Category Archives: Depression

Tips to Raise Psychologically Healthy and Happy Kids

Hi folks! Hope you have read my blog on “Stress and Anxiety in Children”. This blog is a continuation of the blog. In this blog I would be helping you with some effective techniques to raise psychologically healthy and happy children. So here we go:

  1. Create a safe and happy environment around your home: The more your home environment is safe and jolly for your child, the more psychologically healthy he/she will be. A good and balanced home environment fosters sense of security, self-confidence, sound physical health and overall sense of well-being in a child.
  2. Appreciate your child: Like us, children also want to be appreciated for their achievements and actions. No matter how small or silly your child’s act is… Try to be generous in appreciating your lil’ champ. Appreciation improves self-concept and self-esteem in your child. It also helps him/her master new skills, focus, a well-defined personality and motivation.
  3. Spend quality time with your kid: Even in your busy work schedules, stress and pressures try spending quality time with your child. Talk about your day, try to connect with your child, know more about him/her, try to inculcate a good value system in your child and show your love-warmth-affection. Some parents think that spending time with their kids is like a duty. If you are also thinking like this, then you need to understand that more than a duty it should be a priority. You child is the blessing of your love… The innocent, pure and Heavenly expression of what you and your partner created. So never fall behind in expressing to your child how much you love him/her and what he/she means to you.
  4. Make every corner of your home speak your heart out: If you are a working parent or a busy homemaker, then try to communicate your love and affection plus the way you want your child to be in alternative ways. Hanging family pictures or good times spent with your child on the walls, decorating your home with your kid, inspirational wall hangings, etc are some of the effective and interesting ways to communicate the right message to your child.
  5. Be an active listener: Even if you are a kind of person who wants to talk more and listen less, try to listen to your child as much as you can. Sometimes children convey messages that are very important in their lives and development. If you miss out these important points, then this may lead to serious complications.
  6. Do not discuss or enter into conflicts in front of your child: Children are very sensitive and their minds are very perceptive too. They tend to record and sink into each and every thing they observe. This creates their thinking and responding styles. So, if you fight or create conflicting situations with your partner, your child gets very psychologically disturbed. It shatters his/her thought-world, makes him/her confused, isolated, depressed, aggressive, hostile and he/she develops many personality deficit. So, the rule of the thumb is, try to keep conflicts at bay. Discuss and try to resolve the issues when your child is not around. “Treat others the way you want to be treated”.
  7. Supervise your kid while socializing, watching TV and during exposure to such social/media aspects: I have seen many parents allowing their children to watch TV or socialize without proper guidance. In this process sometimes children are exposed to violent scenes and other negative things that convey the wrong messages to them. This leads to a negative and unhealthy psychological reaction in your child and makes him/her susceptible to mental health issues too. Try to sit with your child and supervise him/her in such situations so that they understand and learn the right things.
  8. Do not compare or underestimate your child in front of others: Let me ask you a question: Would you like a scenario in which someone despises or underestimates you, points your weaknesses and flaws? No, right? If someone does this, you would obviously feel bad and dejected. The same thing applies to your child too. Try not to discuss or say about your child’s weaknesses or flaws in front of others. Never compare your child with another too. This destroys his/her self-confidence and puts a very negative impact on your child’s personality, thinking patterns, etc. It makes him/her more depressed, confused, stressed out, isolated and anxious. I am sure you won’t like that to happen.  Your child is the most precious possession you have and is gifted with his/her own unique qualities. So try to recognize and acknowledge that. If you want your child to work on his/her weaknesses, instead of telling it to others, make your child sit with you and both of you plan and workout on how the weaknesses and problems can be sorted out.
  9. Understand the difference between reinforcement and punishment: Reinforcement leads to positive outcome while punishment leads to negative reactions and behavior If you want your child to give up a bad habit or something negative, then try to reinforce and shape a desirable behavior rather than punishing him/her.
  10. Be a parent cum friend cum role model for your child: Love and guide like a parent, support and understand like and friend and be an inspiration for your child like a role model. This will help your child to develop into a fully-developed human being with the greatest gifts of a sound physical health, a well-balanced mental health and it will help your child to grow into a fully-functioning individual.

Becoming parents and parenting are different facets of helping your children grow. Anyone can become a parent, but to foster effective parenting that boosts a good psychological well-being in your child is a challenging aspect. Parenting is an art. The more creative and careful you are, the more worthwhile children you would gift to this world.

