose portfolio can be found at Infinite Shape and also very interested in animal and human rights and the environment.

6 Comments

  1. Maria on October 12, 2011 at 11:59 am

    If you are not too familiar with reiki I would suggest finding a practitioner near you who can give you a treatment. I would look for someone who provides you with their “lineage” which tells you the source of their training. Reiki is passed on from a reiki master teacher to another in a series of steps so that you learn how to handle the energy and learn the healing hand positions. Someone who is trained in the Usui tradition or someone who trained through William Rand’s program would be good places to start. They are both excellent.

    There is no one single resource on reiki so I will give you a few. There are some books under the HSP Bookstore that can help. They are under Resources on the sidebar. Many books are very comprehensive in the way they explain reiki so you should have a feel for it after doing some reading.

    Initially, one of the most confusing things for me was the number of different approaches to reiki and different schools. Along the way many Masters decided to create different flavors of reiki. I decided to go to The John Gray Center in NH, since he was the last living Master taught by the original US Master Tanaka. He has since passed away, but Lourdes Gray is exceptionally knowledgable and gives great training. Another person I trained with was Libby Barnett. She is an expert on Reiki in hospitals. She was a social worker and has put a lot of effort in to making reiki accepted in the medical environment. They are both in New Hampshire. I believe I have links to them on my bio on HSP Stress relief, which you can access at the nav bar on the top of the page.

    I hope this helps. Let me know if there is anything else I can do.



  2. nancys on September 29, 2016 at 7:42 pm

    Hi Maria. I see this article is 5 years old now, but hoping comments still seen. I am feeling quite sad because I have ignored the signs that Depression has given me to change my life path, I didn’t have the courage, I feel like there was some kind of oppressive force which prevented me from changing my life, again and again. I am now 44 years old and feel emotionally stunted, and life has passed me by. Unmarried, no children, just left another nice guy go only for him to find someone else immediately. I have no financial assets, have always felt like I lived in the wrong country and city, but at this stage I believe it is too late for me to start over. I have friends here, but I am deeply ‘out of place’. But if I take a leap of faith and move abroad, maybe to an environment more suitable, I have no guarantee of finding love and security. I don’t know how to move forward but in a lot of emotional pain, and feeling extremely hopeless about an uncertain future. Any suggestions for guidance or practical advice would be great.



    • Maria Hill on October 20, 2016 at 5:33 pm

      Hi Nancy,

      You are not too old. I do not have children either. I think our system is a hard one for sensitive people to feel that they can survive in and it lowers our confidence.We are introducing a course that starts to deal with these issues directly. Please add your name to our newsletter list to get the information about it.

      All the best,
      Maria