Yesterday I saw my therapist. We did an ART (Accelerated Resolution Therapy) session. I swear, it’s like magic. It made such a huge difference. I have done several ART sessions before, but it has always been about specific trauma or learned behaviors from trauma that I was struggling with. I’d never done it about something as broad and general as depression. But it worked wonders! My therapist said she wished she had a picture of me when I walked in and after the ART was over because she could see a difference in me. We discussed medication and other options as well, but at this point I feel best about going in more often to have more ART sessions during the winter.
In simple terms, Accelerated Resolution Therapy combines eye movements and visualization to treat trauma, PTSD, anxiety, depression, etc. A good definition I found was that ART “works directly to reprogram the way in which distressing memories and images are stored in the brain so that they no longer trigger strong physical and emotional reactions.” https://acceleratedresolutiontherapy.com/ It has worked for me in a truly life-changing way. After the session yesterday I felt as if a huge, heavy burden had been lifted off my shoulders. I feel hope again.
I wouldn’t say ART “cured” my depression or took it away. It’s still here, like it’s here every winter. And every spring it goes away. That’s why I’m going to do ART more often this winter, until there’s more warmth, light and sunny skies in the world. I do think that medication has its place, and I’m going to talk to a doctor about medication for anxiety because my anxiety never goes away. But for now, I feel good about continuing with the plan I have in place. I think that’s one of the most important things to remember about mental health. When you find something that works, stick with it.