Category Archives: Depressed Anonymous Workbook

I have found persons who understand me and my problems.

#FOUR/ BELIEVING IS SEEING: 15 ways to leave the prison of depression.  (2017) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.
”  No longer am I alone in my depression. I can now see that it is up to me to form new friendships with others in the fellowship of the Depressed Anonymous Group. I have found persons who understand me  and my problems. I also learn coping skills and new positive behaviors from my fellow group members. ”

Below are listed some of  the advantages of belonging  to the Depressed Anonymous fellowship.

  • Receive acceptance  and support from the fellowship.
  • The fellowship of DA places no judgments  on those who join the group.
  • No longer isolated and alone.
  • No “snap out of it” comments from persons who have not experienced depression.
  • Learn how to gradually remove depression from our lives by utilizing the tools provided by the fellowship.
  • Gain new friends who actually “do know”  how we feel.
  • Learn  skills in taking full responsibility for their feelings, thoughts and behaviors.
  • Learning how to be with others in a mutual aid group while simultaneously  developing our interpersonal and social skills.
  • By being part of the group, with persons like oneself, have an overwhelming BELIEF that since they are all getting better, they tell themselves “so can I.”
  • Depression symptoms grow best in  isolation and the withdrawal from others. Healthy encounters with others like ourselves and by using the spiritual principles of the 12 steps, we begin to feel better and gain   hope for ourselves.

___________________________________________________________

Ray’s  personal testimony, #20. The Power of Depressed Anonymous  is found in DEPRESSED  ANONYMOUS, 3rd edition. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. pgs.133-134.

           “So what is the power of Depressed Anonymous?  For me, it’s just like attending the first meeting. I was a little scared and apprehensive at first, but then I found the Depressed Anonymous meeting was a place to go where there were other depressed persons just like me. They could relate to and understand what I was going through. They didn’t judge me or think of me as crazy. I WAS ACCEPTED.

Ray tells us how “the most important power of Depressed Anonymous is hope.”

_______________________________________________________________

The fellowship makes available a HOME SELF STUDY KIT comprised of the Depressed Anonymous Manual and The Depressed Anonymous Workbook.  Both of these books can be purchased together.  For those who might desire some further support for issues in their recovery  that may arise from the Self Study KIT can contact us at depanon@netpenny.net.

For many, a Depressed Anonymous  group may not be available in your community and so the reason for the Home Study Kit. Depressed persons who feel isolated and with no group available can  profit  from this Home Study and gain insights into their own depression symptoms plus learn  how to deal with them.

In telling my story I feel hopeful!

It would not seem like a big deal to share our experience with depression at a Depressed Anonymous mutual aid support group. But the surprise comes as we share our own personal journey with others.   We discover that no one drops out of their seats as they hear a new member  tell of their suicide attempts, or the   shame and guilt over the  crazy things I have done in  the past.

There is a freedom that accompanies our story telling because we are hearing ourselves share very personal  things about our past. Once we get started sharing our story   we may feel that we  are letting ourselves be vulnerable.

In our Depressed Anonymous Big Book, 3rd edition, we hear the author tell us the following.

“Many times we have been so scared of being rejected once more that we have withdrawn deeper into the anguish of our shame and hurt. We need to air our hurts, our shame, and let others hear our story. There is something healing about hearing ourselves speak to others about our own journey in life and the many emotional  potholes that we have fallen into from time to time. We have felt our lives jinxed.”

And here is the surprise  I referred to earlier: there is no criticism of what we share.  Everyone in the group thanks us for sharing our  story. We now know that most of the fellowship have experienced some of the same behaviors and feelings themselves at one time or the other. In fact,  their stories and mine have much in  common.  They have no difficulty in seeing themselves in my account of a lifetime of depression. I feel  affirmed. I no longer feel alone. I know I am among friends and among those who are walking  the same  path as myself. We are all in this recovery effort together.

In the Depressed Anonymous Workbook we read the following:

“Have you noticed that you are spending less and less time alone and more time with others in the fellowship and the fellowship grows among you and others that you have met in Depressed Anonymous?”  Let’s just say that our thoughts and feelings are now solution focused  – whereas all we could think about before was how awful we feel. We believed that we  are at the end of our rope.    If there is no meeting in your community, you can use our HOME STUDY KIT which will take you through each Step and it’s commentary (Big Book)  while the Depressed Anonymous Workbook  asks  some very valuable  questions for you to answer as you move through  your recovery program.

