It's Over

Okay, the reign of terror is over, no more depressing posts for awhile. I have a good one on checking that I can post when I get around to it.

Checking is an anxious habit, one of those symptoms in the anxiety disorder family. Maybe you have this symptom. I check for a lot of things. Like I check to see if every door is locked before I go to sleep, even if I know I locked them. And I'll run home to check to see if I turned off the stove. These are no-brainers. Who wouldn't do this?

So, I'll post on that very soon, and we'll steer away from the sad stuff for awhile, for as long as we can, and keep it a little lighter.

No promises.

Because EVERYONE'S depressed. Everyone I see, either at work or in the community, is depressed.

And they're showing a little anxiety, but not the type you get from too much responsibility. Well, that's not altogether true. The people who are doing the job of three people because two have been laid off are pretty stressed from too much work and responsibility.

But lots of people aren't doing as much anymore, not bringing home the bacon (forgive me) and they're thinking bad thoughts.

The thinking bad thoughts can get you into trouble, you know. Gracie Slick of the Jefferson Airplane said it, in her way, in the sixties. Gracie was lead singer, the song White Rabbit, I think, (who knows if she's still alive). But she advised that you feed your head.

She recommended drugs like LSD, which we now know are bad for you, but the idea of feeding your head isn't all that weird. We really do feed our heads, we do this all the time.

Feeding your head negative thoughts over and over again, basically nourishes a neurological pathway to tears and sadness. And the opposite is true, too. Try the humming, counting and whistling stuff, and you're brain goes to happy. Unless you're really sick and then it won't, and you need stronger stuff, maybe need to see a therapy doc. Certainly don't use LSD.

But if I tell you, It's what you have that matters most, not what you don't have, sure it's a world view, and it's mine, and I go there fifty times a day if necessary. But it's also a way of saying, Don't pave the unhappy pathway. Don't feed your head junk food.

It's what you have, not what you don't have is a mantra, mine, and maybe everyone needs one. The men and women of my mother and father's generation had some kind of saying for every situation, every circumstance.

In English,

Men make plans, G-d laughs.
A good neighbor is better than a distant relative.
A person has to be happy with what he gets in life.

(often there's not much choice, is there, except to feel sorry for yourself, and how boring is that?)

Of course, the mantras of my parents generation were in Yiddish, and everything sounds funnier in Yiddish.



Lisa Marie said…
I hate what this world has come to. I agree that almost everyone you see has this shocked/glazed look on their face. The media is constantly grim. It's no longer bodies, blood and gore, but stocks, bonds and businesses.

It's a good reminder to focus on what makes us human. Our abilities to love our families is something that will never change, no matter how much we do or don't have. I'm guessing that the churches are seeing an influx of members. Church is free, and a little prayer never hurt anyone!
Blinds said…
A couple of thoughts:
1. I am a checker. But my problem is that I genuinely don't remember if I have unplugged my hair straightener. It becomes such a habit to do it that I don't realize I am doing it. So I have to remember to remember. Each time I unplug my straightener I say "Unplugged" and then something unique about that day out loud.

2. I think you are right on with the mantras. I work with traumatized children and I help them create their own mantras and rhymes. The one that I use? Leap and the net will appear.
Wendy said…
I am now wearing a silver bracelet that has a quote from Julian of Norwich (1373) that says:

all shall be well and all shall be well and all manner of things shall be well...

It's my mantra until something better comes along! That and staying with the comic blogs, tshirt sites, and things that just make me laugh (and of course therapy doc!)
Isle Dance said…
Funny timing. I had a sad conversation with myself this morning. Because I wanted to reach out...but not I walked myself through the process of what I'd have shared with another...until I got it just right. At which point I analyzed where'd I'd taken myself vs. what I really wanted. Connection, you know. But I got through the issue on my own. And feel better. And now my conversation with them can be fun/ny in real life. Of course, now I wonder what this all means... :o)
JJ said…
"It's what you have, not what you don't have."

At first I thought "kinda cliche" but then I thought about it. If I really could get that through my mind, things really would look different.
Penelope said…
"Feed your head, feed your hehead!"... great - I can't get that song out of my mind now!

Sometimes when I'm feeling low, I will go to you tube and watch videos of kittens and puppies. Cute happy videos.

I like to think of it as feeding my head some comfort food. I can't look at a baby animal without smiling and feeling a sense of "awwww...".

