Sad City

Recently Men’s Health magazine ranked St. Petersburg as the Saddest City in America. I went on ABC action news (watch here) to discuss is this really true? 

Whether you agree or disagree with the study, it does bring up some issues to be discussed.  First, no matter what stage of life you may find yourself in we are all under constant pressure to be successful.  Whether it’s career success, relationships, financially or any number of other situations, the pressure is on to succeed.  Since we have this added pressure to make it we often have expectations that are too high or unrealistic such as “Supermom” or perfect employee or perfect spouse.  

When we have unrealistic expectation we set ourselves up to fail.  This feeling of failure can lead to depression or feelings of hopelessness because you didn’t meet an expectation that was never really realistic in the first place.  When that starts to happen we make choices:  do I try to figure it out on my own, avoid and deny it or set goals and get help?  

Today I want to talk to you about getting help and what that looks like to you.   Living in the “Sunshine State” we get the added bonus of exposure to the sun which has been shown to help reduce feelings of depression.  That’s a nice bonus, but it’s not always enough.  We need to learn other coping skills and find other ways to get help. Counseling with a licensed therapist is a good place to start. 

Counseling is a place to start setting realistic goals for yourself.  Counseling starts by looking at what’s going on, and what things you would like to be different or change that you have control over.  Your therapist will also help you look at what is out of your control and find ways to cope that are healthy and helpful, instead of unhealthy and hurtful.  

Other ways to find healthy coping skills are looking at community resources and asking friends or family for help.  This belief can go back to “it takes a community…..”   Somewhere we lost this belief and started to try and do everything on our own.  

 I know that seeking out therapy or counseling can seems scary and intimidating.  We sometimes say “why can’t I just do it on my own?”  When we start to feel sad, it helps to talk with someone and connect, we don’t have to be alone.  IT”S OK TO ASK FOR HELP!!!!!! We have given ourselves this false impression that asking for help makes you weak.  Asking for help doesn’t mean that you are weak; in fact it means you have the courage to look inside and see that something isn’t right, the strength to realize it’s oaky to ask for help, and the wisdom to seek it!

If you live in or around St. Petersburg and you or someone you love are feeling sad, or struggling with the daily pressures life brings and you think you might need some help, I’m here to help you.  You can click here to schedule a session online or call me at 727-565-2551.  If you go to my resources page I have some links and some phone numbers that you may find helpful as well.