Our hunches are more right than wrong.

 

We think about the 24 hours ahead when we wake up, and attempt to live the day in honesty and peace. We ask God to  ward off thoughts of self-seeking, dishonesty and false motives.  As Alcoholics  Anonymous says,  with the indecision about something, we then ask God for inspiration and we let go of struggling for an answer. Alcoholics Anonymous says that you will be surprised at how the right answers will come after we have practiced this way of living. It also comes to pass that our hunches are more right than wrong. We also pause throughout the day when we are fearful, puzzled or anxious. We pray  to the Higher Power for which direction to take. I like this suggestion the best when Alcoholics Anonymous says : We constantly remind ourselves that we are no longer running the show, humbly saying to ourselves many times each day “‘Thy will be dome,’ ”  We are then in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry, self-pity, or foolish decisions. We become more efficient. We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly as we did when we were trying to arrange life to suit ourselves.  By coming to the meetings and admitting our addictions, we finally get in touch with those emotions that have all but shut down from an early time in our lives, when to feel hurt too much.  We now have  the chance  to let these feelings get displayed and expressed in the supportive and trusting environment of our newly chosen  family of the Depressed Anonymous group.”

SOURCE:   Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Ky.  Page 101/Step 11.

NOTE: Even though most of us who join the Depressed Anonymous group, do not suffer from alcohol addiction,  Depressed Anonymous is  modeled after the 12  spiritual principles of Alcoholics Anonymous. We have based our  program of recovery on  the 12 steps of recovery and using them on a daily basis. The 12 Steps are now universally used as the basis for a myriad of recovery tools  for those who are trying to free themselves from addictive behaviors and attachments.

 

VISIT THE STORE at the DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS PUBLICATIONS  BOOKSTORE. at www.depressedanon.com. One can order online.

God doesn’t act like gangbusters.

“In Depressed Anonymous, we are exposed constantly to the tough message that we have to give up our self-pity  and sadness if we want to be happy. We have to think in terms of what is possible with God in our lives. Sometimes people come to Depressed Anonymous and don’t want to talk about  God and the Twelve Steps, and can’t understand what this has to do with how bad they feel. If after a number of meetings they still don’t want to work the Twelve Steps, we recommend other groups to them. Depressed Anonymous is a spiritual program and it is allowing the Higher Power into our lives that eventually delivers us from the habit of feeling sad and depressed. We in Depressed Anonymous are committed to working  the Twelve Steps and listening to each other share how God, as we understand God, has worked in our lives….

Jim, a member of Depressed Anonymous admitted that he had seriously thought of taking his own life as he had lost all hope of removing this sadness which, like a cancer, was taking his life by inches. It was only when he had nothing to lose that he made a decision to turn his mind and his will over to the care of God as he understood God. It was at this point that that the God of his understanding or the Higher Power was allowed to work in Jim’s life. God doesn’t act like  gangbusters and force its way into our lives -God has to be invited. Once again there is an invitation from us and we admit our dependence  on God instead of on our own addiction. It is then that our feelings begin to come alive and the flow of God’s love makes its way into our lives. We begin to to find that we are feeling better and that something good as we trust, possibly for the first time,  this God who will give us our heart’s desire. “God grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, the courage to change the things that we can and the wisdom to know the difference. ” Trust God to be God, and let this power help you, as it has helped millions of other men an women before you.”

COPYRIGHT(C) Depressed Anonymous, 3rd ed. Depressed Anonymous Publications Louisville, KY.

 

The total surprise of living.

 

I’ve finally found how to live.  I guess you could say it was pretty much a round -about- way.   Surprisingly, it all came about with my face to face struggle with the dark forces of depression.  Included in these  waves of darkness appeared  the demons of shame, guilt, fear and isolation.  All these foes of serenity and happiness entered through the  door of my life and settled in. I was imprisoned.  It took all my energies to mobilize my will to even get out of bed in the morning.

