If you are thinking about seeking out depression therapy, you may be wondering what you can and should expect from the process. After all, if you are a newbie to going to therapy, the prospect of going can seem daunting and maybe even a little scary. But it does not have to be. You can get to know some of the therapy techniques your therapist may work with you on in therapy for depression. Then, you can feel more prepared and confident going into your first depression therapy session.
Talk Therapy Is Always an Option
In your first session or two of depression therapy, you may find yourself primarily (or exclusively) doing talk therapy. Talk therapy is simply having a conversation with your therapist. They will ask you questions about how you are feeling, your past, traumas you may have experienced, and so on and so forth.
This talk therapy technique is used to get to know you and what you are going through. It can also help you to start to feel comfortable with your therapist so you can open up the lines of communication better and pave the pathway for other therapeutic techniques.
Talk therapy itself can also be beneficial to depression. Sometimes, saying things you are feeling out loud has a cathartic effect on the mind and can relieve some of your depressive symptoms. What will likely happen is that talk therapy will be woven into future sessions so that you always have the opportunity to get things off your chest and determine the direction sessions will go.
You May Learn About Mindfulness
Mindfulness is a therapeutic technique used most often in DBT (dialectical behavior therapy). However, it can also be used just on its own as a way to help with a variety of mental health conditions, including depression.
Mindfulness essentially means being aware and being present in the moment. If you are a person who dwells a lot on the past when depressed (which is quite normal), mindfulness can help you to learn to focus on the here and now instead.
That may sound easy and simple, but that is not necessarily the case. It can take a lot of practice and different exercises to get yourself to be consistently present and aware. And that is okay.
You May Learn About Thought Reprogramming
People's thoughts have a huge impact on their emotional life. Your thoughts are contributing to your depression, whether you realize it or not. People suffering from depression have many negative cognitions (thoughts and thought patterns) that need to be changed to help change their mood.
Thought reprogramming (which goes by many other names) is simply a way of learning contradicting thoughts to use to try to replace those negative thoughts. Developing ways to reprogram thoughts can include just adding a "but" to the negative thought and adding something contradictory to the end of it. There are also many other techniques.
With time and continued effort in and out of therapy, you can rid yourself of many of your negative cognitions and give yourself a way to deal with any future negative cognitions you may have.
Now that you know a few therapy techniques for depression, you can be prepared for your first depression therapy session.