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Coping with the pressure of existence


Pakhawaj
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I've remained fairly stationary for three years now and the computer is clearly what my life revolves around simply because of its accessibility, this is obviously immensely dissatisfying and clearly so but I think there is little else I can do to stop myself thinking.

I imagine that many people here do not lead happy lives, if there is any hope of regaining some spirit or happiness in the future how do you while away the days in the meantime?

If anyone could suggest something that doesn't require any thoughts that would be good, I've attempted cooking but this enables my mind to wander leading to an awful experience.

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Hi Pakhawaj, I'm not sure if this helps, but it's important to distinguish between the act of thinking and the thoughts that people have. To think or imagine gives people the power to motivate or depress themselves. But, this power is developed like a muscle over time. Try to think of yourself as a performer on a stage and focus on what it is what you are physically, visibly doing. This action based focus will serve as the starting point to move away from the negative thoughts that sap your strength. The mind will wander, but people can train themselves to regain focus quickly.

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I think there are certain tasks which one can focus on totally like sculpting but many tasks such as cooking have time-periods in which it's easy to daydream. I would sculpt, but I don't own a studio unfortunately.

Puzzles are a good idea, concentration exercises sound fascinating, what are they?

I am capable of thoughts which are not negative of course, but I fear any thought I have could drift into an unpleasant area and I feel it is best to keep my brain activity low.

Thank you for the tips.

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Paradoxically, I think the solution may be to increase the brain activity and push yourself to the limits of your mental performance. In other words, if you have time to think of things that simply worry or bother you, just take on more tasks to further engage your mind. Time boxing, a method whereby one chooses a period of time to commit to a particular task, can help you see things a little differently.

Tasks have two basic elements: action and time. People need to move their persons to complete a task and it'll take time when they do. When you set a limit to the time you will spend on a task at any given moment, you also dictate the types of actions you can take to complete the task and the pace of such actions. Any physical task is essentially its own Time Box. When you initiate multiple tasks or Time Boxes, your mind has to keep more items in working memory to keep track of them.

Cooking is a great example of Time Boxing. When you increase the complexity of the meal, more tasks must be performed within certain Time Boxes (or durations, times, etc.). You may need to steam things, boil things, and fry things simultaneously to produce the meal properly. Each item has its own required time, temperature, and preparation methods; and, the cooking of each item can happen together. Basically, multiple items that overlap, increasing the load on your working memory.

If your cooking is boring you to tears, buy a cook book and challenge yourself to make some new dishes. This will undoubtedly engage you.

Edited by kaudio
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I tried looking for a puzzle but only found a very simple block puzzle, never mind.

Paradoxically, I think the solution may be to increase the brain activity and push yourself to the limits of your mental performance. In other words, if you have time to think of things that simply worry or bother you, just take on more tasks to further engage your mind. Time boxing, a method whereby one chooses a period of time to commit to a particular task, can help you see things a little differently.

Tasks have two basic elements: action and time. People need to move their persons to complete a task and it'll take time when they do. When you set a limit to the time you will spend on a task at any given moment, you also dictate the types of actions you can take to complete the task and the pace of such actions. Any physical task is essentially its own Time Box. When you initiate multiple tasks or Time Boxes, your mind has to keep more items in working memory to keep track of them.

I think you're right, instead of attempting to disregard myself I should attempt to regard everything else or at least one thing intensely. I think this is what you are saying, I'm sorry if I've misinterpreted you.

A physical activity would be great, I don't really know if I can stir up any motivation for it though and I worry about the possibilities of becoming happy whilst doing it which is something I want to avoid. What would you consider to be a physical activity?

Time-boxing sounds similar to keeping a schedule to me, which also sounds like a good idea... Perhaps I could attempt to school myself in something, I don't know if this would only exemplify my own perceived stupidity though. I don't want to try cooking again.

Thank you, I'm sorry if I've not understood what you are saying.

...

I'm really very sorry but your post terrified me, the idea of blanking out my thoughts sounds ideal for what I asked for but the part of me which wants to resume a normal life is greatly against it. I also find the idea of staring at simple objects scary for some reason. I've probably misunderstood but I don't think I could follow a list of exercises that I am so creeped out by. I'm really sorry and I appreciate you trying to search for something to aid me.

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I'm sorry you feel they wouldn't work for you, a friend gave me the link some time ago and it helped me to block out my bad thoughts.

