It may often be difficult to identify your own thoughts, and you may feel like you’ve found yourself in the midst of a huge mess. If that ever happens, allow yourself to focus on what you are feeling. Allow your emotions to be, and consider what they would tell you, if they could speak. Write down whatever thoughts come to mind, even when they initially seem random and meaningless.
It is in the nature of depression, to fool us into a negative mindset about ourselves and the future. While this can be detrimental for many of our thoughts and experiences, it is useful to try to challenge these negative perceptions, fueled by depression.
Whenever you detect a negative idea about yourself, about others, or the future, ask yourself, “What proof do I have?”. Write down whatever evidence you can think of, while you also write down everything that would disprove them. Even though you lack confidence in these options to begin with, writing them down is an important first step.
Practice self-compassion, by saying to yourself what you would say to a friend, who was in the same situation. You certainly wouldn’t call out your friend for being a failure, just because they delivered a poor report at work, or burned the dinner.
From the leaflet Simple Advice by the Norwegian Ministry of Health.