This very popular saying basically says that if you’re tired with your environment, your work, etc., that changing things about can have a very positive effect, rather than having a rest and going back to the same mundane thing that you needed a rest from. Yet, what if it is something other than the environment that is causing the issue at hand? How can a break away or changing things about help in those times?
This is something I know about from experience and someone reminded me of recently, at a time when I’m thinking about making major changes in my life again. I once ran away from everything, thinking that that would solve all my problems. It didn’t and they just came back again, having just been hidden away in the background waiting for their chance to reappear.
This is one of the major problems with depression, when not treated correctly. When left to face up to the problems on your own, you think that the problems are elsewhere than where they actually are. Often the problems are just inside your head. I didn’t like the neighbourhood I was in, disliked going out, felt trapped, because I felt like I had no privacy from the prying eyes of the gossips just outside the door. Yet part of what the real problem was, was that I was embarrassed about myself, who I was, and didn’t have the confidence to stand up to anyone who may be otherwise accusing of my choice of dress and lifestyle. That was something that didn’t go away with moving. Going out anywhere if you dress like an outsider means you’ll always be an outsider, unless you have the confidence to stand up and just be yourself despite that. I’ve never been into any sort of fashion, always preferring the comfortable route for clothing, and in a world that’s happy to criticise for the slightest faux pas that they see of any kind, it’s meant that I’ve been a target for those nasty words in the past. But, dress sense aside, I also didn’t know who I was, which left me being just as much an outsider.
There were other things at fault in my life at the time, other things that also weren’t simple to change. I didn't realise that there were other things that I could have done at the time, other than running away, to sort out the problems I was having. Yes, I am more comfortable now I’m not living on a housing estate with an assortment of various disreputable characters mingled amongst the ones who are more decent and have learnt to live with it. Yet I’m still quite isolated, away from friends and often quite alone. So, what else could I have done? Perhaps turned to them for advice, looked to have moved closer to people and places that were more comfortable to live in, and, above all, get help so I could learn to be more comfortable with myself.
That last one is easy to say, because in the UK at the time I wasn’t getting the help I needed. I often think that perhaps, if I had, things may not have turned out the way they did. But I then wouldn’t have had the other benefits of the crazy changes I enforced on myself, which were finding out who I really am and what I really want. The next changes I make in my life will be moving towards just that – places that I want to go, rather than panicking to get away from something that isn’t as bad as I may think.
A great follow-up article to read on a blog I’ve just started following, Finding Positives, is I Could Be Happy Here. I read this just as I was thinking about writing this post and it not only gave me the extra nudge to write this, but I think it expresses the ideas on this subject amazingly.