What is “Healthy” Mental Health?

mentalhealth1

Mental health is commonly associated with psychiatric, mood, or personality disorders.  Society at large associates mental health with “crazy”.  Why is mental health so negative?  Shouldn’t the health of our minds be a positive?  Could the negative stigma of mental health be, in large part, due to its negative associations?  What is the positive counterbalance?  What is good mental health? If we do not have a clear picture of what good mental health looks like how can we fully understand mental health issues and to what target we are aiming?  What is good mental health?

Mental health is commonly defined by negative symptoms and behaviors.  If someone’s’ thoughts, feelings, or behaviors fall outside the norm and lead to unwanted or negative consequences it is deemed an issue.  A doctor may prescribe psychiatric medications to lessen unwanted symptoms.  Group and/or one-on-one counseling may be part of the treatment plan.   However, what are we aiming for, and what is the target of good mental health?  Other than attempting to stabilize a person with mental health issues in hopes they can have a full life, or not compromise others, we have no real goals to aim for good mental health.

emotional-intelligence1

Emotional intelligence is a term used to define someone’s emotional maturity.  Is the individual thinking illogically?  Are their thoughts distorted?  How does one respond to stress?  Does the individual take responsibility for their emotions or do they blame others?  Does one take other people’s actions personally? Does one depend too much on others or do others depend too much on them?  Emotional intelligence is a good gauge for positive mental health because it is the direct result of our thinking.

Mental health isn’t necessarily about positivity or looking “on the brighter side”.  Mental health has far more to do about identifying the thinking which is causing our feelings, and discovering the underlying beliefs which reinforce how we perceive and experience ourselves and the world.  Distorted thinking and fallacious reasoning are two main culprits in the creation of negative feelings, beliefs, and actions.  It is one big circle.  If my thinking is illogical or distorted, my feelings will become illogical and distorted.

cbt

A key to mental health is the regular practice of accurate self-appraisal, owing our emotions, discovering our thinking causing our emotions, and challenging our thoughts for sound logic and clarity from distortions.  Far too often, we accept our thoughts as they are and without question.  Thinking is not just a voice in our head, a conversation we are having with ourselves or the story we tell.  Thinking is a key in discovering and understanding how we create our experience and reality. It is a key only you can use.

types-of-distorted-thinking-thoughts-cognitive-behavioral-therapy-cbt

If you have a negative or unwanted feeling check your thinking for common thought distortions above : ) do any of these apply? Or checkout this link to CBT worksheets here!

My story, True Hope – Empower – Natural Brain Balance

TrueHopeLogo

It all started in 2010, for me.  I was suffering from extreme emotional swings.  I had been treated for depression and anxiety most of my adult life.  I went in to treatment and the program psychiatrist happened to be my Dad’s psychiatrist back in the day. Even more amazing is what happened next.

She read my history and told me she was going to check my thyroid.  I had never had my thyroid checked before, though I had taken almost every medication I heard of for depression and anxiety.  This particular doctor believed the thyroid played a major role in mental health.

She saved my life!  My thyroid was elevated, my liver and kidneys were shutting down, and the medication doctors put me on was reaching toxic levels! If she hadn’t had my thyroid tested I could have died.

This doctor told me about a natural supplement for brain balance and health.  She told me, people who are unresponsive to medication tend to respond well to this natural supplement.  It was http://www.truehope.com their “Empower Supplement”!

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I was able to take this supplement while coming off psychiatric medications which were causing health issues and felt better than ever!  I still saw doctors regularly and continued medication off and on, but Empower has been an excellent supplement with or without medication.  If you are taking medication consult with your doctor and they will probably look at the label of ingredients and tell you it is fine to take it. Thats what mine told me. However, True Hope has a dedicated staff to assisting you with your use of this product and have been willing to work with doctors.  Doctors usually have no problem with this Empower Supplement because it is all natural ingredients.

You can get these ingredients from many sources.  The magic of Empower is the synergistic blend of nutrients to promote brain health and balance.  It is how each ingredient works with the other in optimal dosages.  I definitely suggest reaching out these these wonderful people and discussing how one of their all natural supplements may help you or someone you love.  It has saved my life and always works when my medication does not.  That’s my experience with this amazing product.  I hope you check it out for yourselves and see how you may be able to better manage your brain health and balance : ) http://www.truehope.com

Philosopher Stoned - Recovered book and album release 2009 shot by Jonathan Jeyes

Philosopher Stoned – Recovered book and album release Shot by Jonathan Reyes

 

Thank you for reading this and I hope you share this information with anyone who may be able to benefit from a supplement which promotes brain balance and health : ) http://www.truehope.com