I reached down deep into my soul and made a commitment to myself and to my wanting to live.  I discovered a “power greater than myself” in a belief that told me that I could free myself from this strong attachment to sadness and despair. I moved my body. I began to force myself to get up and walk. Almost like Jesus telling the man paralyzed from birth to get up, take up his mat and walk.  And that is what I did. I got out of bed and started walking.

Later I realized that I had put a goal into my life. I had a purpose. It wasn’t some grandiose plan to free myself from the demons of fear–it was  a simple action that put meaning in my life. I lived every day  with a purpose to survive whatever had me by the throat.

“I came to believe that a power greater than myself could restore  me to sanity.” That was Step Two of the Twelve Steps of Depressed Anonymous. That was the moment I made a decision to trust that the God of my understanding would give me back my life. This is indeed what happened.

As it states in our  Manual, ” We found God does not make too hard terms with those who speak seek its guidance. To us, the realm of the spirit is broad, roomy, all inclusive, and never exclusive or forbidding to those who earnestly seek it. It is open, we believe to all men and women.

We believe that to be conscious is to have been able first of all to listen to someone or something that expresses God’s desire to free us from the misery as soon as  we are willing to turn our minds and our wills over to it.  Somewhere  along the way, we were convinced that that the only safe way to  make this life bearable and predictable was to  continually sadden ourselves, withdraw into our little shell and make sure that our own small world was completely under our control. It was a perfect little world, this world of ours. It was dark, gloomy and painful, but at least we knew what we had. It is this predictableness that makes life inescapably  hell for all of us, even though we’d rather have this than the total surprise of living.”

Scott Peck, in his best selling book, The Road Less Traveled makes the statement in the first sentence of his book  “That life is unpredictable.”  Yes, life is definitely unpredictable. That is what can make it an adventure of discovery instead of  completely removing all spontaneity  and joy because of our being imprisoned in that small, painful, and ongoing total isolation of depression.

Break free! Push on!  In time you too will live and enjoy the daily adventure of living life.  Be surprised by the daily joys of living life!

SOURCES: Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY. Pg. 97.

Please VISIT THE DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS PUBLICATIONS  BOOKSTORE FOR MORE INFORMATION.

 

I need a manual on how to live life!

The other day I noticed that one of my head lights was out. I thought why spend good money and have a mechanic fix this thing?  I will just find a manual that fits the make and year of my car and do it myself. So that is what I did. It worked perfectly and I saved my self some grief from a mechanic’s bill.

Before this situation I was visiting my mechanic about a problem that I knew I could not fix and so I went into the garage and found him under the hood peering intently into the car’s engine. At the same time, he was  reading carefully from a manual, spread out over the engine  illustrating the engine parts with pictures and text. I thought, wow! just like my wife when she is cooking up a new dish. Her new dish was illustrated with pictures and text,  giving step by step directions for giving her  latest creation new life.  Many times at a 12 Step group meeting how many times that I  felt I needed a manual on how to live life successfully. When you  are born, your Mom didn’t get a manual from the doctor telling her how her  new creation was to live his/her life.

Fast forward to adolescence and young adulthood or even as an older adult in retirement. In the midst of living out our life there may come a time when we are baffled, surprised about a personal condition that we find we have no control. In our mind we try and figure out what is wrong with  us. What is happening to us.  And for the sake of an example, which I personally know best–been there done that–I painfully discovered I was depressed and getting myself deeper into the dark pit as I continued to ruminate   uselessly on what I had and how to escape this terrible pain.  The more I ruminated and worried the more I isolated myself. I wanted to know if  I was losing my mind, had a brain cancer or some new and incurable disease.

Because  I already was a member of another12 Step program of recovery, it was  obvious, that the Big Book of their fellowship, outlined step by step the nature of our illness and gave a detailed program of recovery on how to live with the interminable effects and symptoms of my illness. The manual worked whereas before  I was powerless to get anything to work  for me that could change my life.

