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Meditation and Mood Disorders

Posted by on Jul 25, 2014 in Bipolar Help, Blog, contemplative, Depression Help, Supervision and Consultation | Comments Off on Meditation and Mood Disorders

Meditation and Mood Disorders

    Meditation and mindfulness in depression recovery “I’ve tried to meditate but I just can’t stop my mind,” says Jack when I ask him about his experience with meditation and relaxation. Jack is working with a mood disorder and is considering practices that may help with stability. I hear this response with some regularity and it makes me wish I could run out and do a “And Now You Know” public service announcement. There is no requirement to stop your thoughts when you meditate. The human mind produces thoughts. Sometimes many,...

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Why Can’t They Understand that I am Depressed?

Posted by on Apr 11, 2014 in Bipolar Help, Blog, Depression Help | Comments Off on Why Can’t They Understand that I am Depressed?

Why Can’t They Understand that I am Depressed?

Depressive symptoms and mood changes are tough territory to work with. It would be great if everyone had the support of important others who understood. Unfortunately it doesn’t always happen that way. Gina came into my office and slumped into the chair. “I’ve had it. They just don’t get it. I can’t believe my friends. They know how hard I’ve worked to feel better, to get a handle on this depression thing. But they still want me to stay up late, have a beer. When I try to explain, they tell me I’m no fun anymore. When I tell them how it feels...

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I Don’t Want to Talk About It : Male Depression and Overcoming the Secret Legacy of

Posted by on Apr 11, 2014 in Bipolar Help, Blog, Depression Help | Comments Off on I Don’t Want to Talk About It : Male Depression and Overcoming the Secret Legacy of

I Don’t Want to Talk About It : Male Depression and Overcoming the Secret Legacy of

I Don’t Want to Talk About It Overcoming the Secret Legacy of Male Depression This is the title of a book on male depression that was published by Terrence Real in 1997. It was a bestseller. Real did a superb job of chronicling his journey and the journey of other men. He explores and explains the “covert depression” that men can suffer from. The depression that may be more evident in behavior and self medicating than in a treatment setting. Real’s book continues to be highly relevant and highly touching. For those of us in Boulder, a...

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Lovingkindness instead of Self Aggression

Posted by on Mar 13, 2014 in Blog, contemplative, Supervision and Consultation | Comments Off on Lovingkindness instead of Self Aggression

Lovingkindness instead of Self Aggression

In my 20’s I lived in a community household of about 30 meditation practitioners. Regular sitting meditation happened after the evening meal. It was not mandatory but encouraged. Because it was our home, a certain casual laziness readily arose. One evening as I was lingering at the dinner table, well aware that the evening sit was beginning, a Buddhist nun who was also living in the community sat down next to me. She smiled at me and said,”Why don’t you be kind to yourself and just go sit.” I thought about it for a moment. I was making...

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Mood disorders: Medication Reminders

Posted by on Feb 15, 2014 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Mood disorders: Medication Reminders

Mood disorders: Medication Reminders

For folks who take medication for mood disorders such as depression (and just about any other condition) there are some important ways to take care of yourself. It is estimated that about 50% of the time medication is not taken as prescribed. If you struggle with this issue know that you are not alone. 1. Who is prescribing?  Did the doctor take a thorough history before prescribing? As you began medication did the doctor monitor you closely and schedule follow up appointments to assess your progress? In other words do you feel your provider...

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Depression Recovery Practice: Working with Negative Thoughts

Posted by on Feb 15, 2014 in Bipolar Help, Depression Help | Comments Off on Depression Recovery Practice: Working with Negative Thoughts

Depression Recovery Practice: Working with Negative Thoughts

                   Working with thoughts – Not taking things personally              Depressed mind produces negative, self referential, semi automatic thoughts. Negative and self referential means the thoughts are some variation of I am bad, inadequate, defective, damaged. Semi automatic means that the thoughts sneak up on us. It is the low murmur from the periphery, not the conscious voice of day to day commentary. These thoughts make us feel bad and feeling bad produces more of these thoughts. This vicious cycle hinders depression...

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Depression and Insomnia: 3 Steps to Creating a Sleep Friendly Space

Posted by on Feb 15, 2014 in Bipolar Help, Blog, Depression Help | Comments Off on Depression and Insomnia: 3 Steps to Creating a Sleep Friendly Space

Depression and Insomnia:  3 Steps to Creating a Sleep Friendly Space

Closing up shop……             At 5:30 it is time for the shoemaker to close up shop. He puts away his tools, wipes off his workbench. Glancing at the shoes he will work on tomorrow, he checks to make sure that his shop is secure and turns out the lights. With a click of the lock he turns his feet, and his thoughts, towards home. Closing up shop. Our brains love this kind of ritual and order. When we want to promote restful sleep we need to be able to “close up shop” and to give ourselves a soft spot in which to rest that feels secure...

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Depression Treatment: Creating Mood Maps

Posted by on Aug 27, 2013 in Bipolar Help, Blog, Depression Help | Comments Off on Depression Treatment: Creating Mood Maps

Depression Treatment: Creating Mood Maps

                    Mood Changes: Looking for Signs The sign reads, “You are now leaving Utah. Welcome to Colorado!”  The map on the front seat of the car and the sign tell us that we are leaving one state and entering another. If only we could have a guide to mood changes that were so clear. People with mood disorders often describe symptoms “sneaking up on them,” something like this: I think I’m okay, don’t feel depressed, just tired, gee my family drives me wild, I wish my coworker would be quiet, OhMyGod – I am depressed. How did...

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Mood Management Skills: Sitting Small

Posted by on Aug 27, 2013 in Bipolar Help, Blog, Depression Help | Comments Off on Mood Management Skills: Sitting Small

Mood Management Skills: Sitting Small

Some rough days may be coming. Paula sits on her couch pulling a pillow to her chest. She makes a mental list: My sleep hasnʼt been so great for about a week. I just want to lay on the couch during the day.                                                                    Iʼm not walking Charlie (her collie). I felt super awkward at the potluck with friends and couldnʼt connect. She feels worried and guilty about all that is not getting done and at the same time wants to watch old sit com reruns for about a year and forget everything. Oh...

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