What can I do if I’m not sure how I feel?

The Emotion Checklist (EC) can help you pinpoint exactly how you feel. EC provides names for feelings like happiness, sadness, anxiety, and anger, listed from weak to strong in each group, and helps you analyze those emotions in the moment. This way, you can follow the changes in your emotions through the days and weeks as you emerge from your depression.

You can also use EC to help explain how you have been feeling to your doctor and therapist. If you take these sheets to your appointments, they will provide material that you can discuss as part of your ongoing treatment. As you progress, it can also show you which of your emotions are responding to therapy and which aren’t.

To use EC, carefully remove the Emotion Checklist worksheet from the book (page 250) and make copies. Every few days, go through a new EC worksheet in the evening and check the words that best describe how you feel. Make a few notes to remind you what happened that day. If you are experiencing important events, you may want to fill out an EC worksheet every day. Keep your checklists, and compare them every Sunday.

EC will help you develop a rich vocabulary of words to explain your emotions. If you are not sure what emotions you are feeling, bring your EC to your next appointment, and ask your doctor and therapist to help you learn how to better identify and understand your emotions.