Sometimes it is good to focus on the lighter things of life.
porcini66 said…
Accept reality for the day and then go to bed. A favorite of mine. That and gratitude lists. Every day! Cuz, c'mon folks. Even in our worst situations, we still likely have a lot more than the average bears out there. Sure, our stocks are gone, but you can't lose what you didn't have to begin with, right? And, well...I think that it's time we got real in this country and began taking care of each other again. We'll get through this mess, really we will. And we will be able to have one foot on the ground again and deal with REALITIES instead of crazy, puffed up bubbles...

Okay...I'm done. Thanks for listening...and thanks for writing.
Syd said…
I only know that the conspicuous consumption, the greed and the pretenses of the past decade are coming to haunt many these days. Maybe it was inevitable that it's come to this. I don't want to sound biblical here but we've worshiped false idols for so long. Maybe it's time to get real and just back to basics. I'm seeing this as positive and not such a bad thing.
Stacie said…
Thank you Therapy Doc. I really need this today and I think I will put that saying up on the wall in my office. It's easy to slip into negativity nowadays. As for checking, bring it on. I am an ocd-er! Not really checking, mostly thoughts, but checking and trying to answer questions you can't answer are probably the same thing. Both ways of trying to alleviate the pain.
Mark said…
Mantras can be very effective. I often say that I have an advance immune system and that is why I rarely become ill. I also say it is what it is, recognizing that sometimes I must accept what is.
Good stuff!
I don't think all is as dark as the media makes it out to be.
Rebecca said…
Thanks for this, Therapy Doc -- and please, more on same.

I try and monitor my thoughts (what AM I thinking?) and make sure I'm being positive, taking corrective action as need be ... and in addition to the YouTube kittens and puppies mentioned earlier, I also try and find things to make me laugh. And keep them running along in the background of my day, so I have periodic laughs as often as possible. That, and trying to make my own jokes, of course ....

Right now, what's making me crack up rather than cracking up are: P.G. Wodehouse - books on tape in the car - and Will Farrell on the tube (I need me some more cowbell ....).

It's tough out there. I work with abused and neglected kids in CPS cases as a dual role ad ltm (atty/guardian) and lemme tell you, you gotta find a way around negative when you're dealing with this kind of work.

Particularly when the number of cases is going up right along with the economy going down. Directly proportional.

So, I listen to PDW in the car and I watch things like Two and A Half Men because it makes me giggle at least once every episode.

And, Will Farrell is a favorite of mine right now. Stupid, inane stuff. Did you see Will Farrell as Ricky Bobby? Shake and bake. Because they're both verbs. LOL LOL

Maybe I do need therapy .....
therapydoc said…
No, I think we all need more Will Farrell and puppies.
blognut said…
Lately I find myself so sick of winter and cold that the depression sets in like a fog. My mantra has become, 'decide to be happy,' because I am and I have a lot to be grateful for, I just need to shake things up a bit and find that energy that I've been missing.
Liara Covert said…
A theory has been presented that suggests women burnt at the stake for witchcraft were actually on LSD. Altered states of consciousness can also be self- induced with mental discipline and practice. Discovered your blog through a comment you left at Naked Soul.
therapydoc said…
Now that's amazing.
muse said…
Are you really back?
therapydoc said…
Ich vais vus (rhymes with, sounds like, pick-waste-noose)

How should I know?
Sorry to add more depression, but I was forcefully reminded of your post, as well as your previous posts re: saving a life, when I read this article about the tragic end of John Odom.
therapydoc said…
I just read it, thanks. If that doesn't say it all about our society, I don't know what does.

John was a ball player, traded for bats. Not funny, and as a vulnerable person, not a good result. And nowhere did I read about any therapy for the poor guy.
Anonymous said…
maybe it's my anti-depressants talking - but I am not all that depressed.

There are a lot of life-changes happening. People downsizing. Not just jobs - but apartments - and cars - and material items.

We're asking ourselves, what has value? Not what the $ of an item is... but what has value. How much does it mean to me to give up this item? Will I be able to replace it? Do I need to? When?

For many - and I believe in every social-economic class - money isn't and hasn't been tangible for a long time. This is not to say everyone, but often, imo, it becomes a game of "what goes where so i can have what i want/need with the minimum of consequences?"

As my partner moves in with me - having lost her job, my income which was never enough, suddenly becomes "we'll make it"
with a tightening of the belt.

While it might cause existential issues in some people, it is driving home to me, who i am and what my values are.

I think this is a beautiful thing. =)
Anonymous said…
I like that line "don't feed your head junk food". I'm totally stealing that :)

Never thought LSD would be OK by a doc. Ever.
therapydoc said…
C.K., it's not okay by this doc.
The Real Gal said…
Gracie Slick.....oh wow!