T Nation

Treating Depression


I've done a lot of these in the past months as I was suicidal (getting used to telling people and accepting the reactions) and has helped tremediously. Alhtought since its exam month my usual sleep schedule is a little off. Going to try the no electronics after 9:00pm. I am the worse for that. Going to look into the Gratitude journal and maybe the cold showers.

I have recovered quite nicely. I tell people if you compare me to when I was in my darkest time to me now, it is two different people.


Cheers mate.

I've had a period in my life where I was a VERY positive person, back when I was 23 and just moved to Singapore. And completed a self-help/personal development course with Anthony Robbins. I was viewing life in a positive manner, rolling with setbacks and striving to be healthier and be better (I dropped 22kgs back then with being vegetarian and cardio). I would like to be that positive again and have all the experience from the last 13 years as well :slight_smile:

I like Matty's quote about "a mind is a terrible thing" - it can aid us and undermine us in the same stroke. "Guard the door of your mind".

Also I forget who talked about pain being relative like the break-up with a partner being painful to some but not others with more traumatic experiences. This is so insightful. Put things in perspective.


It is such an amazing feeling when that all comes back. I do not have chronic depression but very bad seasonal. I can now sympathize with people who are that low but on a everyday standpoint a little hard. It is not at all pleasant to be there. Depression and how people respond to situations is SO subjective. The mind is a powerful and terrible thing.

Meditation helps tremendously as well. I've taken up hot yoga classes as well. I would love to carry on with it but its very expensive.


You may want to take a look at "Learned optimism." It uses some studies based on salesmen and may be something that could be of help.


Thank you for this last point. My wife is more experienced in yoga and meditation and has been trying her best to get me to do both. At least start with meditation. Working on my obstinance should be the first step.

I've heard hot yoga has many benefits. Maybe just regular yoga for now?


Thank you for your help and advice. I searched online further and liked what I read on this. Particularly this summary to begin with :


I took a cue from Cortes and downloaded podcasts on relieving stress, meditation and some Ziglar. I think most importantly I have not been vigilant to what I am thinking about, my reaction towards events and letting the environment influence me.


hot yoga helps in that it gets the toxins out of the body through sweat. Yoga is good because it activates the parasympathetic system and releases those feel good endorphin like dopamine, meditation helps to break one out of mind identification and helps a person to not be sucked into every passing thought and emotion.

Another thing worth trying and free for anyone is a book called Way of Liberation by Adyashanti, but its not something to just read and check out... Its a serious practice to be utilized to go from one perception of separated identification to pure being. Anyways for anyone serious enough and maybe wants to find a deeper insight into things and truth to their suffering worth a shot.. http://www.adyashanti.org/wayofliberation/


First of all, an internet strength training forum is not the place to be getting "therapy". I've been where you are right now, and also had worked professionally in the mental health field for 21 years. Go see a physician who can make an accurate diagnosis and then develop a treatment plan that is appropriate for you.

The newer SSRI medications have very minimal side effects; you may feel a little lightheaded or dizzy the first two days until your body adjusts to the meds, then after that, you won't even know you're on them. Also, (I managed a psychiatric research study as part of my professional career), medication alone tends to lead to a greater likelihood of relapse; the best prognosis is from a combination of medication and therapy. See a qualified professional and best wishes.


I did a term paper on depression in the elderly and the best exercise mode for treating it. In countless papers the meditation group did better than an aerobic and anaerobic intervention. However, not significantly different when compared to the other modes. As well, each intervention group had the same effects as depression medications.

I go to hot yoga because it feels AWESOME to sweat. When I say sweat your skin opens like a tap and pours out water but its a comfortable/effortless sweat. It's great and you feel so good emotionally and physically.


I could easily see that, it seems that the symptoms always seem to start and linger from the mind... basically ego re traumatizing people and bringing back the same feelings and sensations from force of habit and familiarity. The Bikram yoga sounds intense for sure too... Exercise is great for stress release and better mood function, but it doesn't quite get you to be able to allow things to be and pull away and just observe the negative thinking patterns and sensations the other 95% of the day, Obsessing, analyzing, judging, comparing, wishing away, frustration, pushing things away, clingings, forms of compulsive behavior to control symptoms.. It seems that all these things are common recipe to keep any downward spiral to worsen, that's why being non judgemental and letting things be is so important.. It seems to treat any form of addiction, anxiety, or depression we need to get out of our heads first and then practice acceptance from there.

