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I've found hope is harmful. I know, the reflex is to disagree with this, but, at least in my case, hope is harmful. I recently found a bit of hope of ending a profound, debilitating depression. I knew feeling that hope was a mistake, but some part of my brain refused to listen to that. And sure enough, it turned out that hope was harmful.
There’s been much in the way of discussion regarding “toxic” cultural practices, and "toxic positivity,” is receiving its due attention. I couldn’t be happier. A culture of toxic positivity poses an active threat to the wellbeing of anyone who is mentally ill.
Of late, I have been struggling to function throughout the day - from waking up to eating on time, everything seems like an arduous chore. I turned to Google for an answer and it seems like I have something called 'low-functioning depression'. Now I had heard of the term 'high-functioning depression', but never this term. After further browsing, it then dawned on me that low-functioning depression wasn't an anomaly, it just wasn't talked about nearly half as much as high-functioning depression. I wondered how many depressed people must feel inadequate because they are not high-functioning, so I decided to write a post about low-functioning depression.
Speaking openly about mental illness helps, but one thing I know for certain is that ''talking about your feelings'' cannot cure a diagnosable mental illness. To purport this idea is reductive and shows a deep-rooted misunderstanding of the complex physiological roots of psychiatric conditions. However, through supporting my brother in his experiences with anxiety and depression, I have come to appreciate that talking openly about emotions does play an extremely important role in a family where mental illness is present.
If you've quit therapy for mental illness in the past, have you ever asked yourself if it's time to go back to therapy? I've asked that question of myself recently. I've had so much therapy it would make your psychology spin, but I've been out of therapy for about 10 years now. I'm a believer in therapy for everyone, I just thought I was no longer benefitting from it at that time. But are there signs that mean it's time to go back to therapy for mental illness?
Our collective anxiety about the world is skyrocketing. Anxiety disorders are the most common of all mental illnesses worldwide, and the United States is the most anxious nation, with a higher percentage of people diagnosed with anxiety disorders than in any other country. Further, the experience of anxiety in the United States is on the rise, with more...
Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and intimate relationships don't always go well together. On top of that, dating when you are in your 20s is tough. Finding people to date in real life is next to impossible, and online dating can be a fiasco. If you ask around, you'll find that many people in their 20s know and understand this struggle--myself being one of them. What most people don't understand, however, is how much more difficult dating and forming intimate relationships can be when you're suffering from PTSD.
New experiences can bolster self-esteem. I learned this first-hand this week when I received training on new technology for managing my type 1 diabetes. As exciting as it is to be on the cutting edge, my ancient VCR is still unconnected since my recent move because I can't figure out how to attach it to my new cable box. New technology is challenging for me and I was nervous about going in for my training. I am still a bit anxious today as I continue to learn on the job, so to speak, but every day I see tiny little improvements in my diabetes control, and it keeps me motivated. This new experience is strengthening my self-esteem, bit by bit.
Why is a schedule an important part of coping with anxiety?

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Lizanne Corbit
This is such a beautifully expressed read. I love the whole concept of gently and genuinely supporting your friend. One piece in particular that I have to make mention of is the idea that it is not your job to "fix" your friend. This is something so many of us can easily shift into without even really realizing we're doing, the "fix it" mood. This naturally happens because we care and want to make the other person feel better but what we really need to do is hold space, the fixing can make the other person inherently feel like they are a problem to be fixed, and this is of course not what you're trying to convey. Thank you for sharing!
Lizanne Corbit
I love this read! What an amazing testament to the power of shifting our perspective. I love this takeaway: "When I face difficult situations at work, I feel like I have a reservoir of self-belief and strength because I've seen how much positive change I can achieve in just a few years. " How amazing to look at our experiences with things like fear and anxiety and see the other side of the coin with them (so to speak). I think this is something many people can not only relate to but benefit from. Thank you for sharing your experience here.
Lizanne Corbit
This is such a well-crafted read about something that is so true, but probably not realized by many. The "confession" energy around discussing mental health is very real. This may be one of those things that we feel but don't really put a name to, thinking about in terms of a confession really provides a clear lense for how this can be negative and why a shift in perspective is needed. Wonderful read.
Tanya J. Peterson, MS, NCC
Hi Laura,
I have found that practicing mindfulness helps me be comfortable not only with silence, but with myself in situations like these. To make it possible for me to pay attention to what is going on rather than on my thoughts about it or on my anxiety and discomfort, I ground myself. You might find that helpful, too (it does take a while to get used to). Try placing both feet firmly on the ground, and notice the feel of the floor beneath your feet. Breathe slowly and deeply (even deep breathing can be done quietly so you don't feel like you're drawing attention to yourself). Don't try to force thoughts, but just notice your feet planted and your body breathing. Then, let yourself find a focal point and concentrate on that, noting shapes, colors, etc. Grounding yourself this way calms your mind and body and allows you to gently turn your attention to the moment at hand. When you catch your anxiety climbing again (as you know, anxiety tends to do that!), do the grounding exercise again to re-center, then return to the moment. The idea isn't to force thoughts out of your mind but to clear your mind so you can be fully present in your moment.
Shirley
You all are my kindred spirits! I’ve had noise sensitivity since birth. I’ve always felt like an oddball. I don’t know anyone personally who feels as I do. I think I’m one of these Highly Sensitive People. I buy foam earplugs in bulk and use when I vacuum, sometimes when I sleep, or when there is more outside noise than usual. Fireworks at July 4 and New Year’s are the worst. I try to find a town to visit where fireworks use is limited or banned. I can understand people using fireworks on these two holidays but the rude people in the community where I live set them off at random other times of the year. People who blast their vehicle audio systems (boom boom boom) are the rudest of the rude. Being stuck at a traffic light with these jerks is hellish. I’m looking for a quiet place to retire.