Throughout October 2016, we will be fundraising to Keep HeadsUpGuys Going and sharing stories of recovery and practical tips from men who have fought and overcome depression.
"The turning point for me was when I was serving in the US Army in Iraq."
About Bill Hargenrader:
After being wrongfully committed to a mental institution for three years as a child and since proving my innocence, I am now on a lifelong quest of learning, discovering, and sharing the best tools for us to truly change our lives for the better. I am grateful to have found success in becoming a bestselling author and international keynote speaker, with talks ranging from the latest advances in technology, to advancing through our lives realizing that we can be the hero of our own story. You can read more about my story and get free chapters from my upcoming memoir Fight Through the Dark.
Sometimes when we go through traumatic experiences we can gain positive insights, but there can also be lasting negative effects. I certainly went through some tough times emotionally, spiritually and mentally, due to loneliness and depression. Sometimes it was a debilitating depression lasting a month or more. In the past, this negatively impacted my schoolwork and career.
The turning point for me was when I was serving in the US Army in Iraq. I felt that sense that a bout of depression was coming on, but I wanted to serve to the best of my ability. Instead of pulling away from people and work and commitments, I continued to do my job, focusing on completing my day to day tasks, and even took on more responsibilities. The result for me was that my depression was not as strong, and didn’t last nearly as long. I’ve been out of the military for a while now, but I still use that military mindset, plus a number of other tools I’ve learned along the way.
Daily Success Habits
Blood Work and Vitamin D
Embrace Physical fitness
One of the best pieces of advice I can give is to remember that your mental health is closely tied with your physical health. The healthier we live our lives and focus on creating a sustainable, habitual, healthy lifestyle, the easier it is to get through the dark times. Also, remember that even though depression is real, the habits we create around depression can keep us in a depressed state longer. Pick one or two new tactics, test them out, find out what works for you, and keep them as part of your lifestyle. And finally, once you figure out what works for you, pay it forward and share your knowledge and experience with others. Good luck!
– Bill Hargenrader, United States Army Veteran, author, public speaker, and mental health advocate based out of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the United States.