There are not clearly defined stages of depression put out by psychological or medical groups, but some experts in the field have developed lists to help them work with those who are depressed or bipolar. Tom Wootton, for example, an expert in the field of bipolar disorder, has a list of six stages of bipolar – from crisis to self-mastery – that guide a bipolar person from disorder to in- order. His is a sophisticated program that provides extensive assessments, development of tools, and careful planning to become a master of one’s mental health instead of a victim. I highly recommend his course of study.
In my coaching for those who are depressed, I have also found it helpful to define stages of depression. For me, there are six of them. The concept is that you break the wholeness of depression down into manageable stages that require different strategies for each stage. As the old adage goes, “How do you eat an elephant?” The answer is “one bite at a time.” In the case of depression, how do you go from onset to triumph? The answer is “one stage at a time.”
These are the six stages, which are a linear progression from the worst stage to the best, with relapses a usual part of the process. I will explain each of them in future blogs.
- Onset of Depression
- In Treatment
- Becoming Stable
- Developing Tools
- Controlling Depression
- Triumphing Over Depression