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Depression Strikes Every Family In America! sticky icon


Depression strikes more people than you think, and in more ways than you imagine

Dr. Harris Jensen Reviews The Devastating Impact Of Depression On Ordinary People In America

No Family Is Spared

By Harris Jensen, MD
Editor, Good Day Journal
Each year Americans lose $70 billion due to medical problems, and depression accounts for 12 billion of those dollars. This is money lost due to time off work and another $11 billion is lost from decreased effectiveness at work.
These and other amazing facts are reviewed in an article, "Statistics On Depression," in the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance website, and all are facts based on articles in scientific publications or government documents.
 How much do you know about Depression? Test your knowledge with the questions below, which are taken from the DBSA website. These amount to an avalanche of statistics that show depression is not just a medical problem, but the number one health care crisis in the world, causing more problems in families lives than any other medical problem.
In the face of these facts, people who say depression is just  a “mental” thing clearly come across as callous and self absorbed or else just not well informed. 
Maybe hopelessly uninformed.
But that is the common attitude about depression in the US. Depression is just a result of “weak thinking” that is easy to reverse if a person would just try a little.
The common person’s view of depression in this country is way off base. About 80% of people in the US think depression comes from how you think, or evil spirits, or a weak character, or a person just isn’t trying hard to be positive. From the mid 1950's to the early 1990's people did not change their attitudes much in regard to taking care of their head, but with the coming of the internet and a higher percentage of well educated people in this country, those attitudes are changing.  People are taking an interest in getting informed about how to take good care of their "noggin."
These ignorant attitudes are changing for the better in this country, and this change is reviewed in an article, “Americans’ Attitudes Toward Mental Health Treatment Seekling: 1990-2003,” by Ramin Mojtabai, MD, PHD, in the May, 2007 issue of Psychiatric Services. (You can Google this article.)
See how well you can be a part of this new trend of people getting informed about what works to take care of your brain. Take the quiz below and try to guess the right answers…
1.       Adults in America with depression in any given year?
14.8 million or 6.7 percent of adults
2.       Average age depression starts?

Stable Roles, Relationships and Routines... sticky icon

help maintain the gains in mood

for patients with anxiety, depression and bipolar mood swings

New chart by Dr. Harris Jensen helps to chart your progress

by Harris Jensen, MD

It may seem odd to some, but skipping breakfast isn't good for you, nor is "holing up" in your home when you're stressed out--a common thing for people to do nowdays, with the economic recession wreaking havoc in people's heads, whether they are employed or not.

A Time To Honor One Who Was Mindful... sticky icon

Harris Jensn offers free banners for your computer desktop for mindfulness training...they are offered for free to you as a way of remembering the wonder that mindfulness brings to our lives


by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

She left this world for the next one, last night, here in the first week of January of 2009,  suffering cancer, battling hard and long, surrounded by those who loved her.  To honor her privacy I won't mention her name.  But to honor her life I'd like to share 4 meditation banners I've made.  I've used these as a background on my computer screen to encourage my mindfulness training.  She was one who in a kind and gentle way introduced me to the awesome power that resides in the practices of yoga and meditation.  Wow, what a difference she made in my life.  If interested, view the banners in the slide show below.  If you'd like one for free, put your cursor on the image, then click the lower right corner, the cllick the colored circle, and at Picassa web albums you can download the actual jpegs.  Or you can click one of the blue file attachments below, by first clicking the "4 Attachments" link below, then clicking the link to the meditation poster you want.

All the banners have the meditative saying, "Solid As A Mountain, Calm As Water," which is a saying from the Zen Master Thich Nhat Hahn, whom I heard give a talk at YMCA of the Rockies up in Estes Park, Colorado.   He spoke in a quiet voice and yet with great courage and conviction about how mindfulness can help make your day a good day.

This dear one who has left us was strong in her quiet unassuming way, too, and she was calm in the face of the storm. 


New Self Help Book Released By Harris Jensen, MD sticky icon

"The Four Secrets For Successful Living"

Combines The Most Powerful Elements Of Several

Psychotherapy Strategies Into One Powerful Approach (Updated 5/14/09)

by Harris Jensen,MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

(To get the PDF book now, click GET BOOK and go to bottom of the article and click the blue words "The Four Secrets For Successful Living.pdf" to get book, or click the blue audio ".m4a" file, "The Four Secrets -- Preface.m4a, " to hear the book read by the author!  The audio file will start playing shortly, and after the full file is downloaded you can save it to your computer and burn it to a cd and listen to it wherever you want to!  You may be able to go to "file" on your browser and "save page" and save the audio file to your computer.)

