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Depression and Anxiety Are Very Treatable Mental Disorders

You will notice improvements if you apply specific tactics and skills

I've been in the mental health industry for nearly a quarter of a century. As a practitioner, I see issues having to do with anxiety and depression on a frequent basis. Honestly, that's kind of an understatement. That's kind of like saying that the ocean is damp. Anxiety and depression have become so common that people are just accepting them as normal now which I think is problematic and troubling. I think we should be more troubled when we come to just accept that depression and anxiety are just how things are now. There's a reason why this is happening and I also think it's a bit troubling when there's a lack of people asking why. It would help if more people were determined to understand it and get to the bottom of it.

I have many theories about it and I think, perhaps, it could be a different article for a different day as there just seems to be so many contributing factors. A person can improve some of it simply by making the decision and the effort to unplug from some contributing factors. Spending a lot of time with the news or social media for example can have a drastic effect on our perspective on life, the world and other people thereby having a significant impact on how you feel day to day. Humans sometimes even have an interesting way of compulsively choosing things that are harmful to them. You wouldn't keep sticking your finger into a wall socket and then wonder why you have such extreme degrees of physical pain and discomfort. And yet so many people compulsively choose things that contribute to their emotional discomfort and overall misery. The news and social media are just a couple of examples.

I don't think we're supposed to live this way. I think our collective mental health issues point directly to our lifestyles and our social norms for example. So much of what we do and what we have come to accept as normal is working directly against us. One of the most fundamental challenges to wellness in our era is having the guts to do things in such a way that works for us while running the risk of being misunderstood. The older I get and the more I find increased wellness for myself and the more I show the way to others, the more I realize how important it has been for me to give myself permission to be different and to live a life that others may not understand.

The Path to Wellness

As a therapist, it's my goal to offer ways for my clients to get what they are looking for. I work best with those who desire change, seek change and know that if they don't change, then nothing will improve. There are a lot of people who wake up in the morning and think, "man, I sure hope things get better" without realizing that they have far more ability to influence this than they can imagine. The only way to really understand how much power one might have in this way is to put in the work and find out what you can accomplish. Those who just wait for things to get better often end up waiting for a long time while shaving precious time off their life.

The fact is, you have far more ability and power to influence and change this than you think. Many of us have been conditioned or domesticated, of sorts, to see ourselves as victims of things outside of our control and I don't just disagree, I regard it as a horrible and nasty lie. When I realized that I could have a positive impact on my mental health through my own efforts I wasn't just relieved, I was ecstatic. That was a big moment for me. In the years since I had that personal breakthrough, I've only gotten better at being empowered and in charge of my own experience, wellness and happiness. People have gotten angry at me before on the internet because I've preached the good word of personal responsibility. They've really seen me as a villain. They're furious with me. They think I'm blaming them when I'm not but sadly, a lot of people would rather hand their power over to someone or something else and sadly, it's doubtful that they will ever taste real happiness or a good life. Blaming and being a victim won't get you anywhere. It's one of those difficult truths that empower those who accept and embrace it.

Over the years I've seen a lot of people improve and get better. Many. I know what works and what doesn't. I know what's helpful and what isn't. My therapy approaches are directed at strategies and approaches that work and help. I know these techniques and tools so well because I've used them myself. I've come miles and miles from where I once was in many regards including with depression and anxiety. In my own life, I've gone from terribly depressed and anxious to content, happy and at peace. I know it can be done. I'm living proof as are many of my clients, past and present.

I recently saw a video clip on YouTube, Dr. Andrew Huberman had a guest on his podcast, I don't know who he was exactly but he was talking about how he lived with severe problems with anger and rage. Most of which was directed at himself. He refused to tolerate his own mistakes. He went on to say that he learned a couple of effective strategies and he actively practiced and used them. According to him, in just a few short months of remaining diligent in his efforts, he noticed a huge improvement. He was personally shocked at how much better he was doing in such a short amount of time and it was because he stayed focused on his efforts to do something different.

His story helps illustrate an important point about improving mental health. It takes time, patience and diligence. If you were out of shape you wouldn't expect to do a handful of pushups and run a couple of laps and expect to see any improvements. It requires consistent and diligent effort. Mental health is the same way. Practice the tools and the skills on a consistent basis and in a few short months you may find yourself miles and miles from where you were and that's what my therapy treatment is all about. Daily steps that will take you miles.

Depression and Anxiety are Highly Treatable

Sadly, there are many mental health professionals that don't view things like depression and anxiety as things that can be effectively treated. There are more than enough therapists that will just tell you that you have to manage it which also usually means that they think that you should be taking some kind of medication. That's it, that's all, nothing else to see here, time to move on.

I respectfully and boldly disagree. They can be effectively treated. I've overcome them entirely. These mental health plagues used to follow me around like an uncurable disease and now they're gone. My life is completely different.

"If you dedicate yourself to using the tools and skills you could make significant progress in a short amount of time"

Anxiety and depression often go together. It's rare to find one without the other. Anxious people, for example, tend to start limiting themselves in order to avoid things that might cause them to feel anxious. They might spend less time with friends because they don't like driving or going in public for example and in the process, the quality of their life decreases. We need positive human interaction and without it, we tend to be much more depressed. Anxiety can cause isolation and isolation should be avoided as though it could kill you because honestly, it just might. Anxious people tend to engage less in things that bring quality to their lives because anxiety has a way of encapsulating you and separating you from really living and enjoying what's really good about life and so depression worsens in the process.

Treating anxiety and depression has been the most effective, I've found, when I can get people to engage in some behavioral efforts as well as cognitive. If you change your thinking and your behavior you're going to feel better. If you can feel just a little bit better today then you can feel just a little bit better tomorrow and you can learn to compound this effect and build a life that you love and enjoy. The formulas are always effective. If you do certain things you'll be depressed, anxious and miserable and conversely, if you purposely do other things, you'll be hopeful, optimistic and happy.

I've proven that depression and anxiety can be successfully and effectively treated over and over again but it boils down to one major key factor. The individual's ability to pick themselves up and keep working at it whether they feel like it or not. Believe me, I know what it's like to feel hopelessness and despair. It crippled me. The hardest part was showing up. The people who improve are the ones that show up and do their best whether or not they think it's going to help or not. Many people will tell me that they can't engage in these efforts because they just don't feel like it and I'm not discounting how hard it is but I will just say this, you have to try it whether you feel like it or not. Ultimately, it's necessary for a person to want change and not be afraid of it.

If you've heard enough and you want to get started then give me a call or send me an email. We'll get you going and get you moving. I believe in you, I really do and no, I don't have to know you to believe in you. I look forward to working with you and watching your progress.

Scott Carter, LCMHC


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