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Hey,

Does anyone have experience with this? After a series of bad life events, I got burned out and laid off because I couldn't concentrate anymore.

It all started back in summer, was working as a freelance web dev and decided to apply for the CS degree in my city. Well I fucked up the entrance exam (because I am dumb and thought it was easy). Okay no problem. Still have my affiliate site and freelance opportunities. However I look around and find a good job as a software dev. I apply and get accepted easily.

Fast forward 3 months to december... I'm coding 8 hours a day. Job gets exponentially harder and deadlines have to be met. I keep working on my affiliate business on the side.. and lifting 4 times a week heavy compounds.

Back then I was living with roommates, and those fucktards kept interrupting my sleep. Some days I couldn't sleep at all and then shit went downhill really fast. Kept on coding w/o sleep for like 2 weeks.. also tried to keep up with heavy lifting (I know big fucking mistake in this case..) and then something just broke one day.

Obviously my performance went downhill and I got fired. Okay no problem I said to myself. Still have my affiliate site, freelance opportunities and even cash in the bank. But the health problems lasted.

It got really severe and I went to a psychiatrist.. got diagnosed with depression. Tried to avoid antidepressants, but had to go on the for like 2 months. Quit them again because of the side effects..

It's May now and I still deal with all kinds of depression symptoms.. although it got a bit better. Sleep is finally back to around 7 hrs a day again, and I am able to go to the gym.

Fuck.. I never thought something could destroy your life like this. Hell I don't even know if I will ever be back to 100% again. Currently im doing all kinds of things to get out of this like:
  • Meditation
  • Therapy
  • Nofap
  • Good Diet
  • Lifting
  • Human Contact
  • Cold Showers

But I still feel dumb as shit and it's like my brain is working at 10%.. my memory problems are so severe.. I don't really remember most of the last 6 months..

My goal was to study Computer Science, but the degree is already starting again in September.. and I don't know if I got my mental health issues fixed until then. I'm 22 btw, and I have no idea how I got into something like this. I always... always had my shit together. Best grades, side hustle, good social circle etc.. and now this just fucking destroyed me and I don't know what to do.

The only progress I'm making at the moment is at the gym. I try to work on my affiliate business again.. but I'm not thinking straight / have concentration issues. It's hard but I'm trying my best to do more work each day.

Maybe some of you have dealt with this in the past and could give me some tips or point me in the right direction.
 
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Break the cycle of monotonous bullshit

Life Is more than just making money.

For me nothing energizes my existence more than traveling to places where they don’t speak English.
 
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Break the cycle of monotonous bullshit

Life Is more than just making money.

For me nothing energizes my existence more than traveling to places where they don’t speak English.
Yeah thats what I'm planning to do once I'm abit more stable
 

Ryuzaki

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Tried to avoid antidepressants, but had to go on the for like 2 months. Quit them again because of the side effects..
Trying to find the right medicine that works without side effects is a pain because they all take so long to kick in.

Something I did recently was start supplementing my diet in ways I never had with over the counter minerals basically. I'm sure there's more I could add, but I discovered these three things that were like miracles:
  • Vitamin D - My outlook on life changed within 2-3 days. Instead of negativity, I started seeing the positive again and thinking more "lightly and hopeful."
  • Zinc - Within a couple weeks, this eradicated my melancholy bullshit. I no longer have any depressive symptoms. Dealing with anxiety without depression is weird but better than the combo.
  • Magnesium - I deal with derealization and this knocks it out immediately (within an hour). I take one 3x a day just to keep those symptoms at bay. Helps reduce anxiety too. Will make you have soft stool at first till you get used to it.
I think you may benefit from the first 2, and possibly the third. If you try, I'd try one at a time, introducing one and then waiting 2 weeks so you understand how it's affecting you, then adding the next.

There's also over the counter stuff like St. John's Wort, 5-HTP, etc. You could research them and see if they intrigue you. The zinc worked wonders for me in the depression area, please look into that.

Hell I don't even know if I will ever be back to 100% again.
You will. But you can't think like this, because it impacts your actions and emotions, which in turn impact each other and right back to your thoughts. You have to break that negative feedback loop in every place there's an opportunity.

