Depression affects nearly one in six people at some point in their lives, so folk remedies and half-truths about this common illness abound. One such idea: throw yourself into work and you’ll feel better. For a mild case of the blues, this may indeed help, but depression is a different animal. Overworking can actually be a sign of clinical depression, especially in men.
Depression is a serious medical condition — and the top cause of disability in American adults. But it’s still confused with ordinary sadness. Biological evidence of the illness can be seen in brain scans, which show abnormal activity levels. Key brain chemicals that carry signals between nerves (shown here) also appear to be out of balance in depressed people.
A depressed man, his loved ones, and even his doctor may not recognize depression. That’s because men are less likely than women to talk about their feelings — and some depressed men don’t appear sad or down. Instead, men may be irritable, angry, or restless. They may even lash out at others. Some men try to cope with depression through reckless behavior, drinking, or drugs.
Our culture admires will power and mental toughness and is quick to label anyone who falls back as a whiner. But people who have clinical depression are not lazy or simply feeling sorry for themselves. Nor can they “will” depression to go away. Depression is a medical illness — a health problem related to changes in the brain. Like other illnesses, it usually improves with appropriate treatment.
Poet or linebacker, shy or outgoing, anyone from any ethnic background can develop depression. The illness is twice as common in women as in men, but it may be that women are more likely to seek help. It’s often first noticed in the late teens or 20s, but an episode can develop at any age. Tough personal experiences can trigger depression, or it may develop out of the blue.
Depression can creep up gradually, which makes it harder to identify than a sudden illness. A bad day turns into a rut and you start skipping work, school, or social occasions. One type, called dysthymia, can last for years as a chronic, low-level illness – a malaise that silently undermines your career and relationships. Or depression can become a severe, disabling condition. With treatment, many feel substantial relief in 4-6 weeks
Despite the buzz about a “Prozac Nation,” medication is only one of the tools used to lift depression. And asking for help does not mean you’ll be pressured to take prescription drugs. In fact, studies suggest that “talk” therapy works as well as drugs for mild to moderate depression. Even if you do use antidepressants, it probably won’t be for life. Your doctor will help you determine the right time to stop your medication.
Not always. Some people don’t cry or even act terribly sad when they’re depressed. Instead they are emotionally “blank” and may feel worthless or useless. Even without dramatic symptoms, untreated depression prevents people from living life to its fullest — and takes a toll on families.
If depression appears in your family tree, you may have an elevated risk yourself. But that does not mean you are certain to develop the disorder. People with a family history can watch for early symptoms of depression and take positive action promptly — whether that means reducing stress, getting more exercise, counseling, or other professional treatment.
Most older people navigate the challenges of aging without becoming depressed. But when it does occur, it may be overlooked. Seniors may hide their sadness or have different, vague symptoms: food just doesn’t taste good anymore, aches and pains worsen, or sleep patterns change. Medical problems can trigger depression in seniors — and depression can slow recovery from a heart attack or surgery.
People were once advised not to “dwell on” problems by talking about them. Today, there’s evidence that guided discussions with a professional can make things much better. Different types of psychotherapy help treat depression by addressing negative thought patterns, unconscious feelings, or relationship troubles. The first step is to talk to a mental health professional.
The old advice to “accentuate the positive” has advanced into a practice that can ease depression. It’s called cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). People learn new ways of thinking and behaving. Negative “self-talk” and behavior is identified and replaced with more upbeat thoughts and a more positive mood. Used alone or with medication, CBT works for many people.
Known for building one of country music’s most loyal fanbases in the US, Multi-PLATINUM singer/songwriter Kip Moore looks to have emulated this fervent following in the UK and Ireland in the wake of his headlining stint across the pond this past week.
Moore’s return was “eagerly anticipated” (Think Country) with the majority of shows selling out months in advance, prompting the move to bigger venues. Fans and critics agree he “cemented that special bond between crowd and performer…daring to be different, daring to take a risk, he is able to take the crowd further than most artists can by the sheer force of his performance” (2 Country Radio).
Kicking off in Dublin on Friday (4/22), Moore set the pace with a raucous show that led to an impromptu after-show performance at the stage door for fans who weren’t ready to call it a night, followed by a sold-out crowd in Glasgow (4/23) where he again took to the historic streets of the city after his performance to keep the party going. Rowdy shows in England beckoned as Moore played to packed houses in Birmingham (4/25), Manchester (4/26) and he closed out the triumphant run with a sold-out show in London last night (4/27).
Moore will head back out on the road next month for Miranda Lambert’s Keeper Of The Flame Tour, which kicks off in St. Louis, MO on 5/13. His current single, “Running For You,” continues to climb the charts and was taken from the critically acclaimed sophomore album WILD ONES that VICE declares “sprinkles a little late-night Bonnaroo magic…that’s made to be witnessed live.” WILD ONES follows Moore’s debut album UP ALL NIGHT which was recently certified GOLD by the RIAA and spawned three No. One hit singles including GOLD certified “Beer Money,” PLATINUM certified “Hey Pretty Girl,” and the DOUBLE PLATINUM breakout hit “Somethin’ ‘Bout A Truck.”
– Posted by TawnyTucker CMTT
Control. While it’s important to focus on understanding others, you must also be authentic and open so that they can understand you. Because it can make you feel vulnerable, many of us are unwilling to be transparent. Author and former U.S. Navy Captain Mike Abrashoff observes: ‘Some leaders feel that by keeping people in the dark, they maintain a measure of control. But that is a leader’s folly and an organization’s failure. Secrecy spawns isolation, not success. Knowledge is power, yes, but what leaders need is collective power, and that requires collective knowledge. I found that the more people knew what the goals were, the better buy-in I got—and the better the results we achieved together.’ Any time people sense information is being withheld from them, it creates distance. They feel like outsiders, and, as a result, morale drops along with their performance. In his book Lead, Follow, or Get Out of the Way, Jim Lundy writes about what he calls the ‘Subordinates’ Lament’. It says, ‘We, the uninformed, working for the inaccessible, are doing the impossible for the ungrateful!’ Ever feel like that? Then there’s the ‘Mushroom Farm Lament’ which goes like this: ‘We feel we’re being kept in the dark. Every once in a while someone comes around and spreads manure on us. But when our heads pop up, they’re chopped off and then we’re canned.’ Good leaders don’t isolate themselves, and they don’t deliberately keep people in the dark. They inform them, and include them in the decision-making process whenever possible. If you’re serious about serving others, open up. Let people know who you are and what you believe.