Keys to Addressing Depression Realistically
Information on participation via ZOOM.
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic struck Europe, depression was already the most common mood disorder, just as it is the most common mood disorder in the rest of the world. COVID-19 has created a sharp rise in people reporting higher levels of anxiety and depression, which isn’t really very surprising given how often these two disorders are found to co-exist in people. The long-term impact of the COVID-19 world crisis remains to be seen, but already the debilitating anxiety and depression too many people are experiencing is increasing as a result of their sense of isolation, helplessness, and hopelessness. The depression isn’t just in their neurochemistry – no, its point of origin is in their circumstances. This observation alone requires us to re-think what we believe about depression, who is vulnerable to it and under what conditions, and most importantly, what to do about it when trying to help others.
So, what can coaches, psychotherapists, physicians, and other health care professionals do to help people who are suffering with depression? What can people who want to help others, whether their patients or their friends or family members, actually do to help make a positive difference?
A number of well-researched psychotherapies have highlighted these three key insights regarding effective help: the quality of people’s thinking, the quality of people’s relationships, and the need to be active in learning effective behaviors are all vital to helping someone recover from depression. These insights are the foundation for the discussions and skill-building activities provided in this 12-hour highly practical webinar offered in four separate sections.
Schedule of Topics
Section 1: Developing a Realistic View of Depression
• Check your assumptions about depression: who, what, why, and how.
• What has COVID-19 taught us about vulnerability?
• Biology and Psychology on a Collision Course.
• What role for antidepressant medications? What psychotherapy can do better.
• Models of depression: How you think about depression matters a lot.
• Goals of treatment: Where to focus your attention.
• Assessing suicide potential.
• What it means to be an action-oriented clinician.
Section 2: Focus on the Individual
• Individual risk factors for depression.
• Global thinking and its implications.
• Ambiguity and its role in anxiety and depression.
• Coping styles for managing stress that make things worse.
• Problem solving skills that would be good to have.
• Helplessness and hopelessness: what keeps depression going and what to do about it.
• Perceptions of controllability that keep people stuck.
• The importance of addressing sleep issues.
• The merits of focusing methods, especially hypnosis and mindfulness.
Section 3: Focus on Relationships
• COVID-19 has forced social isolation; now what?
• Wired to be social.
• Depression as a social contagion.
• Socialization is a powerful force: value programming, social roles and rules.
• Social skills that are often missing in depressed relationships.
• Social discriminations skills; how do you assess other people realistically?
• Building relationships in ways that can insulate you.
Section 4: Key points, Key Strategies
• 10 key strategies for working with people suffering depression.
• What about self-help?
• What to do when you are depressed.
• What NOT to do when you are depressed.
• When to seek formal therapy.
• Learning to think preventively.
• Summary and closure.
All health care professionals and for those with a personal interest in the subject.
If you have any questions, please contact Systa Jónsdóttir (email@example.com) at The University of Iceland, Department of Continuing Education.
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