Test your Emotional World

Emotions play an integral part in the sun and shade of your life. If you are emotionally strong then no one and nothing can disturb or defeat you in the crossroads of life. However, if you are emotionally weak, then probably you may encounter innumerable problems day in and day out.

Your emotions are thus, the gateways to your happiness or sadness, peace or feelings of agitation, positivity or negativity in general. How is your emotional world then? Are you emotionally strong or weak? Are your emotions healthy or need improvisations? Take the test below to find out ad explore your emotional world:

Test your emotional world

  • Do you consider yourself as being emotionally sensitive?
  • How would you relate yourself: Emotional or easy-going?
  • Do your friends or relatives call you “an emotional fool”?
  • How do you react when you see a negative event in front of you: Do you get hurt easily? Do you burst into tears? Or do you hold yourself strong?
  • What is your problem-solving strategy: Do you tend to use your heart or mind more? Do you look into emotional descriptions or practical solutions?
  • What do you like more:  natural scenery or a logical word-game?
  • What do you like to do when you are alone: Would you like to listen to some soft, soothing music, or go partying with your friends?
  • Do you enjoy being alone or do you like to be around people?
  • How do you sleep: Do you like to sleep in your own free style or do you like cuddling a pillow or a soft toy?
  • Do you consider yourself as being an introvert or an extrovert?
  • How would you describe yourself: Calm, quite or excited and full of energies?

Psychologists say that if you consider yourself to be an emotional person, if you are sensitive towards your feelings and surroundings, if you like soothing music and staying isolated… Then you are an emotional person. If you like to cuddle up a pillow or soft toy while sleeping, if you can easily get hurt or burst into tears, if you are calm-quite-introverted and like natural sceneries… Then also you tend to be quite emotional.

Being an emotional or emotionally sensitive person has its own positive aspects. The depth and clarity of your emotional can adorn you with many positive and higher values of life. Your emotions and their abundance can make you pure-hearted, loving and caring, philosophical, understanding, empathetic and sincere. However, at times people may take undue advantage of your emotions and goodness. So, you need to beware of it and see that you are emotionally safe.

On the other hand, if your emotional strength is higher, if you are a practically oriented person and live life through your mind rather than your heart, then you have amazing strength, energies and vitality. You tend to have excellent planning – coordination – decision-making skills. You tend to be attention-seeking at times. And you have top-notch leadership qualities too. Your emotional strength and practical approach makes you a leader and helps you to help people who need your support.

Therefore, folks!!! Emotions have an extraordinary potentiality to give shape and direction to your life. The more emotionally healthy you are, the happier you will be. Emotional health is very necessary for all-round development in life. Your emotional world in a way defines you and your entity.

The world of emotions is sensitive, beautiful and is filled with astonishing life-changing potentials. The more you know about your emotions and the effectively you handle them… The easily you will be propelled towards overall sense of health, happiness, success, peace, contentment and well-being!!!

Mood Swings in Everyday Life

Moods manifest themselves in manifold hues and shades. Sometimes you may fell happy, while sometimes sad; at times you may feel irritated and at times elated. Different internal and external stimuli in your life lead to the expression of your moods in different ways. It is so interesting, isn’t it? If you maintain a mood diary and write about the varied kinds of moods you underwent on a given day, you will find amazing variations in it. Without our feelings, emotions and moods life would have been so mundane and automated. Moods add meaning and significance to life as a whole.

Do not get confused between moods and emotions. Moods are less intense in nature and can be either of a positive valence or negative valence. However, emotional reactions are much more intense and long-lasting. Etymologically, the word mood is derived from the Old English mōd which means military courage. It also refers to a person’s disposition, temperament or humor at a given period or particular time. Moods are of psychological importance as they play a vital role in regulating one’s daily life functioning. Your moods have significant influence on your personal life, social interactions, peer group interactions, professional life and your entire life ‘n’ lifestyle as a whole. Therefore, it is very important to recognize your moods, understand them and keep them under your conscious control.

