Tag Archives: Anxiety and Clinical Depression

Recovery from Addiction

I understood myself only after I destroyed myself.

It used to be thought by many doctors, and those in 12-step recovery programs, that addiction was a disease in its own right.  Conversely many people believed that alcoholism, drug abuse, compulsive gambling, and other addictions were due to personal weakness.  That it was all down to the search for instant self-gratification, and that addicts were just unwilling to stop ~ or perhaps unable to stop drinking, using, gambling…..

However, medical science no longer believes that pleasure-seeking alone drives addicts into their own personal hell.  Doctors and scientists now think that most engage in addictive behaviour not so much to attain euphoria as to escape physical, emotional, and spiritual pain and distress.

This is certainly true in my own case.  From time to time I drink far too much, not because I like booze or it makes me feel good.  I suffer from Borderline Personality Disorder, which is characterised by extreme emotions, and from time to time negative feelings such as anger, jealousy, paranoia, anxiety, and suicidal depression cause me so much physical, emotional, and spiritual pain that I escape into alcohol.  And you know what?  Drinking doesn’t really work.

In the USA 15.7 million people seriously abuse alcohol, and 2.6 million of those also suffer from a drug abuse disorder.  In all some 7.7 million people in all use illicit drugs in the USA, and / or abuse prescription drugs.  About 8% of the total population of the USA have a substance abuse problem.  Many of these have multiple addictions ~ gambling, excessive use of pornography, and promiscuity also ruin lives.    Doctors also believe that the type of addiction doesn’t matter at all; whether it be alcoholism, drug abuse, gambling, whatever…..  all addictions are the same, addicts are people who try to escape physical, emotional, and spiritual distress.

Some 47,000 people a year die directly from an overdose of opiod drugs, and alcohol claims the lives of some 90,000 people a year.  I know what that feels like, people who suffer from Borderline Personality Disorder have a 10% likelihood of committing suicide, which is over 1,000 times more than in the general population.

Some days I can barely breathe, I can’t eat and I can’t sleep.  Some days I blame others for my pain and problems.  Some days I am barely hanging on.  And, some days life is pretty good.

The good news is that there are a number of effective treatments for addiction; including self-help strategies, psychotherapy, rehabilitation programs, and in some cases medication.  (As it goes medication doesn’t work, and is actually dangerous for anyone with Borderline Personality Disorder.)  But, I can protect myself from addiction by having meaningful and mindful interests in my life, together with supportive friendships.  My problems and pain are very transient.  And life isn’t always supposed to be fun and filled with pleasure, into every life a little rain must fall.  Shit Happens

Some say that addiction only affects weak and pathetic people.  And that there is no chance of recovery from any addiction.  All I know is that I have many more good days than the bad days on which I hit the bottle.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

recovery doesn’t work for those who need it

recovery works for those who want it

Stay Healthy

rock bottom will be the solid foundation on which I can remake my life

Over the past couple of weeks I have struggled to cope with the Borderline Personality Disorder I suffer from.  I have been planning on focusing on my health after the Christmas holidays.  Well, don’t hold your breath.  Unless I can get much better pretty quickly I might be a basket case by the time 2020 rolls around.

If you have health, you probably will be happy, and if you have health and happiness, you have all the wealth you need, even if it’s not all you want.  ~  Elbert Hubbard

I need to get some kind of recovery by avoiding booze, excessive stress, uncontrollable emotions, depression and anxiety, jealousy, and vicious mood swings.  Probably I need to avoid thoughts and situations that emotionally drain me.  I need to put my emotional health right at the top of my list.

I need to try to maintain my spiritual health by finding meaning and mindfulness in every thing I do.  Avoiding activities that I find meaningless or stressful.  Spiritual ill health weakens me physically and emotionally, and it’s easy to get sick if I am weak in mind and body.

Driving myself into the ground, finding yet another rock bottom serves no one.  It decreases my chances of living a long and healthy life.  Do I really want to sacrifice my health because of people, places, things, thought, and emotions?

My health needs to be positively maintained at all times.  I really need to commit to looking after my physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health for the remainder of my life.

Perhaps I could try being happy for a change.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

having multiple personalities might be cool

one of them could be happy

Screwed-up

The ideal day never comes. Today is ideal for him who makes it so.

This is what the inside of my mind looks like.

I’ve not been well, although am much better today, with much to get through.  I’m hoping you are all well, and going to have a good day.