Hang in there. Even if you do nothing, I'd bet time re-stabilizes you, but I don't think you have to wait around. All the things you listed doing sound good to me for anyone.
 
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Get a blood test for Vit-D levels if you live in northern area. Deficiency here can really mess with you.
In any case, I recommend only working+affiliate or only studying+affiliate. Doing all 3 is too much, I know cause I did the same.
Also, sun and water is a good cure for the blues. Go lie on the beach for a few weeks.
 
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Trying to find the right medicine that works without side effects is a pain because they all take so long to kick in.

Something I did recently was start supplementing my diet in ways I never had with over the counter minerals basically. I'm sure there's more I could add, but I discovered these three things that were like miracles:
  • Vitamin D - My outlook on life changed within 2-3 days. Instead of negativity, I started seeing the positive again and thinking more "lightly and hopeful."
  • Zinc - Within a couple weeks, this eradicated my melancholy bullshit. I no longer have any depressive symptoms. Dealing with anxiety without depression is weird but better than the combo.
  • Magnesium - I deal with derealization and this knocks it out immediately (within an hour). I take one 3x a day just to keep those symptoms at bay. Helps reduce anxiety too. Will make you have soft stool at first till you get used to it.
I think you may benefit from the first 2, and possibly the third. If you try, I'd try one at a time, introducing one and then waiting 2 weeks so you understand how it's affecting you, then adding the next.

There's also over the counter stuff like St. John's Wort, 5-HTP, etc. You could research them and see if they intrigue you. The zinc worked wonders for me in the depression area, please look into that.



You will. But you can't think like this, because it impacts your actions and emotions, which in turn impact each other and right back to your thoughts. You have to break that negative feedback loop in every place there's an opportunity.

Hang in there. Even if you do nothing, I'd bet time re-stabilizes you, but I don't think you have to wait around. All the things you listed doing sound good to me for anyone.
Thanks - I'm already using these supplements. Vitamin D in the morning, I get Zink/Magnisum in form of ZMA (it's a workout supplement containing Zink, Magnesium and Vitamin B6) before sleep. Also supplementing with fish oil capsules.

I used 5-HTP in the past, but it didn't help much. Was suggested to go on Venlafaxine.. worst idea ever. Side effects were too much so I quit that shit again.

Thank's.. yeah it's really weird. Everyone is telling me it will end, but in this state I really can't see a end. It's been going on for months, I don't even remember what it's like to feel normal.

Get a blood test for Vit-D levels if you live in northern area. Deficiency here can really mess with you.
In any case, I recommend only working+affiliate or only studying+affiliate. Doing all 3 is too much, I know cause I did the same.
Also, sun and water is a good cure for the blues. Go lie on the beach for a few weeks.
Yeah I got bloodwork done, Vit-D was okay, even got tested for testosterone, that was fine too.

Yes I'm reconsidering my whole life atm. From what I can remember of 2018, literally all I did was study, lift, work and more work. Didn't take a single day off... except of public holidays. Trying to find more balance..
 

eliquid

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Do you think part of this, is you beating yourself up for the stumbles you had?

I do that a lot and I read between the lines a bit you may have done this too.

If so, you need to really sit aside some time and forgive yourself and accept that some things are out of your control. Once you genuinely do this ( because you can fake it, but the problems will linger ), accept it, and move on.. things will get better again.
 
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Do you think part of this, is you beating yourself up for the stumbles you had?

I do that a lot and I read between the lines a bit you may have done this too.

If so, you need to really sit aside some time and forgive yourself and accept that some things are out of your control. Once you genuinely do this ( because you can fake it, but the problems will linger ), accept it, and move on.. things will get better again.
Oh yes. Beating myself up for past decisions.. I do this alot.

In my head im like "why the fuck did I work so much... I wouldn't have needed to do this... now I fucked up my life" or like "why the fuck did I not pass the entrance exam, when I aced nearly every other test in my life? what the fuck?"

