When It's More Than The Blues
Kim Argetsinger depression
"Shame corrodes the very part of us that believes we are capable of change." -Brene Brown

I had a more entrepreneurial blog slotted to share with you this week.

Then, I logged online the other day and saw it was World Mental Health Day (Oct. 10th).

I saw a few posts, registered it, and thought, great someone else can talk about this. It’s good people are talking about this - I don’t have to. I proceeded to brush it under the rug.

I’m calling BS on myself because I very much have something to say about mental health. I’m part of the statistic.

So, next week we’ll talk some business-y, entrepreneurial stuff.

Today, I want to share my experience for anyone who might need to hear it.

(Rather watch and listen? Join me in a Facebook Live below!)

 

 

Mental health disorders are stigmatized, misunderstood, and in the world of positive psychology (which I fully subscribe to), there also seems to be a message of buck-up and positive your way out of it.

Except it doesn’t work that way.

I talk a whole lot about mindset and there’s a big reason I’m driven to learn more about the brain, am fascinated by how it works, and am simultaneously excited and relieved that it’s been shown we can rewire our brain.

While I haven’t had a brain scan, I’m pretty sure I’m neurologically wired for depression, anxiety, and who knows what else. But, I refuse to let it win or for that to be my entire story.

But it was very much was my story for a long time.

The first time I remember feeling depression was in middle school. Not really an opportune time to get hit with feelings of apathy, lethargy, emptiness, sadness, and general lack of enthusiasm for life.

I remember having to trudge my way to school through what felt like mud and thinking it was a normal way to be.

I somehow how found myself on the cheerleading squad and it was an exercise in sheer determination that I made it to practice and plastered a fake smile on my face.

I forced myself to social activities that left me hollow.

I participated in reckless activities because I didn't care what happened to me.

Hear me, I’m not looking for sympathy or empathy. Today, I’m an incredibly happy and fulfilled person who feels joy, flow, excitement, contentment…as well as very normal sadness and anger.

I do want to open your eyes to a very real medical disorder that gets stigmatized, misunderstood, and misdiagnosed. 

I distinctly remember sixth grade when my mom took me to a doctor, a licensed, medical doctor. She looked for the usual red flags: divorce, substance abuse in the home, physical abuse...and when she found none, she told me to "snap out of it" and told my mom I had nothing to be upset about. 

Depression isn’t being sad, though sadness can be a symptom. Depression is also not a choice.  

Thank god I have an incredible mother and father who persisted and sought help elsewhere. Not everyone is as lucky as I am.

I wasn’t old enough to know better. I wasn’t equipped with the self-awareness and tools I have now. I didn’t have Google to search for symptoms and treatments. 

I was young, chemically mixed-up, and speeding down a dead-end, back-alley about to crash.

I was hurting myself in more ways than one.

Yet, a very educated and well-meaning doctor looked at me and decided I had nothing to be upset about and that was almost that.

Depression and mental disorders, in general, aren’t rational. Depression isn’t about being upset about something. It isn’t about needing to buck up and cheer up (and, oh, does that to this day make me want to scream when I hear it). 

If it were that simple, we wouldn't need mental health awareness. It would simply be "keep calm and carry on."

Someone with depression also can’t just “snap out" of it. That’s akin to asking someone with high blood pressure or diabetes to snap out of it. It’s ignorant, insulting, and frustrating.

The exact cause of depression is murky. There’s evidence of a genetic predisposition and chemical imbalances. Science hasn’t quite come to a conclusion, but I’m a big believer in Dr. Amen’s work which says, “Anxiety and depression are not the result of character flaws or personal weakness; they are the result of biological problems in the brain that can be balanced.” 

Depression (and other mental disorders) aren’t a motivation problem or a result of someone being too lazy to “fix” things. 

Often it isn’t about something being “wrong”.

I remember not knowing why I felt the way I did. I didn’t understand why getting out of bed felt like a herculean effort or why making it through the day was absolutely exhausting. Why outings with friends that used to be fun felt like sleepwalking.

I do remember wishing there was something wrong so I could explain it and erase the guilt and shame I felt.

I also remember finally finding someone (well, my parents finding someone) who properly diagnosed me with the worst depression they had ever seen and giving me medication and therapy. 

The medication wasn't a candy-coated cure-all. It didn’t work for a while. They kept having to change and up my doses. The side effects I wonder about to this day.

When it did finally work, I remember thinking, “Oh, you mean it doesn’t have to feel so hard?”

I didn’t necessarily feel “happy” because I wasn’t unhappy before. I remember feeling even and clear for the first time in a long time.

