Are Self-Help Books On Depression Effective? Three Things You Need To Know
Depression and anxiety can be mild annoyances for some, but for others, these can be debilitating conditions that can lead to thoughts of suicide. If you are one of the estimated 350 million people worldwide that suffer from depression, you may not know what to do or where to turn. Many individuals choose not to use anti-depressant medications for a variety of reasons. There are other resources beyond pharmaceuticals. Countless self-help books have been written on dealing with and overcoming depression. If you are currently looking into these books for help, the following three things will help you manage expectations and leverage these books to help you.
Research the Source and Align Your Values
Not every book is the right fit for every individual. Before you begin reading a self-help book for anxiety, research the author and try to find authors that have values similar to your own. For example, if you do not believe in the Christian faith, a book written by a Baptist minister that teaches a Biblical method for dealing with depression is probably not going to be of help. Seek out books that incorporate your personal beliefs, or the books you choose will be worthless to you in dealing with your depression and anxiety.
For many with depression and anxiety, it can be easy to "fall off the wagon" and let those dark thoughts of taking your own life creep in and take over. Once this happens, it can nearly take a miracle to get your mind right and get you back on a positive path. Read your books daily and keep your head filled with positive thoughts. This is not the "be-all, end-all" of stopping suicidal thoughts, but it can go a long way to keeping you from going to "the dark place."
Incorporate Books With Therapy
Even the best self help books on depression and anxiety can't stand alone when you are dealing with thoughts of suicide. Seek the assistance of a trained counselor. Don't skip counseling sessions, and be open and honest with your counselor. And don't be ashamed to let trusted family members and close friends know what you are going through. A true friend will not judge you, and this conversation can mean the difference between you overcoming your depression and living a good life, or waking up in the afterlife. Remember that nothing is forever. If you are going through dark times, don't take your life yet. Everything in life changes and you WILL overcome your thoughts of suicide with help from others and the appropriate resources.