On Writing a Recovery Ebook

I want to give you an overview of my new ebook on recovery from depression and hopefully get your thoughts on the approach I’m taking. Even though I’ve written a great deal about recovery, I have found it difficult to pull my experiences together in the more organized form a book demands. It’s so much easier to write about the miseries of the condition when it’s controlling your life than [...] Read the rest»

Red and blue balloons

Time Off as the Storied Mind Blog Turns 5

2007 seems a world away from my life today, and many of the changes have come about because of the writing I started five years ago on the Storied Mind blog. Depression felt a lot more dominant then than it now does, and prospects for living as I hoped to a lot less bright. All that has changed. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have had the close support of my [...] Read the rest»

stories of mindfulness, loneliness and medicine

The Healing Stories of Rachel Naomi Remen

I keep coming back to the stories of Rachel Naomi Remen, and this video of one of her lectures reminds me what I value in her work. While advocates of the new medicine have been revolutionizing the paradigm of medical practice, Remen is one of those physicians who has changed many lives by applying these ideas in her unique way. She tells stories. She is a physician, teacher, story-teller and [...] Read the rest»

spiral shapes

How Stress Can Shape a Life Story

The psychologist Richard O’Connor believes that we tell ourselves stories about our lives to control stress. Stress has a way of becoming a chronic condition. It wears down your body and damages your brain, especially when combined with depression. Yet stress is a killer we often crave like a drug. We create stories that help us make sense of an unbalanced life. Stories of Challenge In my work, I often [...] Read the rest»

Viktor Frankl 1972

Finding Purpose in Life – Viktor Frankl

Viktor Frankl’s central theme was the necessity of finding purpose in life. As he tells the powerful story in Man’s Search for Meaning, he learned that this was the only way to survive the tortures of a Nazi concentration camp. In creating his own form of psychotherapy, which he called logotherapy, he identified three ways of arriving at meaning in one’s life. They are work, love and the one he [...] Read the rest»

Essence by-Grzegorz Chorus 350

Does Finding Purpose in Life Help You Overcome Depression?

Finding purpose in life that goes beyond your personal needs is often mentioned as a major step in overcoming depression. That’s a hard thing to imagine, though, when you’re in the middle of a severe relapse, and survival is the only goal in sight. Yet, one of the hallmarks of depression is loss of motivation to do anything because you feel that your life is meaningless. You are meaningless, empty, [...] Read the rest»

Revisiting: Recovery and Creative Experience

All that I am, all that life has made me, every past experience that I have had – woven into the tissue of my life – I must give to … new experience. … [The] past … has indeed not been useless, but its use is not in guiding present conduct by past situations. We must put everything we can into each fresh experience, but we shall not get the [...] Read the rest»

Do You Have to Lower Your Expectations of Life to Recover?

Donna-1 recently asked me this question in a comment at Recover Life from Depression. It’s an important one to think about. I’ve often mentioned how crucial it has been to my recovery that I made basic changes in my work and way of living as a whole. Did I have to give up on hopes for what I could accomplish and settle for less in life in order to get [...] Read the rest»