Posts Tagged ‘depression’

Gratitude has helped me

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Cultivating gratitude has worked wonders for my attitude.

Others compliment me for seeing things, situations in a positive light now. That still feels a little strange.

That is an amazing transformation from a world class worrier (me) seen through a prism of gratitude. Things were not safe or alright in my childhood and bad things did happen.

Yes, I lived through a violent, critical abusive childhood. I also had the tools to heal and live a happy life.

Many others had harsher, harder childhoods. I was grateful for my skills and opportunities others did not have.

Gratitude let’s me see others suffering. Meditation has opened my compassion center, which in turn started me giving to others.

I never feel sorry for myself any more, I let that feeling pass on by.

I started this blog to help others improve, then I approached organizations to open a real mindfulness group.

This was an impossible task a year earlier. My PTSD brought depression, social anxiety and agoraphobia. I could not leave my house for six months.

I guess my gratitude was stronger than my social anxiety. The experience of sharing others journey in group, helping them improve has made a profound impact on my life.

Worry still tries to creep in, bringing fear of what may happen.

Healing is not a happy ever after type of deal, it is a day to day experience.

We can heal and live today full out.

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When things flare up, focus and awareness are key

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We must limit the depth we fall when PTSD, anxiety or depression grabs us.

Sometimes we need to play defense, using focus and awareness.

I refuse to make any decisions when PTSD flares. My thoughts can be irrational, highly emotional and extremely negative.

A good amount of my time is spent letting go of the negative thoughts.

Awareness helps us steer attention away from thought and to the present moment.

Another helpful activity is exercise, strenuous if you are capable.

Keep yourself busy and focused for a day or two until things settle down.

Know that the crisis will pass and things will return to what your normal has been.

If we can let go of our thoughts, we limit the depth of depression, anxiety and PTSD.

Healing is cultivated better when we keep our minds calm and focused.

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Doctors eye deep brain stimulation to treat opioid addiction

 


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Associated Press:

Patient Number One is a thin man, with a scabby face and bouncy knees. His head, shaved in preparation for surgery, is wrapped in a clean, white cloth.

 

Years of drug use cost him his wife, his money and his self-respect, before landing him in this drab yellow room at a Shanghai hospital, facing the surgeon who in 72 hours will drill two small holes in his skull and feed electrodes deep into his brain.

 

The hope is that technology will extinguish his addiction, quite literally, with the flip of a switch.

 

The treatment — deep brain stimulation — has long been used for movement disorders like Parkinson’s. Now, the first clinical trial of DBS for methamphetamine addiction is being conducted at Shanghai’s Ruijin Hospital, along with parallel trials for opioid addiction. And this troubled man is the very first patient.

 


The surgery involves implanting a device that acts as a kind of pacemaker for the brain, electrically stimulating targeted areas. While Western attempts to push forward with human trials of DBS for addiction have foundered, China is emerging as a hub for this research.

 

Scientists in Europe have struggled to recruit patients for their DBS addiction studies, and complex ethical, social and scientific questions have made it hard to push forward with this kind of work in the United States, where the devices can cost $100,000 to implant.

 

China has a long, if troubled, history of brain surgery for drug addiction. Even today, China’s punitive anti-drug laws can force people into years of compulsory treatment, including “rehabilitation” through labor. It has a large patient population, government funding and ambitious medical device companies ready to pay for DBS research.

 

There are eight registered DBS clinical trials for drug addiction being conducted in the world, according to a U.S. National Institutes of Health database. Six are in China.

 

But the suffering wrought by the opioid epidemic may be changing the risk-reward calculus for doctors and regulators in the United States. Now, the experimental surgery Patient Number One is about to undergo is coming to America. In February, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration greenlighted a clinical trial in West Virginia of DBS for opioid addiction.

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HUMAN EXPERIMENTS

 

Patient Number One insisted that only his surname, Yan, be published; he fears losing his job if he is identified.

 

He said doctors told him the surgery wasn’t risky. “But I still get nervous,” he said. “It’s my first time to go on the operating table.”

