Depression Getaway

encouragement, information, inspiration and hope

Category: diagnosis

Depression Recovery Diagnosis: #1 Keyword is Diagnosis

This entry is part 2 of 9 in the series Depression Review with Eight Keywords

Depression recovery diagnosis. It took me eight depressing years before I was accurately diagnosed with bipolar disorder. We  won't experience recovery until we know what we need to recover from. Getting the right diagnosis is the #1 keyword in our depression review.

depression recovery diagnosis
For the next 8 posts, we are going to review some of the basics in depression recovery. Yes, I said recovery! Lots of people recover from depression. You may as well be one of them! But it isn't easy and you will need to work as hard as your doctors to even get the right diagnosis.


Without the right depression recovery diagnosis you are unlikely to get the right treatment.

Have you got the right diagnosis?

I wrote a four part series on Journaling for the Right Diagnosis awhile back. Maybe you will find it helpful.

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Depression Review: Eight Keywords for Depression Recovery, Part 1

This entry is part 1 of 9 in the series Depression Review with Eight Keywords

'Keywords for Depression Recovery' sounds simple doesn't it? Eight steps and you're done, right? Not so much. Depression recovery is like a diet or a budget. Unfortunately your have to follow the prescribed regimen to get some positive results. 



'Keywords' is a popular internet word. It's kind of a computer buzzword in a way. It means the word that people use to find out about a certain topic.  So, hopefully if you google 'keywords for depression recovery' you will end up here.

But did that word, keyword, even exist before we had internet? Well, I checked and yes it did. It simply means a word that unlocks the meaning like a key that unlocks a door.

In your attempt to uncover the 'keys' to depression recovery I would like to present 8 keywords to help in your journey. Is recovery easy as pie? No. Do these 8 keywords for depression recovery outline a little work for you? Yes.

If we are going to do a good depression review, we need to get down to basics. Here are my eight keywords for our depression recovery journey:

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Julie Fast – One Woman Bipolar Boot Camp

This entry is part 4 of 4 in the series Diagnosing Bipolar


A mental health HERO to me is someone who platforms their suffering to inspire and teach others. Julie Fast is such a person. The attention is not on herself. The purpose is not to inflate the illness or glorify it. The whole point is helping others who suffer in the same way. 

Once I discovered I had bipolar depression I began my journey to find out as much as I could about it. I didn't have to go much farther than Julie Fast. She is like a one woman bipolar boot camp.

She has broken down this disease into strategic steps for coping. You can find that in her 'health card' system. Or maybe you would get something out of one of her many books. Or possibly you could just start with her newsletters and see if you like the way she communicates. She has a blog too!

This woman has built a career, not despite her bipolar, but around that very condition. She is making lemons out of lemonade. You see for most people with bipolar, and lots of others with mental illness, it's hard to hold down a full time job. Let's face it, we're not always reliable. But Julie took her writing ability and built a business.

She proves that it's possible to live a full productive life with this complicated mental disorder. The point to my short series on Bipolar Disorder was just to mention it in case some of you out there have not considered it yet as a piece of the puzzle of your own journey.

I created my own 'Bipolar Boot Camp' awhile ago if you would like to do a little more reading about this complicated mood disorder.

There are so many more ways to deal with depression, with mental illness besides the usual medication, therapy and lifestyle changes.

WHAT ABOUT YOU? Is there any possibility that you should take a look at this bipolar disorder?

Next time I am go ing to talk to you about another piece of my own puzzle, maybe this piece will complete your puzzle too!

Just for fun, here's another hero for you.


I'm so glad you droppped by Depression Getaway today. There is hope for depression. Don't give up, I'm praying for you!

Wendy Love

‘Bipolar Disorder’ or ‘Quick Change Artist’?

This entry is part 3 of 4 in the series Diagnosing Bipolar

jl4Bipolar Disorder has a lot in common with a 'quick change artist'.

Just for fun, here is a YouTube of a Quick Change Artist at work:

Have you ever had an experience where everything is going along just fine? You are on top of the world, totally in control. You feel as though you could do anything and then it all changes in a moment.

