Depression is a real illness. Sometimes, people tend to feel ashamed of their symptoms and blame themselves for not being able to "snap out of it", but it is not a sign of a person's weakness or character flaw. Depression can be caused by various things, such as a chemical imbalance, persistent dysfunctional thinking patterns, trauma or other life events. I believe that each individual's depression is unique; therefore, I tailor my approach to each client's specific needs. One of the hardest aspects in depression is that the illness takes away the very thing you need to get better: energy and motivation. This is what drives many people toward seeking help for depression.
Signs of depression:
Some of the typical symptoms of depression are: Persistent sad, or "empty" mood. Feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, and guilt. Loss of interest or pleasure in activities you previously enjoyed. Decreased energy. Difficulty concentrating or remembering. Difficulty sleeping. Appetite and/or weight changes. Restlessness, irritability. Thoughts of death or suicide.
How to deal with depression:
Depression is treatable. Sometimes it takes both psychotherapy and medicine, but not always. First, I try to come to a very good understanding of my client's history, symptoms and life situations that may be affecting their mood. Then we examine thinking patterns and talk about what changes may help. It is possible to change one's way of thinking. It's not so much what happens to you that makes you feel the way you do. It is, instead, how you think about what happens to you that makes you feel the way you do. Feeling comes from thinking. This is the primary theory of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Cognitive reprogramming is a very important life skill that serves us well throughout our lives. We focus on specific situations to practice different thoughts and different behaviors. This is one way that change happens.
Find an Austin therapist for depression who cares:
Recent research has shown that much of depression is connected with what our brain is focusing on. If we focus our attention on what's wrong and hopeless, our depression is deepened. If we can focus our attention on what is hopeful...or beautiful...or colorful...etc...it can divert our thinking and lead to more positive emotion. Through mindfulness, meditation, and relaxation practice, it becomes possible to re-direct the mind from negative thoughts/feelings/experiences to something more positive...thus changing mood.
This all may sound very heavy and complicated, but, when taken one step at a time, it works! We even have fun in our sessions.
Ready to talk? I'm ready to listen.