Are you looking for a depression and anxiety treatment? If so, you’re not alone. Depression and anxiety problems are so common in society that every human being, including those who are not anxious or down, must share common psychological processes with those who are anxious or down. Any Depression Treatment or Anxiety Therapy always has to address these issues sooner or later.
The ability to become anxious or down must be built into us. There is no other explanation for this phenomenon. I have worked with many hundreds of clients over the years and I have always tried to see the common features of clients’ problems. Because common features always reveal something of the basic mechanisms of any problem. And understanding the basic mechanism is really useful if you want to create solutions. The act of Imagination is perhaps one of the most creative experiences we can have. It is powerful stuff. Imagination can motivate you to invent a life changing tool, but it can also take you down to the depths of despair. Imagination can be dangerous if not properly seen for what it is: a raw power that can be harnessed or ignored. Harness it and it can serve you well, giving you a lifetime of interest and engagement. Ignore it and you are at its mercy. It can destroy you.
This film explains a little more about Creative Imagination.
In any Depression and Anxiety treatment which involves therapy a therapist will almost always find elements of problematic imagination. Let me give you two examples that are pretty representative of those commonly seen in a CBT Therapy clinic. The first is a key component of the group of Anxiety Problems focused on social phobia or social anxiety. The sufferer will usually have a powerful set of mental images that show them being embarrassed or exposed as a fool, or a fraud in public. They are being ridiculed and made to look weak and helpless. The use of their imagination to create anxiety provoking mental images that while having never happened nevertheless ‘capture’ their deepest fears about themselves is very damaging and limiting. The emotions evoked by these very negative mental images is so strong that it seems to make sense to avoid situations where these fantasies may come to pass.
The second example will most commonly be seen in the CBT Therapy clinic for a Depression Treatment. This is often represented as an inner dialog where the sufferer imagines themselves in a conversation with another person and in this they are being criticized, found to be at fault and failing to live up to the standards expected of them. The power of this fantasy conversation is in the emotion invested into it by the imagination. The most troubling and damaging emotions are evoked, and this often makes the sufferer feel helpless to act in any positive way.Both of these examples are very commonly seen in many depression and anxiety treatment settings. It is fundamental to the success of the CBT Therapy that they be challenged rigorously. The sheer power of these fantasy products of the imagination cannot be underestimated. The good news is that they can be challenged successfully and the negative emotions they create consigned to history. In this process the sufferer can experience a freedom from anxiety and depression perhaps never before dreamed of.
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