Counseling for Depression and Anxiety in HoustonStruggling with feelings of sadness, hopelessness, withdraw, or panic?
What Does it Feel Like Living with Depression?
The darkness surrounds you like an old friend. You can feel its presence in every breath you take, and in the way your heart races when you try to sleep. You are trapped in this dark place, and you can’t seem to find your way out.
The sadness is all-consuming. It’s like a weight on your chest that you can’t shake. You feel like you’re drowning in it, and no matter how hard you try, you can’t seem to break through to the surface.
The anger is always there, lurking just below the surface. It’s a constant presence in your life, and it often erupts without warning. You lash out at those around you, even though you know it’s not their fault.
The hopelessness is perhaps the hardest to deal with. You feel like there is no way out of this darkness, and that you will never be happy again.
Depression is More Common Than You Think
Depression is a very common mental health condition. In the United States, it is estimated that about 1 in 10 adults suffers from depression. The condition can affect people of any age, race, or gender, but it is most commonly diagnosed in adults between the ages of 18 and 44.
The good news is that because depression is so common we have gained a good understanding about its causes as well as its treatment. If you are willing to seek help, there is a very good chance that you can overcome your depression and start living a happy, productive life.
If you are struggling with depression, know that you are not alone. There is help available, and there is hope for recovery. Counseling can be an important part of treatment for depression. A qualified mental health counselor can provide support, guidance, and practical tools to help you manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life.
Not Everyone With Depression Looks the Same
Not everyone who is depressed stays in bed all day hoping to be swallowed up by the darkness. Sometimes you just feel stuck, like no matter what you do you can’t get out of this funk. Those around you don’t even seem to notice. You wear the mask well.
On the outside, you seem like you have it all together- great job, wonderful friends, amazing family. On the inside, the current of sadness runs deep. No matter what you do or how hard you try, it’s always there just under the surface.
You feel all alone like no one can understand. You’re not the first to let the tears run down your face while you listen to the sound of the water cascading down toward the shower drain.
If you’re like many others whom I have had the privilege of counseling, you likely experience your depression in waves. The severity ebbs and flows like the tide. You may experience some or all of the following symptoms:
- Feeling sad or empty most of the time
- Loss of interest in activities once enjoyed
- Insomnia or oversleeping
- Appetite changes, leading to weight gain or loss
- Persistent physical aches and pains that don’t go away
- Feeling restless or irritable a lot of the time
- Difficulty concentrating, making decisions, or remembering things
- Fatigue or low energy levels
- Feeling guilty, worthless, or hopeless
- Thoughts of death or suicide
Know that no matter the severity of your depression, help is available.
What Does it Feel Like Living with Anxiety?
Anxiety is a normal part of life, but when worrying takes over and prevents you from fully living life, we are here to help. Replaying past situations in your head or rehearing conversations that may or may not even happen in the future becomes exhausting. Fear about everyday situations creeps in despite efforts to relax. You may experience panic attacks, waves of fear that immobilize you and leave your heart racing. Panic attacks often strike seemingly out of the blue without a clear reason and can make you feel like you’re dying.
Anxiety might look like:
- Feeling worried or scared
- Rapid heart rate or sweating
- Rapid breathing
- Feeling weak or tired
- Difficulty concentrating or thinking about things other than what is causing you to worry/not being able to ‘turn off’ your worry.
- Stomach upset
- Difficulty breathing
How Can Therapy for Depression and Anxiety Help?
Therapy can help improve the life of someone struggling with depression in a number of ways.
Therapy Can Help You Listen to Your Emotions
First, therapy can help the person to understand and manage their emotions. This can help to reduce feelings of depression and anxiety.
You’ll discover that your emotions are little messengers who help alert you when something isn’t quite right or even unfair. Managing your emotions doesn’t mean they’ll go away; in fact, you will learn to experience your emotions more deeply.
It’s like when the gnomes in Frozen told Elsa’s parents that she needed to learn how to control her powers, and they somehow interpreted this to mean that she needed to suppress them. Sorry to spoil the plot, but that didn’t work, and Elsa ended up freezing the entire kingdom. Eventually, Elsa did learn to control her powers- by using them. Your emotions are kind of like that… kind of.
No one really likes to feel sad or angry or hurt, but when we learn to listen to our emotions, we can develop healthy ways of incorporating the messages they send us and change our lives for the better.
You Can Develop Better Coping Skills
Therapy can also help you develop better coping skills to manage life’s stressors. Sometimes, life can be challenging, even unfair. There may be times when you don’t really feel like life is giving you lemons so much as pelting you with them.
Through various breathing exercises, mindfulness meditation, or even jamming out to your favorite song, you can discover new ways to deal with difficult situations in a healthier way. We all have difficulties at work, at home, and at times, even with our friends, and learning to deal with these problems is a necessary component of leading a healthy lifestyle.
Therapy Can Provide the Support You Need
Therapy can also provide you with support and guidance as you work through your struggles. This can help you to improve your quality of life and build a brighter future for yourself.
Sometimes all it takes is the knowledge that someone has our back and is cheering us on. As your therapist, I will also be your biggest cheerleader. That doesn’t mean I won’t call you out or push you gently to confront your unhealthy habits.
It means I truly have your best interest at heart and will support you in any way that I can to help you realize your goals and aspirations.
You Can Live a Life Free from Depression
Life after overcoming depression can be a beautiful thing. After finally getting rid of the darkness that has been clouding your mind for months or even years, you’ll finally be able to see the world in a new light. You’ll be able to experience life in a whole new way and appreciate the little joys it has to offer.
I’m not going to lie and tell you that it’s going to be sunshine and rainbows all the time. What I can tell you is that you will develop new ways of combating your depression when it rears its ugly head again.
If you’re currently struggling with depression, know that you’re not alone. Millions of Americans suffer silently, but the good news is that there is help available. If you live in Houston, TX, there are many counseling options available to you.
Depression counseling can help you understand your depression and develop healthy coping mechanisms. It can also provide much-needed support during tough times. If you’re ready to start living a happier, healthier life, schedule a free consultation using the button below. I look forward to chatting with you.