When we are feeling depressed, we can experience our feeling state like a sink that is blocked with no outlet. Our reactions to events and unwelcome thoughts seem to go round and round, rather than just flowing through our mind. Tubridy and Corry describe depression as a natural response to life’s experiences – and maintain that depression is an emotion and not a disease. Just as we respond to life with feelings of anger, joy, sadness, love and fear – depression is another way in which we respond to life. Depression however doesn’t just come upon us randomly and by chance. Instead it is a defence we build up around ourselves when we feel under threat or in danger. We build up barriers to protect ourselves and these can act as a very effective defence. However, when the time comes to remove the barriers, we may be unable to do so – thus our barriers of protection become our own prison.
Often our Psychological Skin has become too tight or too loose. When too tight we find it difficult to give or to allow others in. We feel the need to control everything ourselves and can’t delegate or trust others. This however leads to feeling isolated and being cut off from growth in our lives. When our skin has become too open, we readily take on the problems and worries of others – often feeling overwhelmed and unable to set boundaries and say no. The optimal situation is to be neither too open nor too closed. Permeable boundaries allow us to open and let in when needed say no when we need to and reserve our energy.
Frequently people who are experiencing depression can feel plagued by tiredness. The constant effort to keep everything under control, to not upset people or to meet the needs of others can all lead to a constant anxiety and despair, which in turn leads to tiredness.
Some ways out of our depression include:
1. Have something positive that you can say to yourself (e.g All will be well, or This too shall pass) or some inspiring music that you can put on when things feel dark and you feel alone. Choose something that works for you
2. Develop the habit of doing at least one enjoyable, pleasant thing for yourself each day.
3. Keep a diary or a journal where you can record inspiring words, valuable insights or special memories. Whenever you feel low, read what you have written.
Counselling can provide a great support to help deal with depression. SouthWest Counselling Centre Killarney provides affordable professional counselling to children, adolescents adults and couples – both at its Killarney Centre (Lewis Road) and at Kenmare Family Centre. firstname.lastname@example.org. Kerry LifeLine provides FREE counselling and support to anyone feeling suicidal or bereaved through suicide. email@example.com To make an appointment call 064 6636416.
SouthWest Counselling Centre is a not-for-profit organization. All funds raised through fundraising go directly to service provision.