“I feel like no matter what I do, I’m going to be depressed?”

I got this in a text message today from a young man that I have been working with for a little while. He is a fascinating young man with unexpected moments of wisdom combined with some legitimate genetic frustrations that include some degree of genetic depression and a probability of a few other issues. This posting is to him and anyone else with a similar issue.

He and I spoke briefly about Budgeting Mental Time, in the same way you might budget money. A moment that is spent on one idea cannot be spent on another idea. So, (as you will see, I include alot of Stephen Covey isms in my work, so bear with me) I suggest with thought control issues to begin with the end in mind. You do this by making a menu of things you want (based on your values, not your impulses) to think about. Then, whenever you notice yourself not thinking about one of items on your list, jump to it immediately without a lot of introspection.

As you know, this is easier said then done. Next, you become aware of how you feel while you are thinking. This is usually easier for women than men. D&C 6 and D&C 8 both talk about recognizing revelation with your heart and mind. As much as we would like to be smart enough to recognize false principles with our minds all the time, sometimes the lies are too subtle. I have learned that I must check how I feel while processing an idea. If I do not feel some version of EDIFIED (calm, comforted, energized, motivated, hopeful, confident, etc) but instead feel SPUN (overwhelmed, frustrated, powerless, afraid, anxious, depressed, drained, like shutting down), I know my thoughts are planted by Satan. I have learned to flush these with the help of Warrior Chemistry (I can explain this in a separate posting if you wish) then pick back up one of the ideas on you list.

I think in this young mans case, his next step is to realize that God was serious when he said this life would include both pleasure and pain – not only for him, but for his friends as well. As much as the hero inside of each of us men wants to keep all women from experiencing any pain. Read Alma chapter 14. As servants in the hands of God, we must remember that God is in charge, and grieving the pain of others in an appropriate way is sometimes necessary. This is one of those moments in time when we can trust God or become critical of Him.

Perhaps you are looking too far for the correct emotion to live off of instead of depression. Instead of looking to have fun, or even looking to be happy, I invite you to look for HOPE. Hope that God is actually who He says He is. Hope He is actually paying attention. Hope he has an end game in mind that will work out for all of us who are going through the pains of this hell.

I could go on and on on this subject. Let me know if you have specific questions.


About Maurice W. Harker, LPC

Director of Life Changing Services, Director of Sons of Helaman, Facilitator of the WORTH group, Consultant for the Daughters of Light program.