I Feel Sad
Sadness can be a difficult emotion to deal with, not only due to the pain it causes, but also because of the factors that caused the sadness in the first place. Sadness can be the result of loss, helplessness, or disappointment, among many other things. It is important to remember, though, that sadness is one of the most common and natural human emotions and is something that will ultimately help us appreciate our happy times.
Sometimes, though, it is possible for sadness to deepen, and this may be a sign that you are suffering from a form of depression. If you feel as though you are increasingly sad, and feel like your sadness is difficult to explain, call for help now.
Ways Counseling Helps with Depression:
People who are depressed will usually show a style of thinking that focuses on negative views of the world. They often think of themselves as worthless and of the world as being a bad or unfair place, and they are without hope that their lives will improve in the future. When something bad happens, they blame themselves, but when good things happen, they tell themselves they are just lucky. Furthermore, people with depression are less likely to recognize and appreciate positive events when they happen; rather, they tend to be more tuned into the bad things in their lives and brood over those events.
The aim of a cognitive approach is to help people identify and correct their distorted and negatively biased thoughts. This approach identifies and challenges underlying assumptions and beliefs. With encouragement to reframe the way they think about life, people can recover from failures more effectively and to recognize and take credit for the good things in their lives. People learn that they have some control over what happens to them. As with behavioral strategies, having these skills reduces relapse and recurrence of depression.
Addressing the Problem
If you are dealing with severe depression, there are many tools you can use to get your life back on track. Adapting a healthy lifestyle through proper diet and exercise is absolutely critical, but one of the most important things you can do is to seek counseling.
Often times, we go through difficulties in life and bury the problems that we face, which can lead to all sorts of further issues. It can be extremely difficult for an individual to assess themselves internally and decipher a problem that may be lurking in their subconscious.
Working with a counselor to figure out what’s going on can be crucial to recovering from a depressed state. Those that take this route are going to have a far better shot at learning to effectively manage their depression for the long term.
Cognitive Therapy Treatment
The underlying principle for cognitive therapy is that thoughts influence moods. Typically, depression is maintained by constant negative thoughts that are known as automatic thoughts. These thoughts occur without effort and are usually exaggerated and untrue. Examples may include:
- “I am the worst daughter/mother/father, etc.”
- “I am a failure.”
With cognitive therapy, the person learns to recognize these automatic thoughts, correct them and think more realistically. The person learns to work through these problems and understand why they had certain feelings or emotions at the time. Once they do that, the problems become more manageable. These small changes in the way depressed people think about their problems can lead to long-term improvement in mood and their outlook on life.
Living a Healthy Lifestyle
Another thing that can dramatically improve depression is eating a healthy diet with daily exercise. Creating a healthy lifestyle can help take a person out of depression by increasing confidence and self-esteem. For example, it is important to eat smart carbs such as fruits, vegetables, and legumes as well as protein-rich foods to boost alertness.
When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins that interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain. Regular exercise has been proven to reduce stress, ward off anxiety and feelings of depression, boost self-esteem and improve sleep. Not only will you feel far better about yourself if you are living a healthy lifestyle, but your body is also going to feel much better as well.
Depression can seem like an overwhelming problem. If you make the decision to seek help through counseling and clean up your lifestyle, you will be in a far better position to heal from your depressed state.
When to Seek a Counselor for Depression
Sometimes the signs are obvious, but other times, something may just feel slightly off and you can’t figure out why. Before your depression reaches the point where it seems unmanageable, here are a few signs that counseling may be right for you:
- You are feeling sad, angry or not yourself.
- You are abusing drugs, alcohol or food to cope with your feelings.
- You have lost someone or something that is important to you and you don’t know how to cope.
- Something traumatic has happened to you, such as abuse or neglect, or maybe you were diagnosed with a chronic illness or were the victim of a crime.
- You have stopped doing activities that you would normally enjoy doing.
There are many reasons why people seek professional help for depression. Even though you may have a great understanding of your own problems, there still may be times where you need help. The sooner you get it, the sooner you can begin to enjoy life again.