This sense of isolation makes depressed people feel as if an invisible wall is preventing them from experiencing any kind of relief. And this wall often seems impossible to overcome. Not only do people who are depressed have difficulty describing what they are feeling to others but it can also prevent them from getting the help they need. Along with the sadness are a bevy of other emotions that also seem overwhelming: guilt, shame, and apathy, to name just a few--guilt, because depressed individuals can see how worried friends and family members are about them; shame, because they aren't able to handle life as well as everybody else (that other people have similar pains rarely makes a difference); and apathy, because of the belief that nothing they say or do can possibly change things for the better. So, when money means that we can put food on our table, have a roof over our head and support our children, money has the power to transform misery into happiness. But when money is spent on a $1,000 Serenity Dog Pod that lets your dog float away on a cloud-like bed into a blissful state with calming colour, changing light, relaxing and soothing music' (google it; it's a thing), you have definitely run out of stuff you can buy that will improve your happiness. <a href=''>In</a> fact, not only did you reach peak stuff for happiness a while back, but you fell off the cliff and now your dog is taking a dump on the summit. <a href=''>Like</a> most things, the more we have of something, the less happiness we derive from it. <a href=''>The</a> first slice of cake: awesome. <a href=''>The</a> fifth slice: not so good. <a href=''>Economists</a> call this the law of diminishing marginal utility. <a href=''>That</a> is one of the reasons why some countries and people get richer - but not happier. <a href=''>Another</a> reason is that we adapt to new levels of wealth. <a href=''>In</a> happiness research, we call this the hedonic treadmill. <a href=''>Zero-based</a> thinking works like hindsight. <a href=''>Based</a> on experience, you help your decision making process by thinking back to particular events, situations, circumstances, and decisions, looking at the outcome, removing all of the emotions clouding your judgment at the time, and figuring out how you could have handled yourself and/or the situation better. <a href=''>Once</a> you've figured it out, you're storing that information away in your mind and pulling it back out when you're in that situation, or something similar to it, again. <a href=',com_seo/Itemid,84/view,seo/?option=com_seo&'>We</a> naturally do this semi-unconsciously, but it helps you to better control your emotions in the present and future if you start consciously practicing it on a regular basis. <a href=''>During</a> the particular event, situation, circumstance, and decision-making process, you were more emotional about it, naturally, because it was new. <a href=''>It</a> was the unknown. <br /><br /><a href=''>It</a> was darkness. <a href=''>It</a> pushed you out of your comfort zone and forced you to feel vulnerable. <a href=''>You'd</a> never been in the middle of it before and weren't exactly sure how to deal with it. <a href=''>It</a> seemed a lot bigger and scarier than it actually was. <a href=''>But</a> once you return to it, or something similar to it, and you know what to expect, it's easier to leave emotion out of it since you've spent time returning to it, mentally training for it, rehearsing, and planning what you would do if, ever, in that situation again. <a href=''>Again,</a> in your mind, you're returning to the event, stripping it of all emotion, looking at it logically and for what it really is, being truthful with yourself about what really happened, and training yourself for possible future occurrences. <a href=''>You're</a> undoing the life-changing event your emotions made it into and revealing the truth about it. <a href=''>You're</a> preparing, empowering, and arming yourself for the future. <a href=''>How</a> we think affects how we feel and behave. <a href=''>That</a> is the central premise of CBT, which has become widespread in substance use and mental disorder treatments. <a href=''>Aaron</a> T. <a href=';url='>Beck,</a> MD, first popularized this creative approach to mental and behavioral problems some decades ago, and it was later extended to addictive disorders. <a href=''>Imagine</a> a person with an alcohol problem who is in recovery passing a favorite bar or getting a call from an old drinking buddy. <a href=''>That</a> is what we see in The Man with the Golden Arm, the film mentioned at the beginning of this book. <a href=''>The</a> cue is as powerful as the substance itself; after a while--as with Pavlov's dogs, who salivated at the bell, not the food--it becomes a conditioned response. <a href=''>The</a> cue can trigger what Beck and others have called "automatic thoughts," which are often firmly held negative thoughts a person has about himself or herself, such as "I don't deserve to be doing well" or "I am worthless." In response, his or her mood deteriorates and even blood pressure and heart rate can change for the worse. <a href=''>Memories</a> of relief from alcohol, the creeping thought of "Just one drink," come into their minds, and relapse is likely. <a href=''>CBT</a> is meant to be time limited (eight to twelve sessions individually, in group, or a mixture) and is highly problem focused. <a href=''>Sessions</a> are structured to examine and change the negative beliefs. <a href=''>Homework</a> is given for the problem thoughts and reactions. <br /><br /><a href=''>CBT</a> can be a critical method for relapse prevention. <a href=''>Its</a> utility and effectiveness call for its greater dissemination and use. <a href=''>As</a> time passes, if we continue the act of getting over on others, it can become difficult to put an end to this sort of practice. <a href=''>After</a> all, who wants to give up a skill that they've worked hard at developing over a lifetime? <a href=''>Earlier</a> in this chapter, I described how I gave that warehouse clever excuses for my delay in paying their storage bill. <a href=''>Now</a> if that wasn't an act of "getting over" as it relates to procrastination, what is? <a href=''>Habitual</a> procrastinators are often latecomers too, and this is yet another way that we engage in getting over. <a href=''>Besides</a> not taking the responsibility to show up on time, we often deny responsibility for our lateness by blaming