I have just completed a course which has taken up quite a bit of my time – Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy:
If you’ve had depression before and are worried it might come back, you could find Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) very helpful. Clinical research has shown that MBCT is one of the most effective ways of preventing relapse into recurrent depression. MBCT is a meditation-based course that helps you become more aware of the habits of thinking that can lead into depression – and teaches you ways to change these habits.
Depression has been a major part of my life for well over half of it and it has ruled it at times. Although I have never missed a day’s work because of it (partly due to my high work ethic and determination not to be weakened by it and work is all important) it has ruled my life at times. I don’t want to go into details, but it has been very bad…
I have had a year and a half of one to one psycho-dynamic psychotherapy and spoken to various people and it has never helped. To be frank I was bored of it taking such a massive part of my life, talking about it all of the time and scared that at any moment I was going to be sucked back down into it again.
I know what I need to do to stay healthy – sleep, exercise and eating well are the main keys for me, but it is never that simple to escape from it.
And so I wanted to try something else.
When I have been on retreat in the past I always came away feeling great, mainly because of the mediation and just slowing down. I felt happier and all-round well, but I struggled to maintain that practice of mediation in the real world. Even now, 5 years later I sporadically have periods of meditation and then stopping again. Life getting in the way…etc, etc.
So I Googled around for meditation and depression and came across Breathing Space, which just happened to be held at the London Buddhist Centre, with whom I had done my retreats with. I read the site, then I got the book and decided that I would commit to it for the eight weeks.
I have found it so useful, I really feel that it has enabled me to cope better with everything and I have hopes that it will help me control my depression and maybe, even, hopefully prevent a relapse, or lessen the depth of the depression next time it strikes.
I really feel like I have been on a profound journey with it and that it will make a difference to my life. Only time will tell, but I am make a public declaration of my commitment to continue to be mindful in my daily life and to keep up my mediation practice.