I would still get upset. I would still cry. But for a reason. Because I was sad about something that had happened instead of empty for no reason. I’d still be tired if I didn’t sleep enough, but I no longer wanted to sleep the day away.

I’ve cycled through this a few times in my life. It came again in high school, in college, and in early adulthood.

Each time, though, it got easier. The depression became less crippling because I knew what was going on. I can now catch the symptoms as they attempt to sneak in and strangle my grip on life.

I no longer need medication (I’m not against it). I’ve got a giant toolbox I continue to add to and break out the sledgehammer when those symptoms come a-knockin'.

But, I needed help. I couldn’t write you today and tell you this if I hadn’t gotten help. If I hadn’t been lucky enough to have parents who saw that what was going on as more than teenage angst. 

When it happened again in high school and college, I needed someone to lift me and point me to therapy. I needed someone to teach me the tools to take care of myself. 

In honor of World Mental Health Awareness, I want to share this awareness with you. 

Depression is more than being moody. It’s more than a bad case of PMS or the blues.

Depression is serious. One of the deadly side effects is suicide.

According to Mental Health America: the most common underlying disorder for suicide is depression, and suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the US and the second leading cause of death among people ages 15-24.

If you think you’re struggling with depression (or another mental disorder), know you aren’t broken. Know there is help and there’s power and bravery in asking for help. There’s a whole lot of wonderful life on the other side.

If you broke your arm, you’d get someone to help you set it. Don't try to set depression on your own. 

You’re also very much not alone.

I find depression to be particularly common with the people I work with: entrepreneurs, artists, and creative types (I believe our brains are actually wired slightly differently, so we’re more prone).

It’s estimated that 350 million people suffer from depression worldwide, so the statistics say you probably know someone suffering from depression.

I don’t have all the answers, but I hope by sharing my story, I can help someone else know there's they aren't alone. If this resonates with you, please make an appointment with a mental health professional. 

I know it can feel like the dark clouds will always be your only BFF, but the clouds will part. The sun will come out again. It does pass and change. 

With love and so much compassion, 

Kim Argetsinger depression

P.S. I’m not a doctor, so don’t take this as medical advice (which I’m not legally allowed to give, consider this my disclaimer). 

P.P.S. Know someone else who might resonate with this blog? You have my blessing to share it with anyone you think it might help.

Goals Gone Wild
Kim Argetsinger, goals and procrastination
“Even if you are on the right track you'll get run over if you just sit there." -Will Rogers

(Rather watch and listen? Join me in a Facebook Live below!)

 

It’s officially fall here in NYC, which is all sorts of exciting to me.

While the temperature is only just starting to turn (we've had a few 85 degree days recently!) we're starting to close in on the end of the year and the last quarter, or Q4 as the Brits call it.

I sat down earlier this week to dig into my goals. If you’ve been hanging out with me for a while, you know I love a good goal-setting session. 

We’ve spent some time talking about the importance of goal setting, the ‘how to’ of setting goals, unrealistic goals, and the optimal number of goals to set.

I heart goals. Goals give us direction and focus. 

I set yearly, quarterly, monthly, weekly, and daily goals. I have goals for my goals. It’s a freaking goal party over in my world.

Sometimes, though, there can be a be a not-so-helpful fringe feeling lurking in the shadows that holds us back from actually getting anywhere with our goals...it tells us that what we’re doing isn’t enough, that we’re so far behind, and that we “should” set a few more goals so we can “catch up”.

What starts as a good intention of creating a little structure suddenly turns into a  feeding frenzy of ”and another thing!”.

Instead of spending half an hour outlining our goals, we spend all week coming up with the “perfect” goal.

Then, you know, we have to create action items under each goal…suddenly, we’ve got lists for our lists and programs to outline those lists, and a 5-step system to track the list….a week has gone by and we haven’t gotten much of anything done, aside from downloading a fancy app to schedule our new plan.

Then, there’s another idea we saw on Pinterest that would be so great. So, we scrap the original goals list to make a new one, and the cycle starts all over again.

Ever been there? 

Sometimes, our planning and goal-setting is really just a way to delay taking action…a little procrastination in disguise.

It’s clever because it feels like we’re being super productive as we open up a new spreadsheet to outline our plan.

The problem is, unless you’re a professional spreadsheet-er, all those lists and tables aren’t actually getting anything done, but they are taking up a whole lot of time. Time you could spend on your goals instead of planning them.

Goals are meant to give us clarity and a roadmap for where we’re going. But a map doesn’t do us any good if we just look at it; we’ve got to get on the road and start moving.