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Bipolar? Not Me!

This entry is part 2 of 4 in the series Diagnosing Bipolar


It took eight long years of depression to figure out that I had a form of mental illness called Bipolar Disorder. The difference is significant in the treatment and so this was an important step in my progress.

Why did it take so long to figure it out?

Bipolar involves both good moods and bad moods. It affects two poles of the brain, not just one. I have Bipolar 2, which some refer to as 'mild bipolar'.

The only time I went to see my doctor was when I was in the depths of despair, experiencing the low moods of bipolar which was depression.

When I was on top of the world, experiencing the high side of bipolar, hypomania, I was too busy being 'not depressed' to go to the doctor. I assumed those good feelings were normal. I assumed that was how everybody felt who didn't have depression.

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Diagnosis + Discovery = Depression Recovery

This entry is part 1 of 4 in the series Diagnosing Bipolar


'Discovery' can mean different things to different people. Certainly Columbus thought that he 'discovered' America. The truth is, America was already there. The natives probably had a much different point of view. When I found this poster I was surprised at how many other rather critical jokes there are out there of Christopher Columbus!

When you 'discovered' that the symptoms you were experiencing might indicate that you had depression, that was your first step toward recovery. But there are so many more very important steps.

The symptoms of depression could also be associated with other mental disorders such as ADHD, OCD, PTSD, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, anxiety, personality disorder and more. After all, those conditions would make anyone depressed to a certain extent. If your depressive symptoms were just a side effect of one of these conditions, it would help you to know, wouldn't it?

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Depression Books: Reading for Recovery, Part One

This entry is part 1 of 2 in the series Reading for Recovery

Depression books have saved me many times during a dark period. I cling to the words, flip pages full of the hope and the anticipation that there is still something I haven't figured out yet, some clue to clear the road to depression recovery.

depression books

One of the things I have done over the past years, whenever I hit another episode of depression is to go to our local bookstore and spend some time browsing through their books about mental illness. Almost every time I find one little tidbit that helps me put yet another piece of the puzzle in place. I don't buy many of these books. I just read while I am there.

One of the books I ended up purchasing because it was so full of information that I wanted to be able to refer to over and over is  'The Feeling Good Handbook'.

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Journaling is like Gardening; You Need Tools

This entry is part 4 of 4 in the series Journaling for the Right Diagnosis

Gardening compared to journaling? Well, that works for me since I love to do both. But for some of you both a garden or a journal may seem overwhelming.

working in garden

I remember my first few attempts at a vegetable garden. I had no clue and didn't realize I was planting in hard clay! My second garden was better, the soil was excellent and I grew some great stuff, but I not only had not realized how much work there was but also didn't face the fact that I just didn't have the time to do it. There were more weeds than produce. By the time I attempted my third vegetable garden, I had done a lot of reading, I had more time and went into it informed and ready. It was beautiful to look at, a joy to work in and I took a lot of wonderful vegetables out of it.  

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Diagnostic Journaling: Detecting Clues

This entry is part 2 of 4 in the series Journaling for the Right Diagnosis

Diagnostic journaling could be a great job for a detective.

My doctor has a gift for detective work and I am glad she does. When she first began treating me, she would start me on a small dose of the medication and then continue to increase it to the ‘recommended therapeutic dose’. Sometimes I would start to get better and when she increased it I would get worse. Puzzled by this, she took my chart, reread all of her notes and noticed that I always did better on a smaller dosage than the one recommended. If she didn’t have good notes, she would not have been able to figure that out.

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Diagnosis Through Journaling: Digging for Secrets, Part 1

This entry is part 1 of 4 in the series Journaling for the Right Diagnosis

Diagnosis may not be as complicated as you imagine.


Do you remember when you first realized you had some symptoms of depression?

Here was my initial experience. 

I was going through a stressful time in my life (divorce), but coping, or so I thought. One of the ways I dealt with stress was through exercise, particular, walking. One day, while on my walk, I felt like I could not go at my usual pace. The only other time I remembered feeling that awful was when I had anemia. So, assuming that it was the same thing this time, I went to my doctor.

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