Maybe the puzzles might still work for you? I removed the post, the last thing i want to be doing is terrifying you.. All of our minds are unique, what works for one person may not work for another, i hope you can find a solution soon...

Good Luck :)

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You're right, it's exactly like keeping a schedule. I was just going into more detail than I needed to. There's no need to break down your day by the hour precisely, but just note on your calendar the things that you need happen or else they won't happen at all.

As for happiness, that's entirely up to you. You can be intense and focused. My main point was just to move off from being negative. I suppose I'm trying to say being in a state of not-negative does not equate to being happy.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I can't do it, nothing distracts me everything I do reminds me why and how much I hate myself, I am persecuting myself to such a degree that even my therapist doesn't understand how I've lived so long. I can't even escape in my dreams, for the past month I've dreamt of nothing but killing myself and me failing. I feel imprisoned by my own mind, I can't even type this without thinking how I should punish myself for having the fucking audacity to type this.

The few seconds of freedom I have per day (usually caused by rogue thoughts or petty distractions) are instantly brushed aside for my malicious and horrible scorn for having not hated myself briefly.

I've tried developing a psychosis to help myself deal with my mind, but I get fucking scared that I might actually be capable and it could result in an event more horrible situation.

I really need a method in which I can prevent my thoughts effectively and it needs to be something someone as cowardly as I am can accomplish. I don't think this exists though, I am probably wrong.

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Guest SomethingOrOther

Does music have an effect on you? I sometimes use listening to music to think less or focus better.

There's also some excercises in mindfulness that could help. As I understand it you would try to own the moment by focussing on the different things you can hear, like your breathing or cars going by, your surroundings, instead of listening to your thoughts. Ideally, you'd see a thought coming, and then watch it go away again, without it affecting your emotions, because it's just a thought. Ah, well, on the other hand, I might be describing it totally wrong.

Also, you might have answered that already somewhere, but have you tried medication to help with the depression?

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This is what I do when all else fails to help

http://www.shambhala.org/teachers/pema/tonglen1.php

I don't think I harbour the feelings the person who wrote the article expects me to have. Sorry.

Does music have an effect on you? I sometimes use listening to music to think less or focus better.

There's also some excercises in mindfulness that could help.

Music can have an effect on me, but more often than not I disallow myself from listening to it. Sometimes, the songs or the tunes just amplify my feelings though.

Sometimes I am able to disregard my thoughts, but usually never longer than a minute or so. I have in the past blocked any and all negative thoughts and I think it could have resulted in my current situation, I'm not sure though. I think I'd prefer prevention from having these thoughts rather than attempting to nullify them, I'm fairly fickle though and I'll probably change my mind. I'm sorry.

I have not been diagnosed with depression and I've refused to take antidepressants- I'm scared of the way they interact with the chemicals in one's brain.

Realistically I don't think anything can be done about my situation, I don't really know why I'm looking for advice when I'm so scared that any action I take could result in horrible mental agony. I'm probably just grasping at straws. I'm very, very sorry.

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You could try to find out which music is good for your mood and use this more often.

Sorry, I assumed you had been dianosed, but I suppose if you wanted to know, you could ask your therapist about it. I understand that you don't want to take ADs at the moment, but you can keep in mind that this can be another option for you. I actually overestimated the effect that ADs might have on me and was a bit dissapointed that I could still feel quite bad, but they definitely took some of the anxiety away and make me a bit more active. But I only started taking them when I had convinced myself that things can't stay as they are anymore and I couldn't come up with a better idea.

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You could try to find out which music is good for your mood and use this more often.

I don't think things are quite as simple as this. When I listen to music I don't deny myself any genres, I'd rather feel as free as I can under the restrictions I've placed for myself. Otherwise I'm just making more of a concious effort to repress myself.

I don't like listening to sad songs about people in better situations than I am though.

Sorry, I assumed you had been dianosed, but I suppose if you wanted to know, you could ask your therapist about it. I understand that you don't want to take ADs at the moment, but you can keep in mind that this can be another option for you. I actually overestimated the effect that ADs might have on me and was a bit dissapointed that I could still feel quite bad, but they definitely took some of the anxiety away and make me a bit more active. But I only started taking them when I had convinced myself that things can't stay as they are anymore and I couldn't come up with a better idea.