Tavius Dot Org

A Letter From My Dead Son

Daddy,

You know what to do. Just do it! Be yourself. Life is suppose to be fun. Be happy Daddy, just like you always wanted me to be happy. I am happy. There is so much I can do now that I never could do before. I am learning so much and having fun! I see you often and I know you feel me and try to feel me. I know you love me and you know I love you too. Life can be hard. It’s not all about you and what you want. It’s all about learning to love, serve one another and take care of each other (including ourselves).  We are all one big family. We are all connected, even when it doesn’t feel like it. I know you know this.  Live it. Slow down. Trust your gut, Show up. Be present. Allow yourself to love and be loved (those final words were your own to you through me;)

Love,

Your Son,

Goose

Ideas That Keep Rolling Around

I am tired, but I cannot sleep.  I have these ideas rolling around in my mind and body and they are distracting me.  I have been wanting to blog more, but am afraid to come to the page with emotions as I tend to intellectualize my personal feelings.  I can be overly-critical and turn people off though I don’t mean to.  I also believe what I believe with a passion and purpose because of the experience these beliefs afford me, the actual difference they make in my life.

You can literally believe anything we want.  We do it all the time.  We assume what things mean and make up a story, a dialogue to make sense of things.  We write a world into existence with the words we tell ourselves in our minds.  We tell ourselves and others a story to make believe whatever we want.  Most people don’t consciously manipulate their stories to get what they want.  This, coupled, with the inability to feel others leads to sociopathic tendencies.

The point I wanted to make was that our minds and our bodies are connected.  The great philosophic minds of our time and ancient times debated the mind-body dualism, or separation.   let’s take a look at what is really going on here.  It is important because it helps explain the mind in a way that is more expansive and capable of more.

Our bodies are transducers.  They convert one form of energy to another, bio-chemical electromagnetics.   Our brains are thought to be the alpha and omega of our minds, but this is just not true.  Our brains are part of a vast neurological system conducting energy throughout our bodies, communicating back and forth throughout.  Our brain is just one part of the whole neurological system.  Many of the same basic functions thought to give the brain it’s central role in the central nervous system are actually found throughout the entire body and neurological system.  Basically, our mind are not just our brains, they are an entire system which interacts with the world through our bodies.  There is another “brain” in the body tied to our digestion, immunity, overall health, mood, and energy, the gut.  More information travels from the gut to the brain than the brain to the gut.  Why do we call intuition “gut” reaction?  It is simple, because the gut is functioning much like our brains but maybe even to much higher capacities.  The brain may actually be found to be secondary to the rest of the nervous system like an important node in circuitry.

Where am I going with all of this?  What is mindfulness, presence, and embodiment.  Buddhists have been practicing the art of mindfulness for many years. It is mainly a focus of the mind into the immediate sensations and experience of the moment at hand and nothing more.  It’s a quieting of the mind as connected to the brain and a descent into the entire neurological body to become aware of the whole body experience, or mentality.  Mindfulness is so healthy a mental practice it is key to treating anxiety and other mental disorders.  It is also key to a healthy mind.

What is presence?  The act of arriving.  We allow ourselves to come out of our brain centered thoughts in our heads and relax into our bodies, as if we were energetically breathing into ourselves a little more from breath to breath until we feel connected with the earth and the cosmos.  This is the beginning of embodiment, to be present in a particular state or experience.  Embodiment is a tool for becoming one thing or another as completely as you can so to experience its fullness and ultimate meaning.

Hiding in Plain Site – A Poem About Grief

Hiding in Plain Site

 

I’m here

But I don’t want to be

And its not your fault

 

I don’t know how to be myself right now

 

Something has come between us

I feel it

 

But it has no words

To work with

 

It’s not just

 

Anxiety

Depression

Fear

Irritability

Grief

Or shyness

 

I’m not avoiding you

Because

I don’t like you

Or am upset with you

 

I just don’t know what to say

Or how to say it

 

Right now

There is so much

Going on

Inside me

 

I am so preoccupied with everything I am going through

 

I feel bad

I can’t quite be

Fully present or engaging

 

You feel so far away

I don’t feel like I have the energy

To meet you

Where you are

 

It’s cramped

In here

 

I’m alone but with you in spirit

 

And don’t want to bother anyone

I don’t feel I have anything good to offer anyone

I don’t want to bring you down

 

I don’t want you to catch

My disease

Even though

I know you cannot

 

I sometimes feel this way

 

All I really want to say is that I love you

And only want the best for you

And I am here as much as I can be right now

And I hope you understand.

 

 

Tavius Dyer Monday August 8, 2016

Mental Climate Change

 

 

We have all heard of Global Warming and Climate Change. If technology has been so damaging of the natural environment, wouldn’t it follow logically, technology may be having a similar damaging effect on the internal environment of our minds? What if our dependency on media were similar to our dependency on fossil fuels, polluting the natural environment of the mind, and changing the “climate” of our minds, changing the way we think, feel and experience the world? What if our dependency on consuming media was also becoming an addiction? We would have blind faith in technology and deny the any serious or potential damage occurring to ourselves. Isn’t that precisely where we stand now, accepting whatever technology we are given to consume without serious question to its overall effect or the future it will bring? This is precisely where we stand today. However, the damage in our minds is not as easy to see as the damage of the natural environment in the external world, so, it may be far more dangerous and addiction and disease.

