Depression and Core Beliefs

May 7 07:40 2010 Sophie Henshaw Print This Article

Are you alert to how you have generated and continue to maintain your depression? In a nutshell, core beliefs develop when you become identified with your experience and in this article I clarify how the process evolves and what you can do to free yourself for good.

Core beliefs are the nuggets of self-hatred that are present at the heart of your depression. They are produced as a result of experiences that you think signify something about who you are. In other words,Guest Posting identification with experience is the source of your mental agony. As an example, think of what happens when a child is raised by psychologically unstable, alcoholic parents. They choose to spend their time going out drinking in the place of raising their child. From that experience the child internalises this message: “It’s because I’m unlovable that they discard me; it’s my fault. However the reality is that the adults are responsible but do not have the emotional aptitude for parenthood nor the desire to develop it. The development of a core belief goes like this: “This event means I am…”

Freedom from misery and depression involves rupturing that identification. There is a dual reality: 1) you are who you are and 2) you experience all sorts of occurences in your life that have nothing whatsoever to do with who you are. Having an embodied, deep awareness of that truth is the fundamental cure for depression.

Core Beliefs Have These Traits:

=> You know they are a fact

=> You intensely feel how factual they are

=> The pain of them hurts (like hitting yourself with an emotional sledge hammer)

=> They all include the statement “I am”

=> They differ from the actual fact of what is

Levels of Anguish

Although core beliefs have no basis in reality, they cause so much pain that innumerable strategies are used to minimise and avoid them. They are erected over the originating incident like complex layers of an onion, with each new strategy countering the previous one.

The more strategies you create, the more convinced you become that the core belief is actually the real deal All this activity uses precious energy (mostly unconsciously) – which is why depression is such a low energy state. Alternatively, letting go of the core belief results in happiness which is a natural state of ease whereby your life force energy flows freely throughout your body.

In this example, notice how one assumption builds upon another until the original belief is obscured beyond all recognition:

=> I am fundamentally seriously flawed => Therefore I must be repulsive => The reason is that my body looks distorted => I have to conceal it by smiling a lot => I was overlooked because I didn’t get it right => If I just try harder, John will love me.

The strategies might be called:

=> Core Belief => Conclusion => Rationalisation => Compensation => Pressure To Be More / Better => Masking by Pleasing & Placating.

But the reality is:

=> I am a real human being with real emotions that are complex and complicated to understand at times => Human traits are changeable and I have my own unique characteristics => Differences in body contours are normal and my body is unique => People can sense when my smile is at odds with how I really feel and it can make them feel uncomfortable. => It’s really painful => When I’m trying hard to be something that I’m not I feel too worn out to enjoy life.

Depression and Recovery

To mend from depression it is necessary to become conscious of self-judging and invite yourself to witness your experience objectively, just as it really is. The truth is restorative when it reveals your core beliefs as a falsehood, then you experience relief. A good place to start is to PREVENT JUDGING THE JUDGING! In therapy, a skill called “mindfulness” melts away these self-destructive layers. At Henshaw Consulting, Psychologist Perth, you can learn more about mindfulness and recovering from depression by downloading our free E-Book at: www.

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About Article Author

Sophie Henshaw
Sophie Henshaw

Dr. S Henshaw is a Perth-based clinical psychologist with over 20 years’ experience helping people to alleviate their depression and anxiety. To learn more, visit:

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