Depression: Why It Is So Pervasive and What Can Be Done to Lessen Its Effects

Sad WomanGreat sadness, anger, anxiousness, irritability, and angst. That is what someone in the throes of depression experiences on a daily basis. Often, those feelings take over the mind effectively pushing out all thoughts of peace and happiness. Those who suffer with depression wish they did not. They want to feel happy and carefree, and to enjoy life. Unfortunately, when someone has experienced a great deal of tragedies over a long period of time, happiness can seem elusive and hope can seem lost. The human ego, which is the parent of all of our fears, looks for opportunities like this to take over an otherwise happy soul by feeding it with fears, regrets, and worries as a way of challenging the soul’s inherent beliefs about peace and contentment. To do this, the human ego persistently repeats negative thoughts like a music CD skipping on a scratched surface and repeating the same lyrics over and over again. It is up to each individual to learn how to hit the eject button on that skipping CD in order to repair it or replace it with a new soundtrack.

Slogging through the Mud

Depression is tough. I know this because I have experienced it many times in my own life. Sometimes the challenges we face become overwhelming, especially if there have been significant and ongoing struggles with little sense of relief in between tragic circumstances. We become worn down and tired of the constant effort it takes to fight off negative thoughts and feelings that threaten not only our happiness, but also our personal existence at times. It is during these times that the human ego senses our weaknesses and seizes the opportunity to ramp up the negativity. To a person suffering with depression, it can feel as though one is stuck in a mud pit trying desperately to climb out but the slippery slopes cause one slide back in again and again. It can seem like an exercise in futility. Even though the person suffering knows there is a way out because they have risen above the muck before, the human ego with its pervasive power does its best to block those thoughts. Due to the great challenge of trying to see beyond the negativity in order to get to a place of hope and more positive feelings, many people succumb to depression and, at times, tragically take their own lives.

The good news; however, is that depression is a temporary state of mind. There are few guarantees in life; however, one of them is that change is inevitable. It takes strong efforts and great love to free oneself from the grip of depression, but it is possible and, sometimes, it is necessary to receive professional help. If you think you are in need of help, you can contact your primary medical doctor as he or she may be able to provide recommendations for reputable mental health professionals.

Warning Signs and Professional Help

Part of the problem with depression is that those suffering from it often isolate themselves from friends and family members. They either hide their feelings or withdraw from relationships because they feel no one cares for them or loves them. Often, they may purposefully destroy relationships in an attempt to proactively protect themselves from the pain of rejection and loss they believe is inevitable through human relations. In addition, getting extremely upset over the smallest of issues is a red flag that someone is having a really hard time dealing with issues in his or her life. It is a sign of stress overload when someone has little tolerance for anything that upsets the status quo. It is like placing one more rock on a pile which sends them all crashing down in a heap. Excessive sleeping, as well as the abuse of drugs and alcohol, are also red flags that someone is gripped in the throes of depression because they are employing these mechanisms to shut out problems. In their minds, it is a way of providing relief from problems in which they believe there are no satisfactory answers that will help them overcome the issues.

If someone is struggling with deep depression, professional assistance from a counselor, therapist, or in-patient mental health services may be needed to help the person who is suffering. If they are suicidal, it is imperative to take those threats seriously and try to get professional help for him or her by offering to help them find a therapist. Additionally, provide him or her with the national suicide hotline number, 1-800-273-8255, which will provide immediate crisis assistance and put them in touch with mental health experts in the area. While it is good to do what you can to help someone by giving them love and lending them an empathetic ear, deeply rooted problems are best left to those who have extensive training and expertise in dealing with critical or life-threatening issues. You can lend your support and follow up on someone’s progress; however, it is good to recognize when significant problems require professional intervention.

There is Hope for a Brighter Future

There are less serious cases of depression which can be resolved with love, determination, and a strong base of support. Ultimately, we are all responsible for our own happiness and unhappiness. Taking an honest and objective look at the circumstances in your life can reveal why you may be experiencing great sadness and angst, as well as what you can do to rise above it. When you do this, you will not only see the positive benefits of negative circumstances, but also the paths you can take to mitigate or deter similar problems in the future. For instance, you may find yourself in a relationship in which you have been giving much more than you have ever received. This imbalance may be causing a serious imbalance within your emotional and spiritual wellbeing. If, after discussing the issue with the person involved, there are little to no positive changes over a sustained period, it may be time to end the relationship because it is causing more harm than good. It may be challenging to end such a relationship because you may have invested a lot of time and energy into this person; however, your energies would be better served by taking care of yourself instead of constantly feeding into the other person’s wants and needs. Remember, you are important, too. You can ask Archangel Michael to help you to cut the cords of past and current relationships in order to help you move forward into healthier relationships with a balance of give and take.