Growing up, I had a hard time learning to believe in myself.  Finally, a camp director caught me doing some actions well.  He not only told me I did a "good job" but said this was evidence of continued promise for success.

I had what it took to succeed.

This is the approach used in motivational psychotherapy. Help people see they can generalize from successes in one area to other areas that currently leave them "stuck."

The weakness in that approach is one often needs some sophistication in naming irrational thoughts.  That is the approach used in cognitive behavior therapy.  And sometimes that isn't enough.  In situations involving the need for communication skills, interpesonal therapy can train thos


I've pulled together these diverse approaches in my book, "The Four Secrets For Successful Living."

Here is how it helps stress managment:  A person let's say comes home and his children are screaming and that gets on his nerves.  Instead of yelling, he sees he's having an emotional response--that's normal and expected--that is the first of four steps in solving problems effectively.  Seeing that, and that emotions don't inform his decisions, he takes the "energy," as it were, from the emotions, and directs that energy to talk to his girlfriend.  "Boy these kids get on my nerves," he self discloses, "but I love you and I love them!  I wonder what we can do. You are good at working with their rascally behavior?"  She suggests they play hide and go seek, a game outside that will redirect the kid's energy, which is up in part because they are frustrated about being inside, and about Dad being at work all day.  He is now at the second step of successful problem solving, the thinking step, and he's gathering information, resisting the urge to go back to the first step, the emotional response step, because that wouldn't bring him any more information.  It's information he needs now to make a well informed decision.  Thanks to his girlfriend's help and her thoughts, he's got that information.  Then he swings into the third step, the action step, and makes a well informed decision that the family can focus on what works for "us," and vote on what we as a family want to do.  He's encouraging "us" thinking, and modeling the four step model.  The kids vote to play...what else was possible?  But the structure of how they relate to others is different.  There is an order and direction here, based on he and his girlfriend working together in a loving way.  The fourth step is observing the situation you started with.  It's changed!  But he is seeing the situation in a new way, informed by his  thinking, guided by his love and devotion for his family, and energized by his emotions--not misguided by them.

Does this make sense?  If so, read the PDF book below!

I am not satisfied with the self help books out there.  After 15 years of work as a psychiatrist, I keep seeing people read books and make the same mistakes.  Whether the mistakes are -- thinking errors, interpersonal skill deficits, communication mistakes, motivation problems--the books just are not communicating well enough.  So I've just simply pulled together the very best of all those books and put them in one.

I think alot of self help books are hopelessly boring.

No color pictures!  No sound!  No drawings!  No color drawings! My pdf book has lots of color illustrations.  And some books have no CD audio book...hello isn't this the internet era where multimedia approaches help people learn everything from software to meditation?

So I have added an audio book version...and an audio and PDF versions of the book are  available here for free at the bottom of this article.  Click "read more" at the end of the article here, then go to the bottom of the article and you will see the .pdf book, "The Four Secrets For Successful Living.pdf."  Click the .pdf file to download it.  It has dozens and dozens of color pictures to help you learn key concepts! 

Then click the audio files and download them...they may start playing in a minute or less after clicking them...a full download may take several minutes or longer.   The preface of the book took about 25 minutes to read.  Then, once the audio file has fully downloaded, save that audio file to your computer, if your software permits that.  At any rate, open up the .pdf file and move forward to the preface to the book.  Then play the audio file "The Four Secrets--Preface" and  you can listen to me read the book while you read it. 

I think people learn best from both reading and listening to a book being read.  That way you get both the auditory and visual information at the same time.  I think some people learn more effectively if they get both auditory and visual information at the same time.  At any rate, do as you wish, and hope you enjoy the pdf and audio book.

As an added note, the clock face used in the book is available for download as a jpeg file at the end of the story, here.  Just click on the blue link for "clock face" and you got it!

Have a good day!





Happy Holidays! Here's Free "Kick Back And Relax" Movies For Computer Or Ipod or Iphone! sticky icon

Harris Jensen Releases Four Free Movies About The Beauty Of The Rocky Mountains! Relaxation Movies Play On Your IPOD!

All Feature Fabulous  Jazz Music By Mark Sloniker!

Just Click The Links Below And Get'em Free!

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

Many of us live in the Rocky Mountains because of the glorious nature that surrounds us here.  Soaring peaks 14,000 feet high, elk, bigho

How To Deal With A Scary Economy sticky icon

The Coloradoan Publishes Article By Harris Jensen

by Harris Jensen, MD

I was moved by friends wrestling with this bad economy, and how presidential candidates were trying to wrestle with the issues as well.

