If a sadistic person wants to torture someone else and make him depressed, he might imprison his victim and deprive him of exercise, sunlight, and social contact.
But the most important factor for making his victim depressed is to get him to think thoughts like "My life is awful", "My situation will never improve", and "I'll never be happy again".
After all, these kinds of thoughts are what suck the life out of his victim, cause his shoulders to sag, and put him in a depressed state.
So learn from this: the biggest overall thing that makes you depressed is your thinking, and the most important factor for eliminating depression is to change your thinking. Indeed, this has been conclusively proven by the placebo effect for depression.
For this reason, getting rid of negative thoughts and thinking more positively is by far the most important thing you can do to become and remain depression-free.
What is the relationship between negative thinking and depression?
Does depression cause negative thoughts? Or do negative thoughts lead to depression?
If you're thinking negative thoughts like "My situation is hopeless" or "I'll be miserable until the day I die", you might think that you're thinking this way because you're depressed.
However, it's important to appreciate that it's the other way around. These types of negative thoughts make you depressed, and you will struggle with depression as long as you continue to think this way.
So from this moment forward, do not think of negative thinking as a "symptom" of depression, which is a common mistake people make. Instead, think of it as a factor of depression, which you've got to change to stop being depressed.
If you find yourself thinking thoughts like "Why am I so negative and depressed?", the big insight is that negative thinking leads to depression. So change your negative thoughts, and you will naturally change your depressed condition.
Indeed, the good news is that you immediately start coming out of depression the moment you think and believe more positive thoughts.
Test it out for yourself: don't you immediately feel better thinking positive thoughts like "I can get rid of depression" and "I can become happy and stay depression-free"?
If so, then you've already proven to yourself how quickly you can feel better and get out of depression by improving your thinking and replacing negative thoughts with more positive thoughts.
If it's natural for you to automatically think negative thoughts that depress you, rather than more positive thoughts that make you feel happier and depression-free, then in a sense your mind is "wired" for negativity and depression.
If this is your situation, then it's important for you to challenge your negative thoughts and change your thinking, so that it's natural and automatic to think positively, instead of negatively.
Since your thinking is what ultimately causes depression, the importance of doing this cannot be overstated. Doing this is how you become depression-free for good.
To be clear, this is not about forcing yourself to think positively and making yourself think in ways that feel phony and artificial to you. Rather, it's about understanding why a positive thought is better and more sensible than a negative thought, so that it's natural for you to think more positively.
If you want a therapist to help you with this, find someone who specializes in cognitive behavioral therapy (cbt), since the entire premise behind this therapy is to help you change how you think to change how you feel.
Or, if you want to do it on your own (and want a much cheaper alternative) the Positive Thinking Tool will help you rewire your mind for postivity step by step. Just try it out and see what you think.
Bottom line, you've got to make it your priority to replace negative thinking that depresses you with more positive thinking that helps you become and remain depression-free.
If you're looking for a "quick fix" to help you stop dwelling on negative thoughts, you can do an engaging activity like playing a sport or talking to a friend. The idea is that by concentrating on something else, you're naturally not thinking negatively, so this is why it immediately helps you.
However, if negative thoughts keep returning to you, doing an engaging activity is only a temporary band-aid until you take action to replace those negative thoughts with more positive thoughts.
This is why it's so important that you develop the skill of learning how to change your thinking for good on a deep level. You can develop this skill with the Positive Thinking Course, a cbt therapist, or best of all, with the Positive Thinking Tool.
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