Mood has to be controlled. Otherwise, it’s your master.” – Toba Beta, My Ancestor Was an Ancient Astronaut

Factors Influencing Moods

There are several factors that influence your moods and mood swings. Some of the pivotal ones are:

Factors Influencing Moods Descriptions
Lifestyle A good, well-balanced and healthy lifestyle leads to happy and healthy mood states. An unhealthy lifestyle makes you agitated, irritated, restless and mentally unstable
Diet Some foods and flavors like hot, spicy and tangy ones lead to moods of negative valence
Sleep If you do not get a good night’s sleep, if you are experiencing hypersomnia or hyperinsomnia… then these sleep problems are very likely to make your mood states unstable and lead to mood swings
Social Mood Sometimes your moods are influenced by the societal behavior or the crowd that you are in. If the people around you are in a good mood, you will feel the same too and vice versa
Medical Conditions Hormonal imbalances, menstrual cycles, PMS (Premenstrual symptoms), pregnancy, menarche, menopause, psychological medical conditions like depression, mania, etc are seen to influence your moods in different ways
Positive vs Negative Moods Positive and negative moods are also seen to play a vital role in the maintenance and regulation of moods. They are also influential in mood swings.

Mood swings are subjective in nature. Everything in and around you can radically alter your mood system. Passing or flunking an exam, getting loved or losing a loved one, falling sick or feeling healthy… Variations in your experiential world take you in a tour of different moods and mood swings. Sometimes understanding your moods and dealing with mood swings is easy. However, if you are unable to deal with mood swings, handle your moods or going through a medical condition that is influencing your moods then try the following tips and techniques:

Identify your moods

Many people don’t even realize the kind of mood they are experiencing or the fact that they are going through a mood swing! So, the first step towards controlling or dealing with your moods is to identify your mood tone. Are you happy or sad… are you feeling alright or emotionally restless—-try to ask yourself such questions and identify the tone and valence of your moods.

Release your moods

If you have a habit of bottling up or hiding your emotions or reactions, please don’t do so. If you are experiencing a mood and its reaction try to express it in adaptable ways. The more you bottle up or hide your moods, the more restless and agitated you will feel. This may also lead to severe mental health issues in future. So, if you are happy then smile, if you are sad then feel free and shed a few tears—-it’s quite natural.

Identify the triggers

There must be something that would be aggravating your negative moods or mood swings. Therefore, you need to identify the triggers and deal with them accordingly.

Lifestyle

Eat healthy, sleep well, exercise, socialize with good people… In short maintain a good lifestyle. The healthier your lifestyle is, the healthier your moods will be.

Seek professional help

If you are frequently experiencing negative moods or mood swigs, then it could be due to a medical or psychological condition. In such a case, it is wise to seek professional help. Psychologists and psychiatrists can help you to effectively deal with it.

HIV/AIDS Effects on Mental Health: Depression and Anxiety

HIV AIDSWe live in a completely interdependent world which simply means we cannot escape each other. How we respond to AIDS depends, in part, on whether we understand this interdependence. It is not someone else’s problem. This is everybody’s problem.” – Bill Clinton

HIV/AIDS… What is the first thought that comes to your mind when you hear or come across this word? Is it fear, apprehension, stigma, discrimination, anxiety, depression, stress? Well, you may get mixed reactions and feelings when you hear this word. The repercussion of HIV is much more than the nomenclature itself. If you have ample knowledge or awareness about it then it is a good thing. But, if you do not know much about it then it may disturb you knowingly or in unknowing silent ways. Before getting into the mental health aspects of HIV/AIDS let me tell you quickly about its general information:

HIV/AIDS stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome. It is caused by the Human Immunodeficiency Virus. HIV is the primary form of infection while AIDS is full blown HIV infection. It starts with influenza-type symptoms and then progresses into different opportunistic infections. People living with HIV/AIDS have to check on two things. One is the CD4 count while the other one is ART. Since HIV weakens the white blood cells, so the CD4 count is very much important. The less the CD4 count in blood, less will be the immune power of the infected person. If the CD4 count is very less, then the person will have to start the Anti-Retroviral Treatment or ART. Therefore, knowing about HIV/AIDS and how it can be managed is very important.

The whole incidence of HIV/AIDS; the physical, psychological and social effects of it and above all the stigma and discrimination attached to it are sometimes overwhelming to bear for the ones who are suffering from it. People living with HIV/AIDS come across many challenging situations that exert a lot of negative effect on their mental health too. Some of them are:

Depression

Depression is one of the common aftermaths when one comes to know that he/she is HIV positive. This brings in different symptoms like low moods, feelings of isolation, suicidal feelings, changes in sleep and diet patterns, lack of socialization and so on. Depression is very important to be dealt with in HIV/AIDS cases. Because if one does not come out of it, then it becomes very difficult for him/her to manage the symptoms of HIV.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

Getting anxious over everything and any thing is the characteristic feature of GAD. Sometimes, people living with HIV/AIDS experience GAD symptoms too.

