I’ve talked in the past about how regardless of the benefit faith offers, the sense of community I get from my church is important for my recovery. And it doesn’t have to be church if that isn’t your cup of tea, but any kind of a community. The fact is, finding community can be a game-changer when it comes to recovery.
Part of the power of depression, I believe, is that it is so damn isolating. For me, I hate being alone sometimes, but especially early on in my depression, I was so afraid of stepping out of the shadows, lest anyone see my demons. And that was the damn lie that depression whispered so skillfully, so believably that for far too long I bought it hook line and sinker. Even now I struggle with combating that isolation.
Yet, the benefit of finding a community is that you don’t have to do all the work. My community of co-workers for example are great and would reach out if I showed signs of depression overtaking me. Indeed, one of the theories for the evolutionary benefits of depression is that it strengthens the connections we have with our communities as those communities rally to our side when we struggle. Unfortunately, modern society breaks up some of those communities, making it even easier for depression to work its dark magic and spread its macabre lies.
However, community is not lost. It may have taken a backseat to social media and other advances in technology, but it is not lost. You can still find communities through friends, family, work, church, etc. Even social media, harmful to community in some senses, can be beneficial for finding your community, ‘your people,’ regardless of where they are. And if you are an introvert like me, this digital sense of community has the added benefit of being able to connect with you while you’re still in the comfort of your own home.
So however and wherever you find your community, I encourage you to find it, especially if the isolation of depression is something you struggle with.
Your sense of community can even be through a blog *cough, cough*