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Depression Stress & Anxiety


Two of the major factors about depression are:


  • You just don’t know why you feel depressed, stressed and/or anxious
  • It’s hard to accept that you really are depressed stressed and/or anxious


If you are feeling depressed, stressed and/or anxious but don’t know why and don’t know how to deal with it, you are not alone. The number of times we hear our clients say that they don’t understand why and cannot accept that they feel low, sad and anxious is increasing. Depression is the fastest growing mental health problem in the world and anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications are the fastest growing prescribed medicine in the world.


At Mindful Relationships we know that there are a number of different causes for depression, a number of different types of depression and a number of different treatments for depression; and as a consequence the diagnosis and treatment of depression has to be carefully considered for each individual. While we recognise and appreciate that there is an important place for medication for some children and adults in treatment for depression, stress and anxiety, our work concentrates on helping our clients explore, understand and address patterns of thoughts, feelings and behaviour that keep them stuck in what may seem like impossible situations. We also enable our clients to discover the possible root cause of their depression, allowing them to choose to be free of it and begin to experience a positive sense of self and positive relationships.


For more information regarding depression, stress and anxiety please visit:


How Do I Know I am Depressed?


From time to time we all suffer from a low state of mood, perhaps it’s related to family problems, work issues or parenting . And sometimes we ‘feel sad and low’ for no apparent reason at all. This can last for a few hours or a couple of days. It’s what most of us call ‘having a bad day!’ However, low mood and feeling stressed and anxious can become concerning and serious when your:


  • low mood is severe
  • self-esteem is lowered
  • It lasts for more than a couple of weeks
  • It interferes with your ability to participate and function during normal day to day activities


What Are The Signs of Depression?


Depression is a presentation of some or many of the following signs that are consistent daily, for more than a couple of weeks:


  • Feelings of poor self esteem
  • Expression of negative emotions i.e insecurity, sadness, guilt, anger
  • Reduction or loss of appetite
  • Poor sleep patterns with inability to sleep and feeling unrested
  • Mood swings
  • Lack of energy, lethargic feeling, can’t be bothered
  • Reduced desire to participate in life and to be involved
  • Inability to concentrate or to focus, increased feelings of disorganisation
  • Poor memory recall
  • Hard to experience positive emotions i.e joy, happiness
  • Reduction or loss of sex drive
  • Increase in alcohol or drug use
  • Increased body aches and pains with reduced tolerance to pain
  • Feelings of isolation and loneliness



If you are feeling suicidal and need immediate assistance, please contact a Mental Health Professional for support and medical advice, or call 13 11 44


Stress and Anxiety


1 in 7 Australians will suffer from an anxiety disorder, this year alone, making it the most common Mental Health disorder in Australia. Stress and anxiety are the major factors of depression. Some adults and children will have to take medicine to manage their stress and anxiety. Some will manage it with support from professionals, family and friends; and some will manage stress and anxiety using a combination of both. At Mindful Relationships we will help you explore and understand the meaning and cause of your stress and anxiety and give you strategies to manage them or even achieve a life where you don't struggle with them on a daily basis!


“Everyone suffers from stress, don’t they? It’s just a part of modern day life”


What Is Stress?


At Mindful Relationships we recognise that stress is the body’s natural response to challenges that may upset the natural balance, like the undue pressures of life, relationship problems, divorce and financial worries. Our brain is programmed to respond to stress either by running from the stressor or fighting the aggressor. We achieve this by stimulation of the adrenal glands which then release adrenaline, a hormone that primes our body for a physical reaction. This reaction can be an increase in heart rate, increased energy in muscles, greater mental alertness and increased blood flow (causing increased blood pressure).  It is purely a primitive physiological response to a threat that requires action. However, in modern society most threats do not require physical engagement BUT our brain and body continues to prepare us in this way. For short periods of time this is manageable, however, if this level of stress continues for a few weeks or more it can have a profound effect on your physiological and psychological well-being, including, fatigue, diminished mental capacity and sustained high blood pressure.


What Is Anxiety?