Death Anxiety

Despite of being tested HIV Positive; one of my clients (while I was working as a full time counselor for PLHIV in India) always did home-based HIV test till he breathed his last. Death anxiety is also one of the common issues that PLHIVs face right from the moment they are tested positive. This is quite obvious because who would want to die out of illness and drudgery?

Hallucinations and Delusions

Along with making the immune system weak and leading to various bodily opportunistic infections, HIV/AIDS also affect the brain chemistry and mechanism. That is why some people suffering from HIV/AIDS also experience hallucinations, delusions, clinical mental health ailments, etc.

Apart from the above mental health ailments that I have said, people living with HIV/AIDS have to deal with multitude of stressors and pressures, frustration and challenges on an everyday basis. This is due to their own personal thought patterns, the others who are related to them, their professional side, prejudice, social stigma and discrimination.

We respect your confidentiality and dignity.

Best Wishes,

Sareeta

Bereavement and Its Psycho-social Aftermath

BereavementDeath leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.” – Headstone in Ireland

Tears that just don’t seem to stop, memories that keep ripping the heart, ripples of faith and hope together just yearn to live with your loved one for just another day… It is easier to die than to live and keep dying everyday in the memory of the loved one that demised. It’s sad but true folks, that life and death are the two sides of the same coin. In one moment you would be happily celebrating life with your loved ones, and another moment you would be left crying at the burial ground. Life’s like that… it’s a blend of smiles ‘n’ shadows. Day in and day out the world ceases for someone. Leaving this world and joining the celestial race may be difficult, but to be bereaved and staying back on earth is far more difficult. It is heart trenching, overwhelming and unless and until we get over the loss, it’s like living-but dying a new death every day. The whole thing is so complicated!

Bereavement leads to huge emotional pain, immense grief and sense of loss. It is very difficult to pacify the one who is bereaved. No words or actions can soothe the pain of getting bereaved. Bereavement has a lot of psychological and social impact associated with it. In some cases, it can lead to severe physical condition too.

Here is an overview of the effects of bereavement:

Psychological Impact

  • Depression, Sadness, Grief
  • Sense of loss
  • Stress and feeling overwhelmed
  • Anxiety and apprehension
  • Lack of motivation
  • Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), in some cases
  • Problems in attention, memory, concentration, decision-making and other cognitive abilities
  • Suicidal ideations and committing of suicide in worst cases

Social Impact

  • Culture-specific stigma, taboo and discrimination
  • Suffering caused due to social stereotypes and prejudice
  • Loss of life, property and economic stability
  • Social support system is affected and/or influenced

Other than that, bereavement can also affect you physically in the form of discomfort, medical conditions, changes in sleep-diet patterns, and so on. I know it is very difficult or may seem next to impossible to get over the loss or to get over bereavement. But, it is very necessary to deal effectively with bereavement. Otherwise, it may lead to even more problems in your life and the ones related to you. It is true that the one who is gone cannot be brought back, but we still need to live for him/her, at least to fulfill his/her expectations towards us…to fulfill his/her unfulfilled dreams. Following are some of the ways in which you can deal with bereavement and its multidimensional negative aftermath:

Mourning

Do not shield or cocoon your emotions when you experience loss. It may lead to even more harm. It is ok to mourn and cry and let out the pent up emotions.

Sharing

Try to share your feeling with the ones you can rely on. Try to talk to the persons who can emotionally support you or understand you.

Writing

Sometimes writing letters/writing down your feelings for the ones who left you helps a lot. It helps you express your feelings towards the person and also lightens you in the process.

Memory-Lane

Try to assemble photos/pictures of the ones you lost. Keeping a memory diary or a scrapbook of the good times spent with the person will make you feel better. It will also motivate you to live life with a purpose, to live life for others and the way he/she wanted you to live.

Support Groups

You are not alone… There are many people who would be sailing in the same boat as yours. Try to find out support groups and forums where you can join others. Sharing and caring together heals unfathomable wounds effectively.

