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Is it Time to Move on from Self-Help to Self-Management of Depression?

Self-Help Vs Self-Management You probably have heard the term “self-help” and may have also read a few self-help books. When it comes to depression, most self-help books focus on acute treatment of depression based on a particular model of therapy, usually the Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT). While the self-help approach tries to address a particular condition using a focused treatment modality over a short period of time, self-management is learning new ways to manage an illness over a longer period of time. In other words, self-management is using the resources and learning the skills to “positively manage” an illness (Lorig et al., 2006). Self-management, besides treating depression, also prevents relapse of depression and helps an individual maintain good mental health on a day-to-day basis. Lorig and colleagues (2006) further elaborate on self-management: it is a “management style” wherein you are a positive self-manager who not only uses the best treatments provided by healthc…
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Is Depression Pushing You into the Approval Trap?

We all like getting approval and recognition from others. Approval-seeking is good as long as it remains a desire or a want. For example, your boss approves of your work and you feel happy about it. When approval-seeking turns into a need or a necessity, then you become a victim of the “approval trap” that will either make you vulnerable for depression or if you are already feeling depressed, will make your depression worse. If you have low self-esteem, which is not uncommon in depression, and seek approval to give yourself a temporary boost, then you are setting yourself for the “approval trap.” The trap works somewhat like this:Depression causes you to feel worthless → when you get approval from others, you feel better and less worthless → you try to seek more approval → in seeking more approval you do things you don’t want to do to please others and avoid your own needs → others get used to your approval-seeking behavior and stop approving your behavior → you feel treated like a do…

Self-Management of Depression: Why, When and How to say “No” without Guilt

You may have a hard time saying no to other people because you are afraid that you will hurt others, appear selfish, look as if you don’t care, or risk a relationship. You may also want people to like you, especially when depression lowers your self-esteem, and saying no is contrary to your subconscious approval-seeking tendencies. However, depression robs you of energy and motivation to do what others want you to do. You then struggle to accomplish what you have said “yes” to, which drives more guilt. You can break this guilt cycle by learning to say “no.”
Why is it okay to say “no”? Here are a few good reasons why it is okay to say “no”: Accept that you are not a superhuman who can do everything that everyone wants.
Saying “no” doesn’t make you selfish as you have said “yes” several times to several people in the past. By saying “no,” you are only trying to strike a balance between how much responsibility you can and cannot handle.
Pleasing everyone every time by saying “yes” is not hum…

Is Depression Causing You to Have an Analysis Paralysis?

Depression robs you of motivation, slows your thinking, impairs your concentration, and makes you indecisive. Thus, when it comes to putting things into action, your depression can make you go into a state of analysis paralysis wherein you cannot decide on how to implement your plan. 

Common attributes of analysis paralysis are:
You work on solutions to a problem but are overwhelmed by the available options.
You feel you don’t have the “perfect” solution to a problem.
You are afraid of picking up the “wrong” solution.
You overthink about the possible solutions and believe that the problem is too complicated.
You are afraid that you don’t have all the facts to make a decision.
You may never have all the facts and there would always be unknown factors that may impact your decisions. A well-written action plan will help you tide over this analysis paralysis and shift you from an analytic to an action mode. An example of an action plan is in the table below.

Goal Action Steps Resources Potential …