Anxiety is similar in its mechanism to stress in that it prepares us for physical exertion. The difference here is that anxiety occurs or continues with no threat or stressor.  Anxiety is fear based and has a primary feeling of insecurity.  Anxiety often has no obvious or real threat initiating the stress reaction. Anxiety produces the same physical changes as stress but because the perceived stressor is not real it can continue for long periods, leading to the high levels of fatigue, mental health breakdown and diminished functioning. The effects of anxiety impact our ability to function and maintain healthy relationships, this in itself can lead to more anxiety and so the destructive cycle continues!


How Does Anxiety Present Itself?


Anxiety has many presentations including Phobias, Obsessive Compulsive Disorders (OCD), Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Panic Disorders or General Anxiety Disorders. The form of presentation is a manifestation of the underlying distress that is similar for each presentation.

At Mindful Relationships we understand that while the physiological mechanisms that kick in when we are anxious are normal, they are an exaggerated response to distress, it is the body over-reacting to a situation. This exaggerated response can be modified and calmed by changing the thought patterns that initiate this response.


We have observed that the Rapid Exposure Tapping technique is highly effective in increasing awareness of the situations and feelings that distress you and can help you understand your response to situations that you often feel you have no control over.  In cases of stress and anxiety our therapists are able to help you identify the origins of the over-reaction that produces positive results. We believe that your distress and reactivity originate from individual situations that have moulded your responses and set your physiology to over-react. These patterns are locked in your sub-conscious mind and at a cellular level. Identifying these situations and connecting with the reasons for this over-reaction leads to a calming of the mechanism of adrenaline production and reduces your vulnerability to the stress reaction.

The thought patterns causing stress and anxiety can be moderated to result in less triggering of the stress response ie your 'buttons are not pushed', leading to a calm considered response ie your buttons are 'deactivated'.


How Do We Treat Depression, Stress and Anxiety?


At Mindful Relationships, we are interested in the systemic cause and treatment for depression, stress and anxiety. While the diagnosis and treatment of each will vary, our therapeutic work with you will focus on exploring, reflecting and addressing the root and meaning of your depression, stress and/or anxiety. We often use a Depression Checklist  to help us know and understand more about how you are feeling:


    • DSM IV - these questions are based on the symptoms used to identify depression
    • SPHERE - your GP may use this to identify, treat and manage common psychological disorders like depression. The scale takes into consideration how you feel and behave what you think and what physical symptoms you may have. Your GP will normally share this checklist with us.


Our work is influenced by a number of theories and techniques including:


    • Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy
    • Individual, Couple and Family Therapy
    • Cognitive Behaviour Therapy
    • Rapid Exposure Tapping


Over the last two years we have introduced Rapid Exposure Tapping to help our clients be less reactive and to have a more calm and reflective response to states of low mood and/or high anxiety. We continue to be excited by the success of this technique in addressing depression, stress and anxiety. However, we also know and accept that there is often a place for medication in treating severe melancholic and psychotic depression. Indeed, without medication, some of our clients would find they could not undertake psychotherapy. Whether or not our clients are on medication, we know that the support of our work has helped them to learn more about themselves, including the patterns of feelings and behaviours and the types of interactions that keep them stuck. We have also helped them to learn long-term problem solving strategies so that they can experience a more meaningful and happy life.

If you would like to move your life in a direction beyond Depression, Stress and Anxiety, please contact us for more information.

The information provided on this site is not intended to replace professional medical advice.

If you need immediate phone support please call Lifeline on 131144 or 

About Us

Before you see a Counsellor or a Mediator, wouldn’t you like to know how good he or she is? Wouldn’t you like to know that your time and money is wisely spent? Well, at Mindful Relationships we pride ourselves on the fact that over the last 10 years “word of mouth” recommendation has been 100% of our referral base. And now the secret is out! We are growing and we want to offer our unique Counselling and Mediation services to more children, adults, couples and families who would benefit from expert Counselling and Mediation. We know we can make a difference!.

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Phone: 02 9211 8989

Suite 302 88 Foveaux Street
Surry Hills NSW 2010
2/2 Kochia Lane
Lindfield NSW 2070
14 Cardwell Street
Adelaide SA 5000