SHAMPOO FOR DAMAGED SOULS

Written by the_chelf@yahoo.gr

I was looking at myself in the mirror for a considerable length of time.

I don’t spend a lot of time looking into mirrors so I was surprised. I was backstage at photoshoot and as it turns out I wasn’t looking at myself in the mirror:

I WAS DWELLING

Maybe this is why I avoid mirrors, this is what they do to me.

It probably started somehow like this: I should get rid of those split ends, I need to make an appointment for a haircut. No more damaged hair.

Easy Peasy. Now, how do you also get rid of a damaged soul?

YOU DON’T

A shampoo for damaged souls would be a real hit though, if you are looking to invest in a brand new innovating idea, be my guest.

You can go around triggers for a while. You can distract yourself in the hopes of a temporary relief. You can also get sucked into the black hole of depression surrounded by the echoes of your worst memories. You can repeat your key mistakes over and over again, in the name of research unable to determine your self-destructive patterns.

Or you can dive into a burst of positivity – probably the result of lovely Pinterest posts, convincing you that there are at least five-plus-one foolproof ways to get out of a mental rut . You can explore various philosophical theories while you are at it.

OR play the chemical imbalance card, to comfortably frame a mental illness within the limits of reassuring biology.

There are a million things you can do. But you probably can’t fix a damaged soul even if you try to brainwash it with a generous amount of damage repairing shampoo.

SO WHAT DO YOU DO WITH A DAMAGED SOUL?

BE APPROACHABLE:

Be open about it. There is no point in trying to hide a mental disorder, emotional distress or scars. And there is no point in worrying or being concerned about other people’s opinions. If you are going to worry about something, worry about the missed opportunity to help someone who could benefit from your experience and openness.

There is nothing to hide. Excuse the Christian reference but we all have a cross to bear.

BE NICE:

To yourself above all.

Treat yourself as you would treat a loved one in distress. What would you advise the person you love the most if they were in your shoes? Take that piece of advice and utilize it yourself. Or die trying. Personally I find it very easy to feel and express empathy towards others and yet, very hard to forgive myself for the most insignificant things. Being nice (r) to mychelf is something that I need to work on and give me a break. Cause if I won’t no one else will.

EMBRACE IT:

Enjoy it. Wait. Hear me out, this is not a drill, this is not a joke.

This is the essence of years and years of experience speaking.

 From one damaged soul to another,

I promise you, you can get to a point where you actually enjoy it. Not always, not all the time, but it can and it will happen if you let it. Normal is boring. And even though you are not defined by your mental illness, it is a part of you and your experiences have shaped the person you are today. Maybe you are damaged; but battle scars are fascinating.

Keep going, there is hope.

Until the next one,

Chelf.

 

*disclaimer: I am not a mental-health professional or a doctor. I only speak for myself and from personal experiece.

 

38 thoughts on “SHAMPOO FOR DAMAGED SOULS

  1. As I suffer from some major depression myself I find this inspiring. There really is no way to force yourself to heal as you have stated. We can make excuses for it or we can own it. Just like when suffering from an addiction, the first step is admitting you have a problem. I love the part where you said you should treat yourself how you would treat others who are suffering. I think of it in a similar way kind of: When we help others through their problems we can find healing ourselves…we can use our experience to offer compassion and in turn we are able to have more positive moments than self-loathing moments. 🙂

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      Hi Danielle! I can relate to your depression issues and I’m so happy that you found this post inspiring and hopefully comforting as well. You are right, first we have to admit that there’s something going wrong and then figure out ways to deal with it and be functional despite the mental disorders. It takes time but united we stand.

  2. Thankfully my soul is not damaged and it has never been. I have an amazing support system and I always think about the positive aspects of my life. Focusing on the negative or worrying about things that are out of one’s control will only cause negative thinking thus depression.

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      I’m very, very happy for you. I just have to say that you do not necessarily choose to focus on the negative or worry about things. Sometimes you just cannot control it. That’s the thing with depression. You know there is no point in worrying, you know there’s little or nothing you can do to change a certain situation but you can’t help getting overwhelmed. Same goes for all the anxiety disorders too. You don’t simply wake up one day and go ‘ok from now on I’m not gonna worry about a thing” Sad, but true…

  3. I really like the way you write, this is super relatable and makes the topic much more easy to talk about. Thank you for taking the time to share your own thoughts and experiences with mental illness. Also love your artistic take on your pictures, they are very fitting.

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      Hi Adrienne! Thank you so much for the kind words! I’m so glad you enjoyed the post and the pictures as well! I think we don’t talk about these things enough so I gave it a go. As for the photos, I’ve never experimented with this technique before,I hope it turned out decent 🙂

  4. Thank you for this. It’s not always easy and there isn’t just one answer. But it always helps to know others are experiencing the same and what’s worked. I love the idea of giving yourself the advice you would give a loved one.

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      Hi Steph! Absolutely, there isn’t just one way, it’s different for everyone but at least, like you said it helps to know that others are having similar experiences and that you are not alone <3

  5. Being open about my own mental illness is incredibly important to me and it’s nice to see other people embracing it as well. Sometimes I worry about making other people uncomfortable, but it’s a stigma that needs to be broken.

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      Hi Ray. The way I see it, if someone gets uncomfortable because of such a thing, maybe they need to change their perception. Would they also be uncomfortable if we had a broken leg? Nope. So the more we talk about mental health the easier it gets for people to be cool about it. <3

  6. Bravo for stepping out. I was struggling with anxiety and low depression and finally saw my provider. I hated feeling like that, constant fear and worry. <3

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      It’s a struggle and a non-stop battle but we got this! United we are stronger than our demons!