I know I need to let go of those thoughts now to move on. I'm reading stoicism, helps with accepting things that are out of my control.

I'm trying to focus on the things I can control at the moment, which are diet and lifting...
 

Ryuzaki

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Everyone is telling me it will end, but in this state I really can't see a end.
There's a name for this: "eternity thinking" and "eternity present," where it seems like all is hopeless and nothing can change from this less-than-ideal present moment. It's very common, especially in people who've experienced "breaks." A sudden snap like you've had, whether that leads to burnout, dissociation, a psychotic episode, etc, all are going to have elements of PTSD (a single instance of trauma: the break), of which eternity thinking is a common aspect.

It also features rumination and grief over the past, lost potentialities due to the break, regret over the mistakes you made, like you and eliquid mentioned. This can lead to intrusive thoughts too, a type of OCD that doesn't have a compulsion, just the obsession.

I'd definitely get to the forgiveness and acceptance and letting go of the past, to ward off a spiral into obsessive and intrusive thoughts. I'd be conscious of my energy levels and be engaging in energy management, and setting priorities about where I spend my energy. Your body and brain are trying to force you to do that, it seems.
 
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There's a name for this: "eternity thinking" and "eternity present," where it seems like all is hopeless and nothing can change from this less-than-ideal present moment. It's very common, especially in people who've experienced "breaks." A sudden snap like you've had, whether that leads to burnout, dissociation, a psychotic episode, etc, all are going to have elements of PTSD (a single instance of trauma: the break), of which eternity thinking is a common aspect.

It also features rumination and grief over the past, lost potentialities due to the break, regret over the mistakes you made, like you and eliquid mentioned. This can lead to intrusive thoughts too, a type of OCD that doesn't have a compulsion, just the obsession.

I'd definitely get to the forgiveness and acceptance and letting go of the past, to ward off a spiral into obsessive and intrusive thoughts. I'd be conscious of my energy levels and be engaging in energy management, and setting priorities about where I spend my energy. Your body and brain are trying to force you to do that, it seems.
Oh yeah I get those ruminations/thoughts alot. Any idea how I get "accept" or "let go" of the past?
 

eliquid

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Oh yeah I get those ruminations/thoughts alot. Any idea how I get "accept" or "let go" of the past?
This is hard to word so Im just going to write out what I can.

The first step is you have to genuinely believe it.

You can do 42 things that promise to show you how to let go and accept it, but until you truly believe it, it will just be a mask for hidden anger and anxiety that will resurface later.

I am not sure the cycle ever stops. Let me clarify this.

I still wake up everyday and many times, blame myself for something. But it's new stuff. I might wake up and be like, why the fuck did I do XYZ 2 days ago? So stupid of me!

But the things I let go and accepted years ago, they don't resurface. I let the shit go. I cut the strings. I made my peace and moved forward.

My daily WTF and blame has never gone away. It's just part of me. However, I have to "empty" my trash and forgive daily too and move on. New stuff still gets in the trash though. However, emptying it daily is what pushes you forward.

It's only when I genuinely know I emptied the trash I can move on. I don't feel people can stop putting things in the trash though.

Make sense?

I read a story somewhere that some famous productive general in the army would write down on a piece of paper his issues with people and problems he had, and then throw that paper in a drawer. It was his way of emptying the trash in his head. I think a lot of people go through this. This is how he moved forward.

.
 

TacoCat

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Ahh, yess, the good ol Depression and Anxiety,

I've battled this monster for about 4 years now, it ain't easy.

I used to be this

I Can do it all, I'm the master of universe, Hustle Hustle Hustle, I'll sleep when I'm dead type of person. But at the end it turned out that all that was just to mask up all my insecurities.

I was all talk and no action type of guy. Which lead to a huge problem.

I'm convinced that I can do anything, but when I try to do something my brain turns into a potatoe and I can't get anything done and I mean zero.

And I was a highly trained high achieving millenial. By that i mean, I had read a lot of self help books. I couldn't understand what was wrong.

Why do I think I can achieve anything, but I can't make myself to do anything.

