The news is full of stories about people who are struggling with life’s challenges. People are lonely and depressed.
Young adults are exhausted by the demands society places on them to excel: at school, in sports and with their looks.
From 2000 to 2011, sick leave among adults in Norway increased by 145% for mild mental disorders, and mental illness is the reason behind one-third of all disability pensions. Although the prevalence of mental disorders is relatively stable for adults, the trend is clearly on the increase among children and adolescents.
- The use of antidepressants has increased the most among adolescents aged 15-19 years, which is a disturbing trend.
- The most common ailments are anxiety, depression and behavioral disorders (Source: the Norwegian Institute of Public Health).
Changing your habits, lifestyles and thought patterns can’t be done in a flash. There are no quick solutions on the way to your goal.
You have to do the hard work, whether it comes to getting in better physical shape (building your fitness, running a marathon) or your mental health (improving your self-esteem, working with stress or motivation). [···]
The New Year brings new opportunities and a blank slate.
We’re now in that time of year when many people reflect on their lives and evaluate what they have accomplished.
Many people also set goals for the New Year.
These may be to:
- Begin something,
- Stop doing something,
- Do something even better,
- Do less of something, or
- Cut bad habits, become a better human being, etc.
Surveys show, however, that few people succeed in the long run with their New Year’s resolutions. [···]
Research shows that being grateful is good for your health, promotes well-being and increases happiness!
Martin Seligman, known as the founder of positive psychology, has conducted extensive studies of depression, happiness and quality of life.
One project, where he studied the relationship between gratitude and depression, provided some surprising results. Subjects were asked over a certain period to take note of the positive things that happened to them during the day. They were asked to record this in a “gratitude” diary. [···]
It is not always easy to know if you are depressed or not.
Depression comes in various forms, ranging from mild to more severe. Depression is a common mental disorder – and one of the main causes of disability worldwide.
Globally, an estimated 350 million people are affected by depression.
Depression changes the way we think
It’s normal to be sad from time to time, but depression is more than feeling miserable. If your life seems dominated by emptiness and despair and these feelings do not go away, you may be depressed. Depression makes it difficult to function and enjoy life – just getting through the day can be overwhelming. [···]
You may have very different thoughts and feelings about yourself as a person, and about yourself in specific roles – as a parent, a partner or a friend, or in how you cope with your work life.
It can be more important for us to have a sense of mastery in some areas, or to have good feelings about what we do, while in other areas it may not be as important to us. It is different for different people. We are influenced by our own inner voice and our experience of how we cope, in addition to the feedback we get from the environment around us. [···]