things like late trains or heavy traffic. <a href=''>While</a> concentrating on coming up with excuses, the habitual procrastinator doesn't take into account the other person's feelings because he's keen on getting across to that person that it's he, the procrastinator, who's been inconvenienced. <a href=''>Some</a> procrastinators silently wish that their needs could be taken care of for them. <a href=''>For</a> these people, procrastination represents a reluctance to stand on their own two feet as independent adults. <a href=''>Their</a> procrastination may lead them to leave the competitive world, choosing instead the to try just "getting by" with as few hassles as possible. <a href=''>Procrastinating</a> in this way might best be called, "resistance to progression in life." As a result of this lifestyle choice, over time I slowly unlearned personal responsibility by living a life of minimal responsibility, which included getting to the very real point of irresponsibility on a few occasions. <a href=''>It's</a> certainly possible for unhappiness to become depression if it goes on long enough or if the people experiencing it don't get the emotional support they need. <a href=''>For</a> that matter, what we call unhappiness can vary widely across different cultures due to the kind of emotions that might be regarded as acceptable. <a href=''>This</a> means that unhappiness may be regarded as more acceptable than depression since there is still a strong stigma against many mental disorders, which can often lead to individuals trying to keep their unhappiness hidden--something that can have major consequences for them in terms of their mental and physical health. <a href=''>As</a> we can see, while people can become unhappy for a variety of reasons, depression is much more severe and long lasting. <a href=''>For</a> individuals who are particularly vulnerable to developing depression, whether due to problems in early childhood, heredity, or because of their life circumstances, unhappiness can certainly become depression if it goes on for longer than a few weeks. <a href=''>This</a> is why anyone who is coping with feelings of unhappiness that don't seem to go away needs to talk to a qualified health professional as soon as possible. <a href=''>We</a> will be getting into the different ways people can seek out help in the next section. <br /><br /><a href=''>As</a> we can see from the previous question, depression can take many different forms, which makes it hard to estimate how common it really is. <a href=''>Still,</a> recent statistics presented by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) show that an estimated 16.2 million adults in the United States alone have had at least one major depressive episode in their lives. <a href=''>This</a> represents about 6.78 percent of all adults aged eighteen or older. <a href=''>Of</a> these, 10.3 million Americans will develop symptoms severe enough to be considered a serious impairment (4.3 percent of all adults). <a href=''>We</a> all daydream. <a href=''>I</a> often imagine getting into shape, but then I realize it gets in the way of me levelling up in Candy Crush. <a href=''>But</a> we all do it. <a href=''>Daydream.</a> <a href=''>Fantasize.</a> <a href=''>Have</a> great expectations about a future where we move to Paris, learn French and write a book. <a href=''>But</a> how do our expectations and ambitions impact on our happiness? <a href=''>In</a> order to create a better understanding of how ambition shapes our lives, Timothy Judge, professor of management at the University of Notre Dame's Mendoza College of Business, examined data that tracked the lives of 717 people. <a href=''>The</a> data began in 1922 (the year a radio was first introduced into the White House) when the participants were children, and followed them for up to seventy years, a period during which the world lived through a World War, put a man on the moon, saw the rise and fall of empires - and the invention of the internet. <a href=''>In</a> the study, the participants were marked as more or less ambitious; this was based on self-assessment during the subject's youth and their parents' assessment. <a href=''>Perhaps</a> unsurprisingly, the ambitious ones went on to be more successful in objective terms - going on to the more prestigious universities, such as Harvard and Princeton, working in more respected occupations and earning higher salaries. <a href=''>In</a> materialistic terms, Marcus Aurelius might have been right in saying thata man's worth is no greater than the worth of his ambitions', but perhaps he overlooked the fact that a man's worth does not equal his well-being. Emotionally zeroing out doesn't mean being a robot. It doesn't mean you're a cold-hearted asshole. It just means you're intelligent enough to know and understand how feelings aren't very useful or helpful in many situations. That you get better results when you ignore emotion.

It's stripping yourself of emotion not pertaining to or helping your current situation. Consciously choosing not to "feel" one way or the other about it. Emotional favoritism, ties, biases, and prejudices don't hinder you. When something happens that you don't like, zero your emotions out and deal with it. When it's dealt with, zero your emotions out and move on from it. Remaining emotionally neutral makes it much easier. Forget how you feel. It doesn't matter. Leave the feelings to the emotionally-weak. It clouds your judgment, slows down your thinking process, and leads to misguided decisions. Complementary to CBT is group therapy, offered in a variety of professional and lay settings. Group approaches to substance use disorders may be more effective than individual therapy because of the power of peers and their capacity to better respond to minimization, denial, and negative thinking. Relapse prevention groups are particularly essential. Substance use disorders are chronic, relapsing conditions. We have to expect relapse. Patients, families, and clinicians can work to reduce its incidence. This approach began in the 1970s, led by Dr. Alan Marlatt. The approach stresses learning skills that can counteract a person's specific vulnerabilities to relapse, including craving, loneliness, emotional stress, peer pressure, and physical drivers such as fatigue and hunger. The US Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) includes relapse prevention in its registry of evidence-based programs for substance use disorders.