Actions You Can Take for Yourself

When you find yourself struggling with depression or strong negativity, there are many actions you can take to help yourself heal, to correct situations out of alignment with your best interests, and to move forward into more positive experiences for your soul. Here are a few I utilize when I find myself being overwhelmed by negative thoughts and feelings:

  • Call on Archangel Azrael to help transition negative thoughts to positive ones
  • Call on Archangel Michael to give you the strength and the courage to move forward with confidence in your path
  • Provide self-care for yourself, as it is important to take care of you, especially when feelings of anxiety and angst are taking over
  • Take stock of all that you do have and express gratitude for the comforts, relationships, and love you enjoy on a daily basis
  • Halt the negative thoughts and emotions by examining the present. In this exact moment, know that you are safe and loved by those on earth and in heaven. It is often fears and worries that get the best of us, because we are envisioning the worst – let it go and refocus to the present moment. Take each day one moment at a time until the negative feelings pass. You will see how you have come through it with better options than you thought possible.
  • Talk with friends about what is going on. Most of us have experienced times of darkness when negative thinking seems to block out all of the good in our lives. It is healthy to talk it out with trusted friends and family members. They may offer helpful advice or a different perspective that allows you to see the problems within the problem. Think about what they said and examine it in the context of your own life. Then, decide for yourself which ideas have merit for you. Listen to your truths in an objective way.
  • Step out of your environment and see or do something new. Sometimes we get stuck in a rut. A change in our routines may help clear our minds and open up new vistas and opportunities.
  • Take a nap. Not every day or excessively, but when the anger and frustration has reached unprecedented levels and you are having a hard time releasing it. It sometimes helps to take a nap once in a while to give yourself time to reset. As you go to sleep, ask the archangels to help uplift your mood and heal your heart while you are resting.
  • Play soothing music as a form of meditation and allow yourself to concentrate only on the sounds and your breathing. Once calm, you can take yourself on a meditation journey to meet with your loved ones in heaven and the angels in order to bring healing and love to your life.
  • Get moving by taking a walk, by participating in yoga or exercising in ways that bring you joy and helps you release excess emotions. Exercise is a natural way to release endorphins, which are happy hormones in our brains.
  • End relationships that are hurting you. Be honest with yourself about whether someone is truly hurting you or supporting you. Think about whether someone is adding to your life or consistently taking away without any concern for your welfare.
  • Clear out old tasks and tidy up your environment. If tasks seem overwhelming, focus on a little at a time. Set mini-goals such as tidying up one room or task at a time. Once that is done, you can move on to the next. Give yourself credit for each task completed, no matter how big or small.
  • Recite these Reiki energy healing principles when you wake up in the morning in order to start your day off with positive intentions:
    • Just for today, I let go of anger.
    • Just for today, I will not worry.
    • Just for today, I am filled with gratitude.
    • Just for today, I am committed to my work.
    • Just for today, I will be kind to myself and others.
  • Upon waking, tell yourself it is going to be a great day – and mean it.
  • Be as kind to yourself as you would be with others. When you catch yourself thinking negative thoughts about yourself, stop and replace them with two positive thoughts about yourself. Negative self-thoughts are hurtful. When you replace them with two positive thoughts, you are working on changing your thinking through kindness and love. Be kind to you. Life is hard, but you know you have triumphed over tough circumstances in the past and will do so again – with style and grace.

Regaining Hope

Depression is a serious problem for many people. This world can be very challenging, and anything we can do to help ourselves and others is a plus. As much as they would like to, most people struggling with depression cannot just “snap out of it.” It takes time to heal the heart and spirit of those who have been hurt or damaged by negative circumstances. By taking small steps each day, depression can be overcome, even in cases in which it seems hopeless. Those who are suffering from extreme cases of depression would most likely benefit from professional assistance. Help them, if you can, to find the assistance they need to live healthy, happy lives.

Positively Taking Your Life Back

There may be times when depression threatens to upheave your life; however, you do not need to let it take over. Take small steps each day to show appreciation to yourself and know that you are loved by those on earth and in heaven. Remember, change is inevitable, which means the challenging circumstances you may be facing are only temporary. When you get through to the other side of the issues, you may be able to see the positive reasons for the occurrences. Even if you are having a hard time seeing why events have occurred, keep looking and you will find even negative circumstances have positive reasons for occurring. Often, our frustrations arise from circumstances not going the way we wish they would. By learning how to recognize unhealthy patterns and how to see the positive reasons for negative circumstances, we give ourselves the opportunity to move beyond deep disappointment into a higher understanding of situations and better conditions for our lives.