For more on this HOME STUDY KIT,    please visit our Literature store at this site. You can also order Depressed Anonymous material online.

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

Depressed Anonymous Workbook, Depressed  Publications. Louisville.

These  two works form our HOME STUDY KIT and can be ordered as a single unit.

 

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]

=============================================

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

“I wanna be free!” (Part 2) HOME STUDY PROGRAM

HOME STUDY PROGRAM

Today  we want to continue to  share more about how the Home Study Program, using  the Depressed Anonymous   Manual and the Depressed Anonymous Workbook can gradually facilitate a better understanding of the nature of depression and our response to it, using the spiritual principles of the 12 steps of Depressed Anonymous

 

The reason most people use the Home Study Program is that it is a simple and straightforward way to begin to  walk on the path that leads out of depression.

So, I admit that I’m depressed. Now what do I do? The next thing we do is to ask ourselves how much can I dare admit to myself  how out-of-control  I really am? How much do I dare tell myself that I have really hit bottom and that I have nowhere to go but to ask for help? I have been afflicted with this tendency all my life to run and hide whenever I was challenged  by a task, a relationship or  old unpleasant memories that frightened me. I would run and hide. I would be willing to barely admit to myself that what I was feeling wasn’t really me.  I also came to believe that the sea of gloom that I swam in  day after day would one day drown me – the exact day and  time just  happened to be unknown at the time.

One of the things that keeps giving me hope at the Depressed Anonymous fellowship meetings  or here on our website (Depressed Anonymous)   is where we can  continue to read about how others   have been successful  in leaving their own prison of depression.  We see a real challenge  that can open a new Vista – a new way to live out our lives and open up hope before us. One man said that the God of his understanding uses him and his depression for helping others who are likewise depressed.   In other words, God will use your depression to help others.

You will learn that you have the choice as to whether you want to stay depressed  or choose to learn the ways to get out of your depression.  In fact you will also learn that you have the opportunity to feel differently, if you so choose.

SOURCE:  The Depressed Anonymous Workbook. Page 5.

One of the most powerful experiences and benefits of being a member of the Depressed Anonymous  fellowship is at that you will learn that you have the choice as to whether you want to stay depressed or choose to learn the ways to get out of your depression. In fact you will also learn that you also have the opportunity to feel differently, if you so choose.

“We” is the first word of step one. It is a very important word to remember because it sets up  immediately sets up a group fellowship with people who are having the same difficulty. It also makes us feel that we too are not alone, but that there is someone else out there that is experiencing the same difficulty as you and me.

 

One the best part of being a member of Depressed Anonymous is that we don’t have to be alone if we don’t want to be. That might sound strange to some of us but we have to admit that what keeps us depressed is our need to keep apart from other.  To remain disconnected and isolated. We have a need to be by ourselves and to stay apart from human contact. For to be in contact with others like me is that we will have to take some risks  and to make some choices. But when I am depressed and alone I don’t have to make as many choices or take any action except to keep  isolating myself and staying apart. This Home Study Program will help you see that it is in being part of a bigger group, with people like yourselves, which  will gradually give you the desire  to be part,  share and  stay involved in your own  active recovery using the 12 steps of Depressed Anonymous. ”

Source:  Home Study Program: (c)The Depressed Anonymous Workbook, pages 4 and 5.

“One of the more constant behaviors of the individual depressing is to engage in fewer and fewer pleasant activities. The person depressed just can’t bring himself or herself to do anything that might cause a sense of elation or pleasure. If you feel that you are bad, worthless and without any value, then you can’t  get yourself to do something that might make you have a good feeling about yourself. An individual depressing can make him or herself feel anxious, sick and even faint. With the support of a group like Depressed Anonymous and the fellowship here on the web one   can begin to see that life doesn’t have to be lived alone and in  misery. And that is precisely the miracle of the group. You begin to see that you can stay parked in  neutral in your misery and feel hopeless or you can  step out in faith as most members of our group do, and admit that you’ve had it with the sadness and begin to choose life. I do believe and know  a renewed sense of hope is in our hands – we can choose to be sad or by our inaction could choose to live without purpose and  joy.  It’s a risk we choose to take. ”

SOURCE: HOME STUDY PROGRAM:  (c)Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Page 37.

