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Depression and finding a sense of purpose


Symora
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This is something that emerged on another tread and I'm wondering what others think about it.

I've been thinking about the link between depression and having a sense of purpose in life. For a variety of reasons my life has changed considerably in the last 5 years and I am no longer as involved in activities as I used to, or connected to others in fact. I find that because of this I have a lost a sense of purpose and it is making it very challenging for me to get out of this depression, it's like which can first, the chicken or the egg.

Has anyone had experience with losing their sense of purpose and then finding it again ... right now it feels to me like I will never get it back. I go though the motions, but I can't seem to grasp unto anything solid ...;)

Edited by Symora
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Hi Symora I definatly think there is a connection but I don't think either one causes each other. I think it is HARDER to deal and accept each depression and sense of purpose independantly let alone together.

I know what you mean though. I am living in it as well. I never have understood why life for me just crashed from a full functioning puprosefull wife of 25 yrs and a mother of 7 involved in the schools as PTA president and having my own business to a life of not knowing who i am inside and why my head goes from flat and dead to upbeat and kinda manic behavior. I have tried to figure out why my purposefull life is not good enough to keep me out of depression. Or why depression makes me feel so bad I can't get my purposeful life back to where it used to be....

I hope this sort of helps you. I know it helped me think about the connection.. :(

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Thanks for your sharing and support. I have never experienced so much grief before and it has thrown me completely off. Someone told me today that I need grandchildren, to give me a sense of purpose and closeness again... but I guess I can't ask my girls to have children in order to please me :( I keep hoping and praying that I will find a path that makes me fell more connected and involved in life. I am busier lately and trying to reconnect with friends, so I guess I have come a long way since the fall when I could not be with others and spent most of my time crying. Healing takes time and I'm trying to be patient....

For my part I fell like I have given a lot and basically got spit on in return, that is my experience, and it has happened to me many times. It has made me fearful of giving and I'm very cautious with it now. I hate how it has killed my naivete, made me perhaps even overly cautious and distant.... I feel jaded about people now and I don't like it.

Edited by Symora
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I had a loss which led me to feelings of hopelessness several years ago, but I believe now that there were deeper reasons behind why this loss became so unbearable for me. I wonder sometimes just how much of stuff is existential with us human beings. Purpose in life helps us to feel meaningful in the grand scheme of things. There is a place within us which wants to make a mark on the world in some way. We want to be remembered. And while we are here, we also want to be needed and valued. Purpose also gives us drive and the will to move ahead, despite the risks. It makes us feel important. But sometimes life can throw you a curveball. Purpose may find you when and where you least expect it to. There has always been some part of me that wants to bring forth hope and wants to believe that being a loving and caring person matters in this life. But the way this relationship had ended, it snuffed some of my life out and left me feeling as if my purpose was really all for naught. Unable to move through my shame and grief, I ended up in despair...and in therapy. In my relationship with my former therapist, I discovered that my purpose and my hopefulness were still very much alive and well. It had just been wounded and needed some tender loving care from another human being in order to heal. And what ended up happening is my purpose in life grew and took on a whole new direction and meaning. It had always been there, but it needed life events...and some very painful life events...to fully emerge and make itself known. Let your experiences guide you and listen to your heart.

What life purpose did you feel when you were doing these activities, Symora? How was it reaching you and where were the good feelings in it? How did it resonate personally with you and bring you joy? My guess is that your purpose is still there, but that perhaps you need to fully recognize and be aware of yourself in this. Is there any way you can become involved again in these activities?

I hope you feel better, Symora.

Edited by IrmaJean
fixing grammar boo-boos and typos
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Yeah Symora I have had to do a lot of reflecting on my life and what used to make me happy or what I really enjoyed doing. My youngest child is 9 and all of them are very self sufficient. I guess I did my job well but I too often think about grandkids. But, I find I have no patience anymore or even the tolerance of hearing little kids crying in the stores. That womens nesting instinct is gone for me and I am NOT looking forward to grandkids. Unfortunatly with 7 children and a huge house, I don't see that I will not have any grandkids running around. What I used to invision as a home with my childrens spouses and grandkids always welcome over and spending the holidays I find that I can no longer even plan anything let alone a house full of people.

So I guess we have to figure out what makes us tick and start satisfying that need. It seems selfish when I think about it but my family understands the need for me to find happiness in myself. I really want to row and bike. I used to do that alot as a kid and I loved power rowing so I have been finding out where I can join a club and row with a shell(the long thin boats with long oars) but everytime the classes come up I know I cant commit becasue of my cycling.

I hope you can find what used to make you happy as a kid and try to make that a priority in your life... It is tough growing old!! Life keeps changing and hard to keep up with it :)

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Old! What the heck!!! How did that happen so quickly:confused: Yesterday I was middled aged and now I'm thinking about getting old. I was not prepared for this, it's taken me by surprise...

I guess his marrying a 20 year old really did that to me. It was a shocker I can tell you and it severely threw me into an awareness of age, a feeling of being put out to pasture and it's shaken me. But reality is I do see things differently, I make different types of choices because I'm more tired, I take things more slowly than I used to. I don't pack so many things into a day anymore. I am getting older and I stopped being a 'girl' a very along time ago :D. I'm not sure I like this stage as a woman... it 's very hard on the self-esteem...

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