“What do you remember as strengths before being aware that you are depressed? Going to Depressed Anonymous meetings (now on ZOOM and SKYPE) has the potential to restore your sense of proportion about your strong points. At the meetings your friends in the fellowship will begin to tell how you are showing improvement the more you are participating in the meetings. To listen to those who themselves are working the program and who share their lives week after week, you begin to realize that you too can begin to feel differently. Today can be a new start and yes, you do have it within yourself to be that person who is reversing old negative patterns of thinking and replacing them with thoughts of hope and optimism. You now believe that there is hope for yourself. Right now your strength seems to be that of maintaining a habitual way of thinking thoughts of hope. By the fact that you are reading this, takes the strength to want to feel good and continue to maintain a positive recovery. Begin now and reflect on your strengths. Believe that you have a way to maintain them each day. Your personal strengths maintain a personal persistence and desire to continue with gratitude this new feeling of hope.”
As a therapist I would usually start my counseling session with a few questions for the counselee. I would ask them to write down five or six things that they liked about themselves – strengths. Invariably they would sit there, notepad in hand, watching the hand on the wall clock, gradually moving forward. (I might add that this question and answer session would not be too difficult for most of those who came for counseling) But for the depressed, it is a different story. Most could be unable to list any strengths on the list. I would ask them if they needed a little more time? Usually not. I would then tell them that just coming through the door to see a counselor showed immense strength. I told them that seeking help probably is a strength that could open up more doors for their own healing and serenity.
My final session always concluded with the question that started our sessions together – asking them to list all their strengths. The answer this time was quite different. No surprise to me.
Depressed Anonymous meetings can all provide the same help in giving us a look at our newfound strengths. Come to a F2F meeting or an Online meeting and discover this for yourselves. You will be happy that you did.
Copyright © Believing is seeing: 15 ways to leave the prison of depression. Hugh Smith. (2020) Louisville. KY. Page 57-59. (The Eleventh Way).
Copyright © The Depressed Anonymous Workbook(2002) Depressed Anonymous Workbook. Louisville. Ky.
Copyright © Depressed Anonymous,3rd ed. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY.