I offer this 8-week workshop for 6 to 10 people who are depressed. The sessions are held weekly for 1 ½ hours. Every session is divided into ¾ hours of lectures, ½ hours of active guided meditations integrating what you learned, followed by ¼ hours discussion of the trance experience. It is not group therapy: there is no personal disclosure, no cross talk, and no help offered by the participants to each other. Nonetheless, strength in numbers happens, a bond is formed, and modeling and hearing truthful experiences of each other heightens the learning.
Learning to Focus on Happiness
Depression is often called the "common cold of mental illness." However, clinical depression is more than normal sadness or feeling down in the dumps. It is a serious disorder, which disrupts lives and relationships at all levels.
Despite the oversell of drug companies, treatment centers, talk shows, and books that suggest you think of depression as an illness "just like diabetes,” the best evidence to date suggests that for most people depression is not a biologically based disease (you're not born with the disorder). Depression is a learned pattern of complex thoughts and behaviors, unlike bi-polar disorders, which are biologically based. What’s learned can be unlearned. The "disease model” of depression and the value of the anti-depressant medications have been grossly exaggerated. Biology is only a part of the depression story, and at best, anti-depressant medications are only part of the total solution. Research shows that changing the way you think offers the most lasting solution. And if you need medicine, which some people do, combining it with therapy offers the best hope of lasting abatement.
For most people, depression is the result of a hurtful way of interpreting and responding to life experiences. Depression involves an intricate set of projections about yourself, life, the Universe, everything. By projection, I mean the way you interpret and understand the meaning of something that is ambiguous or unclear.
Week 1. The Power of a New Vision of the Future.
An introduction to the symptoms and patterns are reviewed. Then you are taught that it is important to realize that what you think, do, and whom you get involved with now, has consequences in your future, and can cause depression. The active guided meditation then helps you create a new vision of the future. It emphasizes the importance of goals to overcome past and present hurts
Week 2. Life really is ambiguous. Learning to change your interpretations.
A hallmark of depressive reasoning is “all or nothing, black or white, and either–or thinking”. So, if a person received a 95 on an exam, hoping for 100, they say, “I am stupid, a failure. I’ll never get what I want in life.”
Week 3. Less analysis and paralysis: Try Again… but do something different.
Some people say that the definition of crazy is doing the same thing again and again and expecting different results. There is great truth in this statement. Learning how to let go of the past, and your repetitive past reactions, will be the focus of your active guided meditation. It will teach the importance of developing flexibility to learn new skills.
Week 4. What’s in your control and what isn’t.
Learning what you are, and are not, responsible for will help clarify your thoughts and your actions. This will help you resolve and rid yourself of another hallmark of depression; guilt.
Week 5. Life is like art. First you have to draw the line.
Having learned that the only control one has is over themselves, you can learn to set boundaries, and say no to people's requests. This will help stop the feeling of being overwhelmed, used and abused. You will feel good about yourself because you learned to build and maintain self-protective boundaries.
Week 6. Breaking out of the Victim Role!
Not knowing what is expected of a relationship and drawing the line because of it, is very tied into a powerful depressive pattern of people thinking and acting like victims, and becoming depressed because of it.
Week 7. Relationship can bring you pain or pleasure. You are in control of who you allow into your life.
Learning how to pick the people who really fit with you. Superficially, most people act nice, especially in the beginning, but not necessarily once they have you where they want you. This means that you need to be realistic about the fact that about 95% can hurt you in the long run, if they are not like you.
Week 8. Prevention of depression is important to your future happiness.
Now that you have learned how to focus on feeling good, you need to learn how to maintain this feeling. The answer is to think in terms of preventing depression.
For more information on Dr. Albina's 8 week workshop dealing with depression, please call (917) 747-9682 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To sign up for this workshop press here and Dr. Albina will contact you on the particulars for the next one being offered.