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seeking expert advice: anxiety
Old 05-29-2016, 01:22 PM
 
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I have a former coworker who is struggling with depression and anxiety. While we were working together we talked about her anxiety, but now she has approached me about her depression. She is single and about 36. I have discussed that she find a therapist and she is going to peruse that route.

Meanwhile....
What would you suggest to help someone with anxiety?

What strategies work best to elevate anxiety?

What do you recommend to support someone with depression?

What do you say to them?

Do you know of any books that offer insight for depressed adults?

I'd appreciate any suggestions you can give me. TIA


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coworker with anxiety
Old 05-29-2016, 05:22 PM
 
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First of all, I am not an expert, but I still want to respond to your post.

It's great that you want to be helpful. I think that having her seek professional help is the best. You can lend a sympathetic ear, but she really needs someone who is trained.

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a common treatment and your coworker will likely have that type of therapy. You can find information just by googling CBT. I have read this book and it's good at breaking CBT down, but it may be more time consuming to read this that looking CBT up on the web.

I think doing what a good friend would do is the best thing to do. Be there to listen and acknowledge her feelings rather than simply saying something like "Oh, you'll be fine". Say something like "It must be hard feeling like _____." Just remember that you need to take care of yourself too. If she talks too much and it begins to weigh on your emotions, just tell her that she should bring it up with her therapist.

Last edited by eeza; 05-29-2016 at 07:10 PM..
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Thanks, eeza.
Old 05-30-2016, 11:57 AM
 
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Thanks so much for your reply. I feel so badly for this gal. She seems completely down and seems barely to get through the day. I'm pretty worried about her. Your suggestions were helpful.
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Old 06-17-2016, 05:22 PM
 
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Hi! Good to see you here It's been a super busy few weeks for me and I haven't been checking in here like I should

Quote:
What strategies work best to elevate anxiety?
I'm assuming you mean alleviate? I hope you're not trying to elevate someone else's anxiety!

I completely agree that the best bet is to get some professional support from a therapist who is trained in CBT. A therapist trained in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) can be very beneficial for depression. There are a number of workbooks available to purchase for either of these approaches. It's not as effective as having a therapist work through the issues with you, but it's something.

Additionally, this is a good site for anxiety support. I've seen good success with using a SUDS thermometer along with exposure therapy, but this is something better led by a professional versus on your own. It's still useful to rate certain situations on the SUDS so you can see that things might not be as bad as they are. It's also helpful to think "what's the worst that can happen in this situation?" and "will the world end if X happens?" to help put things in context.

I agree that listening and validating feelings (without judgment or minimizing) is good, but I also think you have to be careful about admiring the negative feelings. By that, I mean there needs to be a good balance between being a support and being there for someone and having that be all you do with a person. Sometimes it can put you in the position of "therapist" for someone else, and that's not a healthy relationship (unless you are a therapist!).

Your coworker is lucky to have you for a support!
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Old 06-18-2016, 05:40 AM
 
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Quote:
I agree that listening and validating feelings (without judgment or min
I find that I try to focus on this very element when I listened to my coworker. I want to "hear" what's she's saying but also want to help her see that her perception is possibly exaggerated and not realistic. Because this is a difficult to do, I continue to encourage her to make an appointment for therapy. I want to just be her friend.



Quote:
What strategies work best to elevate anxiety?
Oops, I didi it again! I absolutely meant "alleviate".

I'm going to pass along the site your posted for anxiety support. It's something she can use on her own.

Thanks for your insight, GraceKrispy. I appreciate your reply.


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