The following article is one of the items which make up the Depressed Anonymous “toolkit.”
“Jim, as a member of our Depressed Anonymous Fellowship, learned that he needed more “SUNSPOTS” to bask himself in. These “SUNSPOTS” are meditation times where we can focus on all those pleasurable events, people, places or things that can make us feel happy. The trouble with most of us when we are depressed is that our whole life seems to go into a deep pit with its eighty foot hole and an eight foot ladder.
One good way to escape from this prison is to get with a group of people who by joining each other’s section of ladder, will all eventually get to the top and out of this deep dark hole that we call depression. Think upon these small “SUNSPOTS” throughout the day and know that you are gradually coming into the light of a new day. Prepare a list of memories which at one time in your life were the cause of some joy and pleasure: try to recreate that activity in your imagination as often as you can. At first, all you might be able to do is just make a mental decision to do it, though at the time you don’t feel any particular pleasant emotion. Keep at it and with the continued encouragement of the group, you will be able to recapture a little joy and peace. You will begin to have more mastery over your life and the world: this in itself can lower your feelings of sadness. When you have a negative image or thought which produces an unpleasant feeling, replace it immediately with three positive and pleasant thoughts or mental images. In Depressed Anonymous we call this THE LAW OF THE THREES.” One negative thought is immediately replaced by three pleasant thoughts and or memories.
SOURCE: Copyright(c) Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.
COMMENT At times we find that our thoughts become cyclical. As we continue the rumination process we complete the circle where we end up where we started. Many of us see this compulsive thinking behavior as a deciding activity affecting us physically and emotionally. The unending worry, fear, gradually wears us down, much like the grit of the grinding wheel. So, when we STOP our negative thoughts we can cut off the resulting emotional residue which follows and continues to numb and immobilize us.