Looking at the way many people lead their lives, one might guess that the dirtiest word in the English language is a four-letter word that starts with F: "fail." Many people lead their lives with the singular mission of avoiding failure. Depression may be an effort to challenge the rigid limitations imposed on a life that is guided by such a narrow mission. Depression is the predictable result of compulsively analyzing yourself, pushing and pulling yourself into shape, and not daring to take a wrong step. Depression is trying to free you to see that there is no danger of making a mistake: all of your actions, choices, and life experiences are forms of self-expression.
The consequences of living a life guided by the ideal of not making a mistake is that you become a constrained, overcontrolled, tensed-up ball of fear. This can cause enormous tension that sets up an interesting dynamic that compels you to make catastrophic mistakes in order to free yourself from the ever-present danger of "making a mistake."
More Answers from Lara Honos-Webb, PhD