After ignoring your snooze button twenty times, you've finally mustered up enough strength to climb out of bed. Another day. It feels like an uphill battle. Every. Single. Day. You are exhausted all the time-no matter what. Every notification (phone call, text message, social media, etc.) symbolizes the weight of another expectation, and they are getting heavier and heavier. On paper, your life is great....so no one gets it. You feel guilty and/or ungrateful for feeling this way, so you keep it to yourself. The best part of your day is going to bed (if you can sleep). Unmet expectations of others (whether real or imagined) cause you to feel inadequate at every turn. Do you just want to quiet the noise, go to sleep, or binge your favorite series? Every day? All the time?
During a depressive episode, people feel like they are stuck in a deep, dark pit for weeks or months, and can't see any way out. Treatment can shorten depressive episodes and relieve the symptoms. Treatment for depression can be understood in the following phases: acute, continuation, or maintenance.
Acute treatment usually lasts six to eight weeks. The objective is to relieve symptoms enough to enable you to cope in everyday life again, and make the symptoms go away sooner. Continuation treatment usually lasts four to nine months. The objective of continuation treatment is to further relieve the symptoms, until they go away, and to sustain the progress made through treatment. For individuals with a high risk of recurring depression, long-term treatment may be considered (if the symptoms continue to impede on your functioning despite acute and continuation treatment).
Negative thought patterns such as guilt and self-doubt have got to go! They are in the way. We often employ cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) to explore and break these patterns little by little. The goal of cognitive behavioral therapy is to become more aware of your own thoughts, attitudes and expectations. This makes it possible to identify false and problematic beliefs before we escort them out as well!
Closely related to CBT, dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) can help during times when those thinking patterns just won’t leave. This can cause very intense emotions- so we then take it up a notch. Although DBT is often used for those diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD), it’s also been shown to be an effective treatment for Major Depressive Disorder. The four core principles of DBT are as follows;
Emotion regulation — Increasing awareness of your emotions, then regulating them.
Mindfulness — Being present and 100% aware in moments instead of focusing too much on the past or future. In other words, be where you are while you’re there.
Distress tolerance — Learning healthier ways to handle your emotions in stressful or challenging situations.
Interpersonal effectiveness — Understanding your needs and how to get them met. Set healthy boundaries for yourself and those around you.
The inner monologue that says, “You’re not good enough. Not this enough.....Not that enough” does not pay any bills and has taken up too much of your time, bandwidth, and energy.
We will assist you in finding balance in accepting your life/behaviors while simultaneously providing you with the tools to make changes and address unhelpful behaviors. We will focus on better ways to cope with intense or negative emotions that have led to major depressive episodes in the past. Imagine internal messages of fear and doubt re-mixed into messages of hope, courage, and abundance. Imagine knowing and believing that you are capable and equipped to carry out each role of your life. We will work to cultivate habits that bring you serenity, clarity, and joy. Let’s tear down the walls of your depressive symptoms and process your trauma.
Get ready to improve your relationships, elevate your self-esteem, and go back to sleeping throughout the night. We will strategize together to create meaningful attainable steps toward your goals.
Book your complementary consultation today.