My post on “Screen Life” goes into some of this more ; )

 

Media Fuels Mind

Media is extracted

out from under

the pressures of reality

buried in layers

over the landscape

of our unconscious

minds.

Technology processes media

for optimal combustion

fuels the engine of our minds,

or distracts us from the reality of our lives

but for a moment

of release from the ordinary

to escape

the boredom of being

unentertained

by ourselves and each other

or the feeling of loneliness

created by our inability

to effectively communicate

with each other,

and connect

naturally.

Mental Climate Change

causes Mental Warming

of the collective consciousness

into the rising solidarity

of a simultaneous experience

manifesting

fear

and pain,

anger,

and violence.

Tavius Dyer, Saturday, July 16th, 2016

Screen Life

Fun images depicting the idea of “Screen Life”.

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Screen Life

I type and watch letters emerge from the blinking cursor as it moves across the screen.  I have a Screen Life. I blog.  I facebook.  I sometimes tweet, and have been trying to use instagram more (snapchat is beyond me – maybe I am too old;). There are so many ways to “connect” online, and new portals are opening up all the time.  It can take a lot of time and energy to keep up with others online.  The time we spend online on our phones is taking a life of its own.  The more time we spend in our Screen Life, the more our Screen Life becomes important.  Technology is a powerful tool to communicate and share media.  It is so powerful that it rivals real life!  What is it about our Screen Lives that is so important?

I feel using technology to communicate can connect us to some information about others who may be across the world.  This is cool.   We can share pictures and videos more easily as well.  There are many conveniences in our digital devices.  However,  online communication lacks the most import information we need to really understand each other, ourselves.  Once we take our bodies out of the communication we lose almost everything we would have in person to help us understand each other;  facial expressions, gestures, posture, tone of voice and the overall feel of someone’s presence.  It has been said 90% of communication is body language.  At best, are we communicating with 10% of the information we need to understand each other when not in person or over the phone? Yes.  

The issues of communicating without most of the information we need to understand each other is pretty obvious.   Let’s take facebook for example.  We have all seen things blow up online, be misunderstood, taken out of context, or just plain read it wrong.  Some people have ended relationships or feel there life is over because of something “happened” online.

While more people “connect” online, more people feel anxious, lonely, depressed, and fearful than ever before.  If technology is truly connecting us for the good, then why doesn’t it really feel good the more we do it?  It is a growing feeling inside of us who have a Screen Life; something is missing, something just doesn’t feel quite right.  Perhaps, we feel misunderstood, lonely, sad, fearful, or just don’t feel like we fit in to the online world anymore.  What about the real world?  

Let us not forget, the digital age has given us digital media in our digital solo-universes, but the real world is where others are, and where connections are made which make us feel more whole, and a part of something greater than ourselves.  It is important as people to remember, Screen Life is not the only life.  Let’s not forget to spend some time outside, together, or with ourselves doing something or nothing in the big beautiful world all around (outside!).

Tavius Dot Org

Along Came a Spider

Along came a spider.

She spread her web along the mainstream.  She caught nearly everyone that tried to pass and wove them into cocoons. Then she drained them slowly of all things which gave them life.

The spider masterly managed her ever growing web.  She had constant connection to everything that was going on.  She could tell when anything moved or changed. The movement was carried through the web and brought back to her.  She learned how to read the signals. Eventually, the spider mastered her web and was the envy of all the spiders.  

Some jealous spiders tried to use her web, but she was a black widow.  She seduced them all and killed them.

After some time, her web became so intricate and varied she would get lost.  Then came the day when she had spun too much web and entangled herself.  She hadn’t even realized she had done it.  She was too busy thinking she was managing her web when in fact she was just spinning herself into a cocoon.

The other spiders began to traverse her web and devour everyone she spun in their cocoons as they spun their own.  

And the rest will be history ; )

Some Significant Problems with Politics in America

The main problem with politics in America is simply the fact that the United States is not a true Democracy.  If it were, the popular vote would prevail.  However, we elect representatives who vote as they do, without real accountability to their constituents beyond their own re-electability, but in some rare cases.  Senator Bernie Sanders is one of them.  Here is a man who marched with Martin Luther King and has been the voice for equality and majority his ENTIRE career which spans decades and insists on not taking money from big business but the voters directly!

