Coping with Depression & Anxiety in Recovery


Will Mckinney Talks Recovery and Depression

Will Mckinney is Lakewood Recovery's house manager. Will has dealt with anxiety and major depression issues before and after recovering.

Here Will explains how he responds to stress and anxiety and what depressions and anxiety are like after he recovered from alcohol and drugs.

He focuses on his personal development strategies and life skills that complements his 12-step program.

Dealing with depression in recovery

Multiple doctors and psychiatrists diagnosed me with clinical depression along with a couple of other mental health issues dating back into junior high.

I’ve taken multiple antidepressants and mood stabilizers over the years and they always altered my personality. I also struggle with alcoholism and addiction problems.

I’ve been sober now for more than three years. I came into treatment and requested to not be on medication and if we could revisit the possibility of taking medication if needed.

Even though I suffered from substance abuse, I haven’t taken any antidepressants or mood stabilizers since. I’ve learned ways of coping with my depression by eating healthy, exercise (a minimum of three times a week), structuring my day, meditation, breathing exercises, and achieving daily goals.

I’m not cured of depression and have slumps, but I actively use tools I’ve acquired over the last three years to combat the times that are difficult.

I never seem to get as dark now or fall onto as hard of times with my depression the more I’ve practiced these simple techniques.

Before I felt utterly hopeless, alone, scared, and like the walls were coming down one me. Today I know that it’s going to pass and to keep pushing until I see the light again.

Dealing with a stressful situation & anxiety in recovery

Sometimes life comes at you like a title wave. From work, relationships, family life, friendships, and me time. Some days there feels like there is no balance and something demands more of your attention.

Stress management is key because stress affects almost everything.

I’ve learned the best way to cope and reduce stress. Prioritizing my day and working down a list of daily goals helps me. Also learning to accept things that are out of my control and not stressing about those things.

I get so worked up and overwhelmed by things that I can’t change. Then I realize all the worrying hasn’t bettered my situation it’s only caused me to squander my time uselessly feeling my head with negativity.

The reality is that our whole lives are pretty much out of our hands and that there will always be a curve ball. It’s about how we respond to the adversity that life hands us. Try and keep a positive mind set and achieve your daily goals.

Learning through failure in recovery

So many times in life I’ve started something and when I’m not immediately good at it or even the best in a group. I quit. I rob myself of the opportunity for growth.

If I would just see it through to the end even if I failed, I would learn a life lesson. I would grow from the experience.

The greatest teacher I’ve come to find is experience. The more you obtain the more you grow. Life plays out how life plays out. I may not be suited for things others may be suited for, but I learn, I grow and I adapt.

Character is built through how you fail, how you face adversity and how you face opposition. Will you face it head on or will you be a quitter? Quitting is learned and can become a habit that destroys character.

Strive for greatness in everything you do fail at. Let life and experience be your teacher. It opens you up to being able to appreciate the successes and prepares you for success.

It creates compassion for those you see behind you striving for goals. It creates humility. Surround yourself with like-minded individuals.

Place yourself in position to bring on life’s next chapter. Success is not a race be patient and learn from life.

Being genuine

The world will almost always reject the façade you present. The world will only accept you once you’re able to accept yourself.

Be willing to be brave and be authentic, transparent, and open. State your beliefs, and how you see the world.

Be a positive influence in a world that’s filled with negative media. Be kind and compassionate, but assertive and unwilling to compromise your beliefs.

Stand firm in what it is you see as just. Live for something bigger then yourself. Have unselfish motives.

Strive everyday to be the best you. Know you can make a difference an impact on this world!

Taking the next step in recovery

Sometimes we’re stuck weighted down by things we’re unwilling to let go of in our past. Sometimes we’re so ingrained to operate out of learned belief systems that we’re not even conscious we’re doing it and are unaware of the hinderance it has on progress.

Unable to take the next step and let go because we’re so consumed with fear of what that entails. It leaves us with these character traits that unfortunately more times than not do not benefit us but they hinder our ability to grow to progress. We’ve got to be willing to examine ourselves and honestly admit our faults and wrongs.

Be willing to let go of the past. Be willing to work on ourselves and do something different then the nature of ourselves we’ve created with these belief systems we operate by.

This is an opportunity to recreate ourselves with a mindset towards progress and success.


If you’re looking for a private sober-living home in a great location in Dallas, Texas that supports balance, good recovery, and self-confidence, contact us. Lakewood Recovery is a private recovery residence. We provide upscale amenities, single bedrooms, and a professional staff to support your journey to long-term sobriety from drug abuse and alcohol abuse.


DALLAS, TX, 75214

(214) 462-5619