It took me a couple of years to come to terms with myself that - I'm not an all knowing guru and I know jack shit. I was beeing a perfectionistic tyrant to myself.

Which meant that for even the slightest mistakes I would tear myself down and feeel like complete shit.

That coupled with my first love tearing my heart out of my chest smashed my world to foken pieces.

I became depressed and suicidal.

Just like you @psyvortex I tried everything that is recommended on the internet to deal with depression. I literally did everything that is on the list that you wrote.

But that didn't really solve my problem. It was distracting me from the depression, but it was still there.

Then I struck gold.

What @eliquid mentions is a good start. If you really want to dive deep into solving your depression check out my course... (lol jk) ... check out David D Burns "Feeling good".

Do the fucking exercises, I got better within 1 - 2 weeks of doing the small exercises every day and I mean really better.

Now I'm prone to beeing depressed, but if I keep the regular daily routines and work with myself, I can manage that shit pretty good, even when it gets rough.

Even now my critical brain is telling me "This post is shit, I shouldn't have rambled so much, noone is going to read it and that joke is fucking lame"

My response - "Lol, thanks for the input .. mate" (read that in a sarcastic australian voice)
 

Jared

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Give N-Acetylcysteine a look. I was recommended it by Mike Cernovich, and so far it's worked like a charm. It's cheap, too; around $0.10/capsule.
 

TacoCat

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Give N-Acetylcysteine a look. I was recommended it by Mike Cernovich, and so far it's worked like a charm. It's cheap, too; around $0.10/capsule.
This sent me into an hour long research on this supplement. I was going to rip on your comment for pushing pills as a solution, I ended up ordering a bottle from Amazon. :D
 

jstover77

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I went through something similar when I found out my wife was having an affairr, then literally 2 months later my Dad died and two months after that my best friend died. I was in a bad spot for almost 2 years. I did most of what you are doing to get out of it - diet, exercise, meditation, vitamins, CBD pills (these really helped with anxiety and overall good moods), therapy, getting out more to social events, etc.. I also started doing testosterone therapy, which also was life altering, but I think you may be a bit too young for that..lol. Defintely go get yourself a full blood workup to make sure there is nothing going on, but otherwise, there's a lot of good advice above.

Hand in there bud.
 
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This is hard to word so Im just going to write out what I can.

The first step is you have to genuinely believe it.

You can do 42 things that promise to show you how to let go and accept it, but until you truly believe it, it will just be a mask for hidden anger and anxiety that will resurface later.

I am not sure the cycle ever stops. Let me clarify this.

I still wake up everyday and many times, blame myself for something. But it's new stuff. I might wake up and be like, why the fuck did I do XYZ 2 days ago? So stupid of me!

But the things I let go and accepted years ago, they don't resurface. I let the shit go. I cut the strings. I made my peace and moved forward.

My daily WTF and blame has never gone away. It's just part of me. However, I have to "empty" my trash and forgive daily too and move on. New stuff still gets in the trash though. However, emptying it daily is what pushes you forward.

It's only when I genuinely know I emptied the trash I can move on. I don't feel people can stop putting things in the trash though.

Make sense?

I read a story somewhere that some famous productive general in the army would write down on a piece of paper his issues with people and problems he had, and then throw that paper in a drawer. It was his way of emptying the trash in his head. I think a lot of people go through this. This is how he moved forward.

.
Thanks. I'm working on fully accepting the past and forgiving myself. I already feel better, will take some time for the depression symptoms to fully subside though I guess (if they ever do).


Ahh, yess, the good ol Depression and Anxiety,

I've battled this monster for about 4 years now, it ain't easy.

I used to be this

I Can do it all, I'm the master of universe, Hustle Hustle Hustle, I'll sleep when I'm dead type of person. But at the end it turned out that all that was just to mask up all my insecurities.

I was all talk and no action type of guy. Which lead to a huge problem.

I'm convinced that I can do anything, but when I try to do something my brain turns into a potatoe and I can't get anything done and I mean zero.

And I was a highly trained high achieving millenial. By that i mean, I had read a lot of self help books. I couldn't understand what was wrong.

