Author: Dr Shefali Batra
Publisher: Jaico Books
Publication year: 2023
Pages: 336; Price: 499
Why Do I Feel So Sad?, penned by eminent psychiatrist Dr Shefali Batra, was launched at the boutique bookstore Title Waves in Bandra, Mumbai, on 6 May 2023. A panel discussion was led by anchor Gaurav Sharma (Sharma G) wherein author Dr Shefali, alongside Sumbul Touqeer (Actor), D Sivanandhan (Ex DGP), Prakash Shenoy (Depression Fighter) and Dr Anjali Chhabria (Psychiatrist) discussed pressing concerns about depression and ways to combat it.
This book offers unique perspectives to self-discovery and is a holy grail curated with direct experience from Dr Shefali’s extensive practice in treating her patients over the last 20 years. It describes the experience of sadness and depression by many who have consulted her, and it enlightens the reader on why one feels sad, what the different masks that depression masquerades in are, and how one must break the depression stigma and seek help to feel better.
Written with examples of actual patients and real stories about their lives, the book is additionally equipped with simple checklists, mood monitors, questionnaires and self-assessments that can help the reader get authentic and trusted information about their own feelings and emotions.
Dr Shefali recalls how statistics about depression through the COVID-19 pandemic revealed an alarming escalation — a count of 5.32 crore people worldwide. Depression had risen in the population by 27.6%. As a proponent of the use of self-help books for healing (bibliotherapy), she thought that an advanced book that would hand-hold, guide and encourage the readers in a step-by-step fashion would be life-changing. She insists that sadness experienced by everyone, be it vegetable vendors and sewage cleaners, or industrialists and Bollywood celebrities (names of who cannot be disclosed to safeguard confidentiality), has a common reality — that everyone feels sad from time to time and that sadness does not simply go away by itself. Many people do not recognize how persistent sadness prevents them from living a fulfilling life, simply because sadness presents in multiple unrecognizable faces.
Dr Shefali’s book is like a guide for anyone who wants to change their negative mood and their life by simply changing the way they think, and finding a way out of their sadness and pessimism.