Dealing with Discouragement and Despair

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It has been estimated that at least one in three people experience depression and despair at frequent intervals.

More people than we realize feel that they are not getting anywhere in life. They carry through their daily tasks. But each day is like another and they seem to make no progress. A tension is set up and discouragement leads to despair.

Getting depressed about being depressed creates a cycle of hopelessness, passivity, hibernation, avoidance. It creates a positive feedback loop by which you keep getting more depressed. Separating the layers of depression cuts the self-downing loop.

The topmost layer of despair is emotional but such emotions have behavioural consequences. They lead to avoidance, passivity, perhaps aggression. But they also suggest that depression evolved for a reason—to make you retrench. Used the right way, it prompts you to approach a troublesome situation differently.

This experience is very common indeed. Probably our way of life with its rush and noise and ceaseless competition has a good deal to do with it. But how do we overcome such feelings in our life? The first thing is to try and face the cause. Discouragement, depression and despair could have physical origins. Poor general health is a great impediment; a body that is not functioning harmoniously cannot let the mind function well too.

There could however also be psychological causes for our state of mind. Discouragement and despair are often the result in the feelings of insecurity, lack of confidence, unworthiness and guilt.
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Assuming we have been unsuccessful in unearthing anything physical or psychological, how do we set about conquering out feelings of discouragement and despair?

We become depressed because of our thoughts. It is in our thoughts therefore that we must find the solution.

The secret to achieving this is in our own minds. Two things have repeatedly been proven.
• We can turn our thoughts in any direction we wish,
• The unconscious influences the conscious mind. One of the great discoveries of modern psychology is the importance of the unconscious. Ideas formed there tend to actualize in life.

This is why it is sound to begin the day with an affirmation about ourselves which we can repeat several times. It not only focuses our minds at the time, but its influence continues as it sinks into the unconscious.

So if we can turn our thoughts in any direction, we could think of positive affirmations that bring a sense of joy, hope and calm. When stress comes we begin to substitute it with positive affirmations. Of course as human beings it is not always easy to get on with. But remember – it is objectively possible to turn you thoughts in any direction you like.

All this means substituting a hopeful attitude for a pessimistic one. Discouragement and despair come to most of us at times. There is nothing unusual in that. The big thing is to know how to transform them into hope and courage. Awareness and conscious & consistent practice will mean that uncomfortable situations automatically trigger off ones self-cultivated protective mechanism.

It is not an alien phenomenon and is being done by many people across all levels…that’s why hold yourself as You Can Do It Too!
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