Why do I think I can achieve anything, but I can't make myself to do anything.

It took me a couple of years to come to terms with myself that - I'm not an all knowing guru and I know jack shit. I was beeing a perfectionistic tyrant to myself.

Which meant that for even the slightest mistakes I would tear myself down and feeel like complete shit.

That coupled with my first love tearing my heart out of my chest smashed my world to foken pieces.

I became depressed and suicidal.

Just like you @psyvortex I tried everything that is recommended on the internet to deal with depression. I literally did everything that is on the list that you wrote.

But that didn't really solve my problem. It was distracting me from the depression, but it was still there.

Then I struck gold.

What @eliquid mentions is a good start. If you really want to dive deep into solving your depression check out my course... (lol jk) ... check out David D Burns "Feeling good".

Do the fucking exercises, I got better within 1 - 2 weeks of doing the small exercises every day and I mean really better.

Now I'm prone to beeing depressed, but if I keep the regular daily routines and work with myself, I can manage that shit pretty good, even when it gets rough.

Even now my critical brain is telling me "This post is shit, I shouldn't have rambled so much, noone is going to read it and that joke is fucking lame"

My response - "Lol, thanks for the input .. mate" (read that in a sarcastic australian voice)
Thank you! Just downloaded the book and started reading... and will focus on the exercises and report back.

Give N-Acetylcysteine a look. I was recommended it by Mike Cernovich, and so far it's worked like a charm. It's cheap, too; around $0.10/capsule.
Thanks - will look into that.. how did it help for you?

I went through something similar when I found out my wife was having an affairr, then literally 2 months later my Dad died and two months after that my best friend died. I was in a bad spot for almost 2 years. I did most of what you are doing to get out of it - diet, exercise, meditation, vitamins, CBD pills (these really helped with anxiety and overall good moods), therapy, getting out more to social events, etc.. I also started doing testosterone therapy, which also was life altering, but I think you may be a bit too young for that..lol. Defintely go get yourself a full blood workup to make sure there is nothing going on, but otherwise, there's a lot of good advice above.

Hand in there bud.
Oh shit.. glad you recovered. Already got blood / test checked so that is not the problem. You mentioned CBD pills, how much mg of CBD did you take per day?
 

animalstyle

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Check out psilocybin (magic mushroom) retreats. I can't recommend enough. The michael pollan book 'how to change your mind' is the book to read if the intentional, healing use of psychedelics interests you at all.
 
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Check out psilocybin (magic mushroom) retreats. I can't recommend enough. The michael pollan book 'how to change your mind' is the book to read if the intentional, healing use of psychedelics interests you at all.
Oh yeah I know about psilocybin, I actually tried to go for a 3.5g trip, but somehow I didn't get the expected effects (only body high and mild visuals), I think it's because of the Effexor (Venlaflaxine), which I took for 2 months, its a SNRI.

I was able to get effects from mushrooms / psilocibin before so it's really weird.

I also used to microdose in the past with great benefits, however its not working anymore since I've been on the antidepressants :(.
 

CCarter

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@psyvortex - Have you tried going outside and going for a 2-4 mile run every day for two weeks? There is a huge difference between going to an air-conditioned gym and maybe running on a treadmill versus being outside with the natural air and running around like humans are suppose to.

Just breathing air from the outside will have a huge impact on your mental state - as well as being under the sun, generating Vitamin D naturally instead of taking some weak manufactured shit.

Humans aren’t naturally supposed to be inside for hours and days on end. Whenever I feel like I’m in a negative mood just opening the windows to my house and letting new air circulate for 1-2 hours makes a huge difference to my mood.

You are depressed cause you are treating all the symptoms of the problems instead of the underlying reason for it. Adding more and more drugs or more “processes” and steps... “I do this, I do that, I also take this...” Jebus - whoa chill out. Just reading that list stressed me out.

What @eliquid said hit home to me too, you have to forgive yourself for mistakes of the past. Whenever I’m coding and some shit from the past starts creeping into my thoughts I tell myself “I forgive myself for that incident” - last couple of days have been mentally better for me just doing that.