 

Three of Yan’s friends introduced him to meth in a hotel room shortly after the birth of his son in 2011. They told him: Just do it once, you’ve had your kid, you won’t have problems.

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How do we motivate ourselves?

Photo by Kenrick Mills on Unsplash

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First, a positive attitude is essential. How many depressed people seem motivated? That first step is a formidable one for a seriously depressed person.


Second, an emotional purpose reigns supreme. Write down your purpose and the daily activity to fulfill your purpose. Get it out of your head, on paper with the ability to look at it realistically.


We can distort anything that remains in our minds only. Meditation allows us to let go of the judgments and stay present. In this moment, unencumbered by thought motivation seems easier.


We yearn to be free again, the ability to relax, to enjoy the simple things in life. Is that emotionally charged enough for you to take daily action?

 

Next, it is much easier to take on smaller, specific tasks, to start our journey. We eat the elephant one bite at a time, we develop great focus starting with ten minutes a day.

 

We need to realize daily exertion of energy and desire over long periods of time accomplishes much more for us.

 

Accountability is also important. Write down your day to day goals. We can commit to all out effort. I may not succeed but I will show up and practice with passion. It is half the battle.

 

Give yourself praise for your effort. Leave accomplishment alone for a while. Observe, not judge your performance.


Reward yourself, self soothe with kind words and actions.

 

Smile, your perception shapes your attitude. Believe in yourself and it will come true.

 

It is a process, a journey not a destination.

 

Remember happiness is right now, not tomorrow or ten years from now.


Act like it and enjoy the journey, the details, life.

 

Please share your motivational secrets.
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Number of children going to ER with suicidal thoughts, attempts doubles, study finds. By Dr. Edith Bracho-Sanchez, CNN; Mon April 8, 2019

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Pic by Fernando @cferdo at unsplash.com

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The number of children and teens in the United States who visited emergency rooms for suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts doubled between 2007 and 2015, according to a new analysis.

 

Researchers used publicly available data from the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, administered by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention every year. From the 300 emergency rooms sampled, the researchers tracked the number of children between 5 and 18 who received a diagnosis of suicidal ideation or suicide attempts each year.

 

Diagnoses of either condition increased from 580,000 in 2007 to 1.12 million in 2015, according to the study, published Monday in JAMA Pediatrics. The average age of a child at the time of evaluation was 13, and 43% of the visits were in children between 5 and 11.

 

Suicides under age 13: One every 5 days

 

“The numbers are very alarming,” said Dr. Brett Burstein, the lead study author and a pediatric emergency room physician at Montreal Children’s Hospital of McGill University Health Centre. “It also represents a larger percentage of all pediatric emergency department visits. Where suicidal behavior among the pediatric population was just 2% of all visits, that’s now up to 3.5%.”

The findings come as no surprise to child psychiatrists.

 

“We know that suicide and depression have been rising significantly,” said Dr. Gene Beresin, executive director of The Clay Center for Young Healthy Minds at Massachusetts General Hospital and professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, who was not involved in the study.

 

Depression and a prior suicide attempt are the two biggest risk factors for suicide, and with rates of suicide on the rise, it makes sense for risk factors to increase as well, he explained.


The reason? It’s complicated


One reason for the increase in depression and suicidal behaviors may be more stress and pressure on kids, Beresin said.


“Kids are feeling more pressure to achieve, more pressure in school, and are more worried about making a living than in previous years,” he said.


Parents and caregivers are also more stressed, Beresin said, adding that rates of suicides have increased in all age groups over the past 20 years and that the stress is passed down to children and teens.


Another reason may be the rise of social media and increasing rates of cyberbullying that have come with it, Beresin said.

 

Approximately 15% of US high school students report that they’ve been bullied online in the past year, according to the CDC. A Pew Research Center survey found that the number could be even higher: 59%.

 

“Cyberbullying can be especially difficult for kids,” explained Dr. Neha Chaudhary, child and adolescent psychiatrist at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School and co-founder of Brainstorm:

 

Stanford Lab for Brain Health Innovation and Entrepreneurship. “Unlike in settings like schools, it can fly under the radar without anyone knowing it’s happening and without the same repercussions for the bullies.”


In isolation, none of these factors has been proven to lead to an increase in suicidal behaviors and ultimately suicide, but taken together, a pattern begins to emerge, Beresin said.

 

And the country may not be adequately equipped to deal with the problem.

 

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Codenpendency: How to give up control and stop Rescuing Everyone

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“Dr Nicholas Jenner”


“Codependency is a lot about control and controlling others. I have documented various methods frequently on this blog and how they manifest themselves into the typical dysfunctional behaviour associated with codependency.

Codependents need control to feel secure and are loath to give this power away.

 

One of the more common forms of control employed by codependents is the “art” of rescuing. Many helpful, caring people, especially those that identify as codependent, impulsively rescue others from their self-imposed predicaments.

 

They stay far too long in dysfunctional helping and giving relationships even when their resources or relationships are strained, or they enable others’ addiction, incompetence, or irresponsibility and they do this for a very specific reason.

 

Codependent rescuing means that the codependent retains power and control over the codependent object. They assume that people around them need help and step in even if it is clear they don’t.

 

Every time this happens, it plays into the “drama triangle” of rescuer, persecutor and victim mentalities that drive codependent

 

Often when help is pushed onto another person when they don’t really want it, it gives the codependent the chance to become the victim whether the help is accepted or not.

 

Codependents meet their needs dysfunctionally by adopting the victim role in any situation hoping to attract sympathy and validation from those around them.

 

Anger, blaming and passive aggression can ensue, leading to the next cycle.

 

By rescuing, codependents place themselves in a superior role to their victim.

 

They are saying “You need me and you are helpless without me”.

 

This leads inevitably to feelings of resentment on both sides.

 

The key is to avoid “one-up or one-down” behaviours. The following is a list of suggestions to help with this.

 

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1. Be conscious and avoid giving advice unless asked for. Don’t interrupt and listen effectively to avoid assumptions.

2. Don’t help your partner or anyone else without them asking you to do so. You can do this by openly asking “What can I do?”.

3. Offer support rather than advice. “I can help but maybe you need to see what you can do first”

4. Learn to say “No” and set boundaries around your own behaviour and that of those who are willing to let you rescue them.

5. Don’t assume that you need to do 100% of the work to solve any issue. Talk with your partner and promote equality. “I will do this, what are you prepared to do?”

6. Share any feelings of resentment that are building openly and honestly.

7. Recognise when your partner (or anyone) is inviting rescuing behaviour by playing the victim, feigning illness, etc. Counter with firm boundaries.

8. Learn to ask for your needs to be met in a healthy way.

9. Avoid power moves like avoiding responsibility, escalation, shouting, playing the martyr or reminding your partner of everything you have done for them.

10. Avoid “one-down” victim behaviour that manipulates feelings and behaviour from others.

Avoiding power and control games is one of the key issues of codependent recovery.

 

Many find it difficult to release themselves as the behaviour is so engrained in their personality and thinking.

 

However, once this is done, codependents can look forward to a life free of the “drama triangle” that has been so devastating to them in their lives”.

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Choices: Expectations and happiness or suffering


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After our basic needs are met, happiness is possible without added achievement, possessions, status, or approval.

 

We choose to create external expectations, (cars, careers, titles, approval, etc).
Unfulfilled expectations lead to loss, sadness, jealousy and maybe depression.

 

We need nothing more than the basics if we live in this moment. Nothing wrong with possessions, just realize happiness is not contained in ownership.

 

On the opposite side of opulence, these awakened monks take a vow of poverty and service. They Meditate for hours each day, offering up loving kindness for all sentient beings.

 

They are acknowledged as being the happiest beings on this planet.

 

They lose no sleep with concerns about owning possessions, titles or wielding power.


Humility and giving dominate their thoughts and behavior.

 

Society associates happiness with business success, status, power and possessions.

 

How would you explain lives like Mother Theresa, Mandela, Lincoln?

 

 Lives of service, sacrifice and giving. The opposite of  pleasure-seeking.

 

Many lives that had incredible hardships, huge emotional loss, were extremely satisfying.
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