Here’s a daily reminder that you, dear reader, are cared for, extremely valued and immensely cherished.Experiencing suicidal thoughts can stem from any and all kinds of harsh circumstances. Most of us can’t even begin to imagine the sort of emotional trauma that drives someone to wish to take their own life. You’re not wrong for feeling the way you do, and no one blames you for it.Think about everything you’ve ever worked for, everyone you’ve ever cared for, everyone who’s displayed concern for you, everything you’ve ever wished to achieve. Everyone who’s ever stood by you when times were tough, is testimony to the fact that you were worth their trust and time, ergo, you matter. Your life is precious, and will always be worth living. Through all of it, do keep in mind that you are not weak. You are immensely strong for having so persistently dealt with every curveball life has thrown at you. Circumstances may look incredibly bleak for you now, but you must remember that it is not your fault.According to a case study carried out by the World Health Organization, depression is the leading cause of disability worldwide, and is a major contributor to the overall global burden of disease.Depression, as opposed to ordinary unhappiness, is characterized by longer and deeper feelings of despondency and the presence of certain characteristic symptoms. This distinction is important, because in severe cases, depression can be life threatening, with suicide as a possible outcome.Whatever thoughts are running through your mind, however terrible you may feel at the moment – remember that you have not always felt this way – and that you won’t always feel this way.Reach Out for HelpWhen you’re suicidal, the most dangerous person you can be around is yourself. Therefore, by involving someone else, you drastically decrease the chances of you acting on your self-destructive thoughts. Talking to someone also helps you realise that you’re not alone, and of course, it always makes you feel better when you get things off your chest. Most importantly, take your time. Never should you experience any sort of rush or pressure to feel better.Turn to other ActivitiesThe key here is to get your mind off of doing the unthinkable. If you are at the brink of suicide, do everything within your power to divert your thoughts. You may train your brain to use a keyword, like ‘Clear’ everytime you wish to get rid of these unwanted thoughts and feelings. This simple trick is known as mindfulness. Walk, jog, bike, swim, take a nap, take a hot shower, watch a movie, listen to music, read a book, do household chores, clean, go shopping, go to the park, volunteer at an animal shelter for a few hours if you must. Anything that has the potential to help lift your spirits.Remembering the Positives Make a list of all the positive things about yourself and a list of all the positivities about your life, including the things that have so far prevented you from committing suicide (you may need to get help with this from close friends or family). Keep the lists on you, and read them to yourself each time you are assailed by suicidal thoughts. On a separate sheet of paper, write a safety plan for the times when you feel like acting on your suicidal thoughts. Your safety plan could involve delaying any suicidal attempt by at least 48 hours, and then talking to someone about your thoughts and feelings as soon as possible. Discuss your safety plan with a healthcare professional and commit yourself to it. Sometimes even a single good night’s sleep can significantly alter your outlook, and it is important not to underestimate the importance of sleep. If you are having trouble sleeping, speak to a physician.Seek professional helpMental health professionals who may be consulted include psychiatrists, clinical psychologists, and therapists. One may initially seek help from a general physician or religious counselor. Each type of professional has their own perspective and expertise, and practitioners of all kinds have experience dealing with depression. The important thing is to seek professional help when symptoms are severe and/or longstanding. In fact, it is wise to seek help even when symptoms are not severe to help prevent depression from getting worse.Some moderate and most severe depressions respond to antidepressant medications. These are prescribed by a physician, generally a psychiatrist, after a thorough evaluation. A positive effect is usually expressed within a few weeks.Never give up, no matter how rough the tides get. There’s a reason behind why nearly every successful personality, be it Winston Churchill or Bob Marley, keeps renumerating this very line. It’s because the sun really does shine brighter at the end of the storm, it’s no illusion. Suicide is a largely preventable public health problem. There are several NGOs across the country that are committed to the cause of mental health. They run counselling services and suicide helplines for anyone in danger of committing suicide:Sikkim – 221152, Police Control Room, GangtokiCall, Mumbai – +91 22 2556 3291, e-mail – [email protected] Foundation Helpline – 1 860 266 2345, e-mail – [email protected] Thanal – 0495 237 1100E-mail – [email protected] – Iqra HospitalMalamparambaCalicut 673009Kerala Prathyasa – +91-480 – 2820091Address – Vidya JothiCathedral JunctionIrinjalakuda 680 685 Pratheeksha – +91 484 2448830E-mail – [email protected] – Near Ambedkar ParkPeruvaram RoadNorth Paravur 683 513Kerala Saath – 079 2630 5544, 079 2630 0222Address – B12 Nilamber ComplexH.L. Commerce College RoadNavrangpuraAhmedabad 380 006 Roshni – 040 790 4646E-mail – [email protected] – 1-8-303/48/21 Kalavathy NivasSindhi ColonyS.P. RoadSecunderabad 500003 Lifeline Foundation – +91 33 24637401, +91 33 24637432Address – 17/1A Alipore RoadSarat Bose Road 700 027Kolkata Sumaitri – 011-23389090E-mail- [email protected] – SumaitriAradhana Hostel ComplexNo. 1 Bhagwan Das LaneBhagwan Das RoadNew Delhi Maithri – 91- 484 – 2540530E-mail – [email protected] – ICTA ShantigramChangampuzha Nagar (P.O.)KalamasseryKochi 682 033Connecting India – 9922001122, 18002094353Website – connectingngo.orgAddress – Connecting TrustDastur Girls SchoolMoledina RoadPune 411001 Nagpur Suicide Prevention Helpline – 8888817666 The Samaritans Mumbai – 022 6464 3267, 022 6565 3267, 022 6565 3247Address – B-3, TrisandhyaBehind Ambika SareesDadasaheb Phalke RoadDadar (E) 400014Mumbai Sneha – 91-44-2464 0050, 91-44-2464 0060E-mail – [email protected] – #11, Park View RoadR.A. PuramChennai 600028 Maitreyi – +91-413-339999Address – 255 Thyagumudali Street605001Pondicherry Aasra – 91-22-27546669E-mail – [email protected] – 104, Sunrise ArcadePlot No. 100Sector 16KoparkhairaneNavi Mumbai 400709
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