NOTE:  The Home Study Program/Kit includes both the Depressed Anonymous Manual and the Depressed Anonymous Workbook. This Program is available for purchase online  here at the Depressed Anonymous Website.  Other literature, which applies to  the 12 Steps and to the experience of depression are likewise available. Check it out.

 

 

Being depressed means isolation

How do I know if I’m depressed?

“Being depressed means isolation – and being cut off from everybody and everything.  It is like being in prison, like a pit where the walls are like soft clay and I cannot climb out. To me the isolation is pre-hell and often I feel so dead inside.  There is an awful feeling, that hole in my soul which is like a clenched fist.   I don’t know where to turn with all the pain and hurt. I can’t imagine anyone hurts the way I do and I hope no one does. I would never want to inflict this pain on anyone, so I tried to hold it inside and it seems like it’s too much to bear, especially alone. This is where Depressed Anonymous comes in – this is where powerlessness and God come in. There was no one to help, even to try to understand before Depressed Anonymous. No one wanted my pain  and others started  to avoid me.  I understand better now, especially since I’ve been around Depressed Anonymous via Hugh and the book Depressed Anonymous,3rd edition and the journaling I’ve done. My hope is that I will be more at peace and will try to use the  specific tools which continue to be  great helps in overcoming depression while  giving me  hope —  just for today.”

Source:  Mary C, Sterling Heights, Michigan.

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

Visit the Store for more information on Depression and the use of the 12 Steps.

“WE HAVE THE TOOLS TO BEGIN THE WORK OF CHANGING BEHAVIORS FOSTERED BY DEPRESSION.”

 

THE BEAST

“… We are also under an increasing obligation to confront our illness, seek the proper treatments, and to the extent we can, begin the work of changing the behaviors fostered by depression. This is not blaming the victim; it is – to use a trendy phrase – empowering the victim.  To  fail at this is, to surrender to the devouring  self-pity this illness can engender, violates an unwritten law of society which needs all the talents and energies of every member.  To remain a victim of depression when I’ve been given the tools to be healthy, or at least healthier, means that I am withholding a part of me from people who might need what ever I have to give.”

SOURCE: THE BEAST.  A reckoning with depression. Tracy Thompson. G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York, 1995. Page 13.

TOOLS FOR THE DEPRESSED

We recommend the HOME STUDY KIT, comprised of the Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition manual (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications, and The Depressed Anonymous Workbook (2002) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville, Ky.

 

VISIT THE STORE FOR FURTHER DETAILS ON THESE TOOLS — PRODUCED BY THOSE WHO LIVE OUT THE PROGRAM OF RECOVERY IN THEIR  OWN LIVES.

How to make use of the self-directed pathway to personal serenity and happiness.

By using the self-directed pathway to personal serenity and happiness (Home Study Kit) and by asking myself  the  questions  provided in the Depressed Anonymous Workbook,  I am able  to  get the right answers that are unique to me and which apply specifically to my own situation in life.

By asking the right questions about one’s own depression experience one can be  led to finding the right answers to  depression. In the Depressed Anonymous Workbook and the Depressed Anonymous Manual used together,  this self-directed pathway through  the 12 steps can gradually  provide answers for one’s own  personal recovery.  Surprisingly, you  already have the answers inside of you that with time, prayer and work will  release you from the terrible isolation and pain that we call depression. Now, the questions that will lead you on this pathway to  hope  will provide you with that  light and energy to continue your search through each of the 12 Steps and bring you to the other side – which you will know as a personal  serenity and happiness.

In using the Home Study Kit you will be provided the means to help unleash in yourself the energies  providing  you hope  to continue your process of your recovery day by day. I feel that for many  of us the problem was in knowing what the right questions were  to free  ourselves from  our experience with depression.  For some of us, the experience of depression began so gradually that when we finally realized that it had us in its grip   and we were paralyzed and unable to do anything about the way we felt. We felt hopeless and powerless.  We began to ask ourselves “why am I having such a hard time getting out of bed in the morning.” Or ” Why do I want to sleep all the time.”    “What is happening to me.” Or  “why do I feel like I want  to cry?”   It  felt like I was losing my mind.