I don’t have all the answers, but I think there is wisdom in this quote:

“Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” - Antoine de Saint-Exupery

You keep adding stuff, to your process, task, life or whatever - whether it is adding manufactured drugs, pills, mushrooms (seriously guys??), “12 steps to a healthy you” or whatever. Doesn’t that just add more and more pressure and anxiety when one of these things don’t work fast enough? People now-a-days have no patience - how fast are you looking for turn around?

Just let it all go... find a beach somewhere and lay there for two weeks and run 2-4 miles a day.

You talk about mental health and I look at your avatar- it seems like you are foreshadowing something about yourself simply from the avatar you picked out. I don’t know what it is- you have to figure it out - and adding more “stuff” isn’t the solution, it can’t be since it hasn’t worked.
 
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@psyvortex - Have you tried going outside and going for a 2-4 mile run every day for two weeks? There is a huge difference between going to an air-conditioned gym and maybe running on a treadmill versus being outside with the natural air and running around like humans are suppose to.

Just breathing air from the outside will have a huge impact on your mental state - as well as being under the sun, generating Vitamin D naturally instead of taking some weak manufactured shit.

Humans aren’t naturally supposed to be inside for hours and days on end. Whenever I feel like I’m in a negative mood just opening the windows to my house and letting new air circulate for 1-2 hours makes a huge difference to my mood.

You are depressed cause you are treating all the symptoms of the problems instead of the underlying reason for it. Adding more and more drugs or more “processes” and steps... “I do this, I do that, I also take this...” Jebus - whoa chill out. Just reading that list stressed me out.

What @eliquid said hit home to me too, you have to forgive yourself for mistakes of the past. Whenever I’m coding and some shit from the past starts creeping into my thoughts I tell myself “I forgive myself for that incident” - last couple of days have been mentally better for me just doing that.

I don’t have all the answers, but I think there is wisdom in this quote:

“Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” - Antoine de Saint-Exupery

You keep adding stuff, to your process, task, life or whatever - whether it is adding manufactured drugs, pills, mushrooms (seriously guys??), “12 steps to a healthy you” or whatever. Doesn’t that just add more and more pressure and anxiety when one of these things don’t work fast enough? People now-a-days have no patience - how fast are you looking for turn around?

Just let it all go... find a beach somewhere and lay there for two weeks and run 2-4 miles a day.

You talk about mental health and I look at your avatar- it seems like you are foreshadowing something about yourself simply from the avatar you picked out. I don’t know what it is- you have to figure it out - and adding more “stuff” isn’t the solution, it can’t be since it hasn’t worked.
The months before the depression started, I didn't go outside alot.. thats true.. starting beeing in nature/running outside when it was too late. Although I supplemented with vitamin D before..

About adding more stuff, omg this hits it on the nail I think. I constantly think about what I need to do / in future to fix my depression.. when the key would be to stay active / present I guess. I'm meditating, that helps, its no cure though.

Back in February my state was so bad, all I could do was lie in the sun for weeks. However that didn't really help. So far time seems to help the most.. but it's still there.. I get all the common symptoms of major depression except the suicidal thoughts.

About the mushrooms, they seriously work for depression for a lot of people (see the John Hopkins study).

The avatar.. yeah I don't remember exactly why I picked it, but it has something to do with my introverted character type.. I read that introverts are naturally more prone to depression, yeah there is a connection.
 

animalstyle

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@psyvortex glad to hear you've utilized mushrooms as tools but I do want to make sure you're seeing my point which is the retreat setting.

Many of the accelerating mental health problems in the world, in my opinion, are caused largely in part to the isolating nature of our society. Not having to rely on anyone for anything and building ourselves into islands is terrible for the psyche. Look at what you're doing here in action, you're reaching out to other people for help.

Not just to advocate for psychedelic use use as a blanket solution (it's obvious that they are misunderstood and feared based on societal stigma - @CCarter there is plenty of amazing research out there if you'd like me to link you) but mushrooms used in a group retreat setting do two things - they uncover and unleash the shit that you pack down so that you MUST process the emotions/feelings/thoughts and they help you connect with other people which is critical for processing the shit you unpack.

