How to Stay One Step Ahead of Mental Depression: Part 1 of 3

In the face of today’s endlessly turbulent economy, it’s too easy for people to get caught up in the general conversation about everything negative in their lives, especially with the holidays coming up. Unfortunately, at the end of 2011, America and the whole world are still drowning in a huge wave of difficult economic conditions, sweeping us into chaos at an alarming rate, making money scarce and credit harder to come by and more expensive. The devastating economic baggage we drag from one year to the next is mounting as people grapple with endless bills as they try to support themselves and their families. Along with phrases like “I’m broke; I fear for my job; business is bad, my unemployment benefits are running out;” you’ll also hear, “I can’t keep up with my car insurance or mortgage payments; I’ve used up my credit cards and I don’t know where to find money!” This bleak scenario leads a large number of people into a state of sheer panic and depression with no hope of a way out. Many Americans also face physical and emotional hardships because they cannot afford medical insurance. There are even people who have lost their coverage due to unemployment.

Not only do people become seriously depressed as a result of their financial desperation, but many also suffer the consequences of divorce, the end of a relationship or the death of a loved one. Seniors are no exception, especially those who have become disabled. They are also in a state of depression because they lose their independence and feel like they are a burden to their children. Each person’s situation is truly genuine and completely different, and the end results are devastating no matter how you look at it. In many homes today, a terrible ominous feeling seems to hang like a black cloud over most people’s lives.

What happens to each of us matters, but more importantly, how we recognize and react to what happens to us says everything about who we are. Adversity suddenly thrust upon us can stir up emotions that have the potential to revolutionize the way we live and relate to others. This article is part 1 of a 3-part series on learning how to manage and overcome depression, regardless of its cause.

Mental depression is not racist, sexist, nor does it discriminate against any religious beliefs, it can consume us all if we let it.

With regard to the current economic climate, the fact is that times are tough no matter what you hear a politician say. You can see it with your eyes, the empty houses, the rising cost of utilities and food as inflation hits. You hear it in the news; unemployment rates and jobless claims continue to rise. You can drive through any city and watch the bread lines get longer and longer. Call it a depression, call it the Great Recession, call it what you will, it stinks, and for the foreseeable future, it’s just our reality.

For good reason, people find it quite difficult to pick up the pieces and move on with their lives. Many people focus on the scene unfolding around them instead of looking within and finding that place of peace, that inner creative power.

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Life is a constant flow of ups and downs. It’s when times are the hardest that we feel so alone, that we feel like bad things are always happening to us, that we feel like we’re being targeted and picked on by an unseen force that controls our destiny, a fate doomed to fail.

When problems overwhelm us, it’s hard to look beyond for a solution. Yet that is exactly what one should do to stay one step ahead of mental depression.

Maybe some of you say, “…stop that preaching lady, get off your pedestal. You can’t be serious! How can you escape mental depression? You don’t even have a clue what me and others like going keep going! It’s not that easy! You’re not in our shoes!”

Believe me, I am not insensitive to your pain or your despair because I know what it is like to go through mental depression. Did that. I’m in pain, I’m crying, and I’ve experienced what you feel too. I know the pain of rejection, divorce, the grief of losing loved ones, the pain of years of physical, emotional and verbal abuse from an alcoholic husband, from a high paying job to cleaning homes and offices to survive. I am familiar with the symptoms of depression, I was physically lethargic, I wanted to sleep my life away, I stopped enjoying the things I used to love. Loneliness, hopelessness, and despair plagued me like a shadow that stole all the light in my life, leading me to seek spiritual and professional support as well.

One thing I’ve learned from all this is that the more we dwell on a difficulty, the more we reinforce it and the harder it is to get out of it, sending us into a state of mental depression. We get so caught up in old negative thought patterns that we have little time or energy left to develop new affirmative patterns. When we reverse our negative view of life and instead learn to see the positive, then we can create a new state of existence called “Peace of Mind”. As a result, we will become a much stronger person no matter what situation we face. The way we think determines the way we live. Remember, like attracts like, it’s the law of attraction. In Part 2 of this three-part series, we’ll look at ways and tips that can help you beat depression.