And what about those brilliant new ideas that seem to pop up right as we’re about to sit down and start working? 

They're so shiny and alluring, I hear you. And the closer to any tough work you need to get through, the louder they get. 

The very nature of creatives, artists, and entrepreneurs is to be full of ideas and constantly dream up new possibilities, so it’s usually no problem to lean on a few “shiny objects” to fluff up that goals list and distract us from the task at hand.

But the quickest way to get nothing done is to try to do everything. And the fastest way to mediocrity is a bunch of half-baked projects that never get finished. 

Goals are a tool. They can help you create what you want, but only if you take action on them…otherwise, goals are just words that let us down.

So, this week, as we start a new month and the last quarter of the year, yes, I’d love to encourage you to set some new goals and intentions. Goals still rock, in my book.

But, I’d also love for you to give yourself a limit…both in the number of goals you’re setting and the amount of time you spend outlining them!

One goal you focus on with intensity and take action on consistently will take you further than 347 watered down, luke-warm goals you think about starting.

Besides, the sooner you get your goals off of the paper and into action, the sooner you’ll achieve them and be able to start on that next shiny object!

This Q4, let’s set goals and take action so we can close the year out with a bang.

Wishing you a happy, productive fall and your version of success,

Kim Argetsinger blog

P.S. Been thinking about coaching, but not quite ready to put a ring on it? I hear you, and I've got you covered! I'm opening up 4, 90-minute Coaching Intensives for the month of October! Click here to learn more and grab one of these spots! {Once they're snagged, as Wyclef says they'll be, "Gone 'til November"}

P.P.S. Goals are still cool! I've got some free goal-setting PDFs for you. Click below to access them!

Own Your Story with Rosalynne Love

Unlock Your Success: Success Stories

A fresh, real-life look behind the scenes with inspiring individuals who have created their version of success and the grit that got them there. 

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Rosalynne Love

"I want to tell people they can, and it is possible."

"In that moment of weakness, you find your strength."

"You are your own story."

"You speaking out is giving someone else permission to speak out and believe in themselves. You're doing someone else a disservice by holding back and being captive to fear."

Ever been told your dreams are "unrealistic" or that what you want to do isn't possible? Rosalynne Love is about to turn all of that on its head.

This week, I'm back with another Success Stories Interview, and I'm so excited to share this one with you! I'm chatting with the lovely Rosalynne Love, who is wise beyond her years.

Rosalynne owns an online retail shop called Rosalynne Love, where she sells hand-lettered apparel and mugs. Her company's purpose is to love on others through spreading joy and encouragement through fun, inspiring products. 

"I just want to make beautiful things, love like Jesus, go on adventures with my hubby, and drink lots of coffee."

I mean come on, don't you just love her already?

For anyone who's been sitting on the fence, thinking about taking the leap to pursue a passion or artistic talent, I think this you'll especially connect with what Rosalynne has to share.

In this interview, we're talking about balancing grit and going with the flow in business and in life...and celebrating those first steps and every other milestone along the way.

Rosalynne and I jam on:

  • {2:10} her version of success, the importance of taking that first step, and celebrating (a girl after my own heart).
  • {3:10 } going for it in business and life, the fear that comes along with the leap, and how this translates into growth.
  • {3:35} the stories we tell ourselves.
  • {5:20} some of the grit and grace that have gone on behind the scenes of Rosalynne's business. 
  • {6:05} comparison! 
  • {6:30} the importance of celebrating the small wins and having the grace to be kind to yourself in the less than shiny moments. 
  • {6:55} business boundaries and not defining yourself and worth through your business.
  • {7:50} perspective, positivity, and being aware of the mind and what you let affect you.
  • {10:20} what success means to Rosaylnne and the first year in her business.
  • {12:05} owning our story and the journey we're on.
  • {13:05} how we can get in our own way.
  • {15:05} the struggle of believing in yourself, comparison, and taking the leap.
  • {16:05} Rosaylnne's words of wisdom on speaking out and fear.

Rosaylnne's incredibly inspiring and full of beautiful nuggets of wisdom! I was nodding my head throughout our entire conversation!

CLICK BELOW TO LISTEN TO THE FULL INTERVIEW:

(You can also download the interview and listen to it any time.)

Once you’ve had a chance to listen, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. Let me know what's your biggest take away from this conversation - and why? 

I hope this conversation inspires you to own your story, believe your dreams are possible, and go for it (whatever your "it" may be)!

Rosalynne, thanks for taking the time to share a behind the scenes look into your business and all of your inspiration and wisdom! 

Wishing you your version of success!

