Depression is an actual disease in the brain that requires clinical treatment

Depression facts

Depression facts

Laypeople often misuse the term to refer to occasional sadness, but that’s not depression. Depression is not even feeling sad all the time – it could just as well be a specific period in your life that is causing this change in wellbeing. Maybe your dog died or you got divorced. These things take time to get over, but feelings of sadness due to undesirable changes in our lives are very common and have nothing to do with depression. It is also quite common to experience symptoms of depression during the two-week period prior to the onslaught of PMS, but these symptoms usually die down once menstrual flow is underway.



Depression facts: A disorder

But a clinical depression, as doctors call it, is different, as it refers to an actual disease that requires treatment (typically medication or therapy) and encompasses physical symptoms such as insomnia, slow speech, lack of or total absence of concentration, appetite and/or libido. Furthermore, in its huge classification-list, ICD-10, World Health Organization has divided depression into depressive episodes (standalone incidents that do no repeat and do not require treatment) and recurrent depressive disorder (repeating depressive episodes that requires treatment). In both cases, the episodes can be mild, moderate or severe, depending upon the number and severity of the symptoms.


Depression facts: Do I have depression?

First of all, I have written a more thorough article, listing the signs of depression. But in a nutshell, it’s a sign of depression if you experience repeated episodes of agitated sadness along with the physical symptoms described above. However, depression is a subcategory under mood disorders which is again a subcategory under mental illnesses. And there are other forms of mood disorders that can be the cause of your sadness. One of them is called bipolar affective disorder which refers to intense mood swings, but whereas depression only refers to a decline in mood, bipolar affective disorder can cause your mood to go up as well as down.

So, if you’re able to feel joyful and jolly, even just for a brief moment, you do not have depression. People with depression don’t care about things that would normally excite them and make them cheerful.


What you can do

If you’re absolutely positive that you have some sort of depression, I’ve written another article on how to beat depression. For more advanced stuff, we have an e-book and several apps available for download.

Personal growth quotes

Personal growth quotes

People change. It’s a fact of life. But personal growth, as a psychological subject, is about taking control of that change and creating your own destiny. You can do this in many ways such as increasing self-awareness (understanding who you are, what you believe and how you differ from other people), build and expand upon currently perceived identity (go from believing one thing to another, for example, from being an agnostic to becoming an atheist or the other way around), development of strengths and talents (getting physically stronger is also part of personal growth, the same way that becoming better at socializing is), development of potentials (finding out that you’re actually good at baking, but didn’t know it), and much more.

Check out these people and their personal growth quotes to find out how they have achieved it:


Personal growth quotes: “We should not judge people by their peak of excellence; but by the distance they have traveled from the point where they started.”

The American writer, Henry Ward Beecher, is known for his abolitionism and one of his contemporaries, Frederick Douglass beautifully exemplifies Beecher’s quote: it is not impressive that Douglass wrote books and articles on abolition, but rather the journey that he went through in order to do that: from being a slave with no future to being a freed man, advocating equality and anti-slavery across America.


Personal growth quotes: “Do not wait to strike ’til the iron is hot; but make it hot by striking.”

Procrastination have become an embarrassing activity – people do it, but only reluctantly admit it. How did William Yeats become so famous? Not only because of his talent, but also because he didn’t beat around the bush. Yeats wrote and wrote and wrote, and eventually landed the Nobel Prize – because he didn’t wait to strike. Learning to not procrastinate is one of the biggest ways in which you can grow.


“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things that you had not.”

Throughout human history, we have taken things for granted. And once we learn not to do that, we find a change of mood and appreciation of life in us that we always knew was there, but just did not notice. The Ancient Greek philosopher, Epicurus,  experienced this firsthand and it is indeed a powerful way to nurture the development of our minds.


“All truly great thoughts are conceived while walking.”

Learning to exercise on a daily basis is also part of personal development. Friedrich Nietzsche may not have been an olympic athlete, but he was a great thinker. Whether or not he conceived all his thoughts while walking, I don’t know, but he’s a good example that exercise is good for not only the body but also the mind.


“We have all the evidence we need in our immediate experience and only a deliberate refusal to ‘look’ is responsible for atheism.”

Many people throughout the world go through spiritual development in their lives. They may go from thinking there is a god to thinking there is none, or the other way around. Antony Flew was one of those who changed his mind several times, growing his spirituality along the way. As a boy, he was a believer, then concluded as a teenager that there was no god, advocating atheism throughout most of his life, then in the last part of his life began to advocate deism and on his deathbed proclaimed to be a theist and Christian. What we believe is part of who we are, and if we change this, it means we experience personal growth.