Thoughts on creativity, time, mindfulness, and small steps
Two more books for you :-). “The Untethered Soul” by Michael S Singer, and “The Road Less Traveled” by M Scott Peck. They teach about subjective perception, our stubborn mental maps and expectations of how things and others should be, and that annoying antagonist bossy “voice in our head”. And some other cool stuff. I wouldn’t say either of these are spiritual, they’re more scientific and psychological. Very practical. And once you read them, it makes it nearly impossible not to be aware of where our feelings and emotions are really coming from. That knowledge is incredibly helpful in maintaining inner calm and control of our own happiness. I still suck at it sometimes, stubborn human that I am :-). But I expect that over time I’ll get better at remaining conscious of all the tricks our minds play on us. Perhaps these two books will give you insight into where your dissatisfaction with life stems from? Is it your life(?) that needs changes, is it your mind(?) that needs it, is it a combination of both?
I don't want to appear insufficiently sensitive, bu you do not strike me as having the slightest scintilla of depresson. Indeed, I am very envious of you because I consider you a member of an elect congregation: The well-adjusted.
First an introductory semi-joke which illustrates the farcical nature of our thoughts re depression and emotional problems:
Consider this hypothetical:
A) John's house is on fire
B) This prompts John to be anxious and makes his heart beat faster
C) John is exhibiting the classic signs of an anxiety disorder (Formerly called anxiety neurosis, but the term neurosis was dropped from the APA's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual becasue of its specific Freudian meanings)
D) Should we give John valium. OF COURSE NOT.
There is a song, a saying and a movie about schizophrenics entitled,
"I NEVER PROMISED YOU A ROSE GARDEN."
The human condition is not one of eternal edenic joy.
A feeling of anger or sadness or dismay is not necessarily a sign of emotional derangment.
Sometimes, unpleasant feelings tell us to wake up and get rid of the rabid rats in our basement.
The more one learns about psychodiagnostics, the more one learns to mistrust it
Compare and contrast with the diagnosis of physical ailments:
We can feel, see and often smell (it has a cruddy fecal sort of smell) an infected appendix
No one has ever seen, felt let alone quantified the ego or the superego.
Psychodiagnostics is filled with ambiguities, confusion, and arbitrariness.
The percentage of children with a diagnosis of attention deficit disorder has surged.
In prior years, they were GETTING DIFFERENT DIAGNOSES BECASUSE PSYCHIATRIC INTERESTS MAY HABE BEEN DIFFERENT.
Years ago, one of the most common diagnoses for middle aged women and young men was NEUROSTHENIA, a sort of withdrawal from the world characterized by complaints of exhaustion and disinterest. Are they getting the diagnosis of depressoin today.
Sometimes, a diagnose depends on what a doctor is looking for and where his ideological committments lie:
Compare and Contrast:
Many male homosexuals complained, both in turn of the century Vienna and contemporary New York, of diarrhea and gastro intestinal disturbances:
A) Shortly befoire World War One, Freud hypthesized that this was a manifestation of GUILT as homosexual sex involved the end point of the GI tract, the anus.
B) In 1968, the New England Journal of Medicine published an article entited "Manhattan, The Tropical Isle." The article noted that many gay men had GI problems from intestinal parasites more commonly seen in tropical climates.
Courage to you for being so up front about how messy and screwed up life and we can be and specially for your say no to other people's kind words - I get that totally. It\s my pain my shame - I might want to tell you I feel it but I don't want you to try and heal it. Least I think that's what your were saying...Mindfulness is cool - I particularly enjoyed the Headspace app which has the voice of an Andy Puddcombe an English ex Buddhist monk and some very cool exercises and concepts. It's become a big corporation now but I think he\s a good guy. That said I'm more in a Madness is My Muse Mode right now... PS Great shots by Deb
Music and writing songs is a great cathartic activity. I went through some dark times with cancer (I'm in remission) and there were days when the best I could do was pick up a guitar and rest my head and arms on it. I also wrote lots of songs that helped me get through. I had a friend TXT me every day encouraging me to play every day, even if it was just for 5 minutes. It helped immensely. I started a big project called The Cancer Diaries and planned to create an ambitious record complete with a gospel choir for the finale. I recorded some demos but otherwise have left it behind. Its purpose wasn't something for other people to hear, it was to help me heal emotionally, and it did.
I can relate to your comment about not knowing what depression was. My dad passed away in 1997 and I figure that I was depressed for 2 and a half years. I didn't know that I was depressed until I wasn't. Twenty five years ago, people really didn't talk about depression as they do now.
It certainly took a toll on my business and on my life. I can see how my income suffered and my debt rose over those years. The income returned, though the debt took many years to pay off.