Professional help

If you feel that you are sinking into deep psychological, physical, social problems then taking professional help would be a good step. Your life is also precious; you need to take care of it too.

Don’t grieve. Anything you lose, comes round in another form” – Rumi

Best wishes,

Sareeta

Play Therapy for Depression

DepressedDepression… generally speaking, it is a mental health condition, in which life just ceases or seems to be at a dead end. All of us get struck by depression in some or the other part of our lives in varying degrees. Death of a loved one, loss of job, a bad break-up, trauma, life-transition, failure, environmental conditions, terminal illnesses, shocking life events… All these are some of the causal factors that can literally shove you into depression. And once you slip into depression, everything related to your life starts falling apart like a deck of cards. Helplessness, hopelessness, social withdrawal, lack of energies and motivation, change in sleep and diet patterns, suicidal thinking, are some of the symptoms that may start bothering you. These symptoms are enough to jostle you off your physical health, psychological well-being, social life, relationships, self-concept, work/studies, and the entire outlook of life as a whole.

Therefore, if you or your loved ones feel depressed then it is very important to come off it via strategic therapeutic interventions. In some cases, medication also becomes necessary. There are many ways in which depression can be successfully treated in today’s world. Hey, have you read another blog on depression that I have written? I would suggest you to read that too once you have read this blog. It is based on the technical know-how on depression and the treatment techniques for depression.

Among the different treatment interventions available for depression so far, play therapy is sometimes amazingly effective. I know you must be thinking that when you are depressed, sad and dejected how can play therapy help you with depression? It is possible folks. Let me tell you how play therapy works:

  • Taps the feel-good hormones and chemicals of your body and brain
  • Works on your lack of motivation when you are depressed
  • It engages you in adaptive behavior
  • Makes you feel fresh and energized
  • It also serves as a gateway to the happy and colorful moments of your life

When done with the help of an experienced practitioner, play therapy can help you in significantly dealing with your depression. It can be done both in individual and group settings. A typical play therapy session can last up to 30-40 minutes. Once you try the play therapy methods, you will surely crave for more! Now let us look into some of the common play therapy methods:

Sand-Magic

In this form of play therapy you would be given sand/mud as a medium of therapy. First you would be asked to shed your inhibitions, feel the sand and try to enjoy that feeling. Then you need to use the sand/mud to illustrate your major life event – events that have changed your life, events that you like and/or events that have significant influence on you. Based on your illustrations your therapist would assess your symptoms, and help you more in the treatment process.

The pick-up-sticks Game

I am sure you must have played this game in some part of your lives. This game has therapeutic value too. In this game there would be sticks of different colors depicting the different colors of your life. The therapist holds all the sticks together and releases them. You would have to pick up one stick out of that without disturbing the others and describe events, moments/experience of your life that are related to the color of the stick that you have picked.

This game is very helpful to re-create scenes from your life and resolve them through therapy. It also gives a boost to your creative thinking, memory, concentration, and other cognitive skills.

Bubble Breaths

Have you ever tried blowing bubbles from a can/or a container having detergent/soap water? I just loved the game when I was a kid. But, today I know that it has great therapeutic value. When you are depressed, your energy system becomes low. When your energies are low, it exerts a negative influence on your brain and body; your respiratory system needs to work hard in order to pump oxygen to the vital organs of your body to keep them functioning.

In this form of play therapy, the practitioner would blow bubbles first and ask you to pop them. If you are too fast in popping them, then the therapist would ask you to take a deep breathe and then pop the bubbles. So what is the whole rationale behind it? It is quite simple yet effective. Bubble breath help you to understand your mind-body connection, it helps in impulse control and above all it makes you to breathe deeply as a result of which there is adequate supply of oxygen to your brain and body. This helps a lot in reducing depression symptoms and the physical symptoms related to it.

So folks! This was a brief overview of how play therapy can help in the reduction of depression symptoms. It may sound silly and kiddish at first, but has deep therapeutic properties. Once you start practicing it you will yourself see and experience its magic!