  7. Hey boo!! First of all THANK YOU for being so vulnerable and raw and real! I love how you said “Be Open” I think that is so key. To keep telling your story to help others and yourself. xoxo!

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      Hiya Boo! Unlimited hugs to you!

  8. I love the imagry you used. Anxiety sucks! It is so pervasive now.

  9. Such a wonderful reading! A shampoo for damaged souls would be a great idea. Wash the pain and tears away in just a few minutes, I would definitely need this in my life.

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      Thank you Helene! What a brilliant business idea right? The closest we have so far is vodka 😉 (drink responsibly, it was a joke)

  10. Vox says:

    I like your metaphor and your suggestions. We have to start from loving ourselves and spread out from there. Thanks for tackling a sensitive issue.

  11. Kayla says:

    I love the title ??.

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      it loves you too

  12. Cass says:

    I appreciate you being so open and honest. Being nice to yourself is a good point that I think a lot of people tend to forget, including myself. I am my own worst enemy

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      aren’t we all? Let’s work on that 🙂

  13. I found myself intrigued by this article and it’s multi analogies that can be grasped by one or all of the readers here. That’s fantastic to capture an audience like that gain their trust and attention and help them along the way. As I myself was being entertained, and caught myself interested in the responses of other folk like myself male and female. Depression and anxiety knows no gender, color nor religion. Secondly I felt comfortable, I realized I’m not the only one who used, key word USED to suffer in silence with little education on how to move forward. I felt trapped in my own head, I felt tapped in my own self loathing and created my own personal prison. A few month back I met a red head from Germany, and she as turned out to be a blessing and one of the best people to have entered my life and she as made an impact and helped me see that a lot of my issues could be resolved if I looked deep within myself and stop blaming other and stop the self loathing and thing will begin to feel better for me. Or that was her experience and advice and it worked for her. It’s still a work in progress for me but I feel better , day by day, little by little. She is one of my best friends right now and I could never thank her enough for reaching out when I was at my lowest.

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      wow, Patrick thank you for the lovely comment. I’m so glad you enjoyed the post and that you found a way to relate. You are right: Depression or any other mental disorder for that matter, knows no gender, age, color or religion. The fact that you felt comfortable while reading this post is the best reward for me. Makes all the sleepless nights worth it. No second thoughts. When I first started building this platform I dreamt about a “kingdom” open to everyone, where everyone can be unapologeticaly themselves and share and have a giggle and be nice and comfy. I never thought we would end up with this amazing community here, to me that’s family. I’m so happy you found a way to overcome your suffering. She (the redhead) sounds amazing, I can’t begin to tell you how happy I am you found a friend to help you through this. Having said that, please make sure you don’t rely on anyone else but yourself to be happy or content. Consider the fact of human nature, no matter how lovely the other person might be. Just a humble opinion here, I’m anything but an expert when it comes to human relationships.Having said that, it’s so important to find someone to offer a helping hand, someone to listen or share or just point you to the right direction. Please feel free to stop by whenever you feel low or need to tak to someone as well. My inbox is always open. Hugs.

  14. Jewish Chick says:

    I have to tell you, I do the SAME thing. Mine is more of an obsessive thing so I try not to even get the ball started or it will consume me (whatever it is) for the next few hours, if not days!

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      I know the feeling…

  15. I had a gulp in my throat reading this, but it was a great read. I love how you have wrote this – very clever and easy to relate x

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      You are so sweet Melanie! Thank you for taking the time to read my story. Sending hugs.

  16. It’s nice to see people talking about mental health problems. I have been a patient myself, not much help was around yhen

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      You can always rely on our little community here Dinesh. You are not alone, my inbox is always open!

  17. Great message here. Good you are talking about mental health. I bet your story would help many people out there dealing with mental health problems. Normal is so boring.

  18. Ola says:

    I love this Chelf. We all have a “thorn in our flesh” to contend with. Sometimes – most times the key to coping is to embrace it. “So you’re here to stay, huh? Since I can’t get rid of you, let me explore other ways of tolerating you”. That is the key to facing every tough situation. Beautifully written Chelf, as always.

    xoxo

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      Hey girl! I’ve missed you! It’s good to see ya back on the Chelfdom. Glad you enjoyed the post and yes, that’s my mindset, if you can’t get rid of your demons learn to embrace them and that makes them less and less stronger very day.

  19. Aine Mulloy says:

    Very insightful so important for people to take time to look after themselves

  20. Szebastian Onne #INSPIRE says:

    woah! You made me think – in a very positive way though. Do we all do this to ourselves from time to time?
    I suppose we do and in a manner we become our own foe. But the way you have expressed yourself makes one think ‘How can I get out of this cycle and be strong?’ and that is a perfect beginning towards stronger, healthier us. Thank you so much for this phenomenal article.

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      Yes Exactly! The minute we stop and think how we can get out of it is the first baby step to getting better

  21. Joy says:

    Thank you for being transparent and willing to shine the spotlight on such an important topic. I think with more conversation, the stigma associated with mental illness will be erased once and for all. Your personal story is helping more people than you can imagine. Thanks for sharing.

    • the_chelf@yahoo.gr says:

      Hi Joy! Thank you for stopping by! United we stand <3

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