Monthly Archives: February 2011

Thoughts on Suffering

Don’t look forward to the day you stop suffering, because when it comes you’ll know you’re dead. — Tennessee Williams

To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering. — Fredrich Nietzche
 
I do not believe that sheer suffering teaches. If suffering alone taught, all the world would be wise, since everyone suffers. To suffering must be added mourning, understanding, patience, love, openness and the willingness to remain vulnerable. — Anne Morrow Lindbergh

 

Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars. — Kahlil Gibran

Paranoid or Just Insecure?

So for instance, let’s say there was a situation where someone commented on an event that directly affected you, but they should have no knowledge of the why or how…should you feel paranoid, or just assume they are intelligent enough to guess at the circumstances that transpired because they were indirectly involved? Oh, this sounds so mysterious, but all parties shall remain unnamed so as not to incriminate anyone. Let’s just say I’m a little torked over something that happened this week at a place I spend a lot of my waking hours.

I’m not very good at office politics. I just don’t play games, I’m direct and to the point (I think I’ve mentioned that before). I think this is usually a good trait, and I use it judiciously. I don’t blurt inappropriately, and I do try to make a point of thinking before I speak. However, I have been known to be too direct. This apparently offends some delicate sensibilities. I’m working on that.

I’ve found some work environments  are places where you find yourself looking over your shoulder. Who’s watching? Is someone checking my work? Do they trust me? I generally take pride in my work, and want to be noticed for doing a good job. I think everyone likes a little pat on the back once in a while. But having to deal with Depression already gives you a sense of insecurity worrying about what others think of you. An unstable or chaotic work environment can just contribute to feelings of paranoia. Who wants to get up every morning and be sick with worry about their employment status?

Most often it has to do with the personalities and attitudes of the people in the workplace. Just a few people can make for a good or not so good work environment. Even one person in a position of power or who happens to be friends with the boss can affect the tenor of the office.

So, what to do? One can work to find a niche that suits them and steer clear of any conflict or troublemakers. One could also face the challenges head on and hope for the best. It can always be a gamble to play the office politics game. There really are never any winners and the power players can turn on you in a heartbeat. And always is the option to walk away. The grass is not always greener either, we all know that cliché. You can find yourself in the same situation with different players. It’s never an easy decision, just one more reason to feel less than secure.

Still Struggling

I’m still struggling with being open with others, finding a balance between being friendly and aloof. I feel like I am just matter of fact, tell it like it is kind of person. But apparently that is off-putting to some. I am “unapproachable.” My therapist says I can work on this. Somehow I must have missed the lesson on how to make nice at work. One of my issues is fear of getting hurt. I’ve experienced so much emotional pain due to relationships that I just don’t want to get that involved with people. But my therapist says I can be cordial and warm without getting too deep. I’m going to try to work on that. I sure do better with writing than talking.

Sometimes I wish I could have a personality transplant, because I feel Depression has shaped my personality in a negative manner. It certainly has changed my worldview and it has affected how I see myself as well. Nothing seems clear, and I can’t even trust my judgement or perception. So can I really rely on others opinions either? Should I trust others as being sincere, or am I being set up for a fall? Hard to tell, and no one to ask. Feel like I am right back at the beginning, and I thought I was making progress…

More on Friendship

Just a few great quotes on friendship…

The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, nor the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship; it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when he discovers that someone else believes in him and is willing to trust him.                ——- Ralph Waldo Emerson

There is nothing on this earth more prized than true friendship.                                  —-St. Thomas Aquinas

The person who tries to live alone will not succeed as a human being. His heart withers if it does not answer another heart. His mind shrinks away if he hears only the echoes of his own thoughts and finds no other inspiration.                            —Pearl Buck

Friendship is a sheltering tree. — Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Friends

Everybody needs friends. It’s a part of staying connected and grounded in reality. That would be if you have true blue friends that stick by you during the hard times. The therapist told me it would be good to “socialize” and stop staying home by myself. And she’s right as usual. It’s so easy to just say everyone is busy with their own lives and stuff. I’m not the social butterfly type to begin with…I am a homebody, I don’t like crowded events, and enjoy my solitude.

Little did I know one of my good friends has struggled too. Not deep depression, more of the lack of feeling anything and I don’t want to be bothered type. Anhedonia, I believe is the term for it. Good thing she has a friend like me to set her straight! I told her like it is…yes you are depressed! It’s ok, it will get better. It’s hard to reach out to others when you don’t feel good. Lack of motivation and sense of self-worth can hinder you from taking that first step.

Friendship takes work, and it takes two people to work at it. A good friendship involves being able to share the good times and to support each other during the difficult ones. This kind of relationship is nurtured and cherished, because it is a gift. We tend to have lots of “friends” on our social network sites, but there are precious few who can be counted on as those who will always be there for you.

I hope I will always have a few special people in my life that I can count on, and who know they can count on me. I’ve always been one to not give away too much, but good friends are the people you can trust with just about anything. And I hope they know they can count on me too.

Persistence

Persistence is the spiritual grace that allows you to continue to act with optimism even when you feel trapped in the pit of hell. ***Daphne Rose Kingma

It is so easy to start blaming oneself when life gets overwhelming. Such as, “I brought this on myself,” or “This is all my fault.” Somehow I feel that I should be able to handle whatever life throws my way. Seems like everyone else seems to keep it together and go with the flow, right? I’m a strong, independent woman, so why is it when all hell breaks loose, I sometimes feel hopeless and defeated?

This is Depression talking and taking me down again. I am still and always have been an intelligent and capable person, able to work through difficulties and handle crises. It is a matter of getting my mind right…being in the right frame of mind to borrow a cliché. I just have to remind myself of my many accomplishments. I’m no slacker, I’m well-educated and articulate, I’ve done numerous things in my career, I’ve had many creative pursuits, I’ve raised a child, etc., etc. Even starting my blog was a huge step that I could have never imagined I would do.

I’m a survivor too. I’ve been through tremendous emotional hardships in my personal life and am still standing. It wasn’t easy either. I was subjected to some mean-spirited and malicious attacks on my character. That was extremely difficult. It’s hard not to take in that kind of ugliness, particularly when you already suffer from Depression. I just could not allow myself to believe that the circumstances were bigger than me, and I continued to have hope for a better future.

Persistence seems key. I keep pressing on, keep holding onto hope that things will be better, that each difficulty is an opportunity to learn something new and that wisdom is power and strength to carry on. Sounds rather pollyanna-ish but it’s truly how I cope with the obstacles and challenges that come my way. Prayer helps too.

Paying the Bills

I loathe sitting down to pay the bills. And I have been so scattered and forgetful lately, I missed some of the due dates, AGAIN. I think Depression should be an excellent excuse for being late with payments. Sometimes I just can’t get it together. It’s not that I don’t have the money, or that I don’t care, I just can’t get organized and motivated both at the same time and at the right time to accomplish the task. So I get dinged with late fees. I hate that. I really hate that.

Then I signed up for this online budgeting program called Mint.com. It kindly reminds me when I overspend on my budget, or when I am charged interest or LATE FEES. That is just not helpful. I need reminding ahead of time to pay the damn bill. I guess there are programs for that too. I just have to be organized and motivated to set that up. Sometime. Soon. Right after I pay the late fee.

Pray for peace and understanding.