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Function Meter

@Ecdysis do you include any tasks that are meant to feed you so to speak? Things which bring joy / peace / connection/ laughter etc
Yah... that's the problem with this depression... literally nothing brings me joy/ connection/ laughter... It's really bad...

I've got a few things on there which probably go in the category "peaceful"... Wellness type stuff... Self-care... Those items are on my list, yeah.

But yah, meaning/ joy/ all the good stuff...? It's like that stuff is in some parallel universe and I don't have access to it...
 
So, I think this is part of the problem:

I'm in a constant loop of "but it's not enough" and "it's never enough".

I'm adding these things to my daily routine... hopefully this will help a bit...

- Give myself some genuine credit for today's achievements
- Compassionately acknowledge how very difficult my current situation is
- Cut myself some slack
- Spend some non-goal-oriented me-time
 
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Struggling with this a bit... My function meter has become quite "high functioning"... which is good...but I'm realising it doesn't adequately reflect "dealing with suicidality" as a task that's taken up much of my days this past week.

I'm basically ignoring my function meter atm cos suicidality is making it feel irrelevant/ meaningless.
 
I'm realising it doesn't adequately reflect "dealing with suicidality" as a task that's taken up much of my days this past week.
The function meter, by itself, never got rid of my SI. In fact, I still deal with SI even though my function is now almost completely unimpaired.

Tbh, anyone that tries to tell you there’s one tool that will get rid of chronic SI? Smile and thank them for the kind thoughts, knowing that they have no idea!

The key thing the Function Meter did for me was to improve function. That, by itself, is an important part of recovery from chronic depression, because depression persists (and often deteriorates) when function is absent. The immobility that depression causes, being stuck in bed unable to move, feeds depression.

Things that we know improve depression (medium-long term), are regular exercise (single most effective method for treating depression that we have - including medication), good quality sleep, good diet (feed your gut biome if you can), and social interaction. Those things help slowly change the brain from depression to working normally again.

SI and depression happen together. And SI is often a symptom of depression. But I’m Exhibit A for how SI can persist long after a Major Depressive episode has waned. SI can persist with a dysthymic mood, and even a relatively healthy mood, for long periods of time. So that specific symptom may need additional tools. For me? Thought diffusion (unfortunately, it took a long time) was very helpful. Because I basically now coexist with very powerful SI, probably in much the same way that a schizophrenic person might ultimately learn to coexist with certain hallucinations once the remainder of their condition is largely managed.

I’m sorry it’s still such a struggle for you. It can feel incredibly defeating to have thoughts about suicide continue to interrupt all the time.
 
Thanks @Sideways 🙂

Yeah, I didn't mean using the Function Meter as a way of getting rid of SI... Although that would be a nice side-effect, too!

I dunno how to explain it right... I think it's actually been quite helpful for me in terms of getting more functional... tho to make things nice an conflated, 3 things happened concurrently - I started using the function meter, started a new anti-depressant which seems to be helping and the weather shifted from winter to spring... So...?

Anyway, point is, that my functioning improved quite nicely and I adapted my Function Meter to suit that...

But now that I've hit a challenging phase with more SI, I'm finding that I've designed my Function Meter in a way that doesn't reflect that very well...

I think I need to adjust it so that "dealing with SI" is a task well done, that I can tick off 10 or 20 times a day, on bad days.

And "dealing with strong depression symptoms" is a thing... or stuff like that... "staying alive, despite SI thoughts/feelings"... or "reading through my crisis plan when I have SI thoughts" or "calling someone/ reaching out to someone on my crisis plan when I have SI thoughts"... stuff like that...

So that I have things to tick off and focus on as achievements on the really bad days too... if that makes sense?

I've still got my core "10 things" to actually "assess" how bad my depression is - did I brush my teeth? take my meds? get up before noon? get dressed? leave the house?

And I've got a bunch of other stuff to tick off on good days...

Now I think I want to add a bunch of stuff for the baaaad days...

Cos "staying alive" on a bad day is actually quite a feat... But when you're ticking like nothing else on your function meter that day... it can feel like you've done "nothing" and achieved "nothing" and the whole day was a failure... which can be so de-motivating when you've been fighting to stay alive all day and it's been exhausting...
 
But now that I've hit a challenging phase with more SI, I'm finding that I've designed my Function Meter in a way that doesn't reflect that very well...
Time to build in safety nets.

And exactly the right time to start adding them, because you've got your baseline/foundation mapped out, & working, & can now build to exactly meet your needs as things crop up in different ways. And the next time? Build to suit those needs. And the next time? Ditto. And so on, and so on, until you have umpteen different nets that can snap into place... individually or in combination, with no effort... exactly when called for.

And I've got a bunch of other stuff to tick off on good days...

Now I think I want to add a bunch of stuff for the baaaad days...
Precisely.

Exquisite Stress Management / Highly EffectiveFunctional Living... isn't static. It's adaptive, & dynamic, & recognizes different challenges have different solutions.

Well done, you.
 
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