“Help is on the way!”

 

Learning some creative ways   to deal with depression, based on one’s  own personal experiences utilizing the   power of the Twelve Steps of Depressed Anonymous.  Our program is modeled after  the recovery program of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Many times a person depressed will look for help from our website,  hoping that we have something that will give them relief and present for them  a positive solution.  We  do our best to help them with our solution focused approach to overcoming depression. Most are thankful to know that we are here and have developed various avenues for one’s own  recovery from depression.

To understand who we are and what we do, we always advise that the seeker read each   of the items listed on our website menu. We also  point them to past issues of our published  Newsletters in the Newsletter Archives.

Our readers are treated to timely posts at our website  center (www.depressedanon.cm) which include those topics which are most helpful to a person depressed as well as for one’s family members and friends.

Recently, we initiated an ongoing program of recovery for those persons who would like to start their own Depressed Anonymous group This program is one in which our DA members (SPONSORS) work collaboratively with those who choose this HOME STUDY PROGRAM OF RECOVERY.  The program enables the person desirous of learning more about depression and their own unique experiences,  to  communicate with their sponsor  by email. The participant   answers  questions from the Depressed Anonymous Workbook and reading  from the Basic text of Depressed Anonymous.    Each of the Twelve Steps is    reflected upon as it relates  to one’s life past and present. The participant’s responses are then emailed to the sponsor and a return mail by the sponsor  answers   those questions which the participant may have during the  course study of  their ongoing Home Study  Program. The best part of the Home Study is that you can go at your own pace and  get feedback from someone who has lived the program in their daily life!

If you choose to start a group that is entirely up to you and there is no obligation to initiate a group in your locality.

So there you have it. You may discover  things about yourself that you never know existed. And  whatever questions you might have about the origins of your own experience may come to light during this program. The best answers are there in your own life experiences and your taking the time to reflect upon them by using the DA WORKBOOK and the DA BASIC TEXT.

A participant will need the two books  mentioned above for the program of Home Study and these are used in the group program.  You can purchase both books as a unit   from the Depressed Anonymous Publications Bookstore as well as purchase the books as eBooks from the Depressed Anonymous  Publications Bookstore onsite at www.depressedanon.com.

If for whatever reason you are financially  unable to purchase these  books, please send me  an email (depanon@netpenny.net)   and we will contact you privately about the matter.  Our main concern is to get these positive materials in the hands of those who want a way out of the prison of depression.

For an explanation of the HOMNE STUDY PROGRAM in more detail please click onto the Website Menu and click onto the drop down menu labeled HOME STUDY PROGRAM.

 

 

I am able to beat loneliness by repeatedly being with other people in recovery or by doing the Home Study* program with my sponsor.

A HIGHER THOUGHT FOR YOUR DAY

AFFIRMATION

“I’m sure many sufferer’s could find a lot of comfort and support by coming into a group as I’ve done, to help beat the terrible loneliness which is felt by many and who find lasting friendship with lovely people.”

CLARIFICATION OF THOUGHT

In the group, I established myself and got some positive feednback from others who watched me grow and have seen the genuine changes I make personally. I am gradually throwing off my personal way with sadness. The real support comes when I begin to learn that members of the group have the same problem that I have. That helps me trust others with the story of my life. These people are the ones who want to hear my story of how depression cost me my life.  Now, my life is freeing me from my need to sad myself.

I feel more able to attach myself to the group now that I know that they are struggling with the same depression that I struggle with. I no longer have to fight this battle on my own.

MEDITATION AND BEING MINDFUL OF A HIGHER POWER

God, you are our rock and our refuge, on you I place my trust. We know and  believe, easier now than before, that God has something good in store for me today. (Personal comment).

SOURCE:  Higher thoughts for down days: 365 daily thoughts and meditations for members of 12 Step fellowship groups. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.  April 26. Pages 84-85.

*HOME STUDY PROGRAM, is an individual approach to a STEP study  program when no  Depressed Anonymous group program is available in one’s community. The participant is helped in working the steps by utilizing the help of a sponsor. The sponsor leads the individual through all the steps using the Depressed Anonymous Manual, 3rd edition as well as coordinating this work with the Depressed Anonymous Workbook. By means of emails the sponsor and participant communicate with each other on  a regular basis.

For more information in how to set up this HOME STUDY program please click onto the Depressed Anonymous Publications Bookstore. Or contact us at depanon@netpenny.net for how you can be part of this individualized study.

The Home Study material  can be ordered online.

 

When I am “powerless” I feel out of control.

