Finding the right medication to successfully treat depression is part art and part science. Once we optimally manage a client’s medication type, dosage, and side effects, we confront the challenge of identifying the past and present issues fueling the depression.
Depression can indicate unfinished business from the past, including complex developmental trauma and neglect, and post-traumatic stress. Subsequently, the individual often makes self-destructive decisions, develops addictive patterns or makes poor relational choices that complicate the depression.
Often the client’s niche in life may also be suboptimal, i.e. his or her living situation, relationships, and career, breeding a sense of helplessness to create the change the client needs and craves. Life coaching can be particularly helpful in encouraging a client who has struggled with depressive symptoms to “try on” new approaches and develop more positive habits.
Finally, a central issue underlying depression can be the absence of a core sense of self. The individual feels like an imposter and strives to be perfect so as not to disappoint others. This relentless drive for perfection is often motivated by shame. We have specific interventions to seed the integration of self-states and facilitate secure attachments with self and others.