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anxiety, depression, etc

I've been dealing with anxiety for half of my life (I will be a senior in college next school year), but didn't get diagnosed with a disorder until more than a year ago. I was thin for most of my life, but within 5-6 years I gradually put on about 5 pounds per year, due to eating to ease the stress and depression that comes with it (and of course after puberty hit I guess I didn't have that child's metabolism). I have been on PT for more than a year now, but with not much success. I still struggle with emotional eating and staying focused. I worry so much that something bad will happen to me, so I'm like "what's the point...what if once I reach my fitness goal, I find out I'm dying." I'm scared to be happy I guess and scared of life's uncertainty. I know it sounds silly to most people, but perhaps people who suffer from anxiety, depression, etc. who have been able to lose weight or even if you have trouble reaching your goals, could give my some insights, their own stories and advice for me. It would be nice to know that I am not alone in this because I always forget.

Thanks so much!

Fri. Jun 22, 1:20am

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You are most certainly NOT alone! What helped me through my darkest days was my therapist (are you seeing someone?), and being able to talk to close friends about how I was feeling. If I had known that yoga was so restorative back then, I would have started it. Instead I gained a lot of weight that I am still trying to lose. Once I decided that it was time to REALLY take care of myself (meaning, cutting down on alcohol, fried foods, and other things that made me feel bad about myself) and started to pay attention to myself positively, the weight started coming off....Take care and good luck!

Friday, June 22, 2007, 2:24 AM

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2:24: Thanks for your reply! Yes, I have been seeing a therapist for more than a year now. Unfortunately, what I really am missing in my life are real close friends. I have one I can talk to openly about anything, but she doesn't seem to understand the severity of what I'm going through. Ironically, she hopes to go to grad school for psychology. Furthermore, I question our friendship since I am tired of the way she has been treating me, but that's for another thread lol. I find that I can easily remove negative "friends" from my life, but it's extremely hard for me to make real close friends.

Yeah, yoga is amazing!

I want to reach my goals so badly, but it's like I'm allowing my anxiety to take over my life.

Now what I'm realizing is that I really need to make positive friendships but that's hard for me.

Thanks for your reply!!

Friday, June 22, 2007, 3:11 AM

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Sound so simplistic but it has helped me. Develop a gratitude practice. Get a special journal ONLY for the practice...make sure you like it.

Every day write down 3 moments or things you are grateful for....can be as simple as the smell of your mango soap, a stranger who smiled at you in a store, something beautiful you read. You can write a short sentence about the event, person, thought or thing...or more.

I write at night...last thing before I go to bed. I know it sounds like something Oprah would recommend (actually, I think she did)...but honestly it helped me.
Somehow I think you can hold gratitude and anxiety in your thoughts at the same time.

Friday, June 22, 2007, 7:16 AM

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Hi O.P., You are not alone! There are alot of us that can understand. I second the idea of a gratitude journal. I have had to work myself out of some dark places & it has really helped me to keep a journal that marks the small things in life that I am happy to see. It can really help retrain your mind to pick out the positives things, the small blessings encountered each day. Instead of going through the day seeing only the spilled coffee or the person that cut you off in traffic you may see the smiles & the kindness.

Friday, June 22, 2007, 9:40 AM

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vigorous exercise is my anti-depressant. I stop functioning when I don't get enough. It is really amazing.

Friday, June 22, 2007, 2:00 PM

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I've dealt with depression my whole life and been in therapy for years. I'm finally on anti-depressants and that really makes a huge difference. I think exercise works initially but eventually those dopamine and serotonin kicks tend to lessen (for me anyway).

Anyway, I tend to gain weight when I hit a rough patch. The hardest part is taking care of yourself when you are in that rough time and not giving up on yourself and your body. During my last rough patch, I gained 30 pounds in 2 years. Not okay.

The only advice I can give - since everyone's situation is different - is to acknowledge those rough times and ask for help. It's a hard thing to do but remind yourself that you are worth it and that you CAN feel better.

Friday, June 22, 2007, 2:40 PM

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Depression and weight gain

Your comment really spoke to me in a personal way. I battle everyday with Social Anxiety Disorder and mild/moderate depression. I've always had SAD, but the depression is fairly new. (about 2 years) Anyway, I really feel for you and can really relate. I've gained about 30 lbs in the last 2 years and find staying motivated incredibly difficult when you're depressed. Please know you are not alone in the world, and even though I'm a stranger, I CARE!!!

Friday, June 22, 2007, 6:42 PM

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I'm glad I found this thread. For a few days now I've felt like just "checking out". I've never seen a therapist and never considered myself to be depressed, but now I'm thinking differently. Can a person just all of a sudden become depressed?

Friday, June 22, 2007, 10:15 PM

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Depression and Anxiety

I'm a 32 yo. male, and a licensed clinical therapist. Everyday I work with clients in my clinic who come in with depression and anxiety issues, we work through them mainly through intervention strategies and positive coping mechanisms in place. If you're in therapy, you know that there's a cycle to the depression and anxiety. It starts with your triggering events that leads to your thoughts then to your feelings. This is known as the pre-congnitive/ thinking patterns. If we can change our thoughts or our reactions towards those stimuli in the enviornment, the better we are at breaking the cycle. Change the way you think about food in your immediate environment and exercise self-control to replace those thoughts with more positive thoughts. It can be done. I myself am working through the advice I give my clients each day with food. I'm back on the WW diet from 210 to 203 in about 11 days, and I know that if I don't replace my thoughts about what food tastes like "the domino's run at 10pm" and relace it with an apple, I'm on my way...

Friday, June 22, 2007, 11:14 PM

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good point- I really have to pay attention so one "off" day doesn't slip into a downward spiral and before I know it I'm in a bad place again. It takes a lot of awareness to keep taking care of myself.

Saturday, June 23, 2007, 2:21 AM

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