Ageing, depression and your future happiness 90



View Profile

Old age is often thought of as that time of your life where you can rest and do more of the things you left unfinished when you were younger. Unfortunately time also plays its part and age brings with it the realisation that our health is holding us back. Couple this with our disappointment of being unable to do what we want and the stage is set for bouts of depression.

The question is how do we avoid depression? And if we are already suffering from it, how do we cope with it?

This is an age old question in itself I think, but once we reach the time where it’s difficult to get back into the work force, this is where life becomes harder. We feel as though our value has reduced and we begin to feel less useful. As these feelings continue we start to believe it ourselves. This is dangerous territory. It’s born out of comparing ourselves to others. This only serves to deny our own gifts and talents.

You see when we compare ourselves to others it is not a real comparison. Your values and ideals are very different to mine for arguments sake. What you hold dear and what rates highly in your opinion could very well have no impact on me. The things which measure your success will always be different to someone else’s. So we need to understand that the negative feelings which can bring us down could be based on false evidence.

Let me illustrate this:

Two men of similar age, job and income appear to have different levels of success. One has the big house, flash sporty car, in fact lots of up market material possessions… but his marriage is struggling, his kids are drug affected, extended family only want to borrow money all the time and otherwise don’t bother with him. He basically lives a life of isolation with his toys.

The other man has a neat medium sized home, family car, modest possessions, good marriage and loving kids. His extended family just want to gather for fun times and enjoy each other’s company. On the surface his life is inclusive and filled with laughter and family.

However, the second man suffered long periods of depression because he saw the first man’s wealth and felt he was letting his own family down. It’s not until his mentor questions him on where he has succeeded in his life that he realises the value he placed on family. He discovered how he would never trade this virtue for the virtues of the first man.

Basically the second man had made sure his family were provided for with care and love. The cost to him was his perceived lower level of wealth. In hindsight it was a price he was more than willing to pay.

So where was his depression based? Good question.

He had made a judgement based on false evidence; a comparison that didn’t compare. If only we could be comfortable in our own skin and accepting of our own gifts and abilities, we would be far happier… and less depressed.

So here’s a few tips for dealing with depression:

  1. Develop and maintain supportive relationships
  2. If you find yourself thinking negatively, challenge yourself to think more positively
  3. Understand your limitations and don’t over extend yourself
  4. Be as social as you can. Actively seek out group activities and assist others in the group
  5. Take care of yourself by getting regular exercise and eating good healthy food
  6. Be mindful of your state of mind and know when to get help

It is often said, “An idle mind is the devil’s playground”. This is particularly true when dealing with depression. There are definitely dark days but there is a light at the end of the tunnel… and it’s not a freight train.


Do you struggle with depression as you get older? What do you do to keep your mind off your worries? What makes you most happy? Tell us below.


Pat Mesiti

Pat Mesiti is a mindset expert, internationally celebrated speaker and author of 8 books including his latest Pathway to Prosperity. His expertise is to shift mindsets and to build bigger people to produce results

  1. Pat, in your tips for depression, you don’t mention NOT turning away from your family to develop these things. I guess it could be considered as your point number one, but what happens when the family comes last – if at all?

  2. They tell me that depression is something you get and cannot prevent , I feel sorry for anyone who has it and count my blessings that this is something I don’t suffer with. If I am having a low day I either work or read my way out of it or get in the car and look at the beautiful world we live in it helps me.

  3. I think people have to distinguish between melancholy and clinical depression! One is just sadnesses the other one is an imbalance of chemicals in the brain!

    6 REPLY
    • I so agree with this! We all have ‘down’ days that are quickly followed by normal days and this can’t be classified in the true sense of depression. Those suffering clinical depression should seek help first then follow the writers suggestions second.

    • Jill, my sister suffered from depression for most of her adult life, she had horrific things done to her and in the end after 40 years of suffering she very quietly killed herself. Get help darling, there are people who care, take each day at a time and try to find one thing in your day to make you smile.. now that won’t cure you but it might uplift your spirits for a short period

    • Thank you Libby. I did but I got VERY low. It has been 7 yrs now and never have got that low again. You just don’t know the first time and things spiral, almost catatonic. So sorry your sister had such a long haul and such a sad end for you all. I was lucky in the end and got the love and support from my hubby and daughter and hospital staff.

    • So true. I enjoy every day as much as I can. It is an indescribable misery. I have had a brain tumour and the depression was far worse.

  4. Some recognize the symptoms. Seek help themselves. Some have no idea. Live in a depressed state & can’t see how to get out of it. I try to find as much funny stuff around & laugh a lot. What I got out of talking about it anyway.

  5. We hav had & still do hav family health problems Lovan does help some (66+) Youngest daughters husband had stroke (40+) then she, aggressive breast cancer chemo, emergency gall bladder & stones removal all inflamed from Chemo, back 2Chemo treatment then op 2remove shrunk breast cancer & removed all underarm lymph nodes, back on chemo until end of year then radiation next year Her hubbys Mum had stroke from all the worry…..then eldest daughters baby….check out AlliyahsJourney facebook Pge Thanku…& me that’s another storey!!

  6. Thanks for that, well written and hopefully a lot of people will read the article, and get the picture, of what life is about

  7. There are not always causes like the illustration of comparisons to others or letting the devil find work for idle minds! Very simplistic! Certainly people like Robin Williams you would not have categorise like that. Sometimes it’s just always there, and people find ways to walk above it and live separate lives to the depression. Unfortunately the mask, in the case of Robin slipped and things became overwhelming,so yes it can become a freight train. I get that you are trying to put a positive spin on this,but anyone in the depths of darkness cannot respond to this, much as they would love to. This is a very deep topic and requires a huge depth of understanding.

  8. For some people they can see no way out. You can talk about it as much as you like , take all sorts of medication but in the back of their mind is they know the problem will never go away.

    1 REPLY
  9. Nobody would wish depression on anyone. We all feel off some days, but that Black Dog on your back you hear about is very severe and lasts forever, it can be so bad they want it to end. Have a friend who suffers as do their whole family.

    3 REPLY

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *