Monday, June 27, 2011


+ + + FIRST AID KIT + + +

For Depression/Depressive Illness/Primary Affective Disorder/Grief

Factors affecting the above:

Memories-job-past history-losses-weather-environment-neighborhood-stress level- family-culture-country-heritage-traumas-value system-beliefs-biology

1. Is one or more of these factors a prime contributor and can I change it?

2. Is there anything I can do to relieve the pressure.

3. In individual environment, there are 4 aspects of self. All are interconnected. Mental. Emotional. Physical. Behavioral

4. Offering First Aid to one or more of these self-aspects can help reverse the down spiral of depression.

5. Usually, “Thoughts” are where we can intervene first with the most effectiveness. However, intervention in any of the 4 areas has direct effect on other areas. Intervention in all 4 areas at once produces the best success in treating depression.

*   Always helps anyone

PHYSICAL                                                              FEELINGS & MOOD

(Biological)                                                               (Spirituality)

{Shut Down happens}                                              {Hopelessness happens}

*Exercise                                                                   Cry

*Nutrition                                                                   Laugh-get humor library

*Medication                                                               Lighting – bright

*Movement/Play-Work                                              Appreciate Beauty

Pamper & Self-enhancement                              Touch

                                                                                  Feel the Spirit

MENTAL                                                                  BEHAVIORAL

(Thoughts)                                                                 (Activities)

{Depression happens}                                             {Non-functioning happens}

Self-affirmation                                                         Read (Carefully chosen)

Pep Talks                                                                   TV & Movies (Appropriate)

*Gratitude                                                                  *Prayer

Positive Thinking                                                      *Scriptures

“It will work out” attitude                                          Time Management

“The worst is passed” attitude                                   Organize

“Worst Possible” scenario                                         Learn Something new

Eliminate “Stinking thinking”                                     Family History

Remember Good                                             New or re-new Hobbies, Projects

*Reject or change distorted thinking               Animal and Nature Involvement

Determine & plan to improve                             Goal Setting

Realize improvement can be made                           Church Attendance

                                                                          Read Self-help Materials




                                                                                      Gratitude Lists or journals

                                                                                      Mission Statements

Monday, June 20, 2011


There are two points of attack in treating depressive illness- both being necessary for success.
1.      Treat the Body                                   2. Treat the mind (brain)
There are four main areas from which to attack depression.
Support System
            Friends, Church or Community Leaders – Family Members – Health Care Professionals
·         Obtained through appropriate medical services including primary care physician
·         Many, many kinds.  If one doesn’t work, or quits working, work with health care giver for find something that does work.  This can take a long time, but eventually worth it.
·         Medications can cause spiritual numbness or leveling out of peaks and valleys which can preclude some spiritual feelings.  If this is taken into consideration, one learns to have a successful spiritual lifestyle in spite of this.  More on this in another post.
·         Everyone reacts differently to different medications.  Just as it takes some experimenting to get the correct dose and type of blood pressure medication, you need to experiment (under medical care) for the correct type and dose of depression medication.
·         Some Rules of Medicating;
1.      Take Antidepressant medications as in prescription directions, religiously.
2.      Give the medication 4-6 weeks to work before you will see a noticeable effect, unless you are having very bothersome side effects.
3.      Normal side effects, (dry mouth, nausea, sleepiness, or insomnia) usually go away after a few days or weeks of taking medication.
4.      Continue taking medication EVEN IF YOU FEEL BETTER, until the doctor instructs you differently
5.      Do not stop taking your medication without checking with your physician.
6.      Antidepressants are NOT addictive
7.      Continuous treatment for at least 6 months greatly reduces the risk of relapse.
8.      If you have questions about your medication, call your health care provider.
9.      Don’t skip taking medications – even when you feel better.
10.  Show up for all health care appointments.
·         Current treatment often includes cognitive therapy which helps depressed individuals focus on their distorted thought patterns and learn how to break those patterns.
·         Church and Family Services.
·         Spiritually qualified and authorized leaders.
·         Counseling can help you understand your problems and develop ways to work through them.
·         Counseling can give you tools to lessen the effects of diathesis based depression.
·         Make sure you find a counselor or therapist you feel comfortable with.
·         Counseling takes time to work.
·         Short-term counseling or classes can be very effective.
·         Counseling via self-help books can also be very effective.
First Aid Kit  (This is a chart that will follow in another Posting)
Self-Help Books
Spiritual Help
Appropriate Classes
The ultimate responsibility for depression is with the person suffering from depression.  Family members, friends, and professional care givers can support, give advice, empathize, encourage, talk, provide medication, provide information, etc., but each individual is ultimately responsible for getting better.  It is very easy and convenient to blame depression on situations and people, and sometime they are the triggers, but getting better is up to the depressed individual.  No one else can FIX YOU!

Monday, June 13, 2011


The more resilient you are, the better you are able to deal with depression. Generally, resilient people have several of the same seven qualities which tend to cluster in personality types.  One can develop resiliency.
Definition:  The capacity to rebound from hardship.
The stuff from which survivors are made.
Mastering – not suffering- painful memories
Emphasizing the positive – remembering the good – looking for victories instead of victimization
Capacity to withstand hardship – to bounce back
The capacity to rise above adversity by developing skills that expand and ripen into lasting strengths or aspects that help you heal
Seven Skills and Strengths Associated with Resiliency
Insight:  Ability to ask tough questions and give honest answers to yourself
                Understanding, knowing, sensing
Independence:  Drawing boundaries in relationships – keeping emotional and physical distance while satisfying demands of your conscience – non co-dependency
                Separating, disengaging, straying
Relationships:  Intimate and fulfilling ties to people that balance maturely the give and take in a relationship with a minimum of co-dependency
                Attaching, recruiting, connections
Initiative:  Taking charge of and mastering problems, exerting appropriate control, stretching and testing in a demanding task
                Exploring, working, generating
Creativity:  Imposing order, beautify and purpose on the chaos of troubling experiences and painful feelings
                Composing, shaping, playing
Humor:  Find the comic in the tragic, changing perspectives as changing mountains into molehills
                laughing, shaping, playing
Morality:  An informed conscience, a belief in good and evil and how it relates to man
                Serving, valuing, judging

Friday, June 10, 2011


I felt incredibly lucky the day I was able to capture this tree in front of the cloud on the hill in East Canyon.

I assume very cheerful birds live in these darling cheerful birdhouses.

I try to get unique shots.  I liked this one.  My camera brings me lots of joy.

Sunday, June 5, 2011


Since I last wrote in this journal,  I feel much better.  By this time in my life, I have realized that when I’m up – down will follow eventually – but joyfully, when I’m down, UP WILL FOLLOW eventually.  So life is a matter of living in the UPS or waiting for and looking forward to the UPS.  
 So what helped me this week?
·          Exercise.  I did a little more of this. 
·         Blogging – what a surprise.  I have five blogs and they are therapeutic – especially my family history blogs, which would be my other four blogs. 
·         GRATITUDE!  
·         Pain decrease (arthritis). 
·         Not feeling guilty about inactivity.    
·         ?  Weather change?
·         Situational changes
To continue to spiral up – I will add to the above, some cleaning, more meaningful reading, and again this week, I will try harder to change my diet.   I love sugar.  However, Sugar > Increase in Diabetic Symptoms > Increase in Depression.  As I sit here, it seems simple to remedy this situation.  Why is it so hard when I’m out and about. 

The shape of the leaves on this plant always gladdens my heart.  They are small and delicate.

Thursday, June 2, 2011


So I did some serious GRATITUDE THINKING…………..
I’m down 50 pounds from 10 years ago
My depression comes and GOES - so I don't have it all the time.
I can see up a canyon and see beautiful mountains from my street
My relatives, Bob, Stan, Bill, Kirk, Rick and my father have all served our country
My depression isn’t out of control-and each time things seemed insurmountable, something comes along to relieve the results of the current depression – miracles
Occasional new perspectives
New tan skirt – haven’t worn that color much before
Wonderful and Varied neighbors
My granddaughter reminds me so much of my innocent little first child
My husband’s companionship
Tulips in all their varieties
My arthritis isn’t debilitating
Potatoes!  My number one comfort food
The idea of self-confidence instead of self-esteem
My red couch being upstairs
My puss willow lights
Mom’s china and silver
I can do things to influence my own brain chemicals
The advantages of email
Color – color – and more color
I can type