Eating in isolation and not discussing/processing what comes up is a dangerous game to be playing IMO. Honestly, you really don't even need the mushrooms or other substances if you could access the emotional side and find connection and support through others - they are just powerful catalysts.

From my perspective the first step to healing any emotional or mental trauma is to surround ourselves with caring people. We need connection, we need to dig our demons up, face them, address them, and integrate the lessons and we need people who care about us to support that journey.

The worst years of my life have been spent in isolation making great money. I've come to these forums for help and been met by the community as you're being met now. While it is an amazing gift to have this, and I don't take it for granted - it doesn't replace close, open person to person connections and support (read: eye contact, love, physical touch).

We need to be part of a social net that catches us and others when we stumble. Doing this can cure many things. Pills and quick fixes are palliative care that should carry you through short term situation - not long term chronic issues.
 

CCarter

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it's obvious that they are misunderstood and feared based on societal stigma - @CCarter there is plenty of amazing research out there if you'd like me to link you
I really don’t care about any of that TBH. Maybe mushrooms work for you, maybe going outside and running works for others, maybe therapy work for another group of people - my underlying problem is all these solutions being advised seem to be “add this, add that, try this... mushrooms...” come on guys, it’s not solving the problem, they are attempts at covering up the symptoms.

How can you be lite as a feather by adding more shit into the equation?

You hit the nail on the head that depression comes from a lack of social interaction. Just hanging out with friends makes a world of difference.

Several weeks back I was in a slump and my friend invited me to her house, and for about 4 hours we were making a science project for her daughter’s school project together. Just something that simply got me out of the rut I was in. It’s about social interactions and letting go of emotional baggage. However if someone is quick to say “try this drug, mushroom, pill, smoke weed...” Meh - fuck all that.

Cure the disease not the symptoms.
 

Ryuzaki

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I always see conversations like this from the imaginary scenario I read in a book once, of all the helpers standing outside a church looking in at the pulpit through a stained glass window. Everyone's perceptions are different because they're looking through different parts of the stained glass. Some parts (their own experiences) are green, red, pink, blue, purple. But they're all aimed at the same goal (to help).

Depression has no single cause nor any single solution, and it's entirely different than being sad or melancholy. It's not a mind state either. It's a mode of existence.

Sometimes you do have to treat the symptoms first before treating the root causes becomes possible. The best approach is to treat both simultaneously along side the help of a professional.

Psychiatric medication can help manage the symptoms but in many cases there's an imbalance (root cause) that's not easy to overcome without medication retraining the brain as to what the proper neuro-chemical balance is. It's not always necessary, but is helpful even if for a short period of time. Many people have resistances to it. The reality is, if you get a cut, you use a bandaid. If you have diabetes and need insulin, you take it. It's the same concept.

Depression along with most other mental illnesses aren't just environmental events. You can have genetic dispositions. A trauma or long period of stress can wreck your energy levels and emotional regulation. A bad diet and poor nutrition can upset your homeostasis. There's no one cause and no one solution.

The best move is to attack from all angles. Exercise, being social, correcting nutrition deficits, medication, talk therapy, cognitive behavioral corrections (thinking better), changing your environment (location, poisonous family and friends, a shit job)... Take a full inventory of your life and you'll find pieces that are just out of whack that need fixing.

There's a loop here that involves your thoughts, your actions, and your emotions. They all effect each other and you need to look at all of them, not just one single part of that circular feedback loop. There's also interpersonal and spiritual aspects.

Also when you get down like this, other hidden problems expose themselves and start bubbling up from the subconscious and festering that you end up needing to take care of. Maybe your parents, teachers, siblings, friends, bullies... there's all kinds of past experiences that form who you are now that need to be processed and re-experienced in the present and dealt with correctly.

The one thing that's for sure is you always come out the other side as a more mature, more empathetic, more wise, and more experienced person. That is a prize worth fighting for. Our ability to grow to certain heights is equal to the depths of our past suffering.

