I am 25 years old and a medical graduate. I am always having negative thoughts like I might fail my exams though I am a good student or I may not get an internship at a good hospital like I am a failure. I think that I should die, nobody likes me.I am lousy at anything I do. I have no energy to do anything that I even want to do. My sleep is also disturbed and I have gained weight despite normal diet. It all feels awful. Please help. Regards.

A: While it would not be possible for me to make an accurate diagnosis on the basis of a letter, I can say that the range of symptoms you have identified — negative thoughts, anxiety, fear of dying, low self worth, low energy and weight gain — are the kind of indicators that point toward a depression. Since you are in the medical field, you may want to consult with a colleague about getting a physical evaluation first. This will help rule out certain physical causes and help identify which treatment is best.

But in addition to noting your symptoms, I would also take the time to honor the fact that you are attempting to correct this rather than do nothing. You have a sense that your feelings do not match the reality of your experience and are not passive about the discomfort. In other words, know that reducing symptoms isn’t the only way to promote change. Strengthening your healthy inclinations is just as important.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral