"It's like my brain gets hijacked, and I just can't bring myself to feel good about anything. I keep going through the motions but my heart isn't in it." 

Depression can take many forms - a mild though persistent lack of energy, a deeply paralyzing heaviness,  an "existential despair," or low self-esteem. It can be circumstantial/environmental, biological/chemical, sudden, a slow-burn, ongoing and frequent, or short-lived and a one-time ride. Part of the frustration of depression is that there are no clear and definite answers about how it works or what causes it. It's a complex, highly misunderstood, and unfortunately often stigmatized disorder. More likely than not, there's combination of factors involved and the exact cause is different for everyone. 

Though it certainly doesn't look the same on everyone, here's a list of some fairly common signs and symptoms of depression: 

Fortunately, regardless of the cause, there are many forms of treatment for depression, and research has shown that ongoing therapy can lead to recovery and relapse prevention. Through therapy, you can learn to:

  • Increase sense of hope, gratitude, and optimism 

  • Make peace with yourself and your past

  • Embrace your strengths and core values

  • Create a vision for your future 

  • Feel more grounded and at peace, even in moments of chaos 

  • Be more intentional and engaged within your life and relationships

  • Find meaning in life's setbacks and disappoints

  • Connect with others and relieve loneliness 

  • Be mindful and enjoy the small things in life

  • Improve perspective-taking and metacognition skill

  • Accept yourself and others with compassion 

  • Communicate your needs assertively and effectively

  • Express your feelings through healthy, creative outlets

Depression lies. It binds and gags your intuition and teaches you not to trust yourself. Having a supportive, trusting therapy relationship can make all the difference. Rebel against depression, and get back your true voice. 

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