You also seem to be at the age (I'd have to guess somewhere between 18-25) where anyone with predispositions to mental afflictions gets their first taste. It never comes out of nowhere. You described the precipitating events. There's always an immediate trigger in your life (your roommates, your job, burning out) and there's always an ultimate cause too (genetic predisposition, past traumas, bad childhood). You'll need to look at both the immediate and the ultimate causes.

It's never "this is a problem I'm going through between ages X to X, a single chapter of my life." It's a biographical situation, one that stretches back to the beginning. If you want the full growth and prize at the end, you have to dig deep. There's also the angle where you can be one of the people that stays on meds their whole life and only deals with the symptoms. Lots of people do that, and rob themselves of huge growth potential, and turn into zombies.

I'd look at the big picture and understand there's no magic fixes and no single variable that caused or will solve it.
 

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Please hear me out with an open mind...

I think it's very important to point out that there's a big difference between depression depression and "I'm having an off-day, but I went for a run and now I feel better" depression.

Some people have genuine chemical imbalances in their brains that are debilitating and it's dangerous to discredit that in any way, especially using personal anecdotes that ignore commonly accepted and extensively-researched facts about this disease.

There's also a big difference between seeking professional help to find out what's wrong, or having a self-diagnosis. It's so common to see people who have self-diagnosed themselves talking about how easy it can be to overcome depression.

If you can fix it by opening a window, I think you'd be hard-pressed to find anybody who knows what they're talking about that would call that depression. That would be like going up to a geologist and telling them the earth is flat. You'd get the same reaction.

I understand and fully acknowledge and appreciate that all of the advice in this thread is coming from a place of wanting to be helpful. Everyone's giving their time to help out a stranger, that's a beautiful thing, and just having open discussions about mental health in general is great, but it needs to be done responsibly.

These imbalances make it infinitely more difficult for people to even take the first steps of going for a run or hanging out with friends, so it's really tough to understand what it's like for those people if you're someone who is able to just "will their way out of it."

There is no shame in using medication to help you overcome depression. Sometimes, it takes a lot of trial and error to find the one that works with minimal side-effects. It can help to get you over the hump and to a point where you CAN work on the rest of the things.

I'm not advocating for a second to NOT exercise, get fresh air, spend time with loved ones, try new experiences, and so on. If that works, that's awesome and huge props to everyone who can overcome this challenge with sheer will. I'm talking to the person out there who may be reading this, and has already tried those things and they haven't worked, but still feels a stigma around using medicine to treat an illness.
 
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CCarter

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I sort of doubt some people’s idea of depression at times. I don’t know what you guys experience, but I’ve had personal episodes of simply not wanting to do anything but sleep for 20 hours a day and just get up to use the bathroom, binge watch a show for 4 hours then go back to sleep - that lasted for 6 months. Depression to me is not being able to or actually willing to function, even do thing that are bare minimum for survival like eating food.

So far I’ve hear people are able to go lift weights, study, go to the beach - imagine simply not having the will to open your eyes cause you see no purpose or point.

It’s a lot different than trying to get over a girlfriend breaking up with you, it’s a void of not caring whether tomorrow happens or not.

Maybe magic mushrooms may have worked to help me out of the slump faster. What did it for me was social interaction and finding someone that unknowingly got me through it simply by bullshitting with them everyday around a new hobby. Next came the opening of windows, then going outside, then going for a run, and then getting back into the gym.

What I suspect but cannot diagnosis is most people are simply lost. They don’t know where to go in life. Deep depression is not willing to care about your future or anyone else’s, having no goals, or desire to achieve those goals, feeling like a loser even when everyone around you is praising you, you still feel empty inside.

I thought about doing it all, adding this pill or this vitamin, and going to the gym to do this, it was all baby steps to get out of the void, but what really did it for me was social interaction and going outside for natural air - and writing down my goals and going after them with a check box, but that came after I decided to create goals and a purpose for my life - all after the social experience that brought me back from the sleeping dead.

So ask yourself if you really experience depression or are simply lost at sea, there is a difference. If you can get out of bed and do activities, it might be you are just lost.