After 22 years on anti-depressants I weaned off at the end of September. It’s been a rough road but I’ve come out on the other side. Now I’m in search of non-pharmaceutical ways to mental health. I’ll take any and all suggestions.
My question for this post is: can one choose to be happy? Is it really as “simple” as choosing an attitude? And, I’m not talking about for people with mental illnesses like schizophrenia, bi-polar, etc. My diagnosis was low grade depression and anxiety. Since being off the meds I feel the anxiety more than anything–the pandemic adds a lot to that.
Congratulations for successfully weaning off antidepressants after 22 years of use !
“can one choose to be happy? Is it really as ‘simple’ as choosing an attitude?”- I am defining “happy”, for the purpose of answering your question, as being overall content, often curious about life, willing to learn new things, and sometimes feeling joy.
According to this definition, my answer is: if one is not happy, and is not inclined to be happy, then one can choose to become happy, but it will take months and years of making better choices, insight into one’s past and present, learning and practicing new skills (such as Mindfulness, and Assertiveness), and an attitude of endless patience and empathy toward self- so to accomplish the desired happy.
I guess it is a decision but like a longer term one. Anita has explained this very well but I wanted to emphasize on the long term thing. We have to choose to be happy over and over again. In time, we’ll start to succeed little by little. I guess it takes practise. I hope and believe that we can get better at it.