The risk of recovering from depression vs. the risk of living with depression.

Jan 17 2012 Published by under Attitude, Change

Depression is painful. You feel hurt.

You lead a predictable and guaranteed painful existence. You numb yourself with drugs and sometimes lots of sleep. You wait for the pain to go away.

Before long you build an illusion that your recovery is out of your reach.

Then you build another illusion that if you were meant to recover, your journey out of depression would be clear, fast and totally pain-free.


Have you ever thought that you might be hampering your own recovery and choosing to play it safe instead? ‘Better the devil you know?’

Could it be possible that the pain of your depression is less than the pains you might experience during and after your recovery?


There are so many risks associated with depression recovery.

Let’s explore just a few of them.

So, what would you possibly face, change, experience, endure, drop, acquire or cease doing on your way out of depression?

You would finally have to face the truth that you cannot step back into your old (pre-depressed) self or your old (pre-depression) life, which means that:

–         Your life would change, and this process of change could be frightening and uncomfortable.

–          You would change; as in order to heal you would have to undergo a process of personal transformation (Again, it can be frightening and uncomfortable).

–          You would have to let go of some of your habits, beliefs and attitudes (not simple to do, as you would need a lot of discipline and commitment, as well as doing internal work and taking physical actions no matter what mood you find yourself in).

–          You would have to be prepared to let go of some people dear to your heart, as they might not embrace the new depression-free you and might find it very threatening and uncomfortable.

–          You would have to stop manipulating people and trapping them in with your depression.

–          You would no longer be able to use depression as an excuse for your behaviour, mood swings and the hurtful words you use.

–          You would no longer be able to blame it all on depression.

–          You would have to stop blaming yourself and others.

–          You would have to stop feeling a victim.

–          You would have to stop digging up your past.

–          You would have to take responsibility for your life and your actions.

–          You would have to become accountable to yourself.

–          You would have to develop self-discipline.

–          You would have to stand up for yourself and establish your new boundaries.

–          You would have to learn and develop new skills.

–          You would need to make choices and overcome the fear of making them.

–          You would have to step into the unknown and you would need all your courage to do so despite feeling scared and uncomfortable.

–          You would have to take care of yourself.

–          You would have to heal and accept that depression was a remarkable experience of your life.

I am sure I missed a bunch of other reasons to stay put. Please leave a comment if you can think of anything else, especially if you have your personal AHA moment.

My main point, however, is this: depression recovery is not an easy and comfortable journey!

It’s an inner journey of extreme self-discovery, unique personal growth, and astonishing strength.

Is it worth taking this risk of recovery? I truly belief so!


“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom” – Anais Nin


Stay strong, remain hopeful and seek inspiration! 


P.S. If you are not on my list, I cannot send you updates, tips and all the useful information I have to offer. Send me an e-mail (kat (@ symbol…) and I will keep in touch…

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3 responses so far

  • Wendy Love says:

    Wow, Kat! You mention some things I never thought about. Your question ‘Have you ever thought you might be hampering your own recovery by playing it safe?” is a good one and possibly has some truth in it.

    And the negative things about recovery, well, who would have thought? Kind of like winning the lottery I guess, it doesn’t always have a happy ending.

    However, recovery must be the goal and I know from personal experience that it is possible.

    • Kat says:

      Hi Wendy,

      Thank you so much for your comment.

      I don’t think there are negative things about recovery. I described some possible (perceived by our minds) risks and excuses that subconsciously whisper to us: ‘Do you know what is going to change if you recover? Are you prepared for that change? Are you prepared to work hard on yourself and be totally honest and self-disciplined? Are you prepared to let go and surrender to recovery and be uncomfortable with the unknown?,etc.’

      These whispers keep us stuck. We become paralysed. We get into this ‘frozen’ mode, hoping that somehow things would get better without us doing anything and life would unfold on our terms.

      We try to control the outcome by being depressed. (At least I did when I was depressed! :))

      Yes, some risks (like losing a friendship etc.) might turn into reality; but while we build our illusions regarding how our life should be, we are not experiencing our life fully. We are on pause…
      I doubt that anyone can benefit from staying stuck for too long.

      Thanks for the comment once again.

      Love and healing,


  • You definitely nailed it with this one. I experienced pretty much all of what you mentioned in your post. I think for me the AHA moment was realizing that I could overcome depression. I had to deal with the fact that I could no longer use it as an excuse for my behavior and attitudes. Going to a counselor for 2 years really helped with my recovery. Yes, it was going to be hard work, and yes, it was not going to be easy. I had to deal with some issues in my past and also forgive people who hurt me. But let me tell you, after I did that, I felt a freedom I have never, ever felt before. It was phenomenal! I still have to be very conscious of my feelings and my thoughts, because I am prone to slipping backwards. But knowing that living with depression does not mean being depressed for life, gives me much hope. Thank you for your honest post!

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