Distorted Thinking

Being depressed means I have a distorted way of thinking sometimes. My worries are multiplied, my thoughts tend to go to the negative. Research shows that this way of thinking can trigger or worsen the experience of depression.

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I have unrealistic ways of looking at a situation, even pessimistic, which can exaggerate the negative and de-emphasize the positive or promising aspects of an event. I often think negative thoughts about myself and judge myself unfairly. I am critical of myself.
I know now that it is the depression talking to me and not really me. Even when things are going well my mind searches for something wrong. It’s hard-wired probably from my days as a manager when my job was to compare things to a standard. The standard I place on myself is too high.

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Even through all this, I have hope. Hope lifts my perspective a little and opens up my soul to Jesus, who has promised to hold my hand every minute of every day. Things may seem hopeless, but I am holding His hand and I can see a shift in the clouds of depression.

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“As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more.” Psalm 71:14

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I know that my depression is a chemical imbalance, certain neurochemicals in my brain are less active, and I have medication to offset it. This too came from God as He led me to my doctors for their knowledge.

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God doesn’t want me to just endure life- and that is how I sometimes feel, as if I am getting through the day-enduring. My distorted thoughts are unrealistic and negative about the future which, of course, is not hope. If I can just get a flicker of hope each day I know I will be on the path to betterment.

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God said to Job: “You’ll forget your troubles; They’ll be like old, faded photographs. Your world will be washed in sunshine, every shadow dispersed by dayspring. Full of hope, you’ll relax, confident again; you’ll look around, sit back, and take it easy.” Job 11:6-18

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I will wait for that day, never giving up hope. I will fight back when everyday problems are overcome by the depression. I will make plans and goals to bring joy back in my life. Solving problems takes energy and I will get my energy-my hope- from God’s Word.

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I will talk back to my distorted thoughts, challenging them when needed. I will not cling to those thoughts but use my DBT skills to turn my mind and think more realistically. I will not succumb to the lies I tell myself but will listen to my Wise Mind (God) and believe only truths.

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I will be mindful of my emotions and determine how I want to act-effectively. I will accumulate positive emotions and increase joy throughout my day. Reading the Bible props up my hope and leads me to more positive thoughts.

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