Suicide and depression is a real thing. We need to talk about it more. This is part two in the podcast I did with Jeffrey Platts. This part really speaks to anyone who is in crisis right now. So, please, if you can share this, if you know someone or if you’re in crisis yourself go through this podcast and share it with others who may really need it right now.
Steve: I saw your video earlier this year telling men to reach out if they’re in crisis and so I want to speak to or ask you to speak to the men who are perhaps going through a crisis or maybe they’ll go into a crisis at some point in the future. What should these guys be doing?
Jeffrey: Yeah sure. I definitely went through, several years ago went through my own dark night of the soul and several years of just struggling with depression and low self-esteem and I was really just sabotaging a lot of things in my life and not being able to get out of it.
I think it’s even worse for the guys that are smart. If you have a really sharp mind, your mind can really convince you that a lot of things that you’re saying (the bullshit negative thoughts) are true.
So it’s really hard. I had a logical reason why every negative thing that I was thinking about my life and about myself was true.
The worst thing that I did for myself isolated, and not reach out to my friends and not accept support when it was offered to me and you need to kind of at the very least, not isolate yourself.
The first thing to do is to connect with people. If there are guys out there that don’t have any really close friends for whatever reason. And that’s fine, cool, but find, find a support group, find something. Find a therapist. Even go to the local university. They definitely have either pro bono or low cost options for therapy. Somebody that you can just talk to that will have your back.
Coaching is also a great option as well and obviously reach out to your friends and family. Find at least one or two safe people that you trust. That aren’t going to judge you, that aren’t going to just try to fix any kind of like, “oh, your great” and bypass and just try to sugar coat things when you’re really hurting, you’re really struggling, it’s tough. I’ve been there.
I’ve had like really dark nights and yeah, of course, it goes without saying that if you are thinking about taking your life or having those kinds of thoughts to call the hotline, to reach out or call 911 (or relevant number in your country), if you get to that level.
When you really can’t see that shit you’re swimming in. That’s the dangerous part. You have to get someone to help you out. There is ALWAYS A WAY OUT. Call the hotline or call 911 or call your closest friend or something. So I just want to say that out there.
But the first thing is the isolation and start looking at like at a basic level stuff. It goes back to being like a baby almost. Basic stuff. Nutrition, water, exercise, shelter. Are you eating crap? Are you drinking Coke and Big Macs every day? Well, the vibration of that food is probably not helping you at all.
So if you can shift, start shifting your diet, start going for a walk. When in doubt, walk. That’s a solution It’s free. It’s easy. If you have cold weather and you have a coat, that works. Walk, if you’re feeling the struggle, if you want to go and eat junk food if you want to go surf porn, if you want to drink something, cool. At least go for a 20-minute walk and then come back and clear your mind.
Hopefully, the urge will pass by then but the very least when in doubt walk.
So another, another teacher Elliott Hulse says just get up for an hour earlier every morning.
Get up an hour and go for a walk.
Get an audiobook, get some podcasts, get some positive, surround yourself with positive energy.
Listen to some podcast get some audiobooks music that’s positive.
Look at the environment that you’re in, in terms of like the thing you listen to, the things you put into your mind, the things you’re reading.
I think it is also really important to look at this darkness, as though it is your wake-up call.
Use it as fuel for your transformation. Because that’s really what it is.
And unless and until you view that way you’re going to be stuck in it. Because if you view it as “oh, this is all happening to me and I am never going to get out of it” then you’re going to be the victim and you’re going to be stuck in it.
Jeffrey: So the answer to your question is definitely reach out for support, look at your self-care. How is your self-care, you know as far as the level of exercise and nutrition? You don’t have to do the whole 180 and do a whole workout plan and join Crossfit and stuff, that’s helpful (if you can do it, go for it). But at the very basic level, just get some fresh air. Be in nature. Nature is a huge one.
Find a park, find the beach, find a mountain. Do something that gets you in nature because nature has a really interesting way of soothing our nervous system and getting us back to a better feeling state. Nature, exercise, reach out, get help, get support even if it’s just one person that you feel safe and that you trust so. that’s the main thing right now.
Steve: Yeah. I’d just like to add… when I was in a spot where I was thinking about blowing my brains out for every day for about 8 months and I honestly thought it was never going to end and yet I was doing all the things you said.