No matter how worse life can become, no matter how harsh life can become… there is always a way out. So never give up

Best wishes,

Sareeta

Suicide Help and Prevention

Suicide Help and PreventionIn a world that is seen being full of struggle and strife, even a school going child knows what suicide is. The moment you would be thinking of killing yourself, you would also be creating a silent unseen plan of killing your family and loved ones for a lifetime. These words may seem hurtful, but it’s true. You may be thinking of leaving this world, but somewhere or the other your loved ones would die even with the thought of departing from you. If you are someone who is thinking that life is hopeless and isn’t worth any more… please halt for a moment. Give your life another fair chance. You really deserve a life worth-living to its fullest. Only cowards think of dying or leaving a battleground. I know you won’t consider yourself or tag yourself a coward. True fighters and winners are the ones who sustain all difficulties in life, fight against them with all their might, the ones who put all their potentialities in action and ultimately come out successful.

There could be many reasons that would be driving you towards taking your own life. It can be severe depression, life-threatening events, loss of loved ones, loss of job, stress, failure, anxiety, frustration, a terminal illness, assault or abuse, harsh life situations, bullying… many such suicide-provoking incidents. Even if I say a million times that don’t give up, don’t lose hope… I know you would say, “It’s easier said than done”. Well, I admit! But, for whom am I saying this? It’s for your well being, for the sake of others for whom you mean the world, who owe you. Before even thinking of taking your life just think about that amazing moment when you were born and your parents took you in their arms, think about the moment you realized your potentials and walked along the crossroads of life, think about the good n gala time spent with your loved ones. A single or some negative life events cannot rip you apart champ! If at all you want to end something, try to end your problems by solving them. And that solution is not your life, but skillful strategies and healthy coping to life’s stressors and pressures.

Life never leaves one hopeless – it always gives another chance. Even if you do not believe in this now…just don’t give up. Keep trying, you will yourself see how beautiful your life is and how worth living it is. Even if life shows you a hundred reasons to cry and lose, fight back and show life that you have a million reasons to smile and live like a winner. Live life king size.

If you are thinking of harming yourself or ending of life, please give yourself and your loved ones another fair chance. Life is for living like a champion and dying like a martyr. Please contact us if you or your close ones are thinking of suicide due to any of the reasons I said above. There is always a solution to every problem. Believe in this fact.

You can immediately contact suicide prevention centers and suicide crisis lines in your area. Here is a list of a few such centers from around the world:

Country

Organization

Australia

  • Lifeline (lifeline.org.au) is a 24-hour nationwide service that provides access to crisis support, suicide prevention and mental health support services.
  • Kids Help Line (kidshelp.com.au) is a 24-hour nationwide service that provides access to crisis support, suicide prevention and counseling services for Australians aged 5–25

Canada

Cayman Islands

  • The Cayman Islands Social Services (gov.ky/portal) based in George Town, Cayman Islands has a telephone number available to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress.

Ireland

  • Samaritans (samaritans.org) is a registered charity aimed at providing emotional support to anyone in distress or at risk of suicide throughout Ireland.

New Zealand

  • Lifeline Aotearoa (lifeline.org.nz) is a New Zealand organization providing free 24-hour counseling and phone help lines.

United Kingdom

  • PAPYRUS Prevention of Young Suicide (papyrus-uk.org) is a registered charity. It is the national charity campaigning for prevention of young suicide. It operates a helpline providing short-term support and advice for anyone concerned about himself or herself or a young person they know. PAPYRUS also offers training such as the international ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training) program and bespoke packages.
  • Samaritans (samaritans.org) is a registered charity aimed at providing emotional support to anyone in distress or at risk of suicide throughout the United Kingdom
  • Campaign Against Living Miserably (thecalmzone.net) is a registered charity based in England. It was launched in March 2006 as a campaign aimed at bringing the suicide rate down among men aged 15–35.

United States

 

Leave no leaf un-turned. You have every potentiality to fight against all odds and evens of your life. Be positive, believe in yourself and believe in the best.

Sincere thanks to:

Online-therapy fraternity

Wikipedia

Life – the best teacher!

Best wishes,

Sareeta

Destroying Depression: Success Stories

Destroying DepressionThere are wounds that never show on the body that are deeper and more hurtful than anything that bleeds.” – Laurell K. Hamilton, Mistral’s Kiss

Have you felt like you have reached a dead end and you can see no light at the end of the tunnel? At times of despair, do you feel that you will give up and you have lost all hopes? Do hopelessness and helplessness curb all your functioning potentialities? Well, these are all signs of depression. Depression is characterized by low moods, feelings of hopelessness, helplessness, social withdrawal, suicidal and self-harming tendencies, lack of energy and motivation to do something, changes in sleep and diet patterns, drug abuse and impairment in daily life functioning.

