Sunday, December 28, 2008

Antidepressant skills

Two local psychologists, Dan Bilsker and Randy Paterson, have put together an Antidepressant Skills Handbook which is available to download online free of charge. It is available here. The book gives strategies for people with depression to employ, some of it based on the cognitive therapy approach. Individuals can work their way through it with the coaching of a friend or family member. It is also suitable for use by support groups.

I downloaded the 67-page workbook a couple of months ago, intending to make copies to use with a small group of Living Room members. Yesterday I decided it would be a good time for me to try the workbook myself. What better way to familiarize myself with it? I'm sure I'll be able to benefit from it right now.

One section that will be very good for me right now is the one on depressive thinking. That's probably my worst problem right now. The book helps you learn to identify and recognize depressive thoughts, seeing how they trigger your low mood. You learn to challenge these depressive thoughts and replace them with fair and realistic ones. You learn to practice more balanced, realistic thinking.

I don't usually have a lot of problems with negative thinking. I tend to be a very positive person. Yet when I'm into a period of depression as I have been lately, I tend to latch onto negative thoughts about myself. That's when my mood really dips.

I had a good day today. No negative thoughts at all. Finally tackled a huge mess in my bedroom. I followed a friend's advice and put on some good music as I worked. There's still lots to do, but it's already looking much better. It will be so good to come home from the cruise to a tidy house. What I did today is truly a huge accomplishment. I feel encouraged.


Ed said...

Hi marja,
I tried the link for the antidepressant skills book, and noticed that it has an error which can easily be fixed. As it is the link is

but you can see the problem--you need to remove the second http// so that the link becomes

come visit my blog if you like,

marja said...

Thanks, Ed, for catching that. Too bad I didn't see that earlier. I'll edit the post and correct that.