Why We Need to Think Differently About Depression and Anxiety
Depression is an enormous problem all around the world. Globally, more than 300 million people of all ages suffer from it, according to the World Health Organization. Some say it’s our environment, some say it is technology’s increasingly strong grip on our lives – the theories are many and varied.
Susanna Mittermaier, a qualified psychologist, Being You facilitator and the author of the bestseller Pragmatic Psychology says that we, as a society, need to see depression differently if we are going to help those suffering from it.
“I’ve worked as a psychologist for over a decade and have facilitated Access Consciousness classes for nine years and over that time, I have found that a different view on depression is what is required at this point. If we continue to see it as something people have no choice in, we are only going to make the problem bigger. Embracing choice is what sets people off to a new path. Time to do that which works.”
Susanna has had enormous success with aiding depressive individuals. Here are some of her top tips to help people see a different way of living:
1. Don’t allow your past to determine your future. Your past does not have to be a limitation. It can be a contribution to you to know what changes you would like to create to have a future that works for you
2. Know that you have choice. Don’t let people tell you are a prisoner of your brain chemistry. Things can always be different – whether that means a 10% improvement or a 180-degree turnaround
3. Make a choice. Today. No matter what your life has been so far, no matter what occurred, you have what it takes to change it.
4. Find people who support you. People who do not judge you and are kind to you. Allow their kindness into your world.
5. Examine how much of your sadness belongs to others. Ask yourself, “Does this feeling actually belong to me or did I pick it up from someone else in my life?” It’s more common than you may imagine.
6. Learn to trust yourself. If you’ve been depressed for a long time you may have lost sight of how to employ your intuition. Play with the idea of heaviness and lightness when contemplating thoughts and situations. If it feels heavy to you it’s potentially not true. If it has a lightness and ease, it’s probably right. Overanalyzing and judging yourself all the time is exhausting – try and feel things on a gut level rather than all up in your head.
7. Put some thought into who you actually want to be. And who you are when you’re not trying to please – or be liked – by family, friends, teachers, workmates or others. There’s an enormous sense of internal calm that comes with being yourself and not fighting the tide trying to be someone else all the time.
Read her book Pragmatic Psychology