I've taken medication in the past but they were forced onto me. If you don't mind me asking, how long did you last until you gave in to medication?

It sounds like you are heavily, heavily burdened, p. :( Are you able to talk to your therapist about what you are carrying? Perhaps if you start talking about what has happened to you you can lay some of these burdens down. I know it isn't easy. Many people here know what it is like to need some help:(.

I'm able to talk to my therapist, however I only get to see her once a week and only for two hours. I'm sorry, I don't think I fully understood your post, are you suggesting something in particular may have happened to me? What does "p." mean? I'm sorry for being so ignorant.

Thank you for replying to me. I'm sorry my problems are so tedious and dreary.

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Ah, I'm sorry. I suppose that word is difficult to type if you are not used to typing it, I should have been more considerate. My real name is Alex if that makes things simpler, P. is also fine.

I talk to my therapist about everything I talk about here I think, I don't have a reason to hide information. I don't have any hope for the therapy to work, but company is nice and I can talk without thinking, which was probably the attraction for me to this forum.

As far as I know, all of my burdens are self-inflicted and nothing has happened to me.

I'm sorry if this post is difficult to read.

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How long did I last is a bit of a difficult question to answer without crossreferencing my whole life story. However, on the scale of mental health problems one can have, I feel like I've always been the kind that isn't unwell enough to get help and not well enough to call it a life. I started taking meds about two months ago, when I had tried for several months to get on with writing my thesis and all I could muster was to work an hour or two per day, if at all. I could open a file to read and my brain would turn a blind eye instantaneously :eek:. And I had been living from my own savings also for quite a while, so it couldn't go on like this. Maybe that sounds a bit cheap, that I take meds, because I don't like my work, but it makes sense when work is the last thing in life that actually "worked".

I had seen a university counselor I didn't like, a therapist I didn't like and met a CBT counselor in an internet forum, who thought he could love me, but had BPD and spent about the same amount of time telling me how brilliant and how vicious I am. So, apologies, but at some point I decided that people are too stupid and at any rate too slow to help me, so it's meds.

I also wondered if you're from the UK and if you realise that you apologise in every post you make?

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Thank you very much for your tale, reading about someone else's life is a grounding experience if you understand what I mean. I think one of the biggest fears for having medication is the prospect of change, I've gotten very used to my worldview. Do you feel like, by taking medication you are avoiding your issues or battling them?

I am from the UK, I'm interested in knowing how you deducted this.

If I did not apologise as much as I do I wouldn't be able to permit myself to post anything, please try to tolerate this, I realise it can be annoying but posting here is one of the few decadences I allow myself.

I'm sorry if I seem overly familiar or friendly in this response.

I managed to read for four hours today without thinking about myself, I'm not sure how I accomplished this. I might try this again later if I am up to it, I had just woken up and my tired state might have been the cause.

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A combination of posting time and apologising. :rolleyes: It's a stereotype, but it's also true that the British generally apologise for a lot more than, say, Germans. So, it's not entirely a personal thing, it also depends on cultural background a bit. I don't mind that, I just think most of your apologies are about you thinking your posts are inadequate for some reason.

I don't think I'm avoiding my issues. I've spend a whole lot of time avoiding my issues and that didn't involve any medication.. it just involved being really good at avoidance. Also, since I tried therapy and felt bad about it, I believe in the concept that some people need meds to actually be able to confront their issues. And I can get a lot more done now, since I don't wake up scared anymore and can actually read workrelated things.

Also, I think meds are there to make the brain chemistry that is disturbed in depressed brains a bit more like it is in other peoples heads. Sure I could probably confront more, if I saw a therapist, but in my current situation I don't see that as an option.

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Ah, that's quite impressive. I didn't know that stereotype, though I doubt my feelings of inadequacy stem from cultural roots, the part of the country I am from is generally considered brash and enthusiastic.

It's difficult to contemplate medication, I can't envision a future where I am alive or happy so it seems a bit pointless. I'm finding it difficult to justify my existence.

Whenever I see my Doctor he usually persuades me to see a therapist if I don't have one at the time. I don't think I'd have one in any other situation, I'm not motivated enough.

I'm sorry for bothering you when I have nothing to say.

Edited by Pakhawaj
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I don't know why you'd need to justify your existence, it's not like you had much of a choice to start with?

Anyway, you're the best that evolution has come up with so far. ;-)

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