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'Living in the Light' offers a way out of the darkness of depression

By Connie Lewis

For the Deseret News

Published: Thursday, Feb. 7 2013 5:00 a.m. MST

In their book “Living in the Light” (Cedar Fort, $12.99), Lacey A. West and Gary L. Anderson combine proven cognitive therapy techniques and gospel-centered truths to offer ideas on fighting depression, anxiety and low self-esteem. Using ample examples of light in the scriptures, the authors provide techniques for fighting the darkness.

The authors offer several strategies and exercises to help work through tough emotions. Among them are the following:

When negative thoughts surface write them down and counter them with a positive thought.

Eat a balanced diet, sleep sufficiently and exercise regularly.

Push negative voices from your head, the ones that say you're not good enough, by concentrating on the positive whisperings of the Holy Ghost.

Rather than surrendering to trials in life seek out the lesson to be learned, even if it is just patience in endurance.

Stay in the light literally. Get as much sunshine as possible and use light replacement during winter months to combat Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD.

Search the scriptures for examples of the fight between light and darkness, follow the example of Jesus Christ, and make use of the Atonement.

The authors in no way diminish the seriousness of depression disorders and urge anyone suffering from overwhelming feelings to seek medical help.

The book cites a variety of scriptural references from the standard works of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Many deal with the difference between light and darkness and lead the reader to consider the importance of light in the gospel. The combination of proven therapy techniques and gospel principles offers refreshing insight, along with hope, for anyone suffering and looking for answers.

After attending BYU and the University of Utah for five years and not being able to settle on just one major, Connie Lewis decided to be a writer so she could keep studying all things wonderful and new.

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