Depression is a very common illness and is widespread across the world. Anyone can suffer with low mood and depression and it is not a sign of weakness. The most common symptoms are –
- Low Mood
- Loss of interest
- Less or loss of feeling pleasure and joy
- Lack of motivation
- Low energy
- Poor concentration
- Disturbed sleep
- Feelings of low self worth
- Loss of appetite
- Feelings of guilt
We all feel low from time to time and this can be due to life events, ongoing issues, loss of hope or other environmental factors. When low mood and feelings of depression continue for a significant time where it affects many parts of our lives, then we may need support to help us get back on our feet again.
Low mood can affect every part of our lives and can be a downward spiral. For example, if we’re unable to concentrate or motivate ourselves at work, this can bring feelings of guilt and low self worth which make us feel lower meaning we’re less able to perform as we’d like. This affects our ability to feel motivated and we can feel as though we’re sinking into a hole.
How Counselling and CBT can help
Counselling and CBT can be hugely beneficial and can help by: –
- Providing a non-judgemental space to talk. Talking helps our mind process how we’re feeling which allows us to feel better and view ourselves and world with greater more realistically. Often, distorted thought processes keep us contained in low mood.
- Identifying triggers or elements of our lives that may be influencing our low mood. This can allow us to accept things as they are, which reduces our distress about them or we can find ways to make changes.
- Help in understanding our depression and low mood; where it comes from and how it affects our lives.
- Developing healthier coping mechanisms – We all have our own coping mechanisms and ways of managing our emotions. Some can make things worse for us. Many of your current coping mechanisms will have been with you for years and years and it’s hard to change or to let go of the unhelpful ones.
- Reducing unhelpful thoughts and behaviours that may maintain low mood
- Being aware of root causes – Our feelings about ourselves which influces our mood tends to come from our past experiences. Gaining awareness of this can help us to perceive ourselves more realistically.
- Challenging limiting beliefs – Our life experiences can create maladaptive/unhealthy beliefs about ourselves or our expectations of others. CBT and counselling can help with this.
- Undertaking tasks to encourage healthier behaviours that can lift your mood and esteem.
- Building confidence and resilience – As we talk in counselling, we become more self-aware which helps us build our confidence. As we find ways to cope with our anxiety and face it, this also builds resilience.
Mental health issues are now accepted as being widespread across the world. 1 in 5 adults report symptoms of Depression and the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimate that 264 million people suffer from depression globally. Click here for information about depression from Rethink who are leading UK Mental Health Charity.
Seeking support for depression and low mood takes courage but can be essential to begin to move things forward. You can email, text or telephone and I will answer any questions you may have.
If you’re unsure what to ask or what to say, most often I would receive an email with text like –
‘I’ve been feeling low for some time. Is this something you can help with?’
‘I would like help with low mood, what is you availability?’
‘Where are you based and how much are your fees?’
It’s pretty much impossible to offend me (test this if you wish), so please don’t worry about writing or saying ‘wrong thing’ or if you find it hard to articulate how you’re feeling or what you need. My role is to help You.
Regards Duncan (Quinney)