 

During my depression   I was “powerless“.  I no longer had the ability to bounce back from my ongoing ruminations about how bad I felt. The more that I tried to figure out why I was feeling so bad and horrible,  the intensity  deepened. The more that my thoughts circled around in my head the more despair I felt.  I felt hopeless. All I was able to do was lay down and sleep, hoping against hope that my anxiety and fear would disappear. But no, they only intensified my despair. I knew that I had to do something. I had to get my body in motion. I had to talk to someone. I had to DO something besides sit at home and think, think and think some more.

I gradually discovered that my  thoughts produce feelings, feelings produce moods and my  moods produce behaviors. In my case. the behavior was to do nothing, The one thing that I did do, was to begin to isolate from family and friends. This deepened my anxiety and frustration. I knew about talking with someone and so I contacted a friend who was in another 12 Step fellowship. We call these friends sponsors. And so it was in talking with a sponsor that I gradually dug myself out of the hole that I was in. I quit digging.

Today, at the present we have some persons who have decided to do something about their depression and pain–they have begun to participate in our HOME STUDY PROGRAM of recovery. This program is a one to one relationship with a sponsor. All one has to do is sign up  and contact us here at depressedanon.com. There are no fees or dues just a willingness to learn all they can about depression and their  own depression experience,   while  utilizing both  the Depressed Anonymous Manual and the Depressed Anonymous Workbook. Both can be found by clicking onto the Depressed Anonymous Publications Bookstore here at this website.

For more information as to how this Home Study works, please read more at Newsletters, the Antidepressant Tablet. You can read how Kim found us on her computer and is now engaged  in getting herself free of the shackles of depression.

She is longer powerless.

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+++For more information please contact me at  depanon@netpenny.net.

Moving to a new home means packing, unpacking, and packing up things we no longer need or want.

 

There is a strange but real similarity with moving from one place to another with the packing up and unpacking that  is involved. The same holds true for our lives. We packed  habits of thinking, feeling and behaving from early childhood into our adult lives.  It is no surprise to us then and now that certain habitual modes of behavior and thinking have got us to a place where we either hit an emotional wall or we reflect that something in our lives has to change.  It’s time to pack up stuff in our lives that no longer work for us and discard all the extra baggage. It might be painful to rid ourselves of the stuff that has been such a part of our daily lives, but now we see that  it is time to take a closer look. It’s time to dig up and plant something new that will carry us along with a hope and a feeling of freedom as we continue throwing over board the extra weight (emotional and physical) as we continue on our journey in life.

For my own life I gradually found a way to unpack stuff that had me imprisoned and bound up without hope of ever being free of the shackles. Don’t get me wrong, packing  and unpacking certain areas of our life is not an easy thing to accomplish.  It takes time and work. Today I am still unpacking. With work, time and prayerful reflections on my changed thinking, feeling and behaviors I came to the conclusion that with help I could at least get through one 24 period at a time. And this is the point of my writing this piece today. I am pleased to say that it was when I first was introduced to the 12 spiritual principles of recovery with the tools which these principles provided, I now had a plan, a path, on how to live with hope and serenity.  I feel lighter as I reflected upon what I need to let go of.  I learned what exactly I needed to let go of.

It was after reading the literature of a 12 step program dedicated to help with my addiction that I gradually was  learning   more about me. I found what worked for me.   It was in the  Big Book, as it is called,  and written by Bill W., and Bob S.,the co-founders of AA..  There were questions in this book that helped me unpack those areas of my life that needed to be thrown overboard.

In the past years, when not everyone had the opportunity to join a Depressed Anonymous group in their locality, our Publisher Depressed Anonymous Publications decided to offer a HOME STUDY KIT where a person could begin to learn more about themselves by using the Home Study Kit. This includes the Big Book of our fellowship Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition (2011) and the Depressed Anonymous Workbook (2002) –both published by our publisher (DAP). Starting in November,  I will be offering those persons who want a guide to help them with  the Question and Answer part of the Kit, the DA Workbook, which is coordinated with each  chapter of the companion volume   Depressed Anonymous.

Through the years,  persons who have used this method of recovery, have found it has changed their lives. And this, without a group. When I founded this group in 1985 I knew that each persons depression really was unique even though it had many similarities with others depression experience. So with  our Home Study program your own unique experiences can be examined and reflected upon. This is how the healing can begin for you.

I can take only ten persons initially to start this online Home Study program,  which has been  successful  for those who utilize its process. Soon our program will be published in Spanish, as it has already been published in other languages.  One of the fellowship who lives in another region of the world has just written and shared how she feels the program has changed her for the better. I agreed with her that I have seen a change in her thinking and feelings toward herself as she continues to answer questions from the workbook that has enlightened her about her own life. . It’s as she has had a spiritual awakening. A realization that she is not alone.