And then Depressed Anonymous was founded and I soon discovered there was a manual for this illness that was working for other persons depressed so why couldn’t it work for me. It was depression  that seemed to have me by the throat with its innumerable symptoms.  Just as those who put out cook books with hundreds of   recipes, I found the perfect recipe, or detailed instructions, on how to leave the prison of my depression.    And the best part of this Manual,  Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition, was that there was a group discussion meeting that talked about these helpful and healing instructions.  If you were experiencing depression  these steps would work for any one else as well.

Don’t get me wrong, I do not want you, the reader,  to think we are minimizing the “life threatening “ issues that go with the depression experience by using the mechanic and cook book analogies. But if I had not had access to this Manual with its detailed information on how to get well and to feel better ( by the way–all our material is written by people like me–depressed and in recovery), I probably would have struggled longer and who knows what would have become of me.

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Our recipe for wellness  can be located at The Depressed Anonymous Publications Bookstore. Also go to the Website Menu (depressedanon.com) and check out our  HOME STUDY  PROGRAM. Anyone can use this Manual, Depressed Anonymous  and The Depressed Anonymous Workbook together if a Depressed Anonymous group is not in one’s area.

 

 

“If you want to eat an elephant, the best way to do it is one bite at a time.”

 

The following quotation is taken from our “Big Book” Depressed Anonymous (3rd edition) as it appears on page 95.

“All of us who are substance addicted (compulsivre overeating, alcohol, cocaine, pre- scription medication) or process addicted–addicted to a behavior ( the workaholic, sex, gambling, depression) know that in order to free ourselves from the intoxicating experience, we have to first want to give it up and live without it.  We best do this   one day or one hour at a time. Don’t say you will quit a self-destructive behavior for one year at a time and see how you do. No, trying to live one day at a time is a lot easier.  As someone once said “if you want to eat an elephant, the best way to do it is one day at a time.” We know from past experience that our  sobriety, our disappearance of sadness is due to letting go and admitting my powerlessness over my sadness. It  is turning it over to my Higher Power and letting it take care of my sadness. I can’t do anything to remove my compulsive behavior until I choose to live without it.”

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If you happen to be part of our HOME STUDY PROGRAM OF RECOVERY, you will want to turn to page 80 of the Depressed Anonymous Workbook. Both the Manual and the Workbook come together as important tools in overcoming our attachment to the ruminations and isolation that depression brings upon us.

“All of our efforts so far in this Workbook have been directed toward overcoming  –cleaning house if you will —so that our will might be properly disposed to God’s will and that we might feel free and no longer hopeless. We know that our enthusiasm to change will grow the more we desire that change. The more we change the more  we will cast off the shackles from our lives that keep us imprisoned and isolated.”

COMMENT  Like the quote of how to eat an elephant, we also are most aware that you can’t just wish to get rid  of an obsession or addiction, it takes time and work–one day at a time. There is no easy or comfortable way to battle our demons except through work, prayer and meditation. And for me, one of the best ways to overcome my addictions is to use the 12 spiritual principles of the 12 Steps every day of my life. And again, it’s one bite, one step at a time.  Don’t wait. Do something today. Don’t tell yourself the lie, “I’ll do it when I feel better.” Take the plunge.  If there is no meeting in your  community then work with a DA sponsor/guide and participate in our HOME STUDY PROGRAM OF RECOVERY. Go to the main site depressedanon.com  menu under the title HOME STUDY PROGRAM. The program is operating presently.

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SOURCES:   The Depressed Anonymous Workbook, (2002) Depressed Anonymous          Publications. Louisville. Page 80.

                             Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Page 95.

Please click onto The Depressed Anonymous Publications Bookstore for more helpful literature on THE HOME STUDY PROGRAM OF RECOVERY  and information on how to order online.

If you would like to participate in the Home Study, please contact the director at Depanon@netpenny.net. Thank you.

