Depression makes the holiday season especially difficult, especially when there’s so much pressure to be happy. Cheesy music blasts through store speakers, telling us that it’s the “Most Wonderful Time of the Year” when depression rarely takes a day off, no matter what the calendar says. Keep reading

A recent article in the New York Times raised some interesting questions about depression, including whether the conventional ways of looking at depression causes are wrong.

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In the past year I’ve met a few people who have very strong views about antidepressants, mostly with the opinion that they are unnecessary for treating depression effectively. It’s easy to start to believe this, as long as I’m on my medication and am feeling positive. I’ve just had three days without one of my antidepressants, however, and I never want to go off it again.
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Thanksgiving is upon us today in the United States and, with it, a call to express gratitude for all that we have. This got me thinking about the relationship between gratitude and depression. Can expressing gratitude help depression?

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A few years ago I attended an information session on depression and heard one of the greatest pieces of advice about depression treatment I’ve ever heard. The therapist said, “No single person or treatment is going to help you get better. It takes a variety of treatments to get you better.”
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Recently I found out that my work duties have been cut back significantly, leaving me feeling lost and also looking for new work. Job loss can be a significant trigger for depression. This has led me to seek out coping skills to deal with this new reality in my life.

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One of depression’s main symptoms is feeling alone, like no one in the world could possibly understand your situation, your pain, or your experience. You feel cut off from other people, like there’s a glass wall between you and the rest of the world. The feeling of being alone can can make you want to isolate yourself from friends, family, and other people who care about us. Isolation feeds depression.

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Lately, I have found myself with some extra free time on my hands. Which isn’t a bad thing, except for the fact that when I have free time I tend to ruminate, and when I tend to ruminate, depressive thoughts and symptoms often come up. This left me searching out new ways to deal with my depression symptoms and discovering writing as an outlet.

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I’m scared for this winter. It’s not simply the vicious cold and the almost daily dump of snow that I’m dreading, but the annual worsening of my depression. While I haven’t been diagnosed with seasonal affective disorder, I know that winter affects my depression symptoms.

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As I continue to recover from a recent depressive episode, I’ve noticed that I’m better able to deal with my inner critic, as well as be more in the present moment. For example, recently, I found myself unsure how to proceed with a project at work. If I had been feeling more depressed, my inner critic would have taken this as an opportunity to try to push me down further. I was able to fight this by being in the present moment. Keep reading