The mind is a great tool and useful for practical purposes but a horrible place to live lol, honestly its no wonder so many people suffer from a myriad of psychological trauma living in and making identities of what is basically a computer. It is sad to see that sometimes people will not even use the only thing that can save them, from endless sleep and so much suffering.


CBT Therapy usually teaches that your moods are created by your thoughts and how you view your world. Change the thoughts and your are on your way to managing your moods. Most therapeutic approaches for cognitive re training are based around altering beliefs, opinions, and perception..

A good spiritual teaching though is about seeing the false hood in beliefs and a psychological sense of self, and basically ending "you're world" where the only thing left is what is true in what is, before you have a thought or belief about it. It is going from one perception directly to the other from personal and separate to whole and complete truth.

Here's a good guided meditation I sometimes use by Adyashanti, he has plenty of free talks on youtube and the free E Book is really all you need if you want to get serious and hold truth as a higher value then anything else, like survival or just feeling good. I don't want to sound all preachy and pushy and what not but I know from personal experience that this is far more real then all the delusions and perceptions I used to live with.


This idea that depression cannot be chemically related is just an asshat idea. It's a flat denial of reality. The difference is usually discernible by the removal of environmental stimuli that can be associated with the mood. If you can remove the external source and the mood improves then it's situationaly dependent. Usually, it's clinical when there is no obvious reason for the mood and the mood is persistent and life inhibiting.


How is everyone holding up?
Personally, I'm feeling a lot better again after some testing times in the last few months. Hopefully it sticks this time.


I don't want to stick to any specific view points but the idea of a chemical imbalance causing depression is just as much a theory as anything else, actual recent research has shown that a large percentage of people benefited better with CBT therapy alone, among many other things it also showed that medication did not do much in terms of changing mood for a lot of cases. It stated that a large percentage of people had benefited as a placebo about 40%. The thought that they are doing something to fix the problem drops it from their mind and then they persuade others about how amazing x,y,z drug is.. Then you are swarmed with slick and seductive ads from drug pharms showing people suddenly shifting one end to the other. If someone is suffering and you tell them its a chemical imbalance, they seek medication and feel no relief they can start to feel pretty hopeless and then they make an identity out of it which can make the depression come more out of force of belief system alone.. Symptoms are no doubt very real, and very physical but if someone really does the investigation themselves they will find its just a belief in some form of thought processing, the thought comes, then the feeling, then another thought.. If you are not aware of what is going on and are just riding out the process then you will not know where it started and will just seek external help or some relief elsewhere. It is a downward spiral in that sense because a person can identify and stick with a very, very distorted thought that can cause them to become suicidal even because they can't live with their own mind.. It is not that they want physical death as much as they can't live with an illusive sense of self or usually they would say they just want to dissapear, stop being me, etc.. This is all concentrated as a stem in ego and definitely without a doubt can be seen through as an illusion. I know people such as Bryon Katie or Eckhart Tolle, both who suffered for over 10 years and were extremely depressed and suicidal.. However now they are both free of suffering and stated the same thing, it was the belief in the thoughts that caused suffering, or the "little me". Bryon Katie offers a book called The Work, which is a self inquiry to break away from thoughts and feelings a person is identified with, showing them how they are deceiving themselves and a way to see it through. IF we are to state and tell someone they are suffering from a chemical imbalance and they need certain medication to control symptoms we are stating something we don't know for sure, and they can end up re instating that little sense of "Me" and possibly causing them unnecessary suffering.

Of course its not as simple as read this pick me up line, find meaning, go do this or that activity.. It takes time to overcome physical symptoms and behavioral habits do not change overnight. However a person can be shown a way that opens the opportunity to suffer consciously and to stop re in forcing the little "me". In this way the suffering that is caused by ego ends up burning up the ego itself.

