The closed system of depression with its multiple entry points. (chinks in the armor).
A previous entry or blog spoke about the various entry points of depression symptoms and how they all act together to form a syndrome. Basically, a syndrome is a number of symptoms occurring together characterizing a specific disease or condition. For us, and those of us who may be depressed, this is an important issue to take notice of and spending time reflecting on it. Learning more about depression as a closed system with multiple symptoms can have a positive impact on how we go about dealing with them in our recovery program of the 12 steps. In time you will learn more about the Depressed Anonymous fellowship and their use of the 12 principles (steps) of recovery.
Presently I want to share with you more information as to what makes up the closed system of depression. I think the more we take apart the various elements that make up the syndrome (symptoms) of depression, we are able to focus on one symptom at a time or more. This is what I mean by widening the chink in the armor of our depression. Each one will provide an entry to the particular area that we believe has the greatest responsibility for our being depressed.
Let’s go through the five(5) major areas, and see how they each make up this closed system. We discover that symptoms feed on each other and produces a gradual paralysis of will and body which keeps us isolated and disconnected from family, friends and others. It also produces a lethargy where we no longer have regard for ourselves, our health or our future.
I will list the five (5) areas where we can begin to zero in on and list the characteristics of each separate symptom and see which of the five–possibly all of them–have had the principal role in our being disconnected from life and a daily activity.
+mistaken beliefs+ feeling worthless+ guilt+ self-accusation+ self-dislike+ failure+ self-hatred + suicidal ideas+ feeling hopeless and helpless+ out of control+ self-pity
+Insomnia+ decrease in sexual libido+ activity level is zero+ no concentration+ memory loss+ fatigue and bored+ weight loss/gain+ irritable
+difficulty planning for the day/future+ no desire for any pleasurable activity+ future looks bleak+ nothing ever works out+ failing at all jobs/projects
+social withdrawal+ work retardation+ low or no interaction with others+ not involved in pleasant activities+ weight loss/gain+ excessive drinking/eating/sleeping
fear+ sad+ angry+lonely+ irritable+ apathetic+ irritable+ loss of sexual activity+ loss of interest in activities that once gave pleasure+ tired all the time+ crying spells+ hopeless+ helpless and bored
We see that in one area of the symptoms the same issue will appear in the other lists of the depression syndrome.
In order to widen the chink in the armor of your own depression please go through each of the five lists and circle those particular items which apply specifically to your own experience with depression.
One of the five areas listed most probably will produce for you that entry point where you can begin to work on the areas that you have circled as having the greatest part in your sadness. Since each symptom affects the other four(4) one can begin to see how the individual issues cycle around and back and forth clamping down, not only the physical person but all the other areas of one daily life.
Here is the strategy for all of us: when we get to working on the various issues in the symptom that has the most issues circled–that in itself will disrupt all the other symptoms so that what happens in one will affect positively all the other. The negative synergism of the whole syndrome-depression–will be shaken and affected by the positive action or changes of just one of the symptoms. And the more we open up an area — our physiological level of inactivity–and set up a regular and daily exercise routine–this will reverberate to all the other four major symptoms. (A personal note here: when I could no longer get out of bed in the morning to go to my job I made a commitment —thinking and motivational–to get up and walk every day–whether I wanted to do it or not.) And it really worked as my mood was better by the mid day. I no longer felt helpless but I was actually doing something–motivational area affected my mood– the feeling symptom–my behavior as I was not indecisive about exercise–I made a decision to continue to move my body and walk which influenced my thinking positively.
Finally, the closed system of depression has turned into an open and fluid cycle where the negativity of the system has been challenged. Instead of these single deficits of each of the symptoms we now have positive options we can begin with the belief that I too can get better just as others in our fellowship of Depressed Anonymous have broken the bonds of depression and are living lives of serenity and hope.
The 12 Steps and the working the Steps in a group or with the Home Study Workbook and manual will produce a hopeful change as each area, the thinking, the physiological, the motivational, the feelings , and behavior all will be turned into positives and so change our very closed and negative system into a hopeful and positive experience, day after day.
For a deeper look into the open system of hope and healing going to our Depressed Anonymous Workbook for opening up and seeing for yourself how thinking more positively and getting motivated to free oneself from depression actually works. VISIT THE STORE for more information.
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The Fellowship of Depressed Anonymous