Five Stages of Depression – Signs & Symptoms
Five Stages of Depression
When the ‘Holiday Blues’ extend past the Holidays…
It is that time of the season where depression and anxiety are at an all-time high. Living a ‘Paleo Lifestyle’ is more than just the foods we consume; it is about living a healthy lifestyle through the means of natural and organic remedies.
But what if all those natural and organic remedies have failed you?
I struggle and have struggled with depression in the past and as hard as this is to admit; I’ve contemplated life without me.
Would people care? Will they miss me?
The answer is YES.
Yes, people care, even when we think otherwise.
Yes, they will miss you, even when those dreaded three words come out. (and no it’s not I love you)
The thing is you are here for a reason, whether it is to change the world or one individual’s life. You have a higher purpose in this world than you may believe.
Times may be hard for whatever reason at this very moment. I can honestly tell you this is only temporary and you will overcome.
My Story (in short)…
I’ve had a lot of challenges thrown at me throughout my (almost) 30 years on earth. There have been moments where I thought I’d never make it through. But I did, and I’m here to tell you; you will make it through this challenge.
Life is all about challenges. Most of which are true testaments of our strength and how we overcome. No one said life was easy.
As much as I promote natural and organic living; sometimes you just need more help.
I’ve been on and off anti-depressants for most of my teenage and adult years. During my teen years of rebellion I did not believe I needed the help of another drug but as my quality of mental health improved so did my life.
I’ll be honest with you, and this is very hard for me to admit, I still struggle with depression and anxiety, especially after giving birth two my boys.
I don’t believe it will ever go away regardless how good or how bad our lives are. Over the years I realized there are stages of depression we all must go through. Depression is comparable to the grieving process; grieving the loss of one’s self.
Five Stages of Depression
This is where you realize something is wrong but your not ready to admit it. Admitting you have depression would mean you are flawed. During the time of denial, life seems meaningless and overwhelming as you hide your pain from the world. Everything sucks.
Every little thing sets you off. You are a walking time bomb ready to blow at the slightest touch of contact but as the thoughts of denial fade, the realization of reality surfaces. Your inner pain comes through with a burst of anger toward everyone; loved one or stranger, there is no limit.
You start to bargain with your inner self. You desperately want to be normal again. So, you begin to negotiate your feelings of pain and anger into fabricated happiness to avoid the fact you are depressed and need help.
Ironically enough this is the stage where your depression surfaces itself, leaving you with feelings of emptiness and you start to withdraw from your everyday life. Friends become distant, you skip out on outings, call into work multiple days in a row, calls and texts go unanswered, and getting out of bed becomes a chore.
Accepting you have depression becomes a reality within. Unfortunately, many do not reach this stage. For that reason, we need to grow more involved in each other’s lives and be aware of the warning signs and symptoms of depression.
Remember signs and symptoms may vary from person to person but the most common are listed below.
Signs & Symptoms¹
Feelings of emptiness, hopelessness, despair, and sadness
Irritability, anxiousness, and guilt
Feelings of exhaustion, severe tiredness
Loss of interest in previously pleasurable activities
Inability to concentrate or remember details
Suicidal thoughts or attempts of suicide
Sleep disturbances; sleeping too much or too little, insomnia
Changes in appetite – eating too much or too little
Physical symptoms – aches and pains, cramps, headaches, digestive issues, breast tenderness, bloating
Lack of energy
Feeling out of control
Mood swings and feelings of tearfulness
Feelings of tension
Disinterest in daily activities and relationships
If you or a loved one is suffering from one or more of these signs or symptoms, please seek help right away.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24/7
Call 1-800-273-8255 or visit
This is a free and confidential support service for individuals in distress that may need immediate care.
As the Holidays are upon us so is the extra stress of financial pressures, excessive commitment, and unrealistic expectations. It’s best to limit ourselves to what we can do and give during the Holidays. Don’t let the season of giving get you down, instead give back in other ways. Volunteer, donate or help someone in need. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Take care of yourself this Holiday season.