Positive Psychology Self-Help for Depression

Feeling down? January Blues? Vulnerable to SAD? Want to halt the downwards spiral towards depression and raise the bar on your ppfordepressionwell-being?

This online training course is based on the first positive psychology self-help book to target the no1 threat to psychological well-being – depression. Positive psychology is known as the science of happiness. What is not so well-known is that its evidence-based tools can protect you from depression and help you to overcome it. This online training programme is aimed at anyone who would like to learn how to use these evidence-based self-help tools. This would include you if you have a tendency to low mood or suffer from mild-to-moderate episodes of depression. The sessions will introduce you to practices in key areas that lift the mood and build your resilience to depression. It is facilitated by Miriam Akhtar based on the book Positive Psychology for Overcoming Depression, Self-help Strategies for Happiness, Inner Strength & Well-being and her own experience of using positive psychology for depression. The book has been the subject of a study in bibliotherapy (books as therapy) which shows that it does help people overcome depression and improve their well-being. It is scientifically-grounded self-help.

Join in from the comfort of your home.

This gentle, practical coaching course is designed to have an anti-depressant effect. It is easy and accessible which is what you need when energy and motivation are low. Over 4 weeks at the bleakest time of year we’ll look at a range of tools that help to lift us out of the lows and strengthen our well-being.

Starting on Wednesday 21st January 2015, the course involves a 75-minute webinar each week (at 7.30pm UK time, 11.30am US PT, 2.30pm US ET, 8.30pm Europe CET) offering input, interaction and group-based coaching support. We will create a community to support each other through the process.

Weds 21st January 2015 : Session 1 on Positive Emotions – the Feel-Good Factor. This session explores how to increase the experience of positive emotions, which are typically low in depression. We’ll look at the scientifically-grounded strategies that help you towards the feel-good factor, which with practice raises the level of your resilience and well-being. Supported by chapters 3-5 of Positive Psychology for Overcoming Depression.

Weds 28th January 2015 : Session 2 on the Positive You – Your Strengths. In depression we tend to a poor self-image and low self-esteem. Your strengths are your Positive Self and provide you with inner resources to help you on the journey out of depression. We explore your positive characteristics and how they can give you a sense of meaning and direction in life, both of which are lacking in depression. Supported by chapters 11-12.

Weds 4th February 2015 : Session 3 on Positive Recovery – Resilience & Optimism. After considering Positive Emotions and the Positive Self, this session will look at what is often referred to as ‘Positive Thinking’, the cognitive tools that challenge pessimism and build optimism, a key ingredient of resilience. We’ll also consider other routes from positive psychology to support our capacity to cope positively and bounce back from life’s tough times. Supported by chapters 7-8.

Week 11th February 2015 : Session 4 on Positive Other – Mind, Body, Spirit & Other People. Depression is a complex condition with many symptoms and causes. In this session we will consider other practices that help us to recover and protect us from the black dog. From instant mood boosters to mindfulness meditation and natural anti-depressants like physical activity. We’ll also consider how other people can help us on the way out of depression. Supported by chapters 6, 9 and 10.

The course costs £65 (approx $98 or €95) or £50 (approx $77 or €63) if you need a low income concession. If you would like to find out more, please email Miriam or use the contact page.

Please note. The course requires a minimum number of participants in order to run. If that number is not reached then you will be refunded and offered a place when the course runs at a later date.

The course textbook is Positive Psychology for Overcoming Depression, Self-help Strategies for Happiness, Inner Strength & Well-being. In the 3 years since publication the book has helped thousands of people worldwide to recover their well-being.  Here’s a flavour of some of the 5-star reviews of the book.

“This is very accessible book with a scientific backbone and plenty of practical advice. For me, it was the right book at the right time as I sought answers to move on from a challenging spell in my life; I really wanted to take action to enhance my wellbeing and this book gave me the toolkit.”

“I have been looking at various strategies to cope with stress and taking positive steps to help my well-being. The author has a very engaging writing style and the book is a good resource and easy to read. The author provides practical strategies and tips to improve well-being supported by research. I find that I am using this book as a handbook- dipping into it on a regular basis. It’s a very helpful book.”

“I bought this book as part of continuing professional development for my job working with people with mental health issues. It was so good I worked through the exercises myself; even though I’m quite a happy person this book still improved my happiness level.”

The book has been endorsed by GPs, health professionals, therapists, coaches and psychologists. The founder of Books on Prescription has also recommended the book.

“Excellent coverage of an important new approach” Prof Neil Frude

“For many years I have recommended “Mind Over Mood,” to my clinical psychology trainees as the psychological treatment manual of choice. Miriam Akhtar has now written a very credible depression treatment manual, based on the principles of positive psychology. I am sure that this book will go on to become one of the few other classics in this field, along with Beck and Wolpert. Highly recommended!”  Prof Jerome Carson

If you are an organisation that is interested in booking the course as a in-person workshop please email Miriam.