We’ve all had them at one time, and they are probably one of the best feelings in the world. The dictionary describes it as “deep hearty laugh”. Today I had a belly laugh so loud that my coworker even commented saying she has never heard me laugh so hard. After that, I realized I probably haven’t laughed like that in quite some time, and it felt good! Life can get pretty crazy or stressful with so many things pulling us in various directions that we rarely stop to really appreciate the little things like a belly laugh with a close friend. I often find myself running from one place to the next with my calendar often being double or even tripled booked – ridiculous I know. The result is always the same, one way ticket to burnout ville and me. For a lot of people though it’s more than just needing to recharge their batteries.
Today a comedian that we all knew and love died at the age of 63 of an apparent suicide. Articles online are reporting that Robin Williams had been suffering of depression. Over the past few years I have seen an increase in campaigns such Bell Let’s Talk which hopes to build mental health awareness, and alleviate some of the stigma. Depressionhurts.ca says “1 in 10 Canadians will experience an episode of major depressive disorder (the diagnosis given to those suffering from depression) during their lifetime”. This is one statistic I didn’t know until today, 1 in 10 is a staggering number and means many people close to us or even us could experience depression at some point in our lives. It’s unfortunate that it takes a tragedy or something bad to happen to get us talking about something that is so prevalent. I am neither a doctor, nor a psychologist but I am going to start focusing on my own mental health, do my research, watch for signs and be there in case any of my friends or family needs a set of ears. I am not naïve enough to suggest a simple belly laugh is the cure, but I do know that when I’m down and feeling beat up it helps me. This isn’t my typical post but I wrote this in effort to contribute to the conversation.
If you want to learn more about depression here are a couple links to get you starts: