Posts Tagged ‘depression’

Mental Health, Bullying, Career Uncertainty



These are among the top concerns for Ph.D. students, according to a new survey by Nature.

More than a third of Ph.D. students have sought help for anxiety or depression caused by Ph.D. study, according to results of a global survey of 6,300 students from Nature.

Thirty-six percent is a very large share, considering that many students who suffer don’t reach out for help.

Still, the figure parallels those found by other studies on the topic.

A 2018 study of mostly Ph.D. students, for instance, found that 39 percent of respondents scored in the moderate-to-severe depression range.

That’s compared to 6 percent of the general population measured with the same scale.



life includes the whole show, the light and the dark, part two, 2,

Hong Kong photographer Vincent Wu’s image of the Hill of the Buddha at the Makomanai Takino Cemetery in Sapporo, Japan.



“Nothing to Grasp” by Joan Tollifson

Instead of trying to intentionally fix or improve “myself” or “the world,” I am more open to allowing everything to heal itself in its own way, in its own time, as it does anyway.

There is a devotion to the immediacy of life exactly as it is right now, without superimposing any kind of spin.

This bare intimacy is neither an effortful, goal-oriented, improvement-seeking exertion, nor is it any kind of passive or fatalistic resignation.

It is an energetic aliveness, an openness that includes everything and sticks to nothing.

It is not something “you” achieve or acquire, but simply the boundlessness, the bare being that is always already fully present right here, right now.



The hormones PTSD brings to our doorstep

geralt / 20578 images



Cortisol & Adrenal Function

Cortisol is a life sustaining adrenal hormone essential to the maintenance of homeostasis.

Called “the stress hormone,” cortisol influences, regulates or modulates many of the changes that occur in the body in response to stress including, but not limited to:

Blood sugar (glucose) levels

Fat, protein and carbohydrate metabolism to maintain blood glucose (gluconeogenesis)

Immune responses

Anti-inflammatory actions

Blood pressure

Heart and blood vessel tone and contraction

Central nervous system activation

Cortisol levels normally fluctuate throughout the day and night in a circadian rhythm that peaks at about 8 AM and reaches it lowest around 4 AM.

While it is vital to health for the adrenals to secret more cortisol in response to stress, it is also very important that bodily functions and cortisol levels return to normal following a stressful event.

Unfortunately, in our current high-stress culture, the stress response is activated so often that the body does not always have a chance to return to normal.

This can lead to health problems resulting from too much circulating cortisol and/or from too little cortisol if the adrenal glands become chronically fatigued (adrenal fatigue).

Higher and more prolonged levels of circulating cortisol (like those associated with chronic stress) have been shown to have negative effects, such as:

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Small concrete actions

johnhain / 1133 images/:;-



Meditation has an enormous connotation attached to it.

It seems foreign, mystical, an enormous, unreachable, unattainable journey.

Let all those judgments go.

Sometimes, I introduce meditation as a focus exercise, a simple way to train the mind. That is an accurate statement.

No robes, no religion, no lineage, just you and your mind sitting quietly.

Why do we fear taking responsibility for our life, our wellbeing?

Meditation can be as simple as being able to focus for ten breath cycles.

We only need focus until a no thought stage is developed.

Then, we are below the “Ego”, on our expansive side.

Floating in the expansive, brilliant side of the brain soothes and repairs our mind and body.

Start with three breaths, inhale, pause, exhale, pause.

We can build our focus, one breath at a time.

It takes a little persistence and using a simple model for me.

Practice with three breath sets, then expand to five breaths.

Practice the basics, over and over, it is the quickest way to learn and master this simple task.

By the time you build up to ten breaths, the mission is complete.

Meditation is simple, repetitive, and soothing.

Yes, you take responsibility for your life.



America’s Crisis



Homelessness has increased 32% in Eugene since last year.

In most towns I have lived in, the homelessness was isolated in a few areas, in Eugene, they are everywhere.

The state of Oregon failed to open its new mental health facility because of money.

One of the greatest fears inside my chronic pain group was homelessness.

Our spines were damaged, our ability to work, to support ourselves was gone.

In a way, we felt helpless. We lived in fear.

Now, my compassion center is overworked every time I get in my car.

Every trip to the grocery, I buy an extra slice of pizza for the homeless on the corner.

Hard to be happy with all this suffering surrounding us.

Any thoughts on this subject?



Updated: The impact of Childhood PTSD



At 67 I have finally found a calling that interests me.

My childhood abuse stole my life for decades. So much time was spent avoiding, denying, trying to make sense of PTSD’s symptoms.

I felt unworthy, flawed, shamed. I hid by overworking, trying to accomplish things that would give me status, worth.

That external search was misguided and uneventful, the real search was an internal one.

PTSD distorted my sense of myself , hid my strengths in plain sight, covered them in a cloudy anxiety blanket.

I think childhood abuse hides our true nature from ourselves. I had no clue who I was.

When I healed my therapist said your fathers abuse hid your true identity, an extrovert. My life was lived as an introvert until I was in my 50’s. I was quiet, easily shamed or embarrassed in a public setting.

All my emotions were aimed towards the bias of PTSD, making me a stranger to myself.

How could a shamed little boy, beaten and criticized, think he could be normal.

Now at 67, I have the desire to be a healer, a therapist.

First time in my life I know what I want to be.

Better late than never and I can find gratitude in my journey, not regret.

Life is not easy for any of us, challenges are given to every one of us.



Lost in childhood, lost for decades

Pixabay: Flensshot



In my childhood, I never had a content moment, a moment of pure satisfaction, a situation that had a purpose I created.

My parents were young, 16 when the pregnancy happened. My father resented his freedom being stolen, later I would read about how narcissists only care about themselves .

I know a purpose would benefit me. My mother told me God made me to be a professional baseball player, my father just demanded I be twice as good as everyone else, there was no room for my purpose.

I do not feel sorry for myself, I want to understand why my life lacked purpose. Starved for approval throughout my childhood, adulthood was a lost journey for decades.

Who was I? “I” had no idea.

Looking back, experiencing approval was more important than my wellbeing. I would risk and persevere to earn approval.

Approval equaled happiness for me, but happiness is not what I felt.

Approval was external, fleeting and could change to criticism, so life was always stressful, in flux.

Approval was never permanent so my pseudo happiness was based on false assumptions.

I yearn for that content, calm, confidant feeling, an internal knowing I am fine.

My path has decided to enhance giving and gratitude.

Thoughts and emotions are discounted as ephemeral and transparent, like appendages.

My Aware Presence is given maximum energy.

Simple, concrete, specific goals are best.




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