As I began talking to other people about their depression experience I found that I was not losing my mind but that was I was suffering from depression. After being introduced to the 12 steps of recovery and putting each of the 12 steps into practice in my life I discovered that by asking the right questions of myself and others in the fellowship of Depressed Anonymous I gradually got the right answers on the ‘how to recover’  from the  unending sadness that had me by the throat.

I have found that by using the Home Study Kit,  and answering the questions provided for me in the Depressed Anonymous Workbook and   using  the Depressed Anonymous Manual with its coordinated references to the Workbook questions, that I came to find that answers to the questions which had lain dormant in my mind body and now provided me the pathway, step-by-step, which is leading  me out of  depression. My response to the questions provided in the Workbook are truly like buried treasures. This methodical and “go at your own pace”  process of recovery encouraged me by the fact that the answers  became written solutions to my problems,   which were brought to the fore by the questions asked and to which I faithfully responded.

HOME STUDY KIT

The following is an example from the Depressed Anonymous Workbook: Step #1: Question 1:11. “When have you  felt most powerless over anything in your life?  How did you handle your feelings of powerlessness then?”

Then  use the  Depressed Anonymous Manual. (2011) DAP. Louisville. Step One/  Pages 29-38.

These two important works comprise the HOME STUDY KIT.  For more information on these two works at The Store. Online ordering is available for all Depressed Anonymous Literature.

 

 

What am I feeling?

WHAT AM I FEELING?

                                 Anger? Hostility? Aggression?

Anger: An emotion that says “Something is wrong.” That  it can be expressed to tell others about your personal limits, values, rules, and boundaries. The respectful expression of anger is an important way to educate others about how their behavior affects you. It can result in mutual respect between you and another person.

Hostility: An attitude that contributes to the violation of another person’s rights, values, rules, or boundaries. This attitude can include ruminating or brooding about another person’s real or perceived injustices toward you and ways that you can  “get even” with him/her   and this attitude leads to feelings of powerlessness. It can often lead to aggression our withdrawal as a way to punish others.

Aggression: A behavior, acted on with the intent to harm others, either physically or emotionally for real or imagined  “wrongs” done to you. This behavior always results in disrespect for yourself or the other person. It creates distance between you rather that brings you closer.

                           Learning how to express anger respectfully.

1.  Admit your anger. Accept that you are angry. Shouting “I am not angry!” at the other person only escalates you more. It can be safe and growth producing to acknowledge that you are angry.

2. Take a “timeout” to cool down if you need it.  Learning to deal respectfully and constructively with your anger takes time and practice.

3. Identify the source of your anger (look for your primary feelings). Make sure you perceived what happened correctly. Ask yourself questions like: ” what is my negative self-talk?” “Am I  dealing only with this issue at hand or are there other stressors that have already escalated me before this?” “Am I looking for a reason to blowup?”

4. Separate the energy of your anger (pent up feelings inside you seeking release) from the issue your anger is about (the condition, idea, event, or person you feel angry at).

5. Decide how and when you will express your anger.

6. Talk to the other person involved with your anger. Share your anger and any  primary feelings you can identify in an open, direct, and respectful way.

7. Make  “I” statements. Take responsibility for your own feelings. Resist the temptation to blame someone else for  “making you” feel angry.

8. Listen closely to the others point of view. Recognize and accept that their view may be quite different from yours. Remember that they have a right to their perspective and feelings.

9. Get in touch with your expectations and your intentions in sharing your anger. The purpose is not to “win” the argument (or discussion) or to make the other person agree with you or your point of view. Rather, it is an opportunity to give  both of you a time to express feelings.  Also,  explore alternatives such as compromising. Or you can “Agree to disagree” and table the discussion until another time.”

Source: The Depressed Anonymous Workbook. (2002). Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Pages 34 to 35.

Please VIST THE STORE  for more information on the Depressed Anonymous Workbook and the Depressed Anonymous Manual, both of which comprise the HOME STUDY KIT which can be purchased online.

I refuse to be a victim of my depression!

