Rise From Darkness - by Kristian Hall

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There are many self-help books about overcoming depression. This one is special; it is not written by an academic, but by a person who overcame his own depression by following the techniques in this book. This means that people suffering from depression will find themselves being able to identify with the author and the text. This book was written by someone who really understands how you feel. Imagine being Administrator of NASA the day after John F. Kennedy promised to put a man on the moon by the end of the decade. It must have seemed overwhelming. You cannot complete such complex projects in a single go; you need to divide them into many small and achievable tasks. Then, just take on the individual tasks one at a time. You can follow the same strategy to overcome depression.

Text of Rise From Darkness - by Kristian Hall

  • RISE FROM DARKNESS KRISTIAN HALL

    FAKKELFORLAG

    RISE FROM DARKNESS Paths Out of Depression

    Toward Happiness

    KRISTIAN HALL

    THERE ARE PATHS OUT OF DEPRESSIONImagine being Administrator of NASA the day after John F. Kennedy promised to put a man on the moon by the end of the decade. It must have seemed overwhelming. You cannot complete such complex projects in a single go; you need to divide them into many small and achievable tasks. Then, just take on the individual tasks one at a time. You can follow the same strategy to overcome depression.

    Kristian Hall went through eleven years of deep depression as a teenager and student. He overcame his depression by practicing techniques from cognitive behavioral therapy and positive psychology. His personal development did not stop there he used the same techniques to overcome lifes other challenges, and to become a thoroughly happy person.

    You can improve your life a lot and your path may start with this book!

  • RISE FROM DARKNESS

    How to Overcome Depression

    through Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

    and Positive Psychology

    Kristian Hall

    FAKKEL FORLAG

    Paths Out of Depression Toward Happiness

  • Fakkel Forlag AS, Oslo, Norway

    First published in Norway in 2015, originally titled Opp fra avgrunnen

    Published in English translation 2016

    Translated by: Jonathan Fraenkel-EidseIllustrated by: Thomas Nesland Olsen

    All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical,

    including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the

    copyright owner.

    ISBN: 978-82-999887-3-5

  • To Dad.For everything you gave us, despite your inner darkness.

  • Contents

    Foreword ..........................................................................13How to use this book ........................................................19To those who care about a depressed person .....................23

    PART 1: HOW TO BE HAPPY ...............................................25What is depression? ...........................................................26What you can change ........................................................28About the brain .................................................................30What are feelings? .............................................................33Reality filters .....................................................................36Demons and thought fallacies ...........................................41

    PART 2: GET BETTER RIGHT NOW ..................................51A toolbox for a better life ..................................................52A crash plan ......................................................................54Therapy .............................................................................57Chimney sweeping ............................................................59Live here and now .............................................................62Bring on the good feelings .................................................65Positive psychology ...........................................................72Exercise and Fitness ..........................................................83Diet ...................................................................................87Surround yourself with people who uplift you ......................................................89The Super Week ................................................................93

  • PART 3: DEPRESSIONS COMPANIONS ............................95Related conditions .............................................................96Worries and sleeplessness ..................................................97Anxiety ...........................................................................100Grief ................................................................................102Bitterness and self-pity ....................................................106Envy ................................................................................108Regret, guilt and shame ..................................................110Suicidal thoughts .............................................................111

    PART 4: LONG-TERM SELF-IMPROVEMENT ....................113The process .....................................................................114An initiation ritual ..........................................................116Mapping .........................................................................117Acceptance ......................................................................129Decide to change .............................................................130Implementation phase .....................................................133

    PART 5: MEDITATION AND SELF-HYPNOSIS ................151Meet your subconscious ..................................................152Let go ..............................................................................154Self-hypnosis ...................................................................161Visualization ...................................................................168Rituals .............................................................................172Immerse yourself .............................................................175Thank you! .....................................................................179

    APPENDICES .......................................................................181Appendix A: Further reading ...........................................182Appendix B: Example of self-hypnosis script ...................184Appendix C: Endnotes ....................................................188About the Author ............................................................191

  • 13

    Foreword

    My father was an exceptional person. I have never met an adult who was so warm, playful and inventive. It was as though he was taken from a childrens tale.

    At the same time, he was a person with serious psychological problems which were partly the result of a difficult childhood. He had deep depression and struggled with anxiety. When he was young he self-medicated with alcohol in order to suppress his social anxiety. Eventually this developed into a serious alcohol problem.

    He never managed to beat alcoholism, even after he had children. My sister and I grew up in a home where we never knew if Dad was drunk or if he was himself when we came home from school. This resulted in many frightening situations as our mother could not always be there for us.

    When I was 14 years old my dad died suddenly. It was a terrible shock for the entire family. Despite his problems, he was a fantastic person who gave me and many others countless warm experiences and memories. I loved him very much, and still do.

    My sorrow eventually developed into a deep depression. Full of sorrow and anger, I became a bad person, filled to the brink with negative thoughts and feelings, which in turn made me horrible company for others. One by one I lost most of my friends. They were, quite understandably, not particularly inter-ested in being around me.

    I lived in depression for a decade, a depression which continued to grow deeper and which eventually reached a level where my greatest desire was to die. Not a day went by when I did not think of how I would take my life, and when I would do

  • 19

    How to use this book

    There are many ways to read a book. Personally, I like to open a new book on page one and plow through it as fast as I can. You can read this book in such a manner, but if you do so, you should read it several times to increase the benefit you receive from it. I have kept the book short. The intention is that you should be able to skim through it in one evening to get an impression of what its about. You can use a highlighter to quickly go back to those techniques in which you have the most faith.

    The core of the book is the techniques. If you want maximum personal change, you need to do the exercises. People learn best by experiencing things directly, not by reading what others have done. Overcoming depression involves teaching oneself to live life in another way, learning how to think differently and to do things which lead to a better balance in ones emotional life.

    Whether you read this book quickly or slowly, take the time to try all of the exercises. If a practice does not work for you the first time, try it one more time before moving on. You may find that some of the techniques work perfectly for you, while others do not work at all. Different techniques will work differently from person to person. Use and develop those techniques which are the most effective for you.

    Depending on your life situation, some of these techniques may seem pretty tough. I am of the opinion that as a rule it is better to confront our problems, and in doing so to temporar-ily increase the pain rather than to let the problems continue to produce low-intensity pain over a long period of time. If you are unsure if a technique is right for you, consult with your doctor or therapist.

  • 23

    To those who care about a depressed person

    In some cases, it can be quite difficult to be close to somebody who is depressed. It can feel as though you are depressed yourself. Feeling powerless when you see a child, a sibling, a partner, a friend or a parent who is depressed, can be terrible. You only want to help, but often there are few actions that will have a significant effect. Its the depressed person that will need to work themselves out of it. People in the surroundings can su