Do you ever feel like staying positive is an exhausting endeavor, or that looking on the bright side is a skill that is beyond your grasp? You’re not alone. Depression is one of the most common mental conditions in the world, with almost 16 million adults in the United States experiencing a depressive episode in the year 2014, alone. Depression can arise in several forms, from Seasonal Affective Disorder to Persistent Depressive Disorder, and subsequently there are many treatment options for these varied iterations of depression.
The practice of mindfulness can be enormously beneficial to those who suffer from various forms of depression, particularly those who are averse to an intensive, long-term maintenance regimen involving the continued use of antidepressants. Mindfulness skills can be attained in programs like Mindfulness Based Stress Deduction and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy, referred to as MBSR and MBCT, respectively.
Mindfulness helps people develop skills that can prevent a reoccurrence of depression by teaching them how to shift their thinking away from negativity and despair. They are then able to focus their minds on awareness and acceptance of the goings-on around them, and can move away from the negative patterns of thought.
Practicing mindfulness techniques can have remarkable benefits for the millions of people who suffer from depressive thoughts on a daily basis, but the benefits of doing so can be felt by all. Mindfulness allows the practitioner to alter their relationship with their own thoughts, allowing them to calmly acknowledge and accept their various emotions, ideas, and sensations without being imprisoned by them. Focusing intently on the present moment and shedding our various worries and fears can significantly help in reducing stress and anxiety, invaluable benefits to anyone who lives within the frantic hustle and bustle of the modern world.