Depression is fast becoming a worldwide epidemicApproximately 350 million people globally are experiencing some form of depression. It’s considered to be the biggest ‘psychological’ disorder in the Western world. By 2020, it’s predicted that depression will be the second-biggest cause of disability in the world after heart disease.
This begs the question…what’s going on?
According to the direct experience and teachings of Kevin Billett, CEO of The Journey Ltd, depression is a state or condition caused by learned, unhealthy patterns and behaviors. It is not an emotion. For many people, depression is NOT a mental illness. Knowing that unhealthy behaviors are conditioned, learned responses to social influences, it follows that many people can and have broken their cycle of depression using the methods shared at the Journey Intensive. First we need to understand in more detail how depression can start.
How our belief systems can make us ill
As we grow up we learn what to think, how to behave, what to feel (and what we mustn’t feel) from those people nearest and dearest to us. Our belief systems are massively influenced by our:
- 1. Families
- 2. Cultures
- 3. Religions
- 4. Social Media
- 5. Peers
- 6. Colleagues etc.
These belief systems are role-modeled within our families and social groups and have an incredible impact on our compensatory behaviors (our responses to problems that cause us anxiety). We’re told what’s expected of us, how to react under duress, and which emotions are taboo. We also learn what feelings are on the ‘good’ list.
Ultimately we develop a belief system that, until challenged, runs on autopilot – well beyond the level of our awareness.
Some emotional avoidance strategies that rob us of authentic self-expression
As children, we mirror the behavior of those around us and learn strategies of emotional avoidance that can make us:
- 1. Inflate our habits and pretend to look and feel stronger than we actually do
- 2.Deflate and suppress our hidden feelings to protect ourselves in some way
- 3.Become rigid and rule-bound and build walls and boundaries around us to keep our feelings at bay
Sadly, these survival techniques make our emotions unavailable in genuine, heartfelt ways, denying us the true beauty, richness and depth of our true feelings.
Symptoms of depression may include:
Stress, restlessness, malaise, negativity, nervousness, withdrawal, dissatisfaction, feeling down or ‘blue’, anxiety, burnout, fatigue, foggy brain, lethargy, loss, sadness, grief, purposelessness, lack of intimacy, numbness, apathy, pointlessness, trapped, hopelessness, suicidal
Just for a moment ask yourself these questions:
Which emotions am I ‘allowed’ to feel? What constitutes a ‘good’ emotion? What do I consider to be a ‘bad’ feeling? Which emotions are on the ‘ugly’ list?
When you begin to ask self-inquiry questions like these, and explore where your beliefs originally came from, you may start to realize you’ve adopted a belief system that was never truly yours in the first place. At this point you need to replace your adopted reactions with new, healthy beliefs that will support your life.
Denying and manipulating our true feelings comes at a price
If you never reach this stage of awareness, and leave your feelings unchecked and unhealed, the results can be devastating over time. Socially conditioned unhealthy responses to intense situations mean we live fake lives that make us suppress, deny, brace and shutdown how we really feel in order to protect ourselves.
WE ARE MORE THAN OUR STUCK EMOTIONS AND UNHEALTHY BELIEFSIt takes a certain skill set to acknowledge, recognize and shift from the state of depression to make free, healthy choices. An amount of courage and commitment is necessary to break depression’s grip on your life. The good news is that it’s entirely possible to interrupt these patterns and be rid of them once and for all.
How do we begin to unravel this unhealthy labyrinth of beliefs, behaviors and emotions to access and clear the root causes of depression at a cellular level?
It takes courage to face the truth
In Western societies, a medical doctor has approximately ten minutes to explore what’s truly going on in their patient’s life. So the quickest fix is to prescribe some sort of antidepressant drug that numbs out the patient’s feelings. This is not the answer to healing from depression. It only exacerbates the problem by making it even more difficult to feel fully and to think clearly.
It takes focus, courage and energy to access buried emotions, discern the beliefs that no longer serve us, and recognize our automatic, unhealthy, default behaviors. At the Journey Intensive, you’ll have the support you need to identify, access and remove false and often detrimental habits at their core. With clarity and courage you can learn easily repeatable techniques to eradicate old, non-serving patterns. This interrupts the patterns of depression and leaves room for healthy and conscious choice.
THE JOURNEY METHOD OFFERS SOMETHING COMPLETELY UNIQUE AND CUTTING EDGETrue freedom is on offer at the Journey Intensive. Being at conscious choice to decide what we want from life lifts a weight of inertia and heaviness from our shoulders. Energy, creativity and purpose rush in to fill the void, inviting the more expansive emotions (bliss, joy, happiness, passion, love and so on) to flow naturally and consistently throughout our lives.
Freedom is experienced when we forgive others and ourselves for life’s transgressions while never condoning abusive behaviors. We heal and learn not to define ourselves as our stories, but instead recognize that each of us is innately whole and complete at our core. We recognize that we’ve been in survival mode and unwittingly adopted coping strategies to protect ourselves – believing these self-sabotaging behaviors would keep us safe and alive. When we come clean with our true feelings and learn healthy habits and behavior patterns we can end the cycle of depression – medication free.
We also come to appreciate and explore what makes us happy. Realizing that we’re responsible for our own happiness gives us the drive to keep clearing away the debris in our life. We celebrate the fact that who and what we are is freedom, that emotions are the spices of life, and that healthy and empowering behaviors will align with our value belief system, energizing and inspiring us to live life to its fullest.
Ultimately, the Journey Intensive teaches a proven, easily repeatable method to help you identify the real causes of depression. You’ll learn what sets up the pattern of anxiety, stress and burnout in the first place. You’ll easily identify the coping strategies you’re desperately adopted to avoid feeling overloaded by life’s demands. And you’re forever empowered to pull dysfunctional patterns out by their roots.
As you uncover and heal from your unmet expectations of how you thought things ‘should’ go, and instead learn how to accept what is, your emotional and physical health improves. You’ll begin to recognize how your lifestyle can change to support a healthy body, mind and spirit. This is key to your own personal transformation. Accessing and taking action on what makes you passionate about life gives you the desire and focus to spring out of bed in the mornings and show up for humanity’s healing.
It’s time to face the truth and set yourself free