Freeman Cebu Business

Easing the Pain

BUSINESS AFTER BUSINESS - Romelinda Garces - The Freeman

We lost a nephew recently, and in the midst of our pain, I could not fathom the depth of his.

Depression, the number one killer of our spirit!

In an article from the Mayo Clinic, depression was defined as “a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. Also called major depressive disorder or clinical depression, it affects how you feel, think and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems. You may have trouble doing normal day-to-day activities, and sometimes you may feel as if life isn’t worth living”

The World Health Organization reports that as of March 2023, “An estimated 3.8% of the population experience depression, including 5% of adults (4% among men and 6% among women), and 5.7% of adults older than 60 years. Approximately 280 million people in the world have depression (1). Depression is about 50% more common among women than among men. Worldwide, more than 10% of pregnant women and women who have just given birth experience depression (2). More than 700 000 people die due to suicide every year. Suicide is the fourth leading cause of death in 15–29-year-olds.”

Is this caused by the pandemic?  Many claim that the cloistering of people during the pandemic and reduced interaction has made people also cover themselves inside and bottle their feelings, no longer free to share them in fear of contamination. When the community was cruel and they would shun the infected like they were a leprose, the effect on those who thought they were carriers or were actually infected, was devastating.

As the variants reduced in wrath, the effects of lockdowns and psychological enclosures remained. The only crutch was the presence of the internet. Which can also account for the young, getting utterly displeased when their connection is nil. But as the documents of the WHO and other clinics declare, depression goes far more into the core of a person’s being.

Suppressed hurt is more agonizing and takes long to heal all the more if the pain is piled one on top of another in a heart that is lost in itself. What is my point? Perhaps we must take note of our environment, our workmates, family and friends who may not even have the voice to speak. The quiet and seemingly docile. Or the combative, whose psychosis is camouflaged my belligerence. Psychologists state many causes of depression, and albeit our being a country with a culture of resilience, depression is often neglected and only when we lose someone do we realize its force.

Loneliness, family issues, drug dependence, post-partum blues, illness, bereavement, guilt and self-recriminations fall in line with other causes of depression. And we have to see the heart to know. And that is hard to do.

It would be great for a company to have an in-house psychologist or a counselor in the house to deal with the seemingly benign but growing concerns of its employees. It would even be better it there would be support groups and activities to help alleviate an emotional burden and possibly create more connections to hopefully ease and help an ailing colleague cope.

It is harder when the problem is at home. When our families just read their phones and have more time with their computers rather than speak with each other. We have to reduce the “cellphone nursemaids” or using our cellphones to yaya our children and have more conversations with them. When we are too self-centered we forget we are in a universe where we need to interact. We have to beef up on family time and have couples (mom and dad) time as well.

I recall a former boss who had seven children.  He would painstakingly allocate one day per child for an “us” time and have intentional dates with his wife on either planned or spontaneous days so as to keep the communication and the affection as a top agenda.

Maybe when we put off out gadgets even for just two hours a day to speak with each other, it may create a lot improvement and reduce depression.

I hope as we do this, we can ease each other’s pain.

Kuya, you are sorely missed.

vuukle comment


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