 

The following is a process for clarifying our thoughts so that we might gradually  work our way out of depression.

(1) Aware. I’m learning through my program of recovery, using the 12 Steps that as long as I blame everyone for the way I feel I will never improve my feel differently. I’m now becoming conscious that I got myself depressed and now I’m going to have to do something about it.  I’m not blaming myself for being depressed – that’s counterproductive – but now being conscious that I am depressed I am going to take full responsibility for getting out of it.  I don’t have to feel this way!

(2)  Motivating. I am making a plan to check out the way I think– the faulty patterns of automatic thinking that I fell into over my past life. I am now going to see myself as a survivor  as I live one day at a time and begin living with hope.

(3)  Doing. Every day I’m going to do something good and pleasant for myself. I’m going to take mastery over my life by setting small goals one day at a time for feeling different. I’m going to spend some time every day making conscious contact with the  God of my understanding and pray that I might have the will and the power to carry it out!

(4) Maintaining. I know there is no  “cheap grace” and getting free from my depression.  I also believe in having gratitude that I have the spiritual program of recovery to continue my exit from the despair of depression. In order to sustain my healing I will take responsibility for all my words, thoughts and actions. I now believe that if my world is to change then it is up to me to change it.  I now know it is up to my Higher Power  and myself   to feel whole and serene. ”

——————————————————–

Source:  Copyright (C) The Depressed Anonymous Workbook (2002). Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville . Pages 42 and 43.

Note: This valuable tool is coordinated with the Depressed Anonymous manual, 3rd edition. (2011). Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

By using both of these works (Home Study Kit) one can begin to walk the path of recovery using the 12 steps.

See  The Store for more information.

What is the power of Depressed Anonymous?

What is the power of Depressed Anonymous?


“Well,  first let me say that when I first started attending Depressed Anonymous, I went for s couple of months and then stopped. I stopped going because my depression was so bad that I didn’t  want to leave my apartment. I didn’t want to be around or talk to anyone. I just didn’t want to do anything except crawl in a hole somewhere and isolate myself from everything. Then after about six weeks of isolation, I called the residential treatment center where I had been a client to see if I had received any mail there and one of the members of the DA group where I attend answered the phone. I spent a few minutes talking to her and there was something in her voice that told me  that for some reason, it was important for me to be at the meeting. I attended the next Depreseed Anonymous meeting. After the meeting was over, I suddenly realized the importance  and power of Depressed Anonymous.

So what is the power of Depressed Anonymous? For me, it is just like attending that first meeting. I was a little scared and apprehensive at first, but then I found the Depressed Anonymous meeting was a place to go where there were other depressed people just like me. They could relate to and understand what I was going thr0ugh. They didn’t judge me or think of me as crazy. I was accepted.

Another power of Depressed Anonymous is the miracle fo the group and what each person brings to the group. I have seen our fellowship get stronger and grow. I have developed many friendships that I can depend on for support and understanding. I have watched some  of the newcomers that have kept coming back grow and improve. Even something as simple as a smile when there was none before.  The miracle of the group empowers and energizes me.

The most important power of Depresseed Anonynous is hope. Hope that we will not be locked into the prison of depression forever and that there is a way out for each of us. A hope that our Higher Power will work the miracle through us and that we will find our own happiness. I have hope that our heart and minds will know love and peace like we have never known or felt before.  The power of Depressed  Anonymous works for me.  I hope and pray that it works for you. Keep coming back!

SOURCE:  Copyright(c)  Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY . Pages 134,135.  Ray’s personal story of recovery.

___________________________________________________________________________

If there is no Depressed Anonymous group where you live–don’t let that stop you from joining our fellowship. Get started today and use the HOME STUDY KIT (SEE STORE)  where you can begin your own recovery using the tools that members in a “face to face” group use at their meetings.  The HOME STUDY  version provides you with a Depressed Anonynmous WORKBOOK plus a Depresssed Anonymous  MANUAl. These two works will provide you with an amazing process in which you can grow and learn more about depression and its effect upon your own  life.  It can also  provide you with an access to our web blog where you can read article after article on the “how” to leave the prison of depression. You are always welcome to involve yourself with any and all comments that you would like to send to the site in response to what you see and read here.

We welcome you.

Home Study Kit