With Light and Love,
Karen T. Hluchan

Spirit Medium, Motivational Speaker, Reiki Master, & Author of How Have You Loved?

www.HealingSpiritWithLove.com

Karen T. Hluchan is a spirit medium, motivational speaker, Reiki master, and author of How Have You Loved? Through her mediumship practice, Healing Spirit with Love, she devotes her time to the healing of spirit on earth through her connection with heaven. Her passion for her calling is shared through the spirit readings, demonstrations, and workshops she provides, as well as through her writing, Reiki, and fine art spiritual paintings. All of her work is inspired by the divine light that is within us all. She has a great love of nature, people, and the planet, and she enjoys her connection in spirit, both here and in heaven.
 
Click here to learn more about Karen’s upcoming events.

Healing from Childhood Abuse: A Very Personal Journey with Divine Purposes for the Soul

ChildSuffering from abuse as a child, whether it is verbal, physical, or sexual, can have a significant impact on your life as an adult. Often, people who are abused at a young age experience problems relating with others on a personal level. This is because their earliest experiences with relationships brought them pain, and eroded their trust and belief in others. The very people who were supposed to love and protect them introduced them to a world of hurt instead. Because of this treatment early in life, there are special challenges that people who are abused face regarding self-esteem, feelings of abandonment, a lack of feeling safe and loved, and the ability to trust others.

Fear of Retribution Leads to Underreporting and Unhealthy Relationships
Often, cases of abuse go unreported. Children who are abused are usually threatened by their abusers with more pain, or even death, if they tell someone about the horrors that they are living through. The people committing the abuse may also put the responsibility for the abuse on the children by telling them that it is their fault it is happening. Because children are in the formative stages of social development and look to adults for behavioral cues, they often accept the blame and internalize the resulting pain and confusion. Therefore, children often suffer in silence. In their minds, they are afraid to tell anyone and often pretend that they are happy, even when they are suffering. They become masters at hiding their feelings by keeping problems and secrets to themselves. They also may come to believe that their feelings are not as important as those of others, and may often put the needs of others before their own. These learned behaviors are a direct result of the way their abusers treated them. Tragically, this forms a skewed and damaged basis for future relationships for many of these children.

Healing Over a Lifetime
The personal journey of healing from childhood abuse may involve a lifetime of searching for peace, trust, safety, and love. Forgiveness plays a very important role in the healing process, as does learning how to love who you are. As adults, we can look back and try to make peace with what has occurred by extending forgiveness to all who have hurt us. Remember, forgiveness does not mean that you condone hurtful actions, it means that you consciously release painful situations in order to move forward with your life and growth. You may even get to the point where you see how these events made you more compassionate and empathetic toward others. Therapy and self-help books may also play an important role in working through the pain by learning how to relate to others and to build trust. Even though these steps may be taken, some people may still experience difficulties in their relationships. Because of the damage from the past, certain issues may trigger negative memories and, therefore, cause guards to be raised due to a perceived threat to their emotional or physical safety. Left unaddressed, the angst may build to unprecedented levels. The pressure may cause that person to withdraw from relationships, become depressed or even suicidal, lash out at others for seemingly no reason, express extreme fear or distrust, engage in unhealthy behaviors, cause self-inflicted pain, or exhibit other negative behaviors that are not easily comprehended by others.

Support and Love from Above
The true pathway to freedom from the effects of childhood abuse begins from within. It is a very spiritual and personal journey. People who are or have been abused need to know that their feelings matter, that their voice is heard, and that they are safe and loved. They also need to know that their experiences were not a punishment from God. As a person who has experienced childhood abuse firsthand, I know this journey well. I have traversed every aspect of its effects and have searched high and low for the reasons, as well as how I can heal and get back the trust and feeling of safety that was taken from me. From the depths of my soul, I have searched for ways to help myself and others with these issues. Therapy has helped; however, the most powerful answers and guidance I have received have come from my heavenly support team, including God. In order to receive the information, I had to go within and pay attention to what they were communicating with me through my soul.

My First Meeting with God
The first time God came to me, I was struggling with relationship issues. I felt like I was running on a treadmill of recycling negative issues and going nowhere fast. I was getting mad at God and asking why I was experiencing the same issues over and over again. In great despair one night, I cried myself to sleep, feeling hopeless and broken. When I woke up the next morning, I laid in bed not ready to get up yet and face the day. It was then that I experienced an incredible wash of love that came over me, accompanied by a brilliant white light that filled my vision. The feeling and the light were so strong and all-encompassing that I knew it was not of this earth. I knew in my soul that it was God sending his love directly to me, and that he wanted me to know, without a doubt, that I was loved. It was such a profound and magnificent experience that I never wanted it to end. Even now as I write about it, that feeling of love is still there, and I know that I can reach out and feel it in my soul whenever I need help. It was God’s way of telling me that he loves me and is always there for me whenever I need him.

