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Depression Workbook

by Mary Ellen Copeland, M.S., M.A.

This resource features a wealth of interactive exercises that teach essential coping skills.

Full Description:   

The Depression Workbook offers step-by-step, self-help guidance for:

  • Taking responsibility for your own wellness
  • Using charts to track and control your moods
  • Finding appropriate mental health professionals
  • Building a support system
  • Increasing your self-confidence and self-esteem
  • Using relaxation, diet, exercise, and full-sprectrum light to stabilize your moods
  • Avoiding conditions that can exacerbate your mood swings

This resource features a wealth of interactive exercises that teach essential coping skills, offers special sections that provide up-to-date information about optimizing the therapeutic effects of exercise, full-spectrum lighting, and diet, as well as the possible harmful effects of electromagnetic radiation.

The workbook is further enlighted by the responses of 120 participants in a survey of depressives and manic depressives, who share their insights, experiences, and strategies for living with extreme mood swings.

Sample Activity

A Four-Step Process for Eliminating Distorted Thoughts

There are several simple and very effective techniques for changing or eliminating stress-producing, distorted, and negative thought patterns to positive ones. By systematically examining thought patterns and applying behavioral techniques, you can change the way you think and feel about yourself and your life. This will have a profound effect on your moods, and will greatly enhance the quality of your life. The four steps in this process involve

  • Identifying your emotion
  • Describing the situation that gave rise to the emotion
  • Identifying the distortion in your thought process
  • Refuting the distortion

Read through the example below.

  1. What emotion (or emotions) are you feeling now?
    I am feeling angry, tense, and anxious.

  2. Describe, in detail, the event or situation that gave rise to your emotion.
    I went to my fiend Peter's house at 4:00 p.m., as previously arranged, to go for a walk and have dinner together. He was not at home when I got there.

  3. Describe your thoughts, and identify any distortions in your thinking.
    Because Peter wasn't there, I decided he really didn't want to spend the time with me, that he really doesn't like me and doesn't respect my feelings. (This would fit in the category of mind-reading.)

  4. Refute the distortions.
    There was only one piece of evidence, his not being there when I arrived, that was the basis for my distortion. The truth is, Peter and I have been close friends for a long time. All evidence indicated that he likes me a lot. An emergency may have come up, he may have gone to do an errand that took longer than anticipated, he may have misunderstood the plan that we made or he may have forgotten that we made a plan (or I may have misunderstood)--any of which are acceptable reasons and do nothing to lend credence to my distorted thought. The best course of action for me would be to wait on his porch (doing relaxation exercises) until his return; or leave him a note asking him to call me when he gets in.

Practice using this four-step process to work on straightening out your distorted thoughts. For your first try, choose a situation in which the distortion in your thinking is fairly easy for you to identify. As the process becomes clearer, you can work on situations in which the distortion is more subtle (or in which there are several distortions operating at once). Use separate sheets of paper to ananlyze each situation.

304 pages; 8 1/2 X 11;soft bound

Preface
Introduction

Getting Started

    PART I A Clearer Picture

  1. A Medical Overview of Mood Disorders
    by Matthew McKay, Ph.D.
  2. Experiencing Depression
  3. Experiencing Mania
  4. Taking Responsibility for Your Own Wellness
  5. Possible Causes of Mood Disorders
  6. The Way Out of Depression
  7. Coming Down From Mania
  8. Using a Chart To Keep Your Moods Controlled

    PART II Support Is Essential

  9. Building a Strong Support System
  10. Finding Appropriate Health Care Professionals
  11. Support Groups
  12. Family Support

    PART III Developing a Lifestyle That Enhances Wellness
  13. Taking a Look at Your Lifestyle
  14. How About Counseling?
  15. Building Self-Esteem and Self-Confidence
  16. New Ways of Thinking
  17. Using Relaxation To Stabilize Moods
  18. Diet
  19. Exercise: Do It
  20. Light, Electromagnetic Radiation, and the Biological Clock

    PART IV Looking at Suicide

  21. Suicide: The Tragedy of Mood Instability
  22. Preventing Suicide

    PART V Resource List

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