So, if anyone is interested in a long distance Home Study approach, by email, then you might find it particularly useful. The whole process will be done via our emails. It will be strictly confidential and I will work with any  person who wants to find a way out of depression.   Basically our work will enable us to clarify our thinking about ourselves and help us formulate strategies for gaining back our freedom to be whom we want to be.

We will start our HS program on November 15th, 2017.  If you are serious about committing yourself to this self study then please contact me here at our website or email me at depanon@netpenny.net.

You may find this individual effort challenging as  I was, but in time and with work and the interaction with a sponsor–you will be happy you did. You will learn how to unpack those areas of your life which have kept you imprisoned.  This time you will be living with hope.

I am looking forward to hearing from you. Reading the Depressed Anonymous  literature, which I might add,  has been written by those persons who have been depressed and are now depression free and in recovery will be a great benefit to you and your daily living.  More information will be coming on this BLOG tomorrow.

Please click onto our literature store and discover more about the Manual and the Workbook which will be used for our Home Study program.  I hope that you will be joining us soon.

With gratitude, for the fellowship,

Hugh S

 

 

 

 

How do people change?

People change by facing themselves and discovering a process, a step by step process, where we begin to be aware of why we are the way we are. In THE  DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS WORKBOOK, a companion volume to DEPRESSED ANONMYMOUS,  3rd edition, (HOME STUDY PROGRAM)  we  will  find  answers on how to change.

We learn that depression distorted us from the truths of life, namely, that life is to be lived with hope and serenity. Nursing along a good habit can in time wean us from old and debilitating  habits of thought and behavior. We want to daily fill our day with the gratitude that we are indeed getting better and that the trust we have is indeed placed in the Higher Power.

In order for us to escape depression we need to begin to be aware of the process of how people change. That process is of a nature a spiral instead of a straight line. In other words, now we are willing to risk feeling differently and we have been gearing up to improve our situation. In other words we are making a very important decision right now about our lives.

 

  1. AWARENESS STAGE: We become conscious that we can’t go on feeling the way we do. Something has to give.
  2. MOTIVATING STAGE: I am going to prepare  myself for needed changes in my thinking, acting and feeling.
  3. DOING STAGE:   I am going to take charge and be responsible for positive changed that have to be made by me if I am to feel differently.
  4. MAINTAINING STAGE: I will continue to seek out and sustain my recovery with people, concepts and my personal working of the 12 Step program for recovery.

Now apply these  four stages which serve as antidotes to our character defects (ideas and habits which continue to make us feel sad). These defects of character cause us to stay imprisoned in our prison of depression.

In the days to follow we will examine  THE FOLLOWING THREE  issues which confront the daily lives of most of us when we are depressed.

(1) BLAMING ourselves and/or others for our problems.

(2) BEING A VICTIM.

(3) ANXIETY AND INNER JITTERINESS.

For those of you who desire a more complete approach to finding what depression is, what it does to our self esteem and ways to overcome our isolation and sadness, persons  depressed  have utilized the HOME STUDY PROGRAM.

THE DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS WORBOOK, with its question and answer format,  provides a pathway leading  to the road to serenity and community. You find that others just like yourself started where you are starting and found answers to why we have become depressed in the first place.  By the time you have worked out answers to all the questions posed by the author in the WORKBOOK you may discover your best self. And, isn’t that what we all are looking for?

With the WORKBOOK, there is the DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS Big Book, 3rd edition., which is coordinated with each Step in the WORKBOOK and provides a recovery process which will complement one’s own progress in working the program

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SOURCES:  (c)Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

(c) The Depressed Anonymous Workbook. (2002) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

VISIT THE STORE, which lists all literature from DAP.,  and order online if you wish, the HOME STUDY PROGRAM.

Depression gradually dies in the light of…

The following is an  excerpt from the Depressed Anonymous Publication,  Believing is seeing: 15 ways to leave the prison of depression. 

The SEVENTH WAY  on how to leave the prison of depression.

Today is all that we have. Don’t let dwelling on yesterday’s hurts and fears about tomorrow, rob you of peace today. Contrary to what you might have thought -you are responsible for how you think and feel. I want to be responsible for my depression even though I feel it’s difficult to face the fact that one of the ways of getting out of my depression is to stay and feel the pain of my sadness. I have to live in the here and the now – I can’t run and hide in the unknown of tomorrow or disappear into the gloomy fog of yesterday. We begin to get mentally healthy when we take it upon  ourselves to admit 1) I have a problem, 2) secondly, I need to change the  way I think about myself and my world. Again, no one need blame us for the fact that we got ourselves depressed -but once we know and believe that we are depressed – we learn that we need to take full responsibility for our recovery. One of the best ways to break our dependency on our sadness is to share/admit our depression to members of our Depressed Anonymous groups.  We know how depression flourishes and grows strong in the privacy  and solitude of our minds. Depression gradually dies in the light of open sharing and frank discussion. We are only as weak as the secrets we keep.”