 

Change always involves uncertainty.

 

 

“I know that a number of people who are first introduced to the Twelve Step program of recovery wonder what their sadness has to do with  the spiritual program of Twelve Steps that originated for alcoholics. I might be depressed but I am surely not a drunk. Sometimes you will hear a new member of the group say that they never committed any wrongs against anyone, so why  do they need to make amends.  (See Step Ten). For many persons, the loss of a love, the death of a spouse, the end of a lifetime career  can produce a spiraling sense of despair in  in people  whose whole lives have centered on someone else’s feelings rather than their own. Their lives are lived for someone else rather being lived for their own self. When that other person is lost, they feel lost and abandoned. This is precisely  the point– the need to make amends for erroneously thinking that someone else can satisfy all their wants and desires. In making amends, we begin to take responsibility for our thoughts  and feelings, and when these have hurt others we need to do something about them.”

SOURCE: Page 86. Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011)Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

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On page 71 of The Depressed Anonymous Workbook (2001) Depressed Anonymous Publications, we discover further positive insights about living our lives with spontaneity and hope.

Dorothy Rowe in her Award Winning book, Depression: The way out of your prison, tells us the following:

Dangers, perhaps even greater dangers, threaten you if you leave your prison of depression for the ordinary world. There you might have to change, and change always involves uncertainty. The good thing about being depressed is that you can make everyday the same. You can be sure of what is going to happen. You can ward off all those people and events that expect a response from you. Your prison life has a regular routine, and like any long term prisoner,  you grow  accustomed to the jail’s security and predictability. The prison of depression may not be comfortable, but it is at least safe.”  Page 127.

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NOTE TO THE READER

One of the most valuable ways to deal with the pain and isolation of one’s depression experience is to utilize our latest tools in freeing ourselves from the prison of depression.

Our Publisher (DAP) has provided those who wish to learn more about themselves a HOME STUDY KIT where a person can begin  sorting out what makes them tick. The two works, include both the Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition Manual and The Depressed Anonymous Workbook.

These two works have been written and organized by those of us who know what depression feels like and the potential risk to life that it presents.  We’ve been there.

In one of our first Depressed Anonymous  meetings, the group who were members of the Fellowship became  part of writing the commentary on the  12 Steps which resulted in our manual Depressed Anonymous. All these were persons working their way out of depression and who shared their story in the personal story section of  the DA Manual. There are 31 testimonies total.  In other words, our material is one of the very few that are written by persons depressed and who have  freed themselves from the shackles of the depression prison.

If you want to begin your own personal recovery from depression the HOME STUDY KIT combo is what you are looking for.  And possibly you and a friend, a therapist, pastor, family member may like to work with you  as you move on and through the depression experience.

You can put your online  order in today at our literature STORE.  You will also be able to communicate online at our website www.depressedanon.com and FIND HELP with our  BLOG provided by WordPress.com.

 

 

A remedy for depression

 

” Years ago, Dr. Alfred Adler prescribed this remedy for depression to a patient: “You can be healed if every day you begin the first thing in the morning to consider how you can bring a real joy to someone else. If you can stick to this for two weeks, you will no longer need therapy.”  Adler’s “prescription,” of  course, is not much different than the suggestion that we work more intuitively The Program’s Twelve Steps to rid ourselves of depression. When I am depressed, do I keep my feelings to myself? Or do I do what friends in The program have suggested that I do?  (Author’s emphasis)

Today I pray

May  I turn myself inside out, air out the depression which has been closeted inside me, replace it with the comfortable feeling that I am cared about by real friends, then pass along that comfort to others caught in the same despair.

Today I will remember

The only real despair is loneliness.

SOURCE:   A DAY AT A TIME.   Hazeldon.  September 10

With Depressed Anonymous I keep on an even keel.

 

Bill’s personal story of recovery.

