Tag Archives: anxiety Depressed Anonymous Workbook

“Are you afraid of the dark?”

When I was a child I was afraid of going down into our home’s basement.  It was  dark and  gloomy.   My older brother convinced me that a frightening ghost was prepared to jump on me and eat me if I ever   ventured downstairs. Even when the single light that shone during the day couldn’t free me from my dreaded fear of the unknown.

As I grew older and outgrew my fears about ghosts and such I still was plagued with fears about things which popped up  unexpectedly  in my life. The way I handled  these fears was to think of all the possible ways that  I would be eaten (metaphorically speaking )  if the dark moods which  were   created  inside of me  continued.  It appeared that the more I  was feeling these unpleasant feelings swirling around in my mind, the more fearsome they did become. It was no longer the ghost in the basement  that terrified me but it was my own fears of being  reduced to nothingness that sent me spiraling downward into the great dark abyss. In a certain manner  of speaking, when I had a situation that caused my whole person to grieve something as much as a part of ourselves , loss of a love, a loved one’s death, loss of freedom through an addiction,  again I was  being thrust  into the dark basement of my childhood, with  those old  horrific feelings  suddenly rekindled and as real a threat as the imagined ferocious  basement ghost of my childhood.

Feelings are like that. They seem to just come out of the blue. In reality they come out of our past and those awful fears are being reignited by some of the same situations that caused us such panic in the earliest years of our lives. These fears continue to scare us and shut us down, feeling-wise, as long as we make no efforts to identify them and see how they are  connected  between then and now. Our body sensors are always alert to danger and so somehow a present danger or unpleasant feeling appears as fresh and new, when in reality it has its origin in a fearful childhood experience.

“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 then begin to admit 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 these feelings  over to the Higher Power. We can discover that forgiving  ourselves and being forgiven by God are one and 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.”


For more on this important  subject please read Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition.(2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.

VISIT THE STORE here at our site and order online more of our valuable books on the subject.

HOW DOES A PERSON CHANGE? THINK ABOUT IT AS A FOUR STAGE PROCESS.

In order for us to escape depression we need to begin to be aware of the process of how people change. That process for change is of the nature of a spiral instead of a straight line. In other words, now that we are willing to risk feeling differently we have been gearing up to improve our situation. In other words we are making a very important decision right now about our lives.
1. AWARENESS STAGE: We become conscious that we can’t go on feeling the way that we do. Something has to give.
2. MOTIVATING STAGE: I am going to prepare myself for needed change in my thinking, acting and feeling.
3. DOING STAGE: I am going to take charge and be responsible for positive changes that have to be made by me if I am to feel differently.
4. MAINTAINING STAGE: I will continue to seek out and sustain my recovery with people, concepts and my personal working of the 12 step program for recovery.
Now apply these four stages which serve as antidotes to our character defects and which cause us to stay imprisoned in our prison of depression…The first is the character defect of BLAMING.
(1) AWARE. Now that I have admitted that I am powerless over my depression and that it serves no purpose to blame myself for my depression an d bashing myself with daily reminders how bad and unacceptable I am. And now I am: (1) AWARE of my need to discover what there is about myself that I do find acceptable, good and wholesome.

(2) I am MOTIVATING myself now that I am aware how I have depressed myself by the faulty beliefs that I have held about myself over the past years. I now know that part of the way I feel is due to the way I automatically talk to myself throughout the day. Without ever being conscious of it I now realize that my feelings about myself are very negative and emotion laden.

(3) DOING. I intend today to replace all negative statements that I make in my head and replace them with positive statements –positive affirmations. I am going to alert myself –like a red flag waving –every time I call myself stupid or put myself down mentally. I will use affirmations such as “I will build a new life.” “I am strong.” “I have courage to go through this experience.” “I no longer blame myself or others for my sadness.” “I do not have to wait for someone to make me feel differently.” “I can do it myself.”

(4) MAINTAINING. I am very hopeful that I can feel differently just today, for this 24 hour period. I am going to tolerate my imperfectness while at the same time refusing to feel sorry for myself. I am going to make myself accountable for how I feel –not blame it on another, the weather, parents or whatever.
SOURCE: The Depressed Anonymous Workbook (Pgs. 41-43)- Depressed Anonymous Publications – Louisville
Continued tomorrow: BEING A VICTIM