Are The Challenges Of Life Getting You Down?
Do you find yourself wearing a smile while carrying an undercurrent of discontent and sadness? Are you feeling sluggish and have difficulty concentrating at work? Are you no longer enjoying the company of friends or family? Does the COVID-19 pandemic have you feeling lonely, irritable, and apathetic?
Perhaps you feel persistently sad and lack interest in the things that you once enjoyed. Maybe your eating habits have changed and you lose your appetite for weeks at a time or binge because of emotional distress. Or you may have resorted to using drugs or alcohol as a way to cope.
Depression can show its face as a lack of motivation. You wake up and think, “Is this as good as it gets? There has to be more to life! I can’t do this anymore.” Maybe you are a goal-driven professional, but just can’t get all of your work tasks done between 9 and 5. Or you work long hours from home, isolated due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and you long for more than the fleeting social interactions from Zoom calls. You feel drained and fatigued, and as a result, withdraw away from loved ones—friends, a partner, your children.
This lack of activity and motivation hurts your soul. These symptoms of depression can only be overcome with professional support. Your favorite self-help author or motivational guru, unfortunately, can’t fix this problem. If you’ve been diagnosed with clinical depression or believe you may be exhibiting the symptoms of depression, then treatment with a skilled therapist can help you have a more joyful and productive life and feel more connected to yourself and your loved ones.
Coping with depression can be isolating, yet you’re not alone.I’d like to help guide you through what could be just a phase in your rich and layered life.
Nobody Is Immune To Bouts of Depression
Over the years, depression has slowly come out of the shadows as more people have acknowledged its effects. In fact, each year, about 3.3 million adults are affected by Persistent Depressive Disorder in the United States.
Clinical depression can be caused by trauma, genetics, medication, grief, major life events, illness, and substance abuse. And no one demographic is immune to experiencing depression. Both women and men can be affected, though women are diagnosed at higher rates. Even a child can be depressed. We can experience depression, no matter our age, race, socioeconomic standing, sexual orientation, or education.
Overcoming depression alone is challenging. We lack the support and de-stigmatization of the disorder to make real strides in recovery. And so, we may not seek therapy because of the shame we feel for having a problem. Maybe we don’t have the right tools or techniques for adequate help. Or perhaps we compare ourselves to others through social media and other societal expectations.
Fortunately, therapy can help you to face your depression and overcome its challenges. With the help of a trained professional, you will be able to access tools to lift your depression and let you feel whole again.
Depression Treatment Can Put You Back In The Driver’s Seat
Clinical depression is a mood disorder that affects the way you think, feel and behave. You may feel you have the inability to cope with life’s problems, depression is affecting your relationships, you are experiencing physical pain, a weakened immune system, sexual dysfunction, and even self-injury, including thoughts of suicide. (If you are actively having suicidal thoughts, please seek immediate help by calling 911 and the suicide helpline at 800-273-8255.)
It’s easy to mistake clinical depression for a bad spell of sadness. But it can’t be cured with seven habits of positive thinking. Instead, depression treatment may require medication, psychotherapy, or some combination of both.
As a depression therapist, I have seen first-hand the benefits of fostering a warm and empathetic environment that provides a platform for people to discuss their depression, its causes, and their beliefs, emotions, and feelings. Psychotherapy is an effective treatment tool for mild to moderate depression that benefits most people.
In our sessions, we will identify the underlying issues for your depression, its symptoms, and how it affects your life. You will also gain several skills from these sessions, such as learning to create a strategic action plan to help alleviate your symptoms and look more in-depth to identify the origin of your depression (trauma, grief, relationships, for example). And you will also learn to ask the right people—whether family or friends—and organizations from your community for additional support.
To treat your depression, we can utilize a variety of methods such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), EMDR Therapy, expressive writing, walk and talk therapy, meditation, and building a daily practice of self-care. CBT observes cognitive beliefs, how a person views themselves, and their life choices. Walk and talk therapy happens outside of the office, particularly walking in nature to help address depression with talking, movement and fresh air. And meditation therapy uses breathing exercises to tap into experiences so that you can observe them and then release the pain related to your memories. EMDR—a technique based on the theoretical research that trauma overwhelms the brain and is never fully processed; as a result causing symptoms of anxiety, depression, PTSD, grief, and somatic distress. EMDR bilateral stimulation helps the brain reprocess distressing experiences, which then reduces symptoms of depression.
Dealing with depression is isolating and can leave you feeling like you have no one to turn to. But overcoming depression is possible. According to the American Psychiatric Association, 80 to 90 percent of people respond well to depression treatment.
With the right treatment, there is hope that your depression can begin to lift like fog. It starts with you asking for help and then working with a depression therapist to find the tools within you to heal your spirit, body, and mind.
But you may still have questions about depression therapy…
This is out of my budget.
I understand. Especially now in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, people are tight with cash. Budgets are smaller, and all of us are making sure that every dollar goes to good use, which is why therapy is essential. It is an investment in your future self—a you that functions at full capacity. Therapy is a practice of self-care and self-love, and it will pay off in dividends.
I’m worried that therapy will fall short of my expectations.
Therapy takes commitment inside and outside of the session. Just like any relationship, it requires that not only the therapist brings their full self to the table, but that you do as well. Yet, imagine the pay-off when you begin each session with a commitment to building a better life. You’ll reap the rewards of applying the tools you’ve developed through the sessions and making the necessary changes for healing to occur. Putting your best foot forward when coping with depression will help you grow and learn to overcome it.
I just don’t have the time.
There is nothing more understandable than being too busy for one’s self. You work, maybe more than 40 hours per week. You may have kids and a partner or spouse you need to make extra time for. If only you could exist in two places at once. Actually, with online therapy, you can face depression from your office, at home, in a car—anywhere. Depression isn’t location-specific, so why should your therapy sessions be?
Are You Ready To Unearth The Real You, Without The Added Mental Weight?
If you want to look in the mirror and recognize the person looking back at you, if you want to exist within yourself and not feel like one non-stop out-of-body experience, and if you want to smile with eyes that also speak of joy, then working with a depression therapist is the first step. I invite you to contact me for a free, 15-minute phone consultation at 415-912-8055. Or you can email me (through the website contact form) to set up an appointment.