As a strong skeptic of “depression,” I have recently been challenged on my beliefs. Instead of calling it depression, I’m going to say that I’ve recently felt very “down.”

This evening my wife and I were driving home and at a time no later than 7:00 pm, I was ready to lay down and go to sleep. This is incredibly uncharacteristic for me, a person who routinely sleeps 6 hours a night.

My wife gave me that, “you must be kidding” look only women can contort their face into, and I decided to do something productive instead.

Recently we started some landscaping projects around the house, and a truck load of mulch was dropped late last week to finish off our home projects. That pile was sitting in the driveway staring back at me, challenging me to just lay down and worry about it, tomorrow. You know, the tomorrow that never comes…

The “Down” Disappears Shovel by Shovel

Regardless, the shovel was retrieved, and the pile started to disappear. As the poop brown pile slowly diminished I noted that my frustrations, angst, and general feeling of “blah” shrank with it. By the time the pile was dispersed throughout the yard I felt better than when I started.

Fight Back With Your Weapon of Choice

Give this a shot yourself the next time you feel the “blah” creeping in.

Pick a simple project that you can start immediately. Do not muddle things up with a lot of planning or thinking.

Start small. Start VERY small. My mulch pile was simple and easy to start moving. One shovel full at a time and in less than an hour I had most of the flower beds and trees looking spiffy and new.

Do not attempt to tackle something large. Seriously, I mean small… If you want to clean, then start with the linen closet, not your 200 square foot walk in. The whole idea is to accomplish something quickly to boost yourself to chase the blah away.

K.I.S.S. Last time, Keep It Simple, Silly! You are absolutely right that organizing the two car garage which cannot fit a bicycle into it would feel great, but that is not in our scope.

Choose a project which takes less than One Hour.

That’s all. Obviously, if someone is suffering from clinical depression, thoughts of suicide, or more serious mental instabilities, shoveling mulch in the front yard is not going to cure them.

Let us know in the comments what your “blah shoveling” project is!