Many times people will use phrases like “Stop it, You are lazy, or what’s wrong with you?” because they do not understand depression. Sometimes it is because they see these symptoms in themselves, other times it is because they just do not understand them. When you have someone, be it a Co-worker, a friend or a family member, even a stranger who exhibits these symptoms follow the advice of Stephen Covey, who wrote “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” – “5 – Seek first to undertand, then to be understood.” Simply put, listen. Find out where someone is coming from, what they are dealing with, before you judge them. The last year in the Navy I have been dealing with an abundance of senior leadership and officers who too often judge me for what they see, and have never taken a moment to understand what I am going through or what I am dealing with. I’ve dealt with symptoms of depression for nearly two years now. It’s a hard row to hoe, but it can be done with support.

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