Key Ways ACT Can Help You Deal with Your Depression

When folks use the word “depression,” they are probably referring to a range of depressive disorders. This includes major depression, bipolar disorder, seasonal depression, and more. Each of them is serious and present with some very challenging symptoms. Seeking treatment is imperative and in some cases, urgent. But how can you know which direction to choose? You may begin by getting information on medications.

If you opt for the path of therapy, there are so many approaches to consider. This post highlights one of the more successful options: Acceptance and Commitment Therapy or ACT.

Is It Depression or Sadness?

For starters, it is important to differentiate between inevitable down periods and a diagnosable mental health condition. Everyone has felt sad and will feel it again. This is never a pleasant experience but, on its own, it doesn’t raise a red flag. Sadness, to put it simply, is when you feel sorrow about something. That something could be, for example, losing a job, breaking up with a partner, or learning that someone you love is not well. It’s perfectly normal to feel situational sadness.

General depression, on the other hand, is when you feel sad about everything. This sadness permeates all aspects of your life, e.g. your outlook, behaviors, thoughts, beliefs, feelings, and mood. When you’re sad, you could briefly feel like this. With depression, you chronically feel this way. With this mind, let’s examine ACT as a treatment option.

What is ACT?

Your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors interact. How they interact affects your wellbeing. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy is a form of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) that is designed to explore and change those interactions for the better. This occurs via:

  • Mindfulness to increase your self-awareness
  • Acceptance of what our cannot control — including painful and uncomfortable feelings
  • Choosing value-inspired action to give you life more meaning
  • Changing your relationship with suffering and pain

Key Ways ACT Can Help You Deal with Your Depression

The above description demonstrates why ACT is so effective in treating depression. Every single one of us regularly deals with painful experiences and distressing emotions. Our relation to these events is heavily shaped by:

  1. How we perceive them
  2. How we react to them

It is normal and healthy to go through some extreme emotions in response to an extreme situation. This can go awry if you:

  • Repress these thoughts
  • Seek to control what is beyond your control
  • Create dysfunction via unhelpful coping mechanisms to manage the disconnect you feel

When depressed, some unhealthy mechanisms may include isolation, substance abuse, overeating, social withdrawal, and more. Inevitably, these choices serve to add to our pain and suffering. The cycle is fed and the consequences grow more intense. Here are just a few of the many new perspectives you can gain through ACT:

  • Identifying what is troubling you in a way that accepts these problems without avoiding them
  • Resisting the impulse to act immediately upon experiencing certain emotions and thoughts
  • Using meditation and awareness to stay cognizant of what your inner voice tells you when times get tough
  • Detaching from that negative inner voice
  • Analyzing your internal monologue to expose its inaccuracy and lack of evidence

Choose to Become an Informed Patient

No one knows better than you how and what you are feeling. But there is so much more to know when it comes to the specifics of both conditions and treatments for your condition. It’s necessary to reach out for help and guidance. To learn more about depression and ACT, contact a qualified professional with experience in both topics.

Reach out today for a free consultation to begin your personal journey of healing. All it takes is a single phone call to start changing your life in a profound way.

For more information on Depression Treatment click here.