Kim Argetsinger success + mindset business coach

P.S. I hoped on FB live to dive a little deeper into one of the topics Rosalynne and I talked about - the power of celebration. Click below to join me!


Here's where you can connect with Rosalynne and get to know her beautiful work and world:

Websites: rosalynnelove.com

Instagram: @rosalynnelove

Facebook: facebook.com/rosalynnelove

Pinterest: pinterest.com/rosalynnelove/

Twitter: @rosalynnelove


When Self-Care is Really Self-Sabotage
Kim Argetsinger blog
"Just imagine how much you'd get done if you stopped actively self-sabotaging your work." -Seth Godin

(Rather watch and listen? Join me in a Facebook Live below!)

Ever wander into a swanky store to "browse" and before you know it, you're handing over your credit card for something you didn't even know you wanted?

"I deserve it," you justify to yourself as you walk out of the store buzzing from the endorphin high your splurge just created.

Or what about that sugary dessert you "earned" after eating clean all week...or that day-long, snooze fest you called "recharging" but meant you missed a deadline (like that blog post you swore you'd write)?

Any of these ring a familiar bell?

If so, you're not alone. I've definitely pulled the self-care card as an excuse and so have many of my private coaching clients

Self-care is a tricky one because, well, it's so important. We need to prioritize self-care. Without adequate self-care we risk running on fumes, burning out, and creating mindless drivel.

When we're not taking care of ourselves, our outside world tends to mirror our inner chaos.

Self-care is so incredibly important because as the saying goes, "We can't pour from an empty cup."

But this blog isn't about the virtues of self-care.

At this point, it's hard not to hear about the benefits of self-care with every other post on social media boasting #selfcare.

This is about those times we think we're practicing self-care but are really self-sabotaging in disguise. 

When self-care goes wrong...

Like so many things, when done without clarity and intention, self-care can easily become self-sabotage tied up in a pretty bow.

We get ourselves into hot water when we choose "self-care" behaviors that are in direct opposition to our greater goals and purpose and then affix the label "self-care" to them to make ourselves feel better. 

We might be coming from a good place, but then comes the wash of guilt when we realize our self-care has actually taken us a step away from what we really want.

What am I talking about?

These are often actions that feel good in the moment, like hanging out with your friends instead of going on that long run you promised yourself. They're also actions that with sleight of hand could stand alone as "self-care"....i.e., on its own, seeing friends can fill your tank.

Since self-care is so good for us, these behaviors become permissible, and we believe they're beneficial instead of holding ourselves accountable.

The other quality these masquerading self-sabotagers have in common? They all cause us to take a step away from what we really want.

Blame it on fear of failure, fear of success, low self-esteem, lack of confidence, fear of being seen, or our very human tendency to seek pleasure and avoid pain, these "self-care" actions are more like self-setbacks.

Take my shopping example. There's nothing wrong with buying ourselves something we want as a treat, and this can, on its own, be a form of self-care. But when we have a bigger goal of saving money, staying on a budget, or erasing debt; an impulse purchase is really just taking a giant step directly away from what we want. 

It sounds so virtuous and makes us feel a hell of a lot better when we call it self-care, though. It can even trick us into doing more of the self-sabotaging behavior because it feels so good in the moment, and, hey, self-care is good for us. 

You can see how this might be a giant F-U to our overall happiness and success.

We're driven to seek pleasure and avoid pain. It's human nature to reach for what feels good when we're in the middle of growth or stretching ourselves toward a new goal (which can feel uncomfortable and painful). We're wired that way.

But, not everything that feels good in the moment is good for us. I know, it's such an unfortunate truth. 

So, what to do?

I hate to sound like a broken record, but like so many things, it all starts with awareness and upgrading our mindset

Check in with yourself the next time your self-care makes you feel less-than. Could you be secretly self-sabotaging yourself? If so, what's up? What might be behind this self-sabotage? 

Then, go easy on yourself. Beating up on ourselves never gets us far.

Remind yourself, this is a human response to something that might feel uncomfortable or painful...like quitting sugar, that 10k run, or finishing that daunting email.

Finally, don't throw the baby out with the bathwater. Choose a new form of self-care or self-love that supports your bigger goals, vision, and purpose. Give yourself a chance to succeed and practice some real self-care and self-love. 

Not doing what feels good in the moment or sitting down and doing that task we've been avoiding is sometimes the best form of self-care and self-love. Not all self-care feels amazing and pleasurable in the moment.

Wishing you some real self-care and your version of success!

Kim Argetsinger blog

P.S. Let me know in the comments below if you've ever caught yourself in self-care that's really self-sabotage.