A time of change … new life, new starts. Is it a time of positivity for all?
For many, the arrival of spring is a positive sign and time of year. Traditionally, festivals have been held at the start of spring to welcome its arrival and for what it represents. The signs are there to see: animals giving birth to young - maybe you notice lambs in fields, baby birds, etc; buds burst into life and leaves emerge; evergreens also entering a faster growth phase with fresh shoots and leaves; the weather warming up and increasing daylight hours.
The clocks go forward this weekend too as we enter British Summertime.
Yes, it can be a lovely time of year, although at the time of writing this, Thursday 26 March, the weather is colder than is often the case at this time. That is part of the attraction of spring, some days are relatively summery and others more reminiscent of winter … truly a time of change.
It is worth remembering that for people who experience and live with depression, this positivity that infects many others is absent.
Depression can be extremely debilitating to live with, not only the flat and depressed mood, but the associated thoughts and feelings. The new life and change of spring can seem empty and hollow.
It can often be difficult for others to understand the depth of these feelings and experiences and how they can pervade throughout the whole of the person. This can be especially true when people are able to present a ‘front’ at certain times but not at others. Characteristically, those with depression may be able to appear fine at work but not at home or vice versa. Famously Winston Churchill was able to function with the office and responsibilities he held but experienced a much darker place in his personal life when his “black dog” visited him, relentless in it’s all encompassing nature.
Hypnotherapy can be a useful tool for making positive and lasting changes to many areas and achieving potential, such as overcoming problematic anxiety, losing weight, stopping smoking, managing pain, increasing confidence and performance etc.
When it comes to clinical depression, however, hypnotherapy is NOT the first port of call.
If you are feeling depressed and are unable to find a way to relieve the mood. If you are having thoughts and feelings which are troubling or disturbing, especially where they might be linked to harming yourself, then you need to seek urgent medical attention.
If you suspect you are depressed, please make an appointment to see your GP. If your situation is urgent and you believe that you may do something to harm yourself, then you should see if you can urgently see your GP or otherwise attend at Accident and Emergency - remember A+E is for mental health emergencies as well as physical health ones.
Medication can be useful to stabilise mood and this may provide you with an opportunity to deal with the factors which contribute to your depression and hopefully to make progress to overcome the disorder.
There are psychotherapies which have been found to be very useful and effective at treating depression, particularly Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy. This is also now available within the NHS.
Your doctor can discuss suitable options with you and advise of what is available.
Hypnotherapy is not a first line response with regard to treatment of clinical depression. It may be of assistance only as part of a comprehensive treatment plan alongside other interventions and as agreed by your doctor.
Low mood is an area where hypnotherapy can prove useful but this is very different from depression and is not as all pervading and extreme as flatness and depth of mood and associated thoughts and feelings of depression.
So, if this spring, you are finding you do not share the brightening outlook and you are worried about depression, please seek medical attention.
You can do something to help yourself, and lessen the impact on those you love and care for. Your doctor is your first port of call and in an emergency, A+E.