174. Stops and Starts

An entry from my journal on February 1, 2007, one week after I had changed psychiatrists and was meeting almost daily with a psychotherapist.

“This depression is worse than anything I had thought. My thinking is so distorted, I don’t know how it can ever change. I am living in a nightmare.”

I learned so much in three weeks with the psychotherapist, and the new psychiatrist treated me as a person and not as a body to experiment on with “witches’ brew,” as my previous psychiatrist called the concoctions he was prescribing for me.

What I learned is that I needed to work on four stops and four starts.

The four stops:

  • Stop inordinately thinking about myself all the time.
  • Stop trying to figure everything out.
  • Stop defending myself.
  • Stop always needing to be right.

The four starts:

  • Start giving up obsessive control over my own life and the lives of others.
  • Start being less intense and more laid back.
  • Start replacing excessive pride with humility.
  • Start accepting the universe.

One doesn’t make such drastic changes in a day…or even a year. It took three years to incorporate the stops and starts into my life on a consistent basis, until I could finally say, “I have triumphed over depression.”

About Patrick Day

In 2010, I escaped from four long years of deep, dark depression. This blog shares lessons I learned from those years as depicted in my autobiography - How I Escaped from Depression - as well as other insights about depression and anxiety that only come from someone who has gone through it. When you have a heart attack, you become an expert in heart attacks. When you have diabetes, you become an expert in that condition. As such, I am an expert in depression, with a four-year experiential degree and graduate studies in how to live a life going forward that keeps the ever-lurking Depression at a healthy distance.
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2 Responses to 174. Stops and Starts

  1. Bob says:

    Great, More tools for my tool box. Knowing you now it’s hard sometimes for me to picture you in such a deep state of depression. Praise God we can recover from our Hurts, Habbits and Hang-ups. .

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