"Four Secrets For Successful Living" Is Getting Some Good Reviews! sticky icon

Readers Find It Useful For Stress Managment, Panic and Weight Loss Issues

by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

It's encouraging when a book gets good reviews before it's even done!  People using concepts in the book, "Four Secrets For Successful Living," report finding themselve more effective in managing stress, panic and weight loss problems.

Here's hundreds of wildlife photos from the Rocky Mountains! sticky icon

Harris Jensen's nature photo slide show is quick and easy...

just watch the hundreds of photos of the Rocky Mountains from Colorado and Wyoming and Montana...a great way to destress!


by Harris Jensen, MD

Editor, Good Day Journal

After a long day at school or at the office, the last think you want to do is work at something to relieve stress.  Your are out of gas--maybe emotionally and with what is in your car's gas tank.

Here is something to do to let go of the worries of the world without making much of an effort.

Watch these images from a lake high in the Snowy Range of Wyoming and elsewhere in the Rockies.  It was a warm summer afternoon when some of these pictures were taken.  Brook trout were sipping mayflies on the surface of the lake.  A light breeze rippled the surface.  And no one else was around.  A rabbit hopped along the shore.  Flowers were blooming in a meadow.

Some photos are from Estes Park, Colorado, others are from the Front Range here in Colorado, while others are from the Tetons and Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming...the heron pictures however are from Florida...enjoy!

Enjoy letting go!  Nature makes it easier!

If you put your mouse's cursor over the photos, a menu will appear over the bottom of the pictures. Clicking the colored circle in the lower right corner of the picture will bring you to a page where you can click "Harris" and get to my other public web galleries of photos.  Enjoy them too if you want...


Harris Jensen tells the story about seasonal depression treatment... sticky icon

Light Therapy Brings Back That Spring In Your Step!  Lamps At The Light Center In Fort Collins Provide The Required Full Spectrum Light

Teton Sunset
by Harris Jensen, MD
Psychiatrist, Fort Collins, Colorado
Key Words: Harris Jensen, seasonal depression, light therapy, full spectrum light therapy.

We’ve fallen in love with lots of sun in Colorado.  More than 300 sunny days a year see us flocking to the mountains to ski or hike or what have you...and we get a little grumpy when we lose some of that light in the fall and winter as the sun sails lower in the sky.
At least one in ten of us feel that way, anyway.
Experts call it seasonal affective disorder or syndrome, but really we just miss our bath of summer sun, all 10,000 lux (or units) of full spectrum light warming our skin and our emotional brain.  
The winter blues start with low energy.  You miss that spring in your step.  You find yourself sleeping more, maybe nine hours instead of eight, and still you feel tired on your to class or work...and getting through your day.  It’s harder to focus, more of an effort to stay what you know you enjoy.
Your “get up and go just got up and left”, thanks to not enough sun.  There’s too much of the sleep hormone melatonin in your head, according to one theory.  
About 10,000 units, or lux, of light, is needed to reduce the release of the melatonin from the pineal gland deep in your brain.  The sun’s light hits the back of your eye and creates an electric signal in the 12 layers of cells in the retina, that rockets at 100 feet per second down specialized highways of nerves called the retinohypothalamic tract and suprachiasmatic nucleus, before it reaches the pineal gland.  Full spectrum lamps, available at The Light Center in Fort Collins, CO, provide just this kind of light, reversing this "seasonal depression."
But come fall, it “ain’t happening” with full spectrum light from the sun.  The earth is tilted away from the sun and much less that 10,000 units of light hit the earth, perhaps 8,000 lux or 6,000 lux make it through a much deeper path through the earth’s atmosphere at northern latitudes, filtering out some wavelengths of light.

Good News: Free Relaxation Movie About The Rocky Mountains! sticky icon

Journal Release First In Series Of Nature Music Videos
Nature images and jazz music make for relaxing moments...

"Autumn Treasure" is ready to web stream to you right now, just click the play button below!

Hit the "square button" in the lower right hand corner for full screen mode...thanks to You Tube, you've got video...

The .m4v file at bottom of article is ready to download to your computer to transfer to your ipod as well...for free!

Click this link to see the video on your ipod or iphone at You Tube!

Key words: relaxation, nature photography, nature video, jazz music, Mark Sloniker, stress managment
by Harris Jensen, MD
Editor Good Day Journal


After several years in development, it’s here!  A collaboration of two Colorado artists has yielded a series of four movies totaling about 90 minutes of relaxing nature images and soothing jazz sounds.
Mark Sloniker, a well known jazz artist in Colorado, has produced a number of CD’s (see which have been used as movie soundtracks before (ABC Sports and Public Television) but this is his first collaboration with Jensen.
Now is Jensen an artist?