Patients suffering from depression may benefit from psychological treatment in several ways. The first step is to undergo supportive counseling, to help ease the pain of depression and eliminate feelings of hopelessness and sadness. The second step is to conduct a cognitive therapy in order to change patient’s frame of mind usually pessimistic ideas, unrealistic expectations or low self-esteem. The final step is problem-solving therapy that modifies those areas of patient’s life that are contributing to stress and depression. All of these methods are used as a part of a cognitive therapy approach.
Self-evaluation is a normal life process in which people evaluate how they manage everyday objectives and actions. In depressed people, self-evaluation is extremely negative, and depressed people take responsibility for everything that is going unwell, while giving others credit for things that turn out fine. In depression, self-evaluation is too critical and it nourishes low self-esteem and a sense of disappointment.
Evaluation of Life Experiences
Depressed persons focus on negative aspect of every life situation. Usually, if anything goes wrong, the depressed person evaluates the whole experience as a failure. Depressed people tend to have only negative memories based on their unrealistic expectations and evaluation of life’s “failures”. Psychological treatment may help to develop realistic expectations and regain hope to resolve any problem. It is important to learn how to regroup, recover and start again positively.
Pessimistic thinking may contribute to developing depression. It is a state of mind in which one perceives life negatively. Pessimism often nourishes negative cognitive distortions and self-talk, but it does not cause depression. Pessimism, however, encourages negative thoughts of hopelessness and helplessness, which are key features of depression.
Pessimists think that the future is bleak and there is nothing left to do in order to improve the life. Optimism, on the other hand, may create a certain kind of protection from depression and prevent an individual to reach these depressing conclusions.
The central point in cognitive therapy is a hypothesis that negative and irrational thoughts and beliefs, overgeneralization of negative events, pessimistic attitude on life, a strong predisposition to focus on problems and failures, negative self-assessment and other cognitive distortions, encourage the development of psychological problems. Depression is the most common psychological problem, but many others may result from these negative behaviors, as well. Consulting a psychologist and undergoing a cognitive therapy may help the patient to change his life and liberate himself from the negative effect of these issues.