When the clouds of depression hover in your life, nobody and nothing seems to be right. The heart aches and sinks. Tears don’t stop rolling from the eyes. Everything seems dark and dusty. In a nutshell, the world seems to cease and stops. Living life becomes impossible and gruesome.

Let me tell you about some heart-rending stories of how depression was experienced by some people.

X was a very talented student in a Grad School. He was extraordinarily intelligent and always scored high marks in all his exams. He used to be in the good books of his professors and was an achiever in academics and extra-curricular activities as well. He was the star! However, one incident changed his entire life. He was studying for is exams late in the night. Suddenly, his night lamp had short circuit and his entire study table burst into flames. In order to save his books and belongings he struggled in the fire and severely hurt his hands. Due to his injuries he could not write in his exams. A whole year went into vain for him. After this incident, X could not face anybody. He held himself responsible for this and always remained locked in his room. He seldom attended his classes and never took good care of himself any more. A bubbly-lively guy now became a slow, de-motivated, sluggish person with no hopes and energy.

One fine morning, he got up from bed and saw a small plant growing from a rocky ground. That whispered loud words of life within him. He fought against the bout of his depression with all his might. He sought professional help, took his medicines on time, he started to socialize with people who understood him…he did everything that would take him out of the dark clutches of depression. Today X is a General Manager in a leading Multinational Company. If anything wrong happens in his life, he now takes it sportingly and does his best to solve his problems.

Mrs Y lost her husband very early in their marriage. Her husband died in an accident in front of her own eyes. She was shell-shocked after this incident and lost all motivation to live. She had small kids, but she did not take care of them. Gradually she, her kids and her household started sinking. Mrs Y tried to kill herself a number of times. But, every time she got saved. One day while she was cutting herself her younger daughter came to her and cuddled her up. The lil’ girl wiped her mother’s tears and kissed her wounds. That was enough to create a spark within Mrs Y to start living life again! Today, she is a successful working woman and a wonderful homemaker. Her daughters call her “Super Mom” and life is full of life for them.

Like these brave warriors there are many strong persons who get burnt in the hearth of depressing life events but come out without getting hurt. Do you know what makes a person win over depression? There are some weapons that shield them from losing the battle against depression:

Never Giving Up! No matter how worse a life situation is, never give up. You never know that there would be happiness waiting for you just at the next step. So, never keep trying and never stop walking. Keep working towards a bright and better future.

Don’t Lose Hope! Life will take unknown twists and turns. The road in life is never smooth and straight. So you are bound to fall down not once, neither twice… but many times. When this happens try to clean your wounds, let the emotional bruises heal, never lose hope. Always try to give your life a second chance and that to a fair chance.

Be patient and Persevere! There would be times when you will feel like giving up. There will be a point when you will feel as in you don’t want to live or nothing can be set right again. Hold on… don’t lose your patience. Take some deep breaths, try to keep yourself calm and try seeing life with a different perspective. Sometimes we get sinned and tossed in our own negative spiral thinking. No… don’t do that! If you fell that you have now reached at the edge of things, situations and your emotions, try your level best to be patient. Sometimes things take their own time to settle down. Patience and perseverance are the greatest values that help man to steer through the most violent storms of life.

Talk to your loved ones or take professional help! Sadness halves when we share it with someone and happiness doubles when we share it with someone. When you feel depressed, helpless and hopeless always try to reach out to your friends or loved ones. If you think you need additional support then taking professional help really helps a lot. If you or your loved ones are experiencing depression then please contact us.

There is nothing that you cannot do. Unless you give up, nothing can pull you back. No matter how cruel life is towards you, do not give up… do not lose hope… and keep on marching forward.