I’ve been very critical of myself, because I didn’t meet my own expectations.  Based on my own black and white thinking, my own standards of perfection, I will never have an ideal day.  Perhaps there is no such thing as a perfect day.  Each day happens just the way it’s supposed to, with its imperfections as well as its achievements.  If I have a terrible day, it’s only because I believed it was going to be a lousy day. By the same token, if I have a good day, it was because I believed it was going to be a good day, and not because the sun was shining, or we had a good conversation ~ (although that helps).

Every day is different.  Some days may be enjoyable, while others may be difficult to get through.  Instead of being judgemental, I can see each day as a mindful experience.  What I learn from the day, as well as my attitude about it, is my daily lesson.I have been having some very difficult days to get through. Physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.  My expectations have been all wrong, and my attitude has been bad.  My mind is a complete mess.

I have screwed up in a very big way, let down my family and friends, and let down myself.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

Borderline Personality Disorder is a very serious illness.

I have it, although I am recovering.

 

How to Live in Harmony

from discord, find harmony

When you are in harmony with yourself, four things are aligned: what you do, what you say, what you think, and what you feel.  In those mindful moments, things flow without any sense of stress, tension, or negativity.  Your senses, feelings, and emotions fit together and your life has less anxiety, depression, guilt, upset, and stress.

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.  ~  Gandhi

Being in harmony with yourself and others is all about being authentic, honest, open, kind, trusting, loving, reliable, and at peace with yourself.  It is hard to be at peace with the people, places, and creatures around you when you yourself are not at peace.  It is impossible to be at one with nature when you are not at one with yourself.  Your heart and your brain should be in harmony.

He who lives in harmony with himself lives in harmony with the universe.  ~  Marcus Aurelius

Sadly, most people never experience long-lasting harmony in their lives.  Most chase after material gain, instant gratification, and transitory relationships.

To be in harmony is to do the simple things right, and to the very best of your ability, energy, and strength;

  • If you want to stay sober, then stop drinking booze ~ don’t think you can ever take just one drink once in a while because you can’t.
  • If you want to stop smoking, then stop going through the motions and get serious about never, ever, smoking another cigarette.
  • If you want to lose weight and be fitter and healthier, then eat and drink well, and get plenty of fresh air and exercise.
  • If you promise to help someone, then remember to be there for them and do the things you promised.
  • If you think someone is being unkind and toxic, then stop pretending that all is well between the two of you.  Share what you truly think and feel, and then do something about that relationship.
  • If you feel anxious, depressed, and sad, then recognise and accept the emotions ~ in fact whatever emotions you feel, recognise and accept them.  But, if you want to feel better, then start acting as if you are 100%

If you want the grace to live your own life, in your own time, then be strong enough to live in harmony with yourself and others and all of nature.  Be authentic, honest, and open.  Some toxic and untrustworthy people will pull away from you, but if you do all this you can expect to have more authentic, honest, open, kind, trusting, loving, and peaceful friendships and relationships.

Some say one thing while they are thinking and feeling the opposite.  And most people lie, cheat, and steal.  All I know is we compose our own harmonies in our lives.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

to enjoy the scent of a rose

you must first brave the thorns

Controlling Emotions

the emotion that breaks your heart is often the one that heals it

Most of us would like to control our emotions in order to avoid very negative feelings and make life more pleasant, but in my experience this is not actually possible.  In fact, when we try to control our emotions they become more powerful, but if we don’t try to control them and just experience them instead they become powerless.  The paradox is that when we attempt to control a negative emotion by attempting to change it or escape it, the negative emotion controls us instead.

Last evening I had an example of this when something happened that had me feeling angry, inadequate, worthless, and upset ~ basically I felt bad.  I didn’t want to have those negative feelings, and I tried to avoid them by transferring them to someone else instead.  And that doesn’t work because all that did was have two people feeling feeling angry, inadequate, worthless, and upset.  Then I thought about avoiding those feelings by buying some booze and drinking ~ and for me that is an extremely bad idea.  The most extreme way of avoiding negative emotions is to attempt suicide.

I didn’t want to do any of those things, but the desire to escape negative emotions is strong in me.  For a short while my negative emotions were controlling me.

The alternative is to observe and experience negative emotions without getting lost in them.

I may not be able to control my emotions, but if I try hard I can control how I react to them.  I can’t change how I feel, but I can change what I do.  Last evening I was half successful because I didn’t actually buy any booze and get drunk, and after a short while I stopped blaming someone else for what was basically my own mistake.  I have learned that if I feel bad, angry, inadequate, worthless, and upset, it’s usually because of something I’ve done.  And anyway, my feelings are my feelings, and I shouldn’t be afraid of them.

