Depression – A modern day epidemic

Counselling and Psychotherapy


I regularly work with clients suffering from depression, and I can help you recover.  Depression is a modern-day epidemic.  19.7%  of people in the UK, above the age of 16, show signs of depression or anxiety.  Some people have both which is termed mixed anxiety and depression.  Depression can be comorbid, not the main underlying problem.

This page is one of several on my site highlighting some of the aspects of common problems, such as depression.

Working with low mood

Emotion Focused Therapy (EFT) was initially developed to treat depression.  As the therapy developed over time, it moved on to treat other psychological problems.  I am an emotion focused therapist working in private practice in Colchester, Sudbury, Frinton, outside, and online.  When I work with you, I will offer a safe empathic environment that is free from judgment.  Send me an email or phone.


Stigma can prevent people from finding help, it’s a bold step to seek therapy.  A feeling of depression is often applied in a general sense, ‘Waiting in this mental health queue is depressing’.  On this page, I am referring to a depression that is debilitating and stops you getting on with your life.  Depressed people often develop a sense of isolation due to how others behave around them.

There remains a lot of stigma around this problem, with many people taking a critical attitude towards people suffering from this debilitating state of mind.


  This is not a ‘pull yourself together’ problem!   Criticism can be a part of a depressive state.  Self-criticism is a common feature.  When you are down and may be criticised by others, the result can be that you tell yourself you are hopeless or worthless.  This can have the effect of unintentionally deepening the depression.

Once a person reaches this state of mind they experience a sense of loss (see grief below).  No longer the person they were.   Sadness and self-loathing then deepens even more.  People suffering from depression do not need further criticism, they need empathic support, compassion, and a belief in change.  There is hope!  I can help you look at your needs and address the underlying problems.   Contact Paul


People with depression experience internal biological and psychological stress. The more severe the case, the more severe the stress response. The physical impact on the body affects thinking, and creates psychological change.  Continual external stressful events increase the chances of falling into a depression.  How we deal with and overcome external stressful events determines, to some extent, how quickly we will recover.


When you look into the eyes of a depressed person you see the sadness, it’s a look you also see when a person is grieving.  A loss of ‘self’. There are different degrees of depression.  Freud suggested that transient depression could be likened to a state of mourning.  Deeper depressions were seen as melancholia back then.  The fact is, a loss is almost always included in this problem. Whilst we may not see it as greaving, there is an underlying grief element.  Professor Greenberg speaks about the ‘fractured self’.

Feeling Stuck

In depression people often feel stuck, they can’t just shrug the feelings off.  One of the ways in which I can help is to facilitate the changing of ‘negative’ emotions with ‘positive’ emotions.  Obviously, the degree to which you are depressed links to how stuck you may feel.  Some depressions are so serious that medical intervention and hospitalisation is necessary.

Psychomotor retardation

Some people get to the point where they can not get out of bed.  Movement becomes a problem, the body is exhausted by the stress response that has been continuous.


One of the key indicators of depression is early waking.  In serious depression the sleep patterns are no longer following the normal cycles, sleep cycles are in disarray.  So, losing sleep with early waking my accelerate the internal stress response further.

Depression is complex

Whilst I have highlighted some components of depression there are many other variables, they all fall into either environment, the mind or biology.  There are many beliefs from different schools of thought, that contribute to understanding this complex problem.  In some cases, these beliefs can be unhelpful.  One particular belief is that the problem is genetic.  This can leave you feeling that nothing can be done, a sense of hopelessness ensues.  It’s true that research shows a correlation to a genetic predisposition.  However, research has also shown that some people who have the predisposition never get depressed.  This is because genes are complex and react to environments.

In therapy, I try to create a new experience for you, a positive nurturing environment.

Different Beliefs

There are many different philosophical positions on this problem. Let’s look at some of them.

  • A natural function of being human.
  • It’s created by cognitive distortions, how you think.
  • The problem is rooted in constant craving (constant wanting).
  • An existential problem linked to existential angst.
  • It’s derived from conditions of worth.


I am always interested in statistics on mental health, here are the figures for mental health problems in the UK.  The figures show the depth of the problem in the UK today.  We see many additional cases going unreported and many cases are not treated.  Government health survey


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