SOURCES:  Copyright(c) Believing is seeing: 15 ways to leave the prison of depression.(2014) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Pages 36-41.

   HOME STUDY PROGRAM: (c) Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition.(2011) DAP. Louisville.  Plus (c)  The Depressed Anonymous Workbook.(2002) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

Please VISIT THE STORE for more helpful information  on ways  to leave the prison of depression

“We can feel a change happening…”

THE FIFTH WAY OUT OF THE PRISON OF DEPRESSION: AN EXCERPT

“Remember that an oak tree was once an acorn –recovery begins by taking one step at a time as well as reading DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS literature and regularly participating in the meetings.”

How often do we meet people in the program who want the quick fix, the easy way out, the feeling getter -now! But just as it might have taken years for the person to learn how to get themselves  depressed, it will take time and work to start to feel better. I do believe that all good growth in nature is gradual and that if we want the good growth to continue, we need to follow certain steps  to make sure this growth will continue. One of the first things that we want to do is to admit, like any  thing, person or substance to which we are attached/addicted to,  which we cannot free ourselves from the attachment by will power alone. We ask our Higher Power, this  power greater than ourselves, to free  us. We begin our recovery by meeting with our local Depressed Anonymous group and admit by our presence that we want to change.  We are dissatisfied where we are now and decide to work on ourselves so that we will feel better. By our taking one step at a time we can feel a change happening. Many people have  been depressed for years-they are in so much pain that they want relief now. The members of the group are taking full responsibility for their feelings, moods and behavior.

If you want some inspiring stories of persons who have freed themselves from the deadly grip of depression and isolation, please read their stories  in DEPRESSED ANONYNMOUS, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Pages 110-152.

THE  HOME STUDY PROGRAM: Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition is combined with another publication The Depressed Anonymous Workbook (2002). These two separate publications provide an individual with an opportunity to further their recovery on their own, with the possibility of getting a Depressed Anonymous  mutual aid group started in their own community. The best help for ourselves is in helping others.

Please VISIT THE STORE to discover  a plentiful resource for books dealing with depression and our 12 Step recovery program, Depressed Anonymous.

 

 

Tom had a problem.

“Tom asked why we needed Step Four in our recovery which states that “we made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.”  He said that he was depressed and didn’t need anything else to make him feel worse – like dredging up things that he might have done in the past. Why, Tom wondered, should he resurrect old ghosts?  Anyway, when we spoke about a moral inventory it reminded him of religion with its “do’s and  “don’ts ” with special emphasis on the “don’ts.”  Tom said he came into Depressed Anonymous to learn about what was making him depressed and that he didn’t need anything else to make him feel guilty or sadder.

Some people think that for a person to dredge up old hurts and wrongs will make them that much more depressed. I guess it depends on what type of stuff we put on our inventory. The following list will help  our sadness persist: our perfectionism, our need to control our fears, guilt, shame or resentments, dishonesty, selfishness, passivity, anger, indecisiveness,  fear of change or finally the inability to live with uncertainty. When we begin to ask God for help in removing these areas from our live, this asking for help  will not make us more depressed – it will in fact make us more hopeful. In Step Three we said we make a decision. This means just that and not just a promise as it says in the Alcoholics Anonymous Big Book.  When we begin to surrender our will and our life to the Higher Power and are willing to expose our  effects to others in the group, it is then that our life may be able to take on a peace coupled with new purpose. This really is an essential and necessary step that has to be taken if we want to leave our prison  of depression behind.”  SOURCE: Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Page 53.

In our Depressed Anonymous Workbook, which coordinates each of the Twelve Steps, with its questions and answers coordinated with the individual Twelve  Step commentaries in the Depressed Anonymous big book, we can  discover who we are and  how we became the way we are.

Here we can deepen our awareness of what makes us who we are by continuing our search by means of those questions put forward in our Depressed Anonymous Workbook. Because of the essential nature of the inventory procedure as outlined in our personal recovery program, an individual will see  that their own openness to the process will provide  them with a wealth of hope and serenity.

