Do you struggle with feelings of hopelessness?
Is it getting harder to pretend everything is ok?
Can’t seem to stop being so hard on yourself, finding reasons why you are undeserving of happiness or love? It’s tough to go through each day disconnected from the world. Try as you might to feel attached to others it just keeps getting harder to let people in. Some people who suffer from depression or anxiety find that it also affects other areas of life too, work, relationships and our ability to take care of ourselves or even care.
Are you depressed?
If you experience any of these symptoms, you might be depressed:
- Feelings of helplessness or hopelessness – A feeling that nothing will ever get better and there’s nothing you can do to change it.
- Loss of interest in daily activities – No interest in former hobbies, pastimes and social life.. You’ve lost your ability to feel joy and pleasure.
- Appetite or weight changes – Significant weight loss or weight gain – a change of more than 5% of body weight in one month.
- Sleep changes – Either insomnia, especially waking in the early hours of the morning, or oversleeping.
- Loss of energy – Feeling fatigued, sluggish, and physically drained. Your whole body may feel heavy, and even small tasks are exhausting or take longer to complete.
- Anger or irritability – Feeling agitated, restless, or even violent. Your tolerance level is low, your temper short, and everything and everyone gets on your nerves.
- Self-loathing – Strong feelings of worthlessness or guilt. You harshly criticize yourself for perceived faults and mistakes.
- Reckless behavior – You engage in escapist behavior such as substance abuse, compulsive gambling, reckless driving, or dangerous sports.
- Concentration problems – Trouble focusing, making decisions, or remembering things.
- Unexplained aches and pains – An increase in physical complaints such as headaches, back pain, aching muscles, and stomach pain.
What is depression? Is it sadness?
Sadness is a perfectly normal reaction to life’s struggles, setbacks, and disappointments. Many people use the word “depression” to explain these kinds of feelings, but the symptoms of depression are much more than just sadness. Depression is an overwhelming feeling of despair in spite of everything in your life going right. Some depressed people don’t feel sad at all—they may feel lifeless, empty, and apathetic, or some may even feel angry, aggressive, and restless. Whatever the symptoms, depression is different from normal sadness in that it overwhelms your day-to-day life, interfering with your ability to work, study, eat, sleep, and have fun. The feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, and worthlessness are intense and unrelenting, with little, if any, relief.
The normal ups and downs of life mean that everyone feels sad or down from time to time. But if hopelessness, isolation and despair have taken hold of your life and won’t go away, you may have depression. Depression makes it tough to function and enjoy the things you once did. Just getting through the day can be overwhelming and exhausting. But no matter how hopeless you feel, you can get better. Understanding the signs, symptoms, causes, and treatment of depression is the first step to overcoming the problem.
If you think you might be suffering from depression, you're not alone. I have 20+ years of experience working with all forms of depression and I can help. Using a combination of talk therapy, other therapeutic modalities, mindfulness and coping skills, you can feel good again. Don't let another moment go by. Call or email me today for a free phone consultation.
Lynda Hilburn, LPC, CAC II, CCHt
Licensed Psychotherapist, Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist, Addictions Counselor, Life Coach