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3. Feelings of worthlessness and low self esteem.
4. Fatigue and low energy, unable to get out of bed.
5. Recurring thoughts of death or suicide.
6. Difficulty concentrating for an extended period of time.
7. Sudden weight gain or loss in greater than usual proportions. (Not just usual holiday few extra pounds.)
8. Sleep disturbances such as: difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep or sleeping too much.
9. Continued feelings of helplessness or hopelessness.
10. "Out of character" irritability, impatience or anger.
11. Loss of interest in sex.
12. Loss of interest in your usual daily fun activities.
What To Do:
1. Ask for help.
2. Get help.
3. Give help.
4. Use help available.
5. Don't stay alone. Make sure you seek out others.
6. Don't try to hide your condition from loved ones. Those who care can help you get help you need.
7. Use all available resources. Where To Go:
1. Ask a family member or friend to help you find a referral to a therapist.
2. Ask you physician for a referral to a mental health professional.
3. If your physician prescribes temporary medication, take it.
4. If you use an integrative health practitioner such as an acupuncturist, call them.
5. If you have successfully used alternative medications in past such as Melatonin or St. John's Wort, consider trying them again.
6. Contact your local directory, crisis center, or hot line.
7. Call national crisis hot line: 1-888-363-2287
8. Contact Depression U.S.A., Rockville, MD, 20857
9. Contact your local divorce group, parent's without partners or your religious affiliation.
10. Send your questions to me at www.SaneCrazy.com.
As I have been telling others on nationally syndicated radio and TV, this is a particularly vulnerable time of year. The media, society and those around you tell you to be happy. Instead, you may be missing your family or your current situation is different from what you hoped it would be. Perhaps you have wonderful or dreadful childhood memories of this season that have resurfaced, or your expectations are unrealistic and you don't understand why? Maybe Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) has hit you bad and some light is required?
Whatever reason for your blues this season, next year can be better. Get through this difficult time using all help available. The New Year and new opportunity starts soon.
Life is too hard to do alone,
Dorree Lynn, PH.D.
Dr. Dorree Lynn is co-founder of the Institute for the Advanced Study of Psychotherapy and a practicing clinician in New York and Washington, DC. Dr. Lynn served on the executive board of the American Academy of Psychotherapists and she is on the editorial board of their publication, Voices. She is also a regular columnist for the Washington, DC newspaper, The Georgetowner. Dr. Lynn is a noted speaker and well known on the lecture circuit.