Practicing Positivity Can Help With Depression Remission

September 8, 2013 Liana M. Scott

When I’m in a full out major depressive episode (MDE) or on the cusp of one, there are few things that can put me in a positive frame of mind. That’s why it is so important to practice positivity when I’m in depression remission.

[caption id="attachment_1230" align="alignright" width="227" caption="By Stuart Miles, courtesy of"][/caption]

As part of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), we are told to try and focus on the positive. Not an easy thing to do (damn near impossible) when you’re depressed.

Last week I wrote about knowing yourself – knowing what things (events, people, situations, etc.) trigger bad feelings which can lead to depression. Similarly, you can learn to seek out and immerse yourself in positivity.

• Watch funny movies.
• Hang out with an upbeat friend.
• Search YouTube for cute kitten videos.
• Go to the local maternity ward and look at the new babies.
• Take care of a friend’s dog – or adopt one of your own.

The list is endless – and, it is just important to write your list down. Not only does practicing positivity (and keeping a list) help keep you in remission, but, by writing it down, you can remind yourself about your favorite things at any time.

When you are in depression remission, it is very important –essential, in fact – to practice positivity. And it takes real practice… which you must do when you are in remission. Even if all you ever experience are short periods of remission, practicing positivity might be the very thing you need to stay in depression remission.

APA Reference
Scott, L. (2013, September 8). Practicing Positivity Can Help With Depression Remission, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 15 from

Author: Liana M. Scott

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marilyn kruse
September, 21 2013 at 6:12 am

Your list of positive things to do was great! I've been negative all my life, though, so I've learned some resources that helped. Mindfulness or Acceptance Commitment Therapy really helped, where you step back from your thoughts and observe them. You find they're not always your friends or even the real you. Sound hokey? There's one book and/or online course that was amazing: Awakening Joy by James Baraz. Lots of practice in there too.

September, 17 2013 at 12:21 pm

sometimes I want to give up so bad, but I cant. But for how long can I keep hanging in there?

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Liana Scott
September, 18 2013 at 4:37 am

Hi Wanda. It just take one tiny positive thought, then another and another. Like I wrote to Marija, think of a flower, or a kind smile, or better still, bestow a smile of your own on somebody you see today and make their day! It works! But it takes practice. Here is a for instance. I live in Ontario, Canada. Ccccold place. Yesterday morning I woke up and it was already only 39 degrees! Brr. While I was cold and rather peeved that the cold has come so early this year, I was grateful for the sunrise that came along with it. That is practicing positivity.
Hang in there.

September, 17 2013 at 3:10 am

Growing up with a negative father and perfectionist parents does not help with depression ...being molested as a child and not getting therapy increases depression...and now at 43 yrs old it's hitting me hard and just want to give up

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Liana Scott
September, 17 2013 at 4:08 am

Hi Marija. You're very brave to post your hardships. I've been in your place - wanting to give up. By thinking of something - just one thing - that is positive, really helps. A bright sunrise, a beautiful flower, the love of a pet... so many, when you're willing to stretch out your mind to look for them. There are so many great blogs on HealthyPlace and so many resources out there for you.
My thoughts are with you.

Alan B
September, 9 2013 at 1:33 pm

I agree that it's not easy to focus on positive thoughts all the time. A trick I've learnt is to take 2 minutes every morning and 2 minutes before bed to focus on positive things.

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