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"Sad is How I Am!" Treating Dysthymia in Children and Adults
Dysthymia continuing education psychologist CEUs

Section 36
Appendix D: “I Wish I Could be Happier”
Reproducible Client Worksheet


CEU Answer Booklet
| Table of Contents
| Depression
Psychologist CEs, Counselor CEUs, Social Worker CEUs, MFT CEUs

Is your client waiting for a particular goal or person to bring a greater sense of fulfillment?

Even if they consider themself to be a basically happy person, they may be convinced they can’t really be satisfied until a particular wish comes true. Many people seem to be caught on an endless treadmill of “I’ll be happy when...” Check some of these hopes and wishes on this list:

“I’ll be happy when...”

_____I find the right person
_____I stop searching for the right person
_____I get this job
_____I quit this job
_____I get a raise
_____I get another raise
_____The guests arrive
_____The guests go home
_____We have a simultaneous orgasm
_____We stop being preoccupied with orgasm
_____I make my first million
_____I make my second million
_____I can exercise every day
_____I don’t have to exercise every day
_____I start my profession

After years of delayed fulfillment, “I’ll be happy when...” becomes nostalgic “I was happy when...” Or fulfillment seems to be just over the next hill. This might not be so bad if, once over the hill, your client could enjoy him or herself. Instead, yet another hill looms on the horizon, and lasting satisfaction remains elusive. Remind your client that when their energy is tied up in hoping, worrying, or regretting, they give up their vitality and the power to make their dreams come true. Choosing to be satisfied doesn’t mean “settling for less.” Rather, by choosing satisfaction your client will have more energy and enthusiasm for their goals and challenges.

Instead of resisting the circumstances of life, your client should learn to appreciate themself and what they already have. This can be the strongest starting point for growth and improvement. Your client may still be secretly wishing that a Sugar Daddy, Earth Mother, or Prince Charming will somehow come to their rescue. They may be waiting for someone else to make them happy and resenting that no one does.

 
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CEU Answer Booklet for this course | Depression
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