“No matter how dark life seems, there is always sunshine the next day…”

Best wishes,

Sareeta

Don’t Lose Hope…

Hope is Real

I met hope

She had a twinkle in her eye…

That told of a hidden smile

She had a spring in her step;

Through she walked a thousand mile…

She held my little finger

I followed with unsure steps

Like an ambitious toddler learning to walk…

In her touch I felt magic

Warmth that clearly spoke,

Of good old days returning

Every trouble set right…

I asked her how she found me

She smiled a radiant smile

So it was easy…

She comes to those who cry

She said it was her job…

To find a tearful face

Wipe off its marks of despire…

Replace them with a smile

I knew where she came from…

She need not have told me

She springs from one’s heart…

When wrecked by dark times

I gave her a bear hug

Let her mother me…

And sure enough she led me

Back to glorious light…

To everyone who just read these wonderful, heart-melting lines… my niece shared these lines with me from her book when I was deeply dejected by the struggles and strife of life. I was just about to give up. She came to me silently and gave a note to me. The lil’ 8 yr old did not just give me a note; she gave me a magic wand through which I could set my life on the right track again. So folks, whenever you are shackled in the painful chains of pains… do not give up, do not lose hope. This pain will surely fade out one bright day. You just need to hold on to your hope, re-build your strength and move forward. Hope in Psychology means “Helping Ourselves Psychologically Everyday”. No matter how painful or challenging a given situation is, always remember that there is a way out of it. So, rather than giving up or getting dominated by it, try to look out for alternatives to solve it and live a beautiful life you truly deserve.

Next time you feel out of hope, try to remember the above lines and fill hope into your life again!

Best wishes,

Sareeta

Are You a Positive Thinker or a Negative Thinker?

positive-thinking-quotes-1

Everything in this world is a product of either positive or negative thinking. Folks, do you know that the way you think can influence the entire course of your life? Thought processes have strong consequences. The way we think, is the way we ultimately behave. And the way we behave, is the way we live.

I have seen many people who curse their destinies when something goes wrong. But, the truth is your destiny lies in your hand. It is all in your head, in the top floor of your entire being! Have you experienced a day when nothing goes right, and a day which is full of smiles and cheer? This may be because of situations on one hand but the main reason behind it how you think and react in different situations. Let me tell you a simple day-to-day example: Imagine you get up late in the morning and get irritated due to it. As the day started on an angry note, everything in that day will keep on pushing you towards negative thoughts. Even the slightest mistake by your partner or colleague will make you blast off. On the contrary, if you think positively in each and every situation, you will see how easily and efficiently you can handle things no matter how complicated they are.

Therefore, one thought gives rise to another and gradually several thought clouds start engulfing your mind. What will make the difference is whether they are filled with positive charges or negative thunder bolts. Now let’s see whether you are a positive or a negative thinker. I have written about the different thought and behavior habits of a positive vs negative thinker below. Match them and see where you stand and which path you need to take in future:

Positive Thinker Vs Negative Thinker

Outlook towards Life

Positive Thinker Negative Thinker
Positive thinkers are mostly optimistic Negative thinkers are mostly pessimistic
Positive thinkers see the glass as half-full Negative thinkers see the glass as half-empty
Positive thinkers are full of life and positive energies Negative thinkers lack vital energies and wellness factor
Positive thinkers are in control of situations Negative thinkers are dependent on situations

Planning and Decision-making

Positive Thinkers Negative Thinkers
Positive thinkers are good planners and decision-makers Negative thinkers often lack good planing and decision-making skills
Positive thinkers are optimistic about the future Negative thinkers are fearful about the future
Positive thinkers have faith and confidence on their decisions Negative thinkers usually depend on others for making decisions
Positive thinkers hold themselves accountable and responsible for their work Negative thinkers often hold others responsible and blame others if anything goes wrong

Basic Personality Traits

Positive Thinkers Negative Thinkers
Optimistic, energetic, truthful and genuine Pessimistic, sluggish and sloppy, resort to falsity and lack genuineness
Are good leaders Are basically good followers or moderators
Kind, compassionate, helpful and extroverted Dependent, timid, and introverted
Always healthy, easily flip back to good health if ill and can cope in any situation Always complain about everything, prone to helplessness, hopelessness, anxiety, depression, personality deficits and faulty coping mechanisms

It is the content of our thinking that makes and shapes our entire thought system, behavioral patterns and personality. Positive thinking has tremendous positive effects on your physical health, mental health, social interactions, professional life and in each and every nook and corner of your life. However, negative thinking can shove you in a hearth of ill-health, maladaptive behavior patterns, unstable relationships and overall chaos and disturbance in each and every facet of life.

So with a little thought shift from negativity to positivity your life can turn into a worthwhile journey of happiness, success, health and prosperity.

“There is little difference in people, but that little difference makes a big difference. That little difference is attitude. The big difference is whether it is positive or negative”. – Robert Collier

Best Wishes,

Sareeta