For me, the secrets of coping with really negative feelings are;

  • Do not immediately react when I suddenly have strong, uncontrollable, chaotic, dark, negative feelings.
  • Recognise the emotions and try to work out why I’m feeling what I’m feeling.  And usually it’s much more complicated than it first appears.
  • Try to stay calm, even if inside I’m feeling uncontrollably angry.  Just realise that in a while the anger will most likely pass, and if I do something stupid now I might regret it for a long time.
  • Try to find a polite, logical, unemotional action in response to feelings which are utterly the opposite to anything polite or logical.

Some say that we shouldn’t get angry we should get even.  And that we should never apologise because it’s a sign of weakness.  All I know is that if I just react to the way I feel I usually get myself into deep shit.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

this is a good rule

when it comes to negative emotions

 

Angry Sadness

Mania and depression all at once means;
the will to die and the motivation to make it happen.

sometimes we entrap ourselves

Agitated depression and borderline personality disorder are an extremely dangerous and confusing set of mixed mental / emotional / spiritual states.  Those of us who are unfortunate enough to suffer from a personality disorder, or serious character defect, often become confused because we sometimes seem to have two or more totally different and opposite problems at one in the same time.  Believe me, I’ve been there more than once.

Have you ever felt really tired, but keyed-up and tense at the same time?  You want to go to sleep but you’re full of energy and can’t relax?  Or, you feel really melancholy, depressed, and sad, but at the same time you are very hurt and angry and want to strike out against whoever it is that’s hurt you.  These contradictory conditions are a sign of something called Comorbitity, where one or more medical / mental / emotional / spiritual conditions are co-occurring with a primary problem.

Perhaps the most common instances of comorbitity are between people diagnosed with a mental illness who also abuse booze, drugs, and prescription medication.  Addicts and alcoholics are often also mentally ill.

Anger, rage, and fury alongside sadness, melancholia, and depression at one in the same time don’t actually make a lot of sense.  Anger is a very active emotion requiring a hell of a lot of mental and emotional energy, (and taken to extremes a lot of physical energy), whereas sadness and depression are passive emotions which sap energy and leave the sufferer incapable of doing very much at all.

More typical would be a period of extreme anger, followed by remorse, guilt, and sadness.  Not the two things going on at once.  But, especially in men, anger and depression often go hand in hand.

However, anyone who has been diagnosed with a personality disorder will be aware of just how chancy that diagnosis was, and may well have been misdiagnosed by several doctors / psychiatrists / psychologists / therapists before their correct diagnosis, and hence correct treatment was discovered, (found by accident).  A hell of a lot of people who have Borderline Personality Disorder will at first have been diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder.

In fact there are 9 or 10 distinct personality disorders, and very often a sufferer will have symptoms or traits of more than one of these disorders, at one in the same time.  As if it’s not bad enough suffering from just one of these life-destroying mental illnesses.

So if you’re confused about your illness, or the way your loved one / partner / friend behaves, don’t worry.  Instead put in the hard work and learn about what’s exactly going on ~ start with the internet, then talk with your doctors.

Some say that all alcoholics and addicts are just plain crazy.  And that they just never know how their partner is going to be from one minute to the next.  All I know is they’re both right.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

we all have demons inside us,

sometimes more than just one.

Life Goes On

No matter what happens, life goes on, until the day you die

a murder of crows is a sign of good news

Most of us experience torment, pain, failure, disaster, and tragedy.  Most of us learn that love is blind and that love can be cruel.  Some may suffer from serious debilitating illnesses.  Others may have mental, spiritual, and psychological problems.  More than a few will battle an addiction for most of their lives.  Some may have hit rock bottom and struggle with shame and fear.  For many there will be no relief or comfort until it’s over, and a tragic few some may hasten the end through taking their own lives.

You may have experienced such moments yourself or observed those around you going through the slough of despond.  You, or a member of your family, or a loved one, or a friend, may have struggled for years to find a way to make it through each and every single fucking day.  It is in times like those that achieving goals, making plans, realising dreams, can seem a million light years away.  Instead time is spent coping with shock, pain, grief, sadness, depression, frustration, fear, tears, fighting not to take that next drink, or snort that next line of coke.  Emotions are raw and painful, feelings are negative in the extreme, and the mind can run away like an out of control dynamo.  Nothing means anythng, and nothing makes any sense.

In three words I an sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.  ~  Robert Frost

But, life goes on.  Most of us, given time, maybe given the right support at the right time, most of us are able to return to our dreams and goals, to our plans and schemes, and continue along the warriors path to one form of success or another.

