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Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 3238
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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Hi Im 54 and nothing seems to make me happy any more.

Resolved Question:

Hi I'm 54 and nothing seems to make me happy any more.
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 5 months ago.

Dr. Z :

Hello I believe I can help you with your concern

Dr. Z :

I am so sorry that you are feeling this way, I can imagine how distressing this must be for you

Dr. Z :

I would like to ask you a couple questions to get some more information, so that I can better assist you

Dr. Z :

How long have you been feeling this way?

Dr. Z :

Also can you feel negative emotions, like sadness, anxiety, and anger? Or is just that you cannot feel happy?

Customer:

I have felt this way for almost three years now. I had a very stressful situation of mobbing at work which is still happening to me. I feel very sad, like I'm wasting time there and that my life is stagnating severely.

Customer:

I'm going to quit this job on December 1 but I think these feelings will still be here. I'm very tired, I have no friends at work because they've completely isolated me.

Dr. Z :

I am so sorry that you are feeling this way at work, and I think quitting the job in December will help you, but I agree that you may still be feeling these feelings afterwards too. What you are feeling is most likely a mix of Depression and Anxiety

Customer:

When I get home from work I have no will for anything and my family just lets me rest. It's constant fatigue I'm feeling.

Customer:

I don't know, everything seems so pointless. I used to love my work and had so much energy for everything. Now I just work mechanically, I'm still good at it but it doesn't make me happy.

Dr. Z :

This is caused by the mix of anxiety and depression. I understand that you have done some self-help books, but I think seeing therapist would be the most helpful for you in this situation, preferably one that specializes in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This is the most evidence based therapy that is effective in treating anxiety and depression. CBT has a premise that your symptoms are caused by negative thoughts, so if we change your thought process to be more positive and objective as well, then your symptoms will lessen.

Dr. Z :

If you cannot see a therapist I can recommend you some effective techniques that can help and specific CBT books that will help you as well. I know it seems like things are hopeless right now, but this can be treated effectively to make you feel a lot better.

Customer:

I love to read so if you can recommend these techniques I'd be very grateful.

Dr. Z :

So this link may help you, it contains a technique I use with patients called a thought record. It will help you keep track of any negative thoughts you have. You put the negative thought on paper, the emotion accompanying, the evidence to support it, and the evidence against it. Then I want you to come up with an alternative thought for the situation (more objective and plausible). This will help you change your way of thinking to be able to think more positive and not automatically go to a negative type of thinking.

Dr. Z :

In addition, these two worksheets are very good at helping lessen anxiety and depressive symptoms. It can help you focus on the big picture and the objective/positive thoughts and outcomes.

Dr. Z :

Also individuals with severe anxiety and depression have a poor coping mechanism, so this worksheet will help you develop a better coping strategy to manage your symptoms better.

Dr. Z :

Individuals with a depressive disorder also may have low self-confidence, so this technique will help you replace any self-critical thoughts that you may have with more positive self-beliefs.

Dr. Z :

This is a link for something called Progressive Muscle Relaxation that can help you create a long term calm by using muscle tension and release techniques; it can help manage your anxiety and depression and is very similar to a style of meditation.

Dr. Z :

And these books may be helpful too, I am posting the links from the UK Amazon store, but you can get them anywhere you like

Dr. Z :

Also if you are not a big fan of medication, I would like to recommend the natural supplements of St. Johns Wort, Valerian Root, Glutamate, KAVA, and Omega-3 that can be beneficial for you as well

Customer:

Thanks. I'll try that but I'll also see a therapist because I need to get better so I can function at work and at home.

Dr. Z :

Also this website is good for practicing other CBT techniques as well.

Customer:

I try not to take medication.

Dr. Z :

The natural supplements will help and so will the techniques are also very effective too. So you can use the techniques in addition to seeing your therapist

Dr. Z :

The techniques are more goal-directed and used to "cure" you, while a therapist can help you vent and give you guidance on some issues

Customer:

Ok. I'm so scared of the changes I see in my character - I've absorbed so much hate from people at work and now I'm emanating it to others... I want these bad and evil feelings eliminated from my soul.

Dr. Z :

Okay, so I am gathering that you have anger and frustration, which is understandable. First off anger and frustration are not evil emotions, they are natural and should be expressed, but in an acceptable and assertive manner. This techniques will help you with that instead of keeping it bottled up where it festers and changes who you are

Dr. Z :

If we treat the depression and anxiety successfully, then you will not be afraid that your character is changing

Customer:

Ok, I'll try this. Thanks .

Dr. Z :

Anytime, is there anything else I can assist you with?

Customer:

No, that's ok, you gave me a lot of materials to work on, I'll look for a CGB therapist in my town.

Dr. Z :

Yes a CBT therapist is the most effective for these disorders, I wish you the best of luck and I hope your symptoms resolve shortly. My goal is to provide you with excellent service, so if you ever have any further questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact me at anytime.

Customer:

Thank you and goodbye

Dr. Z :

You are most welcome :)

Dr. Z :

Before you sign off though, I would very much appreciate if you could rate my performance in helping you so that I can get credit for this question. Thank you very much

Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 3238
Experience: Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
Dr. Z and 3 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

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