“Before  Depressed Anonymous, I was paralyzed. I couldn’t even interview for a job. I had no confidence. I could hardly get out of bed in the morning. I would just mope around and never really get moving. I would pick fights with my mother. I didn’t know what to do with my anger and frustration. I didn’t know where to place my misguided fears.

But then I found a place. The depressed anonymous group. We were a small group at first. In this group, we all had a story, and we had to let it out. I thought that no one could be in as bad shape as I was in. I thought everyone was perfectly happy. We started the Depressed Anonymous group about a year ago. We took one step at a time.

Being depressed is like being in a deep dark hole with no one to turn to. Your friends don’t understand you. People around you don’t understand your mood changes. I was so lonely that I didn’t know what to do about myself. I just didn’t give a damn. Now my self-esteem is up. I finally believed in myself. Depressed Anonymous had given me all that back. My attitude is positive. Right now, I feel as if I’m in recovery. I still go to the group because without the group, I get argumentative, and with the group, I keep on an even keel.”

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A personal story of recovery  from a member of a Depressed Anonymous group.

Copyright(c) DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS,   3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Pg.151.

I refuse to run from what I feel.

AFFIRMATION

I will be in touch with my feelings throughout the day. I refuse to run from what I feel.

“The ability to experience one’s  feelings without resisting or running from them, determines  to a large degree whether a person is healthy are not.”

CLARIFICATION OF THOUGHT

I’m going to make a real effort today to do what I  see works for depressed persons like myself. They all say that the longer they are in the program (Depressed Anonymous) , the more feelings they are able to express and the  less the unpleasant feelings of fear dominates their life. I am finding that by  writing my feelings down, the less frightening they seem to be to me. I am now able to deal head on with my feelings.

My addiction was a way of walling off my pain. In time, I became addicted  to the pain and in doing so, I lost myself in the process. I find this experience to be a freeing  one.

My addiction was a way of walling off pain.  Now the pain is more important than what I am running away from.

What I experience in my life determines to a large extent what I predict life to become. My past experiences are predictors of a life not as yet lived. I am wanting to experience the fact that my good days are more frequent now and my bad days occurring not as often.

MEDITATION

God, the more I give up my need to be depressed the more I’m finding that I’m becoming more assertive and truly present to others in my life. I want you to help me feel my feelings and express them today. [ADD YOUR OWN PERSONAL THOUGHTS HERE]

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SOURCE: Higher Thoughts for Down Days: 365 daily thoughts and meditations for members of 12 step fellowships. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

A potent means of recovery

The Twelve Steps are the essential beliefs and at the very core of Depressed Anonymous. The Depressed Anonymous recovery program was modeled on Alcoholics Anonymous. which was originally developed  to help men and women deal with their addiction to alcohol one day at a time. The Twelve Steps have been found to be  a potent means of recovery for those who desire to free  themselves from their compulsions. The Twelve Steps are basically a program of letting go of our compulsions and handing over our will to the care of God, as we understand God. Essentially, our program is a Step by Step way to change not only our addiction, but our way of life. Change happens when we choose to change. The fellowship of the group and our desiring to make changes in our life is what provides our life-giving  spiritual experience. Most people  get organized religion and spirituality mixed up. Depressed Anonymous achieves strength from spirituality without set creed, dogma or doctrine. All the program asks of a person who come to the meetings is only to have a sincere desire to stop the compulsion of saddening themselves.

We make no apologies for our faith in a God that can restore us not only to sanity, but to serenity and joy as well.

“We never apologize for God. Instead, we let God demonstrate through us, what God can do. We ask God to remove our fear and direct our attention to what God would have us be. At once, we commence to outgrow fear.” Alcoholics Anonymous.

 

SOURCES: (c) Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Page 162.

(c)  Believing is seeing: 15 Ways to leave the prison of depression (2016) Hugh Smith, Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

(c) I’ll do it when I feel better. (1986, 2013) 2nd edition. Hugh Smith . Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Ky.