When anxiety leads to depression
Many anxiety sufferers often find themselves stuck in depressive states and many people experiencing depression can also make themselves quite anxious. Over the years we have seen quite a correlation between the two conditions and that is because they each share many of the same characteristics when observed from the point of view of biology and ways of thinking.
The Calmness In Mind anxiety & OCD recovery program is not directly aimed at treating depression, however, many people have told us that is has worked well in helping them to understand themselves in greater depth and motivated them to get active again by changing what needed to be changed in their lives.
What is depression?
We get asked this all the time and we truly believe there is no single answer, at one level it can be feeling low and at the other end of the spectrum there is complete apathy, emotional numbness and no desire to go on living, with every shade of grey in-between. Doctors and scientist that research the many differing types of depression (see below) have yet to isolate any single gene, hormone or chemical that can be traced to cause depression. We think that is because there is no single cause and that it is not a disease – it is the amalgamation of many facets, the way you think, your personality type, your biology, your diet, your upbringing, your circumstantial environment, how you feel about yourself and your coping skills for life.
Some people seem to be more predisposed to depression and melancholy, whilst others are not, even then, those who experience depressive feelings may go 18 months feeling OK then cycle back down again. Interestingly, individuals born before the second world war have many times less depressive episodes than those born after, perhaps indicating that our circumstances, stress, families, work and environmental issues may contribute more than the chemical imbalance.
Types of depression
We are not a big fan of labels, however, the medical world likes to label everything and people who don’t feel well typically want to know why, and if they can associate to an illness it some how seems to be comforting (We would rather know how to get rid of it rather than why we have it). The main types of depression are:
- Clinical Depression/ Major Depression / Major Depressive Disorder
- Dysthymia/ Dysthymic Disorder
- Bi-Polar Disorder/ Manic Depression
- Post Natal Depression
- Situational Depression
- Seasonal Affected Disorder (SAD)
Having listed them out – it really doesn’t matter! Basically, you feel rotten, have no motivation, your feelings are numbed, you can’t make decisions and nothing feels good any more. Ironically, these should be the ideal motivation to do something, however, most people suffering from depression, also, don’t know what they want.
We ask non-depressed people what do you want from life and they give us a big list of things and when we ask that same question to a person feeling low they say “I don’t know.”
So, at a fundamental level, depression is a confusion of cellular activity, a numbing of thoughts and feelings, coupled with a lack of a dream of a big bright future that they feel compelled to step into!
Symptoms of depression
We would prefer to call this section “Behaviours, emotions and thoughts that people with depression often experience.” Either way these are the common experiences:
- Feeling that life has lost its spark and meaning
- Feelings of apathy and emotional exhaustion
- Thinking becomes negative
- It becomes easy to worry and fret about things
- Appetite may increase or decrease
- Concentration and motivation become numbed
- Sleep may be interrupted or sleep patterns altered
- Irritability or feeling overwhelmed is common
- Loss of interest in social life and hobbies
- Feeling that future holds no hope
Some people don’t realise they have been experiencing cycles of depression (maybe for years), especially, those who have personality types that are a little more individual or work on their own, and this group often they think that ‘they’ shouldn’t get it as it is a sign of weakness or not being in control.
To step out of depression you need to think differently, behave differently, become more active (even though you have no energy or inclination) you need to adapt the way you see yourself, change the way you talk to yourself and unravel unhelpful self beliefs that trap you from taking the required action in your life. This is the way I can help you you to help yourself – I can’t make your depression go away! But YOU CAN, you just need a little help. You can protest, moan, cry, give up or fight all you like, you can pretend it’s not happening, you can hide yourself in drinks, food or drugs, but deep down you know the time has come to pay attention and do something!
Is the source of the depressive feelings internal or external?
At a deep fundamental level we have a choice, we can be at the affect of the world or we can (mostly) choose our attitude in any given moment. Why is it that some people have terrible things happen to them and they just shrug, smile and get on with their lives, whilst other people are emotionally immobilised from the smallest of events?
There is a term in psychology called the Locus of Control which classifies how people respond to life, those who feel that they are in control of their life and their emotions are said to have an internal locus of control, they choose what they want to do, they can say yes or no without to
Depression at a cellular level
Our cells do adapt to our most prevalent emotions and chemicals in our body, so, over time people who are experiencing depressive moods have cells that have less receptors to accept the “feel good” chemicals. The good news is that as you change the way you manage your emotions and thoughts, the cells slowly change back to have more receptors for the good chemicals and less for the unhappy chemicals.
Motivating yourself even though you don’t feel like it – yet..
The Calmness In Mind Anxiety & OCD Recovery Program – although this product is primarily aimed at anxiety, often, people who are depressed have passed through anxiety on the way to depression, therefore, it is important that as they recover from depression they don’t fall back in to the anxiousness trap and start the whole cycle off again.
This product teaches you what is happening biologically within you and teaches you new ways the think, feel and behave that will slowly alleviate the depressive feelings and instigate more motivation. But remember, currently your feelings are depressed (both good and bad feelings) and as your emotions recover good things will begin to feel good again – note that, your bad feelings will also increase too, this means you will have to address the things that really need sorting out in your life – this product guides you through making some profound changes in who you think you are and how you can change.
You can sit around feeling depressed or you could do this course whilst you sit around feeling depressed? It’s up to you really, don’t wait for motivation (it doesn’t work that way) motivation comes from activity!