I was going out for walks, I was eating very well, still nothing was really working so I just started reaching out to anyone I knew for help. One of my great friends in Austin, Texas he started doing EFT (emotional freedom technique) with me. That really helped a lot. It may or may not have been because of the EFT but because his presence was so loving, he just wanted me to get through to the other side.
Steve: And another thing that’s strange that helped was these Australian bush flower essences. I found this woman online to put a personal remedy together for me. I don’t know if it was a placebo effect or actually there was something happening but taking in these essences on my tongue every day was something you know maybe it was just the placebo effect of like I’m putting some drops of nature in my body and it's transforming me. But that seemed to help. And what else… I think just reaching out and asking for any help, asking, literally asking the universe. If it’s got that bad just say, “I need help, I need help to send it to me!”
Jeffrey: Yeah, because if you’re listening to this and you’re still breathing on this planet you’re here and you survived. Keep working and stay hungry to fucking get out of it! Just do whatever it takes to get out of it and feel a little bit better, then a little bit better, then a little bit better.
Take a stand for yourself. Say to yourself, “I know I’m suffering, I know I’m struggling however I got into this, that’s fine but right now I’m ready to get out.” And get out in a way that doesn’t involve obviously, blowing your brains out or you know taking an extreme measure like that or a permanent one like that.
There’s ALWAYS something out there that’s the next step that you can take that will help you because you can’t say “I’ve tried everything.” Did you?
Did you try calling your mum, your dad? Did you try exercising for every day for a week? Did you call your best friend? Did you watch some comedy? Did you you go to therapy? Did you change your diet? Did you take a massage? Did you book a trip to the beach or into nature?
There’s obviously something that you haven’t tried because you’re still having the problem. Nature has a solution for everything.
So let’s try something different and then keep trying. And I think it’s having that faith and that kind of view that the universe is supporting you and there’s going to be a way out of this. It WILL come but you have to stay hungry and keep trying different things until something starts to click.
Steve: Believe me, if I could find a way out of my mess you can definitely find a way out of yours, trust me.
Jeffrey: Same for me and mine, yeah. Totally.
Steve: I felt I could not speak about what was happening to me. And that’s normally what leads people to suicidal thoughts as they build up so much shame for themselves for something that’s happened and so much of victim mentality that it feels like the weight of the world is on your shoulders. You have to tell someone.
Jeff: Yeah, reach out, totally. Reach out, find, you know at the very least call the fucking hotline!
Also, ask yourself the question, “how am I being supported right now?”
Shift yourself from “no one loves me, no one gives a shit about me,” it’s cool, note how you went to get a coffee at Starbucks and the barista looked at you and said hello and asked you how you were doing, take that, roll with that. Because a lot of times I think when you’re in these dark places you will ignore all evidence that is positive.
Anything that doesn’t support your view that you are a loser and that your piece of shit gets ignored.
That’s the trap and that the danger that you’re going to ignore all the information that counteracts to the story going through your head. Be aware that it is dangerous! And so that’s why you need outside people you know people that you feel safe with people that you trust whether they’re therapists or coaches or friends or family or a counsellor or whatever you need to point that out and to guide you gently out of that. So yeah.
Steve: Yes. Try as best as you possibly can to find gratitude for anything. Whether it be some water, some food, the fact that you’re even listening (or reading) this podcast and you’re not living in 1584 in Tudor England with piss being thrown on you. That’s a pretty good benefit.
Jeffrey: Haha. Yeah, it’s one with a very specific example, I like that. Yeah, how are you being supported right now? How is the universe supporting you? At the very least gravity is supporting you. You’re not floating into space.
If you are in a dark place if you’re listening to this, take it as the sign that you’re looking for to keep going and to keep, to keep reaching out and to get that hunger to look for something.
Steve: And find someone that can make you laugh, there’s def, if you’re an adult there’s definitely something that’s made you laugh in your life before.
Steve: And for me, as an English guy called Karl Pilkington who’s hilarious. Americans may or may not know him. But you’ve all got a comedian or someone or someone funny in your life that humor really does help and try to find that laughter again.