CBT therapy if done correctly can break a person of their false thoughts and absolve the negative emotions that eventually become very intense and physical along with it. Of course there is nothing wrong with using medication along side CBT but its been shown also that some people are three times MORE likely to commit suicide from taking medication which would probably be the last thing a person should suggest to someone already feeling suicidal. In fact feeling suicidal is not even a bad thing, it just needs to be seen as that which wants to die is not who a person really is, a re direction of the question what wants to die can go much better then acting and fear and judgement of that person. There is also the toxic profile effects of medication, this is not the 70s anymore we have come a long way in regards to finding the root of suffering and how to eliminate it, which in some cases can be chemical such as severe bi polar, or schizophrenic but even in those times a person can work on overcoming them in the short term or when symptoms start to surface with medication and work on lowering dosages if they feel they can be stable enough.

One more thing that is misinterpreted alot is a feeling of emptiness inside, drying up of personal drive to do anything, a feeling of nothing ness.. The feeling of nothing ness or emptiness is not a bad thing at all, it can only get mis translated and interpreted in the mind as a sort of despair. If you get right down to it and strip someone of false identities there is nothing there, they literally are nothing in the core of their being, however they are also everything at the same time and not separate or lesser then a single thing else, the feeling of emptiness and nothing ness is actually a very nice and liberating feeling, it is the end of becoming this and that, no more self image and illusive sense of self to attack and defend, that mind is a liberated mind, and you don't experience absolute nothingness without the simultaneous everything ness, you can get a feel of nothing inside but that is just coming into your own true self which means a faceless voiceless death to a conditioned sense of self .. When a person goes into hypnosis of body and mind they wrap themselves up solely in self image and personality and its no wonder they feel depressed or anxious, the sense of isolation can become quite apparent when a person is left too long with their own thoughts and a turning away from there own being.

There does not have to be belief in anything just the opportunity to drop belief entirely and to experience what is actually real and true for yourself. Anyways I know I went on a rant, some of it more spiritual and the other part just a view on CBT.. I branched off into the spiritual because from my own experience it is what I actually know to be real and true, and if someone else has a flash of recognition they can see it for themselves.. On the other hand just wanted to talk about the benefits of traditional CBT and the reminder that this chemical imbalance thing is just a theory though harder to describe as such when you have billions of dollars invested into it and so much lucrative opportunity for pharm. However if someone is taking medication and they feel its working and they feel good all the more for them, this is just for the people that want to go a different route of investigation there is nothing wrong with either way.


Anyways whole point of my post was to just say everyone is free, and has a right to be... And there is absolutely no limitation on it, whatever is believed to make people go into conflict can absolutely be seen through and for the illusion it is. It just takes letting go of certain long held perceptions and a willingness to fully walk into the unknown.


Reading this threads makes me so glad I chose not to go for drugs when I was being treated...


I thought I’d resurrect this thread rather than start my own.

The black dog has chosen today to come and make his obnoxious presence felt. It’s a physical feeling, as though my head were filled with some sort of black, gritty substance. It typically descends on me for a few weeks and then vanishes as mysteriously as it arrives.

I knew it as soon as I failed to get out of bed. I’ve tried the doctor. He prescribed me an antidepressant that had the side effect of suicidal ideation, leading more or less directly to an admission to accident and emergency and a stern telling off from a doctor. Note to self: co-codamol is a really stupid way to try and commit suicide.

So today, my attitude is this: “Oh no you fucking don’t. We’re drinking a lot of coffee, playing music and getting on with that chainsawing job and doing grease the groove clean and presses.”

So I still feel shitty, but at least I’m getting stuff done. Which is, I suppose, an improvement.


Der_Steppenwolfe, you need to find a doctor and therapist with whom you can work over several months or years to find the right combination of factors - medication as well as behavioral - to stabilize you once and for all. “I tried meds and they didn’t work” is like saying “Yeah, I tried a gym once, but I didn’t get ripped.” It’s a process, trial and error. A therapist is helpful in tracking change, whether + or -, and helping to assess what it is and what it means along with working on strategies to improve mood and functioning.

Nobody loves body building message boards more than I do, but this is NOT the place to deal with your mental health issues.