My feelings are becoming unfrozen.


“I pray that God will give me the courage to live today with hope – hope that God’s leading will take me past the dead end of despair.

If we want to live life fully we must have freedom, love and hope. Life must be an uncertain business. This is what makes it worthwhile.”


I  know how the feelings of depression, and the deadness and greyness of my sadness keep me holed up in the narrow confines of my dark past. Today my  feelings are gradually becoming unfrozen as I attempt new things, new connections with other persons. These cause me to reconsider that a life lived in unpredictableness is a risky but nevertheless a healthy way to live my life.

Since I hold on to the  belief that since bad things happened to me in the past, bad things will happen to me in the future.  I need to live each new day with the belief that I can change the way I think, feel and act.   I know now that I am not mentally ill nor am I losing my mind when I am depressed.  I want to live just for today to try to learn how to face the uncertainties of today.  Life is unpredictable . To have any certainty that it will  be other  than that  is clearly an illusion, and for sure one is being set up for many a disappointment.


We see that it is only in risking., that is, getting a different map, a map that shows a number of different routes instead of the one that leads us down the road to narrow isolation and despair. I ask the God of my understanding to lead me according to it’s guidance. Hopefully the road that leads to hope and serenity.


(C) Higher Thoughts for down days: 365 daily thoughts and meditations  for members of  12  Step fellowship  groups.  Depressed Anonymous Publications . Louisville. KY. (January 5th).

(c) I’ll do it when I feel better. (2018) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville, KY.

(c) Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition.(20ll). Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville, KY.

Check out VISIT THE STORE for more material that can be ordered online.

What’s in your backpack?

Have you ever embarked and planned for a camping trip where you set up camp  for a couple of days. Remember how you would load up your backpack with what you thought you needed? Gradually, it became clear  that you had too much stuff. How could you possibly carry all that stuff on the  mile long trails?  It was obvious that now you had to figure out what to leave behind.  That is the trick: what do I leave behind?

Almost a year ago, my wife and I moved to a new home. We were downsizing. Again, the metaphor of the backpack comes into play. What to give away. What to throw away. It was now that we realized that we no longer needed what we had accumulated over the years. As Ecclesiastes tells us, there is a time to plant and a time to root out.

The American naturalist Sigurd Olson shares that “years of walking through wild country has taught him a great deal about traveling light. Backpackers learn, sometimes the hard way, that simplicity is always a question of knowing what to leave behind.”

I relish listening to the old tape of George Carlin who gives his spiel about  our “stuff.”  We all have more “stuff” that we know what to do with.  We all carry our “stuff” where ever we go.   Too late are we  aware of what our backpack is carrying. I am referring to the “stuff” of   our sad moods  which if not dealt with, will by the sheer weight of it all, overwhelm us.  Our backpacks could be filled with rage, fear, anger, suicidal thoughts and everything else that weighs us down. Not only our body but our mind  is immobilized.

Most of the time now, my backpack has only the essential items  for my life journey. I have opened up my  backpack, looked inside and removed all the situations and feelings that I no longer felt were positive and life giving. Today, I know perfectly well what is in my backpack.  Along with all the solutions that I carry with me day after day, I have my guide book, giving me a Step by Step plan for living my life with serenity and grateful heart.

I no longer let a negative and unpleasant mood spiral  down  so that my backpack becomes heavier and the depression mood darkens a path ahead. Today after years on the road, I now can tell when I need to get on the unpacking thing, take out what I don’t want or need, and move on.  We can  leave behind that which weighs us down

If you want  to know what might be in your backpack, and want to take out that stuff you no longer need or want on this life journey, please join us, get your guide book, and walk with us. In time and with a lighter load, you can join us (Depressed Anonymous).

Together we will get where  we need to be and with what we need to continue to travel on this broad and wide road, not alone but with each other.



SOURCE: Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY.

Visit The Depressed Anonymous Publications Bookstore where you will find your plan for the way out of the wilderness.

Empowerment comes from being informed


Empowerment comes  from being informed and making choices that help us change our lives for the better.  When I came to a Depressed Anonymous meeting I am making a first major step- namely, that I admit my presence at the group meeting that my life is out of control.  My compulsion to depress myself is at the root of my inability to take on the challenge of living life with risk and enthusiasm. But how can I possibly say that I want to depress myself? We are not blaming ourselves  here but are taking responsibility for our own feelings, behavior and thinking. Now that I am conscious of some negative patterns of my own behavior I can get on with learning new strategies for my own healing. With the heartfelt prayer of a monk, I now understand it is by sharing the story of my life – and with the conviction that someone is there to listen, that this can in time help me make it out of my prison of fear and sadness.

I can be empowered by taking the bull by the horn and choosing each new day, one day at a time and start to feel different. I now have the support of the group – support from people who have walked where I am walking.