Jeffrey: Yeah, I think definitely humor helps a lot. Even now I would the stuff that’s going on in the world there’s maybe a time for like take a fast from the news you know. Because there’s, there’s a bias that the news will bring deliberately depressing shit and fear-inducing stuff. So maybe it is looking at different media.
Look at the diet of the information you’re taking not just the food, right. What’s the kind of information that makes your nervous system feel good? That’s where it goes back to again self-awareness, right? Are you in tune with your emotions and your energy and what your body is telling you in response to certain things?
Steve: Love yourself, be wary of everything, feed your body, mind and soul. We don’t have to watch the 4 channels or whatever your parents, or grandparents watched. We have so much choice you can now go on YouTube and watch Gary Vaynerchuk or whoever you want to listen to. What a huge advantage that is. Imagine what your great grandfather or grandmother would be doing in your situation right now.
Jeffrey: Totally. A lot of it is just circulating new energy. Get new energy flowing in you and from you and out of you, because while I think of depression when I was in my depressed thing I would just lay in bed and do nothing and not move. I would call in sick to work, I would do all these things. So I think that’s a huge thing so yeah get some energy flowing that different from what you’ve been doing. You know nothing changes until something changes it’s like an obvious and simple truth but that’s the reality it’s like unless you change something to change how you’re thinking, feeling, moving, feeling what you’re watching all that stuff. Change something, change one thing and keep doing that. Keep circulating new energy in a different way.
Steve: When I was in my pit of hell I would just lie on my sofa and just not be able to move but then I would just get into emotional expression. I would get pillows and start hitting them, or start screaming.
Let some emotion out. Stop building it up inside which as young boys we were never really told to express our emotions very much.
Watch this video (and follow Elliot Hulse).
Steve: So get up and express them in a room on your own preferably you’re in a park where there’s no one around.
Jeffrey: Yeah and then when you are ready you can find a safe person therapist or coach or a friend that can hold space for you, that’s the thing. You want them to be able to hold space for you to feel what you’re feeling.
One of my mentors he says you know the true definition of love is the combination of support and challenge.
So I think the art finding the balance of the right time to just offer support and the other time to, to offer a little bit of a challenge. Be like “hey man, hey bro, let’s do something different here.”
Steve: You need someone to say the words…
“I know you can get through this. I know that your higher self has a better path for you than where you are right now. A path you can’t even see right now but it’s there. You’re going through this to rebirth yourself. This is your rebirth and it sometimes is painful but the butterfly on the other side of it is going to be a beautiful thing and the lessons you’ve learned from this process will be worth it!”
Jeffrey: Totally. That’s the shift of, “how is this happening for me?” Opposed to, “why is this happening to me?”
Write down evidence. Write down things that you see that are true. Because when you put pen to paper a lot of times it helps you see it and feel a little more more more deeply than just thinking it so, yeah.
Steve: Well I hope this helps some people whether you’re a man or a woman I think it would’ve helped either way. Jeffrey where can people find out more about you
Jeffrey: Yeah the best place is on Facebook. I do most of my sharing and writings and videos and stuff on there as well as my website Jeffreyplatts.com. I’m also on Instagram. Shoot me a message if you heard me on this podcast you know reach out and say hello. I’d love to hear from you.
Steve: Sweet and a reminder again he’s in San Diego I’m guessing you work with people across the globe and locally.
Jeffrey: Yeah I work, yeah. Lot of the stuff I do is virtual so I work with clients from anywhere so I can work with you know I’ve had clients from the UK, from Canada from all over. So it’s not just clients in LA and workshops and stuff. Though I do do, I’m starting to do a lot of. I’m starting to do some workshops here in San Diego as well, so there’s that. So whether you’re local here in California or anywhere in the world just reach out. Yeah, the internet is great for that, that’s the beauty of technology right.
Steve: Yeah we’re lucky to be alive in this era so thank you Jeffrey for coming on
Jeffrey: Yeah, thank you, bro, I appreciate you having me on. It’s a great conversation and hopefully it helps at least one person and I know it all been worth it so yeah thank you for having me man, I appreciate, appreciate the connection and the opportunity.
If you are in a dire situation right now, reach out to someone! Please! There is absolutely no shame in asking for help. Do it. NOW!