This Is Your Brain on Depression (2018, Microcosm Publishing) No rating

When we are at our healthiest, we have a larger experience of life. Like the top of the funnel, you can pour in these stressors and have room for them to exist without spillover. Then depressive symptoms kick in (sleep problems, decreased energy, etc.), and this is where the funnel starts to narrow, because we start letting go of the things that seem the most optional. You know. The self-care stuff, like getting enough good quality sleep, eating the foods that are healthiest for our bodies, moving those same-said bodies around a little bit, etc. The problem is, the optional things are the things that most nourish us. So, we funnel into a narrower and narrower way of living as we are depleted more and more. Eventually the only things left are the stressful things we should attend to, rather than the things that give us joy. Trying to manage depression leads us to do the exact things that reinforce the depression instead.

This Is Your Brain on Depression by  (11%)

The concept of depression funnel / exhaustion funnel put words on what has been my main problem since the first lockdown (it actually goes back quite a bit, but the pandemic exacerbated it): I had more time for myself and filled it with too many productive activities, with things I thought I should do, and not enough things that I just like to do, things that bring me joy.

Looking back at 2021, I'm happy I read so many books-that-weren't-comics (last time it happened, I was a child... probably?), but maybe I should slow down a bit on Very Serious Non-Fiction Books About Important Topics™ and make more space for silly stuff and fiction.