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I Am Concerned about Negative Thoughts and How to Know if They Are Delusions in Depression

I was wondering how to tell if you are just having extreme guilt or delusions with depression? It seems like a fine line and difficult to tell. I was ruminating on past things I felt a lot of guilt about and decided I was nearly evil and a monster which increased my symptoms for a while. I was somewhat aware it was extreme, but it also felt very real. I have never had this with depression before, but I really felt like I deserved bad things to happen to me because I was intrinsically bad and needed to pay for my sins so to speak. Like I must be punished in a violent way. Evidence to the contrary just wasn’t enough to shake this.

I Am Concerned about Negative Thoughts and How to Know if They Are Delusions in Depression

A.

Focusing on the guilt is often a way of not focusing on something else. The something else in this case is self-forgiveness. Ruminating about the guilt may be a more familiar place to land your thoughts — and important to help you recover — but the more immediate, and perhaps even more important work is on finding ways to forgive yourself for your transgressions. This article gives a perspective of some of the ways this can happen. This article gives some practical advice.

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

I Am Concerned about Negative Thoughts and How to Know if They Are Delusions in Depression

Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: http://www.dare2behappy.com/. He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2018). I Am Concerned about Negative Thoughts and How to Know if They Are Delusions in Depression. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 16, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2018/07/12/i-am-concerned-about-negative-thoughts-and-how-to-know-if-they-are-delusions-in-depression/

 

Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Jul 2018
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 8 Jul 2018
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