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Behind The Happy Face: A Few Hidden Truths And Facts About Depression And Suicide

Behind The Happy Face: A Few Hidden Truths And Facts About Depression And Suicide

Perhaps, you can still remember the day when your sister called you to tell you the bad news. Her best friend and colleague at work decided to call it quits and ended her life. She was found hanging on a beam of her dormitory room. Nobody knew this was coming. Just the week before, she was with you at the beach. You invited her for a short summer break and she showed no signs of any depression. In fact, she appeared happy and cheerful. Now, she was as dead and gone, with no clear explanation of why. So what could have happened to her? How could this have happened to an otherwise cheery girl like her?

The act of intentionally carrying out the mission to cause his or her own death is generally known as suicide. There are many causes or reasons that lead to a person committing suicide, some of which include, depression, mental disorders, and drug or alcohol alcohol addiction. Aside from these, excessive social pressure, economical failure, grief, emotional imbalance, and interpersonal relationships also tend to encourage a person to commit suicide.

So how come your cheerful friend decided to end her life?

She never appeared to be gloomy at all. Depression can be very hidden. A depressed person can appear normal and happy on the outside but can be breaking down on the inside. You have asked her friends at the dormitory where she resided and they said that she was often in her room, often looking spaced out and lonely. Turned out, she had horrible problems at home that she can’t escape from.

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People who have suicidal thoughts are confused. They don’t know where to turn to for help and who to ask for help. For them, ending their life is moving forward to a better one. This false promise gives them hope that when they finally end their life, they won’t feel depressed, lonely, or empty anymore. Studies show that suicidal thoughts have a lot of causes. Aside from genetics and an undiagnosed mental illness, people who were exposed to a negative experience in life are prone to depression and sometimes succumb to suicide because of it.

There might be several life-changing experiences that can cause depression, like a death of a loved one, a divorce, a breakup, losing your job, financial problems, issues with your house or your car, physical and emotional abuse, sexual abuse, and at times, bullying in teenagers. Depression can have physical signs, like weight loss or weight gain, loss of concentration, feeling weary or lethargic, neglect of personal appearance, or withdrawal from the company of others.

The method implemented by people for committing suicide differs from culture to culture and from place to place. In the underdeveloped and developing countries, use of pesticide and hanging has become widely used methods for committing suicide while in developed countries, the use of a firearm has evolved as a common method. In the United States, almost half of suicides are committed with the use of a firearm. Other common methods of suicide in US are asphyxiation and poisoning, which results in about 40% of suicide cases. But the most common method in which one commits suicide is through the use of pesticides, which accounts for almost 30% of suicide deaths worldwide.

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Other general methods used for committing suicide are hanging, diving from a big height, like from a building, bridge, or cliff, smoke inhalation, exsanguination, self-drowning, electrocution, and coming in front of a moving train or traffic, are the most widely used methods for committing suicide.

It is estimated that around the world, roughly about one million people commit suicide yearly and it is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. It is found that men are more prone to committing suicide than their counterparts and the most common age group of people committing suicide are between 15 and 35. The age between 15 and 35 is the prime time when people begin to realize the actual meaning of life and come across many hurdles and challenges.

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It is not that suicide cases are “the new-world” phenomenon because incidences of suicides go way back to our ancient times. We must have heard about a Hindu practice known as “Sati”, where the widower has to immolate herself on her husband’s pyre whether willingly or with force from the society and family.[1] This practice is still carried out in some of the remote villages of India. Also in the samurai era in Japan, suicide was a form of punishment given for failure.

Suicide cases are not limited to death of single person, but it can also be a mass suicide where a large number of people commit suicide. These types of suicides are generally done for some religious beliefs or as a form of protest. A 1978 incident of a mass suicide by members of Peoples Temple in Guyana acts as an example of this kind of case.[2]

So what could we do to prevent this?

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    Experts say that people who are suffering from depression should go to a specialist if the blues do not go away after two weeks. Psychiatrists can prescribe consultations depending on the degree of depression that the person is feeling instead of anabolic steriods[3] and prednisone and all other forms of so-called anti-depressant synthetic medicines.[4]

    When mild depression is diagnosed, the patient can go on consultations or counseling groups, a common ground of support people that can understand him or her better and help each other in the process. If major depression is diagnosed however, he/she is prescribed antidepressants or, at times, when the patient cannot help themselves and poses danger to him or herself and to others, they are confined and given electro-shock therapy. These are all meant to save them from themselves and the life-threatening effects of depression.

    In the present scenario, suicide is generally committed when the person lacks the will to continue in today’s cutthroat competitive world. People have considered suicide as an easy resolution to any problems, difficulties, or failures that one faces in their lives and don’t have the courage to fight back against. It is often seen that the most common reason for anyone to commit suicide nowadays is either failure. This can translate to failure in studies, failure in business, and failure in meeting the expectation of the society, family members, and stressors in the home or between the partners. But whatever the problem may be, committing suicide has not and will never be the solution. One must have a positive attitude towards life and must have the courage to fight back whatever the situation might be.

    The most important thing is the support that depressed people get from their family and their friends. Let them know that they are not alone. They can turn to you for help if they really need it. Suicide does not have to be the only answer.

    Reference

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    Junie Rutkevich

    Game Developer of iXL Digital

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    Last Updated on December 2, 2018

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

    Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

    The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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    The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

    Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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    Review Your Past Flow

    Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

    Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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    Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

    Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

    Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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    Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

    Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

    We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

    Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

      Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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