The Role Of Avoidance In Chronic Depression

Clinical experience tells us that one common factor unifies most patients' problems in this homogenous clinical presentation: avoidance. Avoidant coping manifests itself in a number of ways in chronic depression and takes three interrelated forms: behavioral avoidance of certain external situations; cognitive avoidance of certain mental ideas or images; and emotional avoidance, through the direct suppression of emotional experiences.

The successful execution of many CT interventions is predicated on the patient's ability to identify, label, experience, and tolerate negative affect and upsetting thoughts. Each of these forms of avoidance is utilized to mask distressing feelings and thoughts, therefore representing a significant obstacle to be overcome if CT is to be implemented successfully. Whereas most patients in acute depression concur that avoidance is wholly unhelpful, the picture is not so clear-cut for patients in chronic depression. Frequently, over the course of years of illness, avoidance becomes adaptive and helps patients to manage both their mood states and their social environment. The adaptive nature of avoidant coping strategies can often be traced back to early childhood and may be shared within families, subcultures, and communities (see Bedrosian & Bozicas, 1994). Formulating different forms of avoidance and how they work for the patient is a vital step to promoting lasting change, because avoidance is pivotal in blocking change.

Letting Go, Moving On

Letting Go, Moving On

Learning About Letting Go, Moving On Can Have Amazing Benefits For Your Life And Success! Don't be held back by the past - face your guilt and fears and move on! Letting go is merely arriving at a decision, no more allowing something from the past tense to influence your life today or to cut down your inner sense of peace and welfare.

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