Tuesday, 23 June 2009

The proven antidote against the blues

Depression has become so common in our society that, most of the time, we don't even notice it. You can only see the phenomenon through the darkness its exudes. Motivation becomes paralysis. Vision breaks apart in doubts. Energy can no longer be replenished and attention gets distracted.

If you look around, you will find plenty of examples: Co-workers who lately have been looking sort of sad, call up the office, name some vague problem at home, and disappear for week. Students who have been at the top of their class, start to fail one exam after the other. Thoughtful friends, the kind who used to have strong opinions, suddenly turn silent.

What is the cause of this wide-spread ailment? Where is this malignant wave coming from? The automatic response in those cases is to blame the world. When you talk to men and women who suffer from the blues, you will often find them willing to enumerate all the negative conditions affecting their life.

Those complaints will usually have a sound basis in reality. Some people will tell you stories of abuse and unfairness, injustices of all sorts, inefficiency and dishonesty. Others will speak about their sickness, the ingratitude of their family, treason by friends, loneliness or divorce.

Nevertheless, those explanations remain insufficient to justify the overweening levels of depression in our society. The most important element in the equation is never mentioned. Why is nobody pointing out that, for every dispirited person, you can find a reasonably contented one who is enduring similar difficulties?

Misfortune and catastrophe are not to be trivialized. Bad luck and sickness can wipe out your savings, your business, your family, and put to test your will to keep on living. Serious problems and painful periods do occur in most people's lives. My point is not that one should become foolishly cheerful in the face of adversity.

Pharmaceuticals aimed at alleviating distress can help to a certain extent, although they are frequently loaded with secondary effects. My message is that, in the worst possible moments, a man owes to himself, to his happiness, to reflect and act with proper perspective. What one should keep in mind is that, on many occasions, depression is a synonym for short-term vision.

Rational thinking is the only antidote that has repeatedly proven its effectiveness against discouragement and depression. Seeing obstacles and disadvantages in the frame of a lifetime helps to reduce them to a manageable size.

Drop the false comfort of self-pity. Never allow yourself to limit your own potential. Never give up before the game is really over. Remind yourself everyday that life offers many opportunities. Define your long-term target, sharpen your arrows, and leave the blues behind. You have better things to do.

[Text: http://johnvespasian.blogspot.com]

[Image by tourist_on_earth under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us]

The proven antidote against the blues

Depression has become so common in our society that, most of the time, we don't even notice it. You can only see the phenomenon through the darkness its exudes. Motivation becomes paralysis. Vision breaks apart in doubts. Energy can no longer be replenished and attention gets distracted.

If you look around, you will find plenty of examples: Co-workers who lately have been looking sort of sad, call up the office, name some vague problem at home, and disappear for week. Students who have been at the top of their class, start to fail one exam after the other. Thoughtful friends, the kind who used to have strong opinions, suddenly turn silent.

What is the cause of this wide-spread ailment? Where is this malignant wave coming from? The automatic response in those cases is to blame the world. When you talk to men and women who suffer from the blues, you will often find them willing to enumerate all the negative conditions affecting their life.

Those complaints will usually have a sound basis in reality. Some people will tell you stories of abuse and unfairness, injustices of all sorts, inefficiency and dishonesty. Others will speak about their sickness, the ingratitude of their family, treason by friends, loneliness or divorce.

Nevertheless, those explanations remain insufficient to justify the overweening levels of depression in our society. The most important element in the equation is never mentioned. Why is nobody pointing out that, for every dispirited person, you can find a reasonably contented one who is enduring similar difficulties?

Misfortune and catastrophe are not to be trivialized. Bad luck and sickness can wipe out your savings, your business, your family, and put to test your will to keep on living. Serious problems and painful periods do occur in most people's lives. My point is not that one should become foolishly cheerful in the face of adversity.

Pharmaceuticals aimed at alleviating distress can help to a certain extent, although they are frequently loaded with secondary effects. My message is that, in the worst possible moments, a man owes to himself, to his happiness, to reflect and act with proper perspective. What one should keep in mind is that, on many occasions, depression is a synonym for short-term vision.

Rational thinking is the only antidote that has repeatedly proven its effectiveness against discouragement and depression. Seeing obstacles and disadvantages in the frame of a lifetime helps to reduce them to a manageable size.

Drop the false comfort of self-pity. Never allow yourself to limit your own potential. Never give up before the game is really over. Remind yourself everyday that life offers many opportunities. Define your long-term target, sharpen your arrows, and leave the blues behind. You have better things to do.

[Text: http://johnvespasian.blogspot.com]

[Image by tourist_on_earth under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us]

How to clear the way for great relationships: avoid dishonest people

Dishonesty, like cancer, starts small. One day, for instance, you learn that someone whom you considered a friend has been maligning you behind your back. On other occasion, you might act on the basis of a verbal agreement only to find out later that the other party has reneged on his word.

You will fall into many of those traps, as we all do, since few things are as difficult as assessing the character of strangers. A wise man writes off his loss as part of the cost of living and learns from experience that, on the next encounter, he should not trust the person who has lied to him.

Honesty is a thread that a man should be allowed to break only once. If you are cheated the first time, blame it on your limited knowledge and do not recriminate yourself. On the other hand, if you are misled twice by the same individual, it is advisable that you take a hard look at your fundamental beliefs.

Achievement in any field of human endeavour requires focused effort sustained through a long period. Sometimes it takes months, frequently years or decades. For many persons, the major obstacle to progress is not lack of funding, but of time. Unless you clear up the clutter from your days, you will never find the hours that you need for your essential goals.

The same principle applies to relationships. Friendship and love constitute wonderful pleasures. We all recognize them as two of the main sources of enjoyment in life. Although none of them can be purchased with money, both require substantial investments of time, continuity, and consistency.

Dealing with dishonest people will waste your energies, consume your patience, and fill your life with disappointments. Do not tell yourself that everybody is like that. Do not argue in your mind in favour of the inevitability of evil. This is not true and you know it perfectly well.

Undeniably, it takes a lot of conviction to make uncomfortable changes in our lives. To quit smoking is extremely difficult. To stop drinking might require a long process of detoxification. To rid ourselves of damaging relationships is tantamount to climbing the steep slope of high mountain.

Take heart and keep your ethical bar at the proper level. Place it low enough to forgive innocent errors. Keep it sufficiently elevated to reject attempts to miscarriage your judgement, fairness, and objectivity.

Who twists reality once to his advantage will not hesitate to abuse your confidence on the next occasion. Just say no. The sooner you see bad people disappear from your life, the faster you will clear the way towards wonderful relationships.


[Text: http://johnvespasian.blogspot.com]

[Image by mikebaird under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/us]