How To Be Depressed

U.S. National Archives

Depression has a weight and a texture all its own. So said a very famous writer, once upon a time. But how to be depressed correctly? How to know if you’re doing it right? Here is a quick field-guide on how to be depressed.

1. Stop showering.

2. Stop going outside. …Don’t you get a weird feeling when you go outside? Like all the skyscrapers and buildings are going to topple down on you. Like they’re leering over you, becoming surrealist and looming, and are about to fall down on you? Give in to that feeling. Become that feeling.

3. Start addressing remarks directly to your cat, since there is no one left to talk to, at this point. (“…Cat? What is going on here?“)  This one is highly crucial. I cannot emphasize this enough.

4. Forget just not showering. Stop cleaning yourself in any way. Consign your feet and your teeth to cheesy death. It’s not going to stop, anyway, is it, this depression? …It’s not going to stop, so just give up.

5. Start looking up quotes about depression. And/or fall into a Wikihole. Here’s a good quote about depression: “Hell is other people.” — Sartre. That’s a good one. Try using that.

6. Outside? …You want me to go outside? Don’t do it. Stay in your self-hole.

7. This isn’t just another “adorkable” list. I actually do all these things. I started cryng just from having to watch that Aimee Mann video that I linked to. Depression is real. It’s a joke to other people, and it’s a joke to yourself when you’re not in it. There are only two ways. You’re either in it, or you’re not in it.

8. Ernest Hemingway once wrote this: “I know the night is not the same as the day: that all things are different, that the things of the night cannot be explained in the day, because they do not then exist.

9. That’s it. That’s it exactly. Depression, or non-depression. It’s like night and day. Such an obvious thing. Can you truly remember the night, when you’re walking around during the day? Can you really recall what it’s like? And vice-versa. Who among us can really recollect the day during the night? It’s like a wall. If you’re depressed, you’ll understand it. If you’re not, it’s just all so much meaningless blather. It’s like a wall. Not a door; a wall. And there’s no way through to either side.

10. Fitzgerald once wrote this: “In a real dark night of the soul it is always three o’clock in the morning, day after day.”

11. That’s it. Exactly.

12. And reading a list about it will not help you.

13. Or will it?

14. Did writing this list help me?

15. It’s hard to say; it’s kind of hard to say anything, in a real dark night of the soul.

16. Sorry folks! No funny or consoling or ironic ending! This is just the end. The end of this list. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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