Overcoming Depression: What about Psychotherapy?
Psychotherapy can teach people the skills known to reduce and even prevent depression. These skills include:
- thinking clearly (as taught in cognitive therapies)
- behaving effectively (as taught in behavioral therapies)
- relating positively to oneself and others (as taught in interpersonal therapies)
- reducing vulnerability to relapses
Here are some clear ways to know when you should seek professional help:
- If your depression has led you to develop thoughts of death or suicide (an especially important reason to get help right away);
- If you are depressed and have no idea why or what to do about it;
- If you are suffering distressing symptoms that directly or indirectly interfere with and diminish your quality of life;
- If your depression is negatively affecting people you love, especially your spouse and children.
- If you are getting feedback from others that you need help, and you know it but don’t want to face it, the only responsible thing to do is to get help;
- If you have no one close enough to confide in and get feedback from who can challenge and divert you from some or all of your depressed thinking and behavior;
- If you have repeated episodes of depression and have no real understanding as to what your risk factors for relapses are, and;
- If you are depressed and you have to make a major life decision (such as seeking a divorce, quitting or taking a job, dropping out of school, etc.), and depression may lead you to make a poor decision you’ll end up deeply regretting later. Depression is usually a poor frame of mind to be in when making potentially life-changing decisions.
- If you’ve continued to try to manage it on your own and have not been as successful as you’d like.
You can overcome depression but not by chasing your own tail.
Your “blind spots” naturally prevent you from seeing yourself clearly, a statement that’s true for all of us. The value of having someone else to talk to who can fill in the gaps and guide you along a clear path out of depression is immeasurable.
These website pages address the mood disorder known as major depressive disorder, or major depression, in general terms. It is not a substitute for professional diagnosis and/or treatment by a qualified mental health professional for any individual. It provides visitors to the site with an expert’s informed perspectives in order to help guide a sensible recovery from the burden of depression.