For most of us the pain, grief, and sadness we have experienced will mean that we return to the warriors path stronger than we were before ~ wiser, kinder, more supportive, more accepting, and more understanding.  The struggle changes us, and it may be true that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.  Our priorities, our wants, needs, and desires will have changed as we fought our inner demons or struggled with the shit the world has thrown into our lives.  What may have seemed important to the shallow and inconsequential people we were before no longer matters to the toughened survivors we have become.  What may seem important to the ordinary folks around us matters not one jot to we who have endured hell and returned.

Some say that they just can’t go on, they can’t take it any more.  And that life has taken away everything they have ever loved, wanted, dreamed of, desired, and needed.  All I know is that when it is at its worst the important thing is to just keep putting one foot in front of another.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

find a way to make it

whatever it takes hold on to the light

Unhappiness Doesn’t Work

Some don’t even ask for happiness, just a little less pain.

I’ve spent a lot of my life being miserable, angry, jealous, paranoid, depressed, in mental and spiritual pain.  From time to time I’ve shared my pain with others, especially those close to me.  In that I don’t mean that I’ve sat down and had a quiet and reasoned discussion. On the contrary, I’ve shared my pain by attacking people close to me verbally and in writing, or by just disappearing, or by getting drunk on the very spurious grounds that it would make others worry about me.

Just what part of my subconscious mind was hard-wired to think that being unhappy would do anything for me?  Except to exist in a state of unhappiness and pain being unhappy achieves very little.  To a sane mind, being unhappy should act as a spur to change whatever it is about one’s life that is making you unhappy ~ except it almost never does, because very few people have that degree of grounded and mindful sanity.

For many people being unhappy, miserable, angry, jealous, paranoid, depressed, in mental and spiritual pain becomes their normal state of being, it becomes their comfort zone.  And how utterly sad that one’s comfort zone is a place of utter and total negativity.

For some others those negative feelings act as a spur to find an escape ~ in alcohol, drugs, binge eating, gambling, pornography, inappropriate casual sex, self-harm, attempted suicide, making a big geographical change…..  For me, the escape from being in a bad dark place was always alcohol ~ and that worked for a while, just as all those other addictive behaviours may work for a while.  However, very quickly the cure becomes far worse than the problem of unhappiness, mental, emotional, and spiritual pain.

Addictive behaviours are not a cure, they are just another facet of the kaleidoscope of some serious underlying issue deep in the subconscious mind of the sufferer ~ it’s like throwing a drowning man a concrete lifebelt, or trying to put out a fire by throwing petrol, (gasoline), on it.  Giving someone with depression a bottle of booze and encouraging them to go out and fuck the first person they meet in a bar is just as bad ~ all it will do is destroy any feelings of self-worth they had left.

So why are so many people seriously unhappy, to the point that it can be classified as a mental illness?

Because we learned to be unhappy before we were old enough to know any better.  Before we were seven years of age, deep and undying unhappiness was inculcated into our subconscious mind by our parents, carers, older siblings, teachers, et al., and now it’s hard-wired into our subconsciousness.  And it doesn’t work.

How we break out of the downward spiral of misery will have to be the topic of another post.  This post is too long already.

Some say that they are unhappy because the world is a bad place.  And it’s all going to be OK because their doctor has given them some happy pills.  All I know is that unhappiness and misery doesn’t work.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

booze is a bad way to try to find escape from mental, emotional, and spiritual unhappiness

 

 

 

Anxiety and Insomnia

I’ve never heard of a cat that suffered from insomnia.

But, then again, I’ve never heard of a cat that suffered from anxiety, depression, and a total lack of self-confidence.

Given that it’s two o’clock in the morning here in England, and I’m awake writing this blog, you might say that I’m suffering from insomnia.

As it goes, I haven’t slept well since the garret was broken into and I had some important stuff stolen.  Having your home burgled is a much more upsetting experience that I thought it could be, until it happened to me.

I need to find a way of working through all this.

 

jack collier

jackcollier7@taltalk.net

staring at a log fire doesn’t count as insomnia among cool cats

Stress and Anxiety

stress affects different people in different ways

Today I realised that since I was burgled and robbed a little while ago I have been suffering from stress, depression, and anxiety.  Locked in the nightmare prison of my own subconscious mind.

The physical symptoms are shaking hands, shortness of breath, headache, and nosebleeds.  Fairly unpleasant.  But, actually, the mental and spiritual symptoms are worse ~ bad dreams for example.

It’s going to be difficult for me ever to be confident enough to trust anyone again.

I need to work on that.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

Where was a proper English Bobby when I really needed one?

 

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