Working the 4th Step is like coming home a different  route.  It is a path that is filled with signposts that point us in a  different direction than where we are used to going. And for many of us this is in a different direction than where we are used to going. And for many of us this is the first time that we are really intent upon taking a good hard look at who we are. This taking inventory of ourselves has much to do with our loving ourselves and making ourselves open to a new path and feeling different.” The Depressed Anonymous Workbook, (2002). Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.  The 4th Step, Page 24.

–For more information on this Group/Home Study Kit and how to order it, please VISIT THE STORE.  Both Workbook and the Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition, comprise our Study Kit. One can order all literature online.

MORE TOMORROW ABOUT THE 4TH STEP.

Stick to the plan!

Stick to the plan!  This is especially relevant for those of us who  try and live one day at a time.  I have found that by doing the same thing everyday, and in the same place everyday, that this in itself will provide the incentive to keep doing   the next right thing.  Doing the next right thing  will be the motivating power to get moving on our own recovery.  For many of us, we have found  that we have an established plan for our recovery in the HOME STUDY PROGRAM. Without a doubt, I have found that once we have felt a strong need to move out of the isolating deadness of depression, we no longer have to wait for something to happen, be that with  a prescribed medication or a twice a month or monthly therapy visit.  What do we do in the meantime with all this pain? What do we do til the medications kick in? Everyone knows that nothing happens over night. But something can happen  when we  do the same thing over and over again, every day,  Once we commit ourselves to the belief that something good can happen, especially with a concrete plan laid out before us, then change can happen. I know. Been there done that.

The Fellowship of Depressed Anonymous has developed an excellent toolkit for those of us who want a daily plan — a way to take our recovery a step at a time. We no longer have to wait to see if something happens, either with a medication or a therapy session. Don’t get me wrong, these are all possible routes to recovery, but why not do something that works in the meantime? There is a way out and the HOME STUDY PROGRAM provides just the right tools to give us insights as to how we got where we are today, namely depressed, and then provides ongoing insights for leaving our depression behind.

The two great resources in our “toolbox” is the Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition manual. This is the book written by those of us who were depressed and who wrote out our own reflections for each one of the 12 Steps. This exercise took 12 weeks of discussion by our  newly formed Depressed Anonymous group –no psychobabble here –just people like you and me sharing how the Steps had freed us from the bondage of isolation and despair.

Because not everyone was able to have a Depressed Anonymous fellowship in their community we saw a critical need for this Depressed Anonymous program of recovery to be used by any and all who were committed to leaving the prison of their depression. It was later that we developed The Depressed Anonymous Workbook that is used in conjunction with the DA Manual. So that is how the HOME STUDY kit  was developed. A person, possibly like yourself, can utilize a daily plan of action not only to help understand the nature of the depression process  but it likewise can help you answer questions about your own experiences. The two works, in combination, will enable you to clarify your own thoughts about how you got where you are today and then using the Steps to get where you want to be — depression free. Let’s be honest here, we all know that if we want to get out of the depression isolation it will take work and time.

To find out more about a program that works please visit the store and find out how to order this “toolkit” of recovery. You might also want to check our website to see if there is a group near you.

Stick to the plan! Do the next right thing. Get involved in your own recovery. You can do it. Just do it!

SOURCES:  Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition.(2011) Depressed Anonymous  Publications.  Louisville.

The Depressed Anonymous Workbook. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

Believing is seeing: 15 ways to leave the prison of depression. (2015) Depressed Anonymous

Publications Louisville.

The solution-focused journey out of depression.

Solution-focused is not only a description of a particular type of therapy but is likewise an apt description of the work that is done when one becomes  a member of the Depressed Anonymous fellowship. The Twelve Steps of Depressed Anonymous present to those still “suffering from depression” positive solutions for the overcoming of their own feelings of worthlessness and despair.

By using the Steps you can begin to take the journey that will change your life, your feelings  and your relationship with the world inside yourself as well as the world in which you live.

Step Twelve  tells us that  “Having had  a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to the depressed,  and to practice these principles in all of our affairs.”

And, that is why we do what we do. Now that we have admitted we had a problem, turned our life over to something bigger than ourselves,  cleared away the rubbish of lives that kept  us imprisoned  (fears, guilt, isolation), we gained a freedom to live everyday in the solution of hope and serenity.

Try the solution! See if our program will work for you. It’s already restored thousands of lives and families.

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VISIT the STORE and check out the HOME STUDY PROGRAM, and order it today.    The solution-focused program consists of The DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS WORKBOOK,(2001), and  DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS, 3rd edition. (2011).Both books  and all our literature is written by those of us who have been depressed and who  now live a daily life of hope.

All we have to lose is our misery!