Originally Posted by yeah_yeah_yeah
I'm about 75% better
Still to be brought down to size:
1) Dating (10% better)
2) Mild friendship paranoia (50% better)
3) People with a Manipulative Style (75% better)
4) Motivation at work (5% better)
The next alleyway in my journey is filling my life with positive things. Scheduling stuff to do in evenings. Exercise. Positively vibed stuff.
SA beatable? You betcha, but you gotta work at it. Its not like the measles - there aint a quick course of meds or a surgical procedure that will make it go away forever. Steady, consistent work on reversing what got you to where you are now.
The brain is a muscle and you've been working it out the wrong way for a long time! If you went and lifted one set of weights for one day, would you expect to be Arnie by the next morning? NO! The brain is the same! Get a brain workout routine that puts you on an upward slope and start working out today!!
Worked for me:
CBT (from books and face to face), Mindfulness, Effexor, A LOT LOT LOT of reading, understanding the disorder, understanding the brain, understanding my past, honesty, letting my emotions out and acknowledging them, being honest about my weaknesses - even the ones I was too ashamed to really admit, focusing on intimacy and closeness instead of
I see that you haven't been active on this forum for 3 years now.
Anyway, excellent posts you gave in this thread. They are pretty detailed. I just read them for the first time.
I hardly see anyone contributing much words. It feels more like an instant messaging forum in here. It can be very constructive and helpful to put in detailed descriptions of personal experiences and on how to fight this disorder.
The hardest part of fighting this disorder is the start - no brainer.
I would like to share some things I learnt over the course of overcoming a lifelong SAD situation. I'm not completely done yet but life surely is less tensed these days.
- read up on books, articles on improving well-being and SAD, gain knowledge and make sure
you think through them and absorb
- don't be too hard on yourself; internalize that we can only learn through mistakes; learn to be courageous and yet easy on yourself
- criticism is hard to bear for anyone; but your rational self is able to tell you which criticism is good; internalize these criticism; the sooner you do so, the better
- i like the articles on marc and angel's site
- don't be a perfectionist; hardly anything in life is perfect
- accept who you are and recognize some realities of how long it might take to reach to that future you
- envision what you want to see in the future you and believe it; if you can't even believe it can happen, how would it happen?
- slow breaths and closed eyes to calm yourself; plan before any challenges on how to execute the actions; think through them in your head first
- don't get too serious and reprimand yourself when you get it wrong
- learn to take challenges light-heartedly; it really is just your mindset; your mind is limitless; stop putting these unhealthy restraints on it (pessimism)
- support the belief by having courage to rise up to small challenges in daily life
- sometimes you just got to tell yourself "stop being a pus-sy, let's go grab some ballz"
- don't rely too much on someone or something for support; you'll be too reliant and it will overwork that person who loves you
- personally, i find the more support I have, the more I wallow in my vomit of pity and exaggerate the situation more than it is
- improve your self-esteem; start dressing better if this works for you; exercise religiously (we all know the benefits of exercising)
- do smth you love because this will give meaning to your life; learn smth that you've been wanting to learn (guitar, swimming, rollerblading, whatever)
- start on the small challenges and slowly progress to bigger challenges
- the start is the hardest as you learn to embrace your deep seated fears in its highest density
- eventually, you will reach a stage where you feel you don't really care about what others think; you're sick of the life you've been leading and how many opportunities passed you by
- many with or without disorder have a painful story; start seeing that we're not the only ones who suffer
- SAD is crippling but it isn't the only thing in this world that makes people miserable
- love more, judge less
- stop allowing negative external influences control your life (for me, it was my parents; I'm glad I care less for them now because that was holding me back)
- learn to love yourself in a meaningful manner, not in arrogance
This list is in no way exhaustive.
And I don't claim to be some almighty conqueror. I still struggle and have my troughs.
Everything is a balancing act. The more you practise, the more refinement you cultivate in balancing.
I don't reside in North America and Europe, so I can't relate to the extrovert outgoing culture there. I do reside in a city, so things are pretty fast paced here. It's an asian city. Although extrovert personalities are favored (as they would be in many places), the general culture is still more "introvert".
I've battled SAD my whole life, as early as age 7; I never knew what it's like to feel normal. I know clearly what it does. Being labelled the very/most quiet by people in every part of my life. Not wearing spectacles when I needed to, just so that I don't see people in high resolution. Being told I'm strange/weird by the few who did dare to tell me so. Targeted in situations where I was thought to be lazy and passive (I was just too overwhelmed by SAD and couldn't act naturally). You'd bet there're so many more things in my memory. And I know many of you relate to this.
Shame, I only know what SAD is 2 years back. And I learned about it on the Internet. God bless Google and the World Wide Web. So, my treatment started late and even then, I didn't have that many psychologist sessions (15, at most). My biggest turning point came when I was down and out emotionally with hardly any emotional support and reality is biting me hard in the rear. I'm close to my mid 20s. I can't work a career, have a relationship, establish a family and live a life with all these in my backyard.
Any longer you drag, any deeper you allow yourself to sink in the cesspit, the harder it is for you to overcome SAD. I'm not sure about you all, but in the past, subconsciously I like to use SAD as an excuse for all the things I couldn't achieve, like it isn't my fault. And then live in the fantasy that if I hadn't had SAD, I could have been that outstanding likable individual.
I've had OCD and depersonalization too. I eradicated the former and still seeing how I can deal with the latter.
True enough, SAD is hellish and it wasn't my fault I developed it (the body acts as a defense mechanism to warn us; and the cause & effect of contributing factors). But I had to stop the blaming (even when the blaming has truth in it) and have a positive hold on my life. All these blaming won't go anywhere. What will bring us to somewhere meaningful is our will and system of thoughts.
A friend shared these quotes with me (along with some good honest criticism) and it hit me good and woke me up; this friend suffered from SAD too:
Man is condemned to be free, because once thrown into the world, he is responsible for everything he does.
Man can will nothing unless he has first understood that he must count on no one but himself; that he is alone, abandoned on earth in the midst of his infinite responsibilities, without help, with no other aim than the one he sets himself, with no other destiny than the one he forges for himself on this earth.
Once you get into all these modes of thinking and start to improve, you'll totally see what people like yeah_yeah_yeah were talking about. Once you're caught in the web of positive belief, you will look back at your past in disbelief and be amazed at how far you trekked and conquered.
After all these, you might not be that rich charismatic influential social animal. But at least, you become more of a normal social being, rid of all the nerve wrecks that you used to have.