My Second Meeting with God
The second time God came to me was during a similar time a few years later. I was getting so mad at God and asking him why he was testing me with painful situations over and over again. I felt I had suffered enough in my lifetime, and I wanted to know why he felt it necessary to keep torturing me. As before, I cried myself to sleep. The next morning, I awoke and did not get out of bed right away. As I lay there, I had a vision of being carried in God’s arms up a large, white staircase which looked like it was made of marble. God was carrying me like he would a baby, cradled in the safety of his arms and wrapped in his love. He was wearing a long and flowing white robe with a sash cinched at the waist. At the time, I could not see his face. As he carried me up the steps, he assured me that he was not testing me. He said he was my father and, like a father, it was not his job to step in and save me from all of the difficult situations I encountered. If he did, I would not learn or grow. He said it was hard to watch me struggle, but he knew that if he stepped in it would do me more harm than good. God told me he loved me and that he was always there for me, even when he could not intervene. He also said we are to love one another as he loves us—unconditionally, and that it is our connection with one another that makes us strong. As he climbed the wide steps, I could see a landing and then a second set of steps extending up to a place where a blinding white light shone. It actually hurt my eyes to look at it. I knew with all of my soul this was the light of heaven, and that it was not my time to go there yet. As we reached the first landing, I noticed two white thrones sitting side by side. They were exact replicas, except in size. God set me down on the landing and sat in the larger throne while guiding me to sit in the smaller throne to his left. He reached his left hand out and took my hand in his. Without words, we sat holding hands like old friends sitting together in the comfortable silence of each other’s company.

Profound Experiences Lead to Profound Understanding
Those profound experiences with God shook up my world. My understanding of why we are here and what we are meant to accomplish started to open up. There was never a doubt in my mind that God exists, I just was not sure of what his role was in my life until then. Instead of seeing God as the one responsible for my pain, I saw him as a friend, a father, and an almighty being who loved me enough to know when to step back and let me grow. Through further exploration with my heavenly support team, I received messages about the soul contracts we make before we are reborn on earth. Many of these contracts contain agreements to experience difficult circumstances in order to grow as souls. Instead of viewing my abuse as a karmic punishment from God, I saw it as a profound experience for learning how to reconnect with the heart of my spirit and to understand our true reasons for being.

Misguided, Not Evil
On an important note, the people who commit the act of abuse are not inherently evil. They are misguided human beings who also have difficult lessons to learn in their lifetimes. Believe it or not, we made the agreement through a soul contract to experience painful circumstances that were meant to push each of us to learn and become better people. Whether we actually do learn and grow is entirely up to each individual. For those who are abused, there are many lifetime lessons including learning how to reconnect with the beauty of our souls, how to forgive, and how to trust in God and others. People who have committed abuse have lifetime lessons of their own, including learning about how hurting others hurts themselves, how to respect and honor the self and others, as well as how to overcome the internal shame and pain of mistreating others.

Reconnecting with Your Heavenly Support Team
Whether you have been abused, committed abuse, or are in relationships affected by abuse, we are all here to learn lessons about love, forgiveness, and compassion. We can help each other in positive ways by speaking and working from the heart, and reconnecting with the best friends we will ever have – ourselves and God. You and God are together on this journey, and it is a relationship that is built upon love and trust. I did not always trust God because of the difficult experiences I had in my life, but now I do, and I find I have more peace in my heart than I have ever had before. This does not mean I no longer fall back from time to time into feelings of angst. It means I am quicker to recognize and understand why I am experiencing upsetting emotional reactions. I now know how to better handle the situations that trigger those feelings. Trust and love is built. Sometimes it takes baby steps to get there, especially when you have experienced hurtful circumstances during the foundational years of your life. Your guys and gals in heaven have your back, and they will help you. Your job is to trust in their assistance, and follow through on the guidance you receive from them through repeated signs and messages.

May Peace be with You
Be at peace, and know that everything you experience has a divine purpose. God is not punishing you; rather, he is helping you to grow into the beautiful being that you are today. Our job is to help ourselves and others to heal through compassion and love, as well as through faith in the divine circumstances that help us to grow as souls.

Namaste!

With Light and Love,
Karen T. Hluchan

Spirit Medium, Motivational Speaker, Reiki Master, & Author of How Have You Loved?

www.HealingSpiritWithLove.com

Karen T. Hluchan is a spirit medium, motivational speaker, Reiki master, and author of How Have You Loved? Through her mediumship practice, Healing Spirit with Love, she devotes her time to the healing of spirit on earth through her connection with heaven. Her passion for her calling is shared through the spirit readings, demonstrations, and workshops she provides, as well as through her writing and Reiki. All of her work is inspired by the divine light that is within us all. She has a great love of nature, people, and the planet, and she enjoys her connection in spirit, both here and in heaven.
To learn more about Karen, who is based in Horsham, Pennsylvania, and her book, How Have You Loved?, visit her website at www.HealingSpiritWithLove.com.