From: Merri Ellen :)
Day 4’s powerful ingredient to cure your depression.
You are well on your way!
Cure-your-depression step 4:
Positive Thinking Strategies
Negative Thinking is the habit that you can easily get into if you suffer from depression. It begins to happen by dwelling on your negative thoughts. Rather than coming up with a solution to a problem and acting on it, you may often find yourself allowing your negative thoughts to spiral out of control. It is important to recognize negative thinking patterns and put a stop to it immediately.
Negative Thinking Patterns only makes your moods worse. When you find yourself doing it, do one of these things: call a friend, exercise, write down the negative thoughts in a journal, or do some other pleasant activity (like knitting, reading, or another hobby). Learn to redirect your attention to more engaging activities.
How To Direct Your Thoughts To Overcome Your Depression
We are what we think!
Negative thinking is so powerful, it can disturb us mentally. Negatively distorted thinking feeds into depression.
Negative thinking is unrealistic and unfair in regards to:
■ your situation
■ your future
Have you stopped to think that the thoughts you have about yourself and those around you could be unrealistic?
Our thinking literally sets a path to who we become.
“Thought, like all potent weapons, is exceedingly dangerous if mishandled. Clear thinking is therefore desirable not only in order to develop the full potentialities of the mind, but also to avoid disaster.”
-Giles St. Aubyn
Your plan is to replace depressive thinking
with realistic thinking.
So does this mean that we have to think positive thoughts all day long?
Do we want to fool ourselves into thinking that nothing bad will ever happen?
Thinking in an unrealistic way, whether positive or negative, causes us to feel and react inappropriately. The aim is to evaluate our lives and ourselves in a realistic manner.
Your goal is to think fair and realistic.
You need to be fair and realistic about yourself (pay attention to good qualities and strengths as well as weaknesses and problems), about your current situation(weigh the positive and negative aspects of your life accurately) and about your future (not exaggerating the likelihood of very negative outcomes).
So, how do you reprogram your thinking?
Thinking is a lot like attitude…
“The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.
Attitude, to me is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company ...a church ...a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past ...we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude ...I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you ...we are in charge of our attitudes.” - Charles Swindoll, author
Question your thoughts and your attitude.
If you're focusing on negative outcomes and aspects, just say: "STOP!" and sit down at your computer or with a piece of paper and say: "I'm concentrating solely on negative outcomes. There are always other possible outcomes and I know I'm not seeing them right now but they are there. WHAT ARE THEY?" And write down other more positive outcomes.
LET YOUR NEGATIVE THOUGHTS
LEAD YOU TO POSITIVE THOUGHTS.
How do you do that?
By asking yourself powerful, state-shifting questions. Questions that the very nature of the answer HAS to be positive. And keep asking them until you uncover an answer:
"How can this help me?"
"What can I do differently?"
"How can I turn this into a better situation?"
"What are some of the ways I can get past this?"
"What can I do that 'the new me' would want to do automatically?"
"What would a Guardian Angel tell me to do?"
WARNING: Do not ask yourself questions starting with "Why?". Why questions get you stuck and don’t empower you to get beyond the negative thinking. Often they just lead to more negative thinking.
At the end of each day, ask yourself…
What 3 things am I thankful for?
Once you have a list of 10 or so major things in your life, why don't you post it on your mirror in the bathroom or beside your bed? This is an excellent reminder.
What good thing(s) did I do today?
Love someone - it doesn't mean romantically. Just love someone and get beyond yourself. Everyone needs to be loved and you may even be loved in return.
“Only a life lived for others is a life worth living.” – Albert Einstein
Journal your emotions:
What am I mad about?
What am I sad about?
What am I scared about?
What am I glad about?
These questions allow you to be honest with yourself and look at the good in yourself. It is there. Don’t let it be crushed by your depression.
If we have never properly been trained or allowed to express our emotions in a healthy way, we are suffering inside when we don't even know it. Our emotional state is causing our depression.
Depression causes you to be self-critical, and recognizing that negative thinking and reprogramming your thinking can give you one more way to beat your depression.
Remind yourself that negative thoughts are the product of your depression. You are not stupid for having them. They are normal during depression.
“Take the first step in faith.
You don't have to see the whole staircase.
Just take the first step.”
– Martin Luther King Jr.
THIS WEEK'S ACTION STEPS:
One Woman's Discovery of The Power of Life Mapping - After going through a death in the family, a death of a college boyfriend, job loss and relationship break up, Joy Meredith discovered a technique she used to put her life back in order. She writes, "we can only transform our lives when we know what they’re already all about. In my journey to transform mine I realized that I was always focusing on one area and was completely oblivious to the others. So I created 'Me Mapping': this way I can literally see my whole life in front of me and take a look at the good, the bad, and the ugly." Click here to learn more.
**Watch for the next ingredient to curing your depression coming to your inbox in a few days.
Carefully take the time to make an effort to start implementing Positive Thinking Strategies.
Remember if altering a person’s behaviour will produce the same beneficial brain changes that can come from medication—without the risks and side effects—then the advantages are obvious.
Here's a sneak peak for the next ingredient...
"You have probably noticed that as you get more depressed, you are less interested in hanging out with friends and family. But, the more you cut yourself off from others, the more depressed you become. It is a vicious cycle. What seems like a good coping strategy actually tends to feed or worsen your depression. You must take careful steps to break this cycle. Here's how to do this..."
There is hope! You are worth it!
To your freedom and to your joy!
Merri Ellen :)
Your Friendly Editor of cure-your-depression.com
Want to jump ahead or compile all this info in a handy guide?
The Simple Truth on Curing Depression - Jump ahead to receive the Step-By-Step, 86 page downloadable instruction guide.
Department Of Psychology, 426 Fraser Hall, 1415 Jayhawk Blvd., University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS 66045-7556
Mental Health Evaluation and Community Consultation Unit of UBC / the Ministry of Health and the Provincial Health Services Authority, Province of British Columbia, Canada. / www.mheccu.ubc.ca/publications