Fighting Discouragement & Depression

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How can we fight discouragement and depression as we embark on a job search or a career transition? Recently, I had to have two surgeries, 10 days apart, one of them a foot surgery that was supposed to put me out of action for a couple of months. The trouble is as a business owner, I can’t afford to take that amount of time away from work. So I determined that somehow I would have to hasten though not compromise my recovery. After my one-day surgery, I was taking client calls and appointments on the way home. I found that absorption in my clients problems distracted me from my pain. I kept my foot elevated per doctors orders, but as I engaged my mind and focused on the needs of others I sensed that my discouragement and depression began to subside.

After a weekend of rest, I gave up the pain pills, and focused on doing what I do best. Within a week, I was walking and mowing my 3.5 acre property, and at the 14-day mark, I am basically operational–not running any footraces to be sure, but fully functional. So what does this have to do with life?

I think life is 90% attitude and 10% opportunity. “We do what we have to do”,  my mom always said. More and more I realize the profundity of that statement. When we are absorbed in our goals and what has to be done, we seem to overcome our discouragement and depression and ignore what other people might characterize as impossible obstacles.

All this can serve as a metaphor for job searching in a tough economy, qualifying ourselves for a position we think is beyond our area of expertise, or taking on a professional or personal challenge. The “we do what we have to do” principle can carry us through the impossible. I remember a number of times in my life when people told me that my aspirations and goals were impossible. In almost every case, they proved to be wrong. Why? Because I am wonder woman? Not at all. Because I “did what I had to do”, and made things happen because I had no choice.

So whatever you are facing now–drown out the voices that whisper, “impossible”. Do whatever it takes to move toward accomplishing your goal. Believe that you can, that you must, and you will in most cases achieve the impossible. Belief is a powerful force. Self-belief is an even more awesome force. Factor in determination and persistence, and you can defeat discouragement and depression and frustrating obstacles. That awesome force can be the deciding factor that can move you beyond the seemingly impossible into the realm of possibility and accomplishment.

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