Now, we see, in America, a defiance of establishment politics, meaning more Americans are fed up with the same old bull shit.  The usual suspects (Democrats and Republicans) are getting outted or as close as will be allowed.  It is time for change.  We have a political system who polarizes the middle as if it were the full swing of the political pendulum.  Anybody, not just left or just right of the middle is polarized, like Bernie Sanders, labeled a communist (as if that is ideally a bad thing).  I am not for the popular “pretend” communist regimes of modern history who were really dictatorships under the guise of Communism, almost as much as America is an Oligarchy under the guise of Democracy.

Basically, what I really want to say is this. No matter how close Bernie Sanders gets to winning the Democratic Nomination, even if winning the delegates people vote for there are still 700 “Super” delegates or roughly 15% of the delegates who get to vote however they please, and most already voted for Hilary Clinton, even before the country really began to weigh in on what it wanted.  If we the people vote for more delegates to Bernie Sanders, he still wont get to run for president because there are a bunch of people we don’t directly elect that vote as they please.

Another example in our lack of Democracy is the 1992 Presidential election when Al Gore had a million plus more votes than George W. Bush, but because of the “Electoral College” (representatives that vote for us by area who actually elect our president),  George W. Bush won the presidency.  And the electoral vote which gave Bush the election was in a district of Florida run by a Bush relative, who called for a questionable recount after Al Gore was already determined President of the United States of America!  Somehow, George W.  Bush got the victory despite over a million Americans more voting for Al Gore.   That somehow, is the electoral college like “delegates” in nominee elections who vote for us, many of which do not vote based on what the people vote, necessarily.  As long as the citizens of the United States of America are removed from the direct election of elected officials and those officials merely reflections of the popular vote, America will not truly be a Democracy, and real freedom will remain our biggest lie.

The plain fact is that the United States is a Democratic Republic which is significantly different than the freedom-totting true Democracy America pretends to be and violently will upon much of the rest of the world.  How can you give something to someone you don’t actually have yourself?  How can the US give Democracy to other countries when the US is not really a true Democracy itself?

This is another important point in Bernie Sander’s campaign, stop trying to control the rest of the world overthrowing other people’s governments.  It’s not working.  Many of America’s enemies were made this way, including Ben Laden (al qaeda), and Saddam Hussein (Iraq).  Who are we to tell other countries what to do when we do not even get to tell our government what to do?  So our government kills with our money in our name and we have little or nothing to say about it?  How is this Democracy?  When do I get a say?

And so it is.  A rant.  A rave.  Easily dismissable as emotional and sophomoric, but the ideas are real, and they are significant in the lives of everyone. We need to stop feeding the lies, and live in the truth.  We must demand it.  It’s time to take back our country (if we ever really had it to begin with), and promote real Democracy, where the people directly elect their officials who only represent the majority.  A government for the people, by the people, just as the United States Constitution guarantees US citizens.  When are we going to get our Constitutional Rights guaranteed us?  Until the majority is directly represented, our constitutional rights are at root denied, and we fail to be a true Democracy.  When are the people of this country going to rise as one and make a real change for the people, by the people and accept no less?  What will it take?

I was thinking about the “checks and balances” of the Republic of the United States.  There are three distinct branches of government,  the executive, which is the president, the legislative, which is the congress, and the judicial, which is the court system.  I believe, until we have a strong third party “Independent” in our political process bi-partisanship will continue to polarize America.  Bernie Sanders is an Independent running on the Democratic ticket.  I imagine, unfortunately, that no matter how the Democrats vote, even if Bernie Sanders gets more delegates by vote, the “super” delegates will ensure Hilary Clinton is the nominee.  The only way Bernie wins the nomination is if he gets more than 60% of the overall delegates. This would be nothing short of a miracle.  I have had my doubts since the get go, and continue to have them even now.

We have won the most important thing in this election process already,  the motivation of our youth to participate in politics like never before, and the overall desire for change translating into votes.

Now we just need votes to make the real changes without any degree of separation in representation of the majority.

Father Sun and Mother Earth

Egyptian sun based belief systems gave rise to the patriarchy of Christianity and western culture. Father God represents male energy and the sun archetype.  Eastern religions refer to this male energy as Yang energy.  However, worship solely of Father God is only masculine energy.  Western Culture lacks a balance with feminine energy.  

The Native Americans are a fine example of Yen feminine energy.  They worshiped Mother Earth, took only what they needed and used everything they took. It’s no secret what Western Yang Sun energy did to the Yen Mother Earth energy of the Native Americans.  The male Yang energy set out to dominate and destroy the Native Americans who lived in harmony with their environment through worship of Yen Mother Earth energy.  

Masculine Yang energy is about control and destruction.  Look how Western Culture has infiltrated almost every native culture across the planet.  It is strong, no doubt, but lacks balance and feminine energy.  East meets west is really about Father Sun and Mother Earth reconnecting and a more balanced faith and culture, ultimately.