Tag Archives: Depression

Overcoming Depression

Identifying Depression

Biblical Counseling Resources

Before overcoming depression, it must be identified. Depression, like most mental illness, runs the gamut of severity. It can be mild or major. It can last from weeks to months. It can involve anxiety symptoms as well. Depression is primarily characterized by sadness and/or loss of pleasure in nearly all activities. Additionally, there may be symptoms such as changes in appetite, sleep patterns, and psychomotor activity (changes in both mental and physical responsiveness and/or activity).

A depressed person may struggle with feelings of low self worth, recurrent thoughts of dying, as well as difficulty concentrating or making decisions.  In children and adolescents the mood is often manifested as irritability rather than sadness. Some people may deny having feelings of sadness; instead they may report feeling numb or having no feelings at all.

Taking Action

First, it is important to look at how severely one’s functioning may be impaired. If the person’s level of functioning has been significantly impaired, i.e. they are having difficulty performing their daily routine, seek professional help immediately. A trip to the family doctor to rule out any medical conditions that might be causing the mood disorder is a good place to start.

Second, assess whether there have been any significant changes in circumstances, relationships etc. that may be contributing to the depression.

Third, if your loved one indicates they have a plan or intentions to harm themselves, take action immediately to get help. Call a mental health professional that you have been referred to by a reliable source or check your phone book for community mental health services. You can also call 1-800-784-2433 a suicide prevention hotline. If the threat is imminent, call 911.

Don’t Wait – Get Help

One of the biggest reasons people do not seek help is the shame they feel about having a mental illness. The reality is that our minds are vulnerable to illness just like our bodies. There is no shame in developing the flu or some other medical condition, so why is there with the mind? Those who avoid seeking help because of the shame they feel only languish longer than necessary. Click here To Find a Therapist.

How Counseling Can Help

A counselor can help a person gain perspective about their illness; resolve problems that may be contributing to the depression and assist the person in developing coping skills.

However, in addition to counseling, depending on the severity of the depression, medication may also be a treatment option. You can discuss this with your counselor, who could then refer you to a psychiatrist to prescribe and manage the necessary medication.

Relief is available for difficulties that plague our minds. It is truly the wise that seek out the help, wisdom and counsel of those whom God has equipped to facilitate the healing of the mind. For biblical counseling tools click here.

 

Depression Help is Available

depression

Depression help from the book of Ruth

Depression is a state of despair in which people feel they have no hope. Along with feelings of hopelessness people who are depressed may also experience a host of other symptoms…

As we examine the book of Ruth you will learn several principles that can help you manage your depression. If you are unfamiliar with the book of Ruth you can find it by clicking here.

We need to associate with emotionally healthy people

We need people. God created us as social creatures. And although some of us are introverts and some of us are extroverts…we all need to associate with emotionally healthy people. For depression help, associating with emotionally healthy people will help you maintain your own emotional health.

However, if you are depressed, you may feel like withdrawing from people. That’s what Naomi did. She began pulling away from her loved ones. After the death of her husband and 2 sons, she urged her daughters-in-law to remain in Moab while she went back to Bethlehem alone. Naomi fixed her eyes on her circumstances which were pretty grim…After all she had lost her husband, her sons, and most likely her dreams…

Depression will distort your perception of truth

Naomi mistakenly put her faith in her feelings. She had forgotten the promises of God. Her despair was so great it clouded her mind and her ability to see truth. You must remember depression is a powerful mood…it can and will distort your perception of truth…that’s why you need healthy people around you for depression help…

Naomi tried to push Ruth her daughter-in-law away. But praise the Lord, Ruth would not take “No” for an answer. She knew what God was calling her to do…among other things, she was providing depression help for Naomi. Ruth was an expression of God’s faithfulness to Naomi…Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. (Deuteronomy 31:6)

If you are depressed, remember it is likely you won’t feel like socializing…but spending time with people who care is one of the best depression help things you can do for yourself. Don’t miss God’s faithful provision to you through His people.

Don’t be deceived

If you are depressed, you are in emotional pain. You may feel you have no more energy to perform for others. The effort to put on the happy face for appearances is just too much. Additionally, there may be feelings of shame…You may even contemplate, “what would people think if they knew I was depressed?”

Getting depression help means we must not let the depression trap us in a web of denial and secrecy. Depression lies to us…don’t let it keep you in chains.

Acknowledge your feelings

Naomi and Ruth were both vocal about their feelings. They not only spoke their feelings to one another, they gave full expression to their feelings by weeping together. Acknowledging our deepest feelings of hurt, resentment, bitterness and despair is to allow the light of God’s truth to shine on these previously hidden parts of ourselves.

When you allow the light to shine in those dark and secret places of your soul…you will begin to find freedom. Often people have a sense of feeling weak and ashamed about their private thoughts and feelings. However, when these things are exposed to the light through confession to a trustworthy friend, spiritual leader or professional counselor several things can occur…

  • If there is a lie embedded in that feeling it can be exposed and dealt with
  • You can be affirmed and validated in your feelings
  • Friends will know better how to respond or minister to you
  • You can begin to deal with your depression in a fruitful way

When we suppress or deny our feelings it is like garbage sitting at the bottom of our trash can that begins to stink. Leaving our feelings to rot in our soul only causes us to feel worse…and everybody around us.

Click here to glean more valuable lessons on depression self help from the book of Ruth.

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