Friday, October 18, 2013

Depression and Appearance

Over the past few months we have been doing some videos for the facebook group and I've been doing a few vlog entries.  I noticed that my excitement for doing more has been hampered by self-criticism.  I really don't want to linger on it, but it takes a lot of effort to feel presentable enough to feel good about the outcome.  So I find I'm doing fewer than I might otherwise.  I realized that all of this is effected by my depressive nature and two major depressive episodes this decade.  I literally wear my feelings on my face.

Of course another factor is just general aging.  I updated my intro on my youtube channel (which I've also been cleaning up and organizing, see playlists) from one I had done four years ago.  I'm actually not complaining about the issue of aging, esp. since I love that video on Fabulous Fashionistas!  What bothers me is the evidence of depression and emotional eating, i.e. pain, which I'd much prefer to keep private.  But I'm thinking of Brene' Brown's encouragement to be authentic about our true selves, to be more authentic, as a way of reducing shame.

I also wonder if being 2/4 is a double whammy.  My energy is quite low, and often sedentary, and I'm now paying for that.  I also sit all the time for my work.  And I'm often absorbing a lot of other people's emotions.  Also my secondary nature is quite perfectionistic, so I'm often way too hard on myself, just by habit.  I think this combines as a lot of stress on my body.  I'm also pretty sure my adrenals are shot from childhood stress and work stress.  But I am taking adrenal supplements and also addressing my thyroid again and taking prescribed Vit. D, so hopefully things will be looking up.  And I began walking daily a month or so ago.

You may recall from previous blog posts on Depression:

  • Type 1s (sanguine) are often hyperthymic (elevated, hypomanic) which is anxious and agitated, or hyper
  • Type 2s (phlegmatic) are often depressive because their energy is generally so low and sluggish
  • Type 3s (choleric) are often anesthetic (insensitive) and are only depressed when they don't achieve what they think they should be able to
  • Types 4s (melancholic) are hyperesthetic (overly sensitive) nervous perfectionists, distressed when they fear inferiority
I posted in my Facebook group:  

Depression... has effected my appearance so much, both my weight problem and the appearance of my face. There is a lot of downward T2 energy in my face anyway, so which came first? And my T4 energy is definitely Melancholic. Anyone else relate?

Does depression affect appearance, and if so, how?

  • It is a known symptom of depression to lose interest in maintaining your appearance and hygiene.
  • Reasons to smile more and frown less.
  • A March 2010 review of 15 studies, published in the Archives of General Psychiatry, linked obesity to a greater risk of developing depression - and vice versa. source
  • "Depression is more than the blues or the blahs; it is not the normal everyday ups and downs. When a "down" mood, along with other symptoms, lasts for more than a couple of weeks, the condition may be clinical depression. A serious health problem, clinical depression affects the total person. It can change one's feelings, behavior, physical health and appearance, academic performance, and the ability to handle daily decisions and pressures." source

... but hey, don't listen to me, EXPRESS YOUR TRUTH! Jane


SWriter said...

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences on this issue. For me this is where many of the systems fall short. It's a simplistic notion to analyze yourself as a type but it is much deeper than this. I like the way you related your type to your actual energy and emotional level.

I can recall being in a place where I thought just dressing a certain way would make me feel better. But I found it only a temporary solution to processing life's issues.

Actually I think your observation reinforces that to "know thyself" is more than just externals.

Thanks for this post.

Jane Leu Rekas said...

Thanks! I actually felt a lot better writing about this.