I am investing in myself. I am making my recovery my highest priority. I may have been on all the antidepressant medications -I  may have seen all the best counselors, psychiatrists and doctors but now finally I am going to a room full of depressed people –  people who understand me and what I am going through!

These people I discover are investing in themselves. What will I find there? I will find some of the most caring people on the face of the earth. Some of the group will have been coming for months, and they say that they are having more good days than bad and it’s getting better. The more meetings they attend the better they feel and the more support they receive. They are feeling empowered. It’s the miracle of the group. Instead of living with a compulsion to repeat old negative and life negating thoughts and feelings we now have a compulsion to live with hope plus a desire for a brand new way of living — and not just the way that  we  once talked to ourselves.

We are going to get a new life. And here is how.

I now feel that that I am getting better learning how not to repeat my old way of thinking, feeling and believing and isolating myself when I fear –whatever. I now know that with work and patience I will get better. For most of us, it has taken us a few years to get here (depressed) so why not take the plunge today and work toward getting better–one day at a time – one meeting at a time —  and using the “tools” of the program.

It has only been when I began to examine the way I talked to myself (negatively) and how I gradually isolated myself from a life lived in serenity and hope,  that I realized I could change this pattern of diminishing myself . Others were doing it and so why couldn’t I? And so can you!


SOURCE: (c)I’ll do it when I feel better.(2014) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

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



“By our continual shutting ourselves up in the little world of our own mind, we gradually sink more and more into despair and feel that no one can understand how we think and feel. The biggest freedom that we can gain from confessing to someone else is that we no longer have to have it all together and be perfect.  We can begin to  admit  it when we are petty, selfish and self-centered. We can then admit that we want to have restored a sense of peace by getting free  from  all worry and fear from the past and by turning those over to the  Higher Power. We can then discover that forgiving ourselves and being forgiven by God are one in the same thing. The group will see to it that the more you admit your own fears about yourself and the future, the less terror the present will hold for you.”

“My dear friends, it is this spiritual experience, to feel that God is with you, and that this joy is the joy that will restore your youth and renew your spirit.  We no longer have to be the way we are -we can choose to feel and be different. Others are doing  it-so can you!”

Depression feeds on hurt, pain and self-doubt. When we are depressed we have a need to bash ourselves for our misguided errors and sinfulness. The Fifth Step  if done genuinely and prayerfully, will in time help restore our sense of freedom and belief that we are truly forgiven.  It is in the miracle of the group and its acceptance, love and nurture that helps the depressed person feel secure without recourse to depression.”

THE DEPRESSED ANONYMOUS WORKBOOK, examining Step Five, asks the following question at 5.21:  List what action you will have to take if you want to respect yourself again? Remember, it’s our past need to tell ourselves how bad and unacceptable that we are that keeps us depressed. This is a “wrong” if there ever  was one.



SOURCES:  Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition.(2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Page 64 (Book One of the Home Study Kit).

The Depressed Anonymous Workbook (2002). Depressed  Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Page 52. (Book Two of the Home Study Kit).

VISIT THE STORE   at this site for ordering online.



Every day of the year I have a Higher Thought for my day. Everyday I turn to my  Higher Thoughts for down days:365 daily thoughts and meditations for 12 step fellowship groups. I continue to keep mindful that the more my prayer and meditation time is filled with Higher Thoughts the more serene my life is becoming. I have this quiet time every morning; the same time every morning; the same place every morning. It is a time when my home is still, the world is still and here I am,  just my God and myself. This is my time to pray and listen for that  still small voice, that slight nudge that prepares  me for the day ahead.     It’s a fresh start, the 24 hours ahead is a new beginning. A miniscule slice of my whole life to do with as I wish. What will it be today?


I hope to do all I can today to remember the positive things I have done for  myself today.

” Those of us who cope with life have put up some barriers, have made some disconnections but maintained many connections. Those people who become depressed have disconnected  themselves completely, and the barriers they have built are the walls of the prison of depression.” (5)


One of the many good connections that arise in taking charge of my life again is the many fine people that I meet at meetings. When I am depressed, it is true that I tend to disconnect and withdraw away from family and friends.  But my admiration is for those who come to the meetings of the fellowship and who successfully connect with other members who are also trying to get better.

Now since I have groups that meet specifically with the needs of depressed people in mind, I am hopeful that these new connection with others can provide me with diverse weys to escape depression.


We are all connected to the life force of creation.  This life force we call God., No matter what many cultures have called this force, we all know it is the source of all life. Right now, we want to ask God, as we understand Him, to help us start anew,  reconnect with others who can help us grow, so we can begin to live with hope.



Today, the Higher Thought is taken from  Higher Thoughts for down days:365 daily thoughts and meditations for 12 step fellowship groups. (1993, 1999) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Pgs.38-39.