The Psychological Impossibility of Tragedy in the Mind of Someone Living in the Twenty-First Century

“It wasn’t only wickedness and scheming that made people unhappy, it was confusion and misunderstanding; above all, it was the failure to grasp the simple truth that other people are as real as you.” – Ian McEwan

They say the biggest distance between two people is misunderstanding. It creates this gap between people. Or is it a wall? And it’s frustrating, isn’t it? It does make you feel as if you’re alone, the only one who thinks and says and acts in a certain way.

And by feeling so don’t we diminish others as well? Don’t we fail to understand that even though they are different, they’re still inherently the same as us? And they deserve to be treated the same way we’d like to be treated.

I don’t know, it’s a difficult question to answer.

But could you hate someone if you knew why they do what they do? If you could truly understand them? Their thoughts? Their feelings? Know their past? Their struggles? What they want? What they have lost?

Continue reading

You’re Not Broken. You’re Human.

“You say you’re ‘depressed’ – all I see is resilience. You are allowed to feel messed up and inside out. It doesn’t mean you’re defective – it just means you’re human.”David Mitchel

Loneliness. It’s painful. It’s a disease. It’s as if there’s a wall between you and everyone else. It’s just you and the silence. Just you and yourself. It forces you to think. To remember. To feel. To remember what you’d never want to feel again.

Depression. Feels like drowning. With the added difference that you see everyone else breathing. It’s standing at edge of an abyss, staring down at the void, contemplating the idea of oblivion.

We often feel broken beyond repair. Hopeless. We see ourselves as unworthy of redemption.

I want to tell you that we are here to feel.

That is all.

Everything that makes you feel alive is worth experiencing at least once. Sometimes even twice.

It’s all so we develop a certain perspective. It’s so that we grow and become what we’re supposed to become.

So feel. Just feel. Just let it be. Just accept what is.

Let go. Continue reading

Loneliness

This video presents a number of interesting concepts about virtual interaction, social networks, and loneliness, but what I found really interesting was the idea that in a virtual environment we get to edit who we are.

In a way, I agree. In a social media world such as ours, we can delete and change who we want the world to believe we are. Information is a couple of seconds from our reach, so we can appear to be smarter, but given enough time I believe you can’t appear to be someone you’re not. Continue reading

Do This and It Will Change Your Life

The Stanford marshmallow experiment was a series of studies conducted by psychologist Walter Mischel in the late 1960s and early 1970s. In these studies, a child had to choose between receiving a small reward immediately or two small rewards if they waited for a short period, during which the tester left the room and then returned.

Pretty much a study on delayed gratification.

Do you want it now, or are you willing to suffer and wait for it? Continue reading

Depression. Suicide. Courage.

The so-called ‘psychotically depressed’ person who tries to kill herself doesn’t do so out of quote ‘hopelessness’ or any abstract conviction that life’s assets and debits do not square. And surely not because death seems suddenly appealing. The person in whom Its invisible agony reaches a certain unendurable level will kill herself the same way a trapped person will eventually jump from the window of a burning high-rise. Make no mistake about people who leap from burning windows. Their terror of falling from a great height is still just as great as it would be for you or me standing speculatively at the same window just checking out the view; i.e. the fear of falling remains a constant. The variable here is the other terror, the fire’s flames: when the flames get close enough, falling to death becomes the slightly less terrible of two terrors. It’s not desiring the fall; it’s terror of the flames. And yet nobody down on the sidewalk, looking up and yelling ‘Don’t!’ and ‘Hang on!’, can understand the jump. Not really. You’d have to have personally been trapped and felt flames to really understand a terror way beyond falling. – David Foster Wallace

Written by someone who ended up hanging himself, I think he knew what he was talking about.

Deciding to end one’s life needs quite a lot of contemplating on the subject. And, truth of the matter, we could debate the accuracy of such a description and all aspects of depression and suicide until the end of time, without arriving at a certain conclusion.

Maybe it’s got to do with emotional resilience. Maybe it’s got to do with neurological damage, with hormones and stuff. Continue reading

On Feeling Broken

“When you are the anvil, be patient. When you are the hammer, strike.” Arabian Proverb

I have this defect. One of my legs. Nothing too crazy, it just makes me walk in a funny way.

I also don’t have the most symmetric of faces.

I used to weight some 55kg at a height of 175 cm.

I’ve been sick of one thing or another ever since I can remember. Spent a lot of time in hospitals.

I’ve been alone for almost all my life.

I’ve been depressed, socially anxious, lonely, tired, so, so tired, I’ve been suicidal, self-destructive, selfish, and a real pain in the ass for a lot of people.

I spent eight years writing without earning a dime, being constantly told to give up on my dreams. Continue reading

The Power of Reframing

Success is this: the ability to play the hand you’re dealt like it’s the hand you wanted.

Life is kind of unpredictable. Roller-coaster from hell gone mad kind of unpredictable. Lots and lots of ups and downs, of stress, of pain and suffering and obstacles. Also, our minds play tricks on us and it seems that it is far easier to focus on the bad, on what we have yet to have, on faults and flaws, on the bad memories. Continue reading

Heaven or Hell? Now or Later?

“The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven…” – John Milton, Paradise Lost

Have you ever met someone who, objectively speaking, has it all, yet they are miserable, depressed, anxious? Have you ever met someone who is constantly seeking out problems, creating issues where they don’t exist, overreacting, overthinking, and spending most of their time trying to identify what exactly is wrong with their lives?

Have you ever met someone who could be happy and fulfilled if only they’d give up on a bad habit or addiction? Yet, even though they ask for help and always talk about changing their ways, they never do so. Continue reading

Depression is a Luxury

First of all, I’d like to say that I have been that guy. The loser. Depressed, suicidal, yet doing my best to motivate others. The words I wrote were for myself, for those like myself, and for those who could, one day, end up like me.

That being said, I believe in every single word spoken in that video. I understand the principles at work, I have lived in comfort (and depression), I have desired comfort, and the more I wanted comfort, the more discomfort I had in my life.

If you are inclined to disagree with me, or feel that I am insensitive to people’s mental health, I do urge you to listen Joe Rogan in this video, then try to see it in a less civilized manner. See yourself as less than human, and a bit more animal, and see that happiness and mental well-being is the result of overcoming struggles, not avoiding them. Continue reading