Tuesday, April 12, 2005

A Moment of Zen

Seeing Things...For The First Time
I had a therapy session today; as usual it helps me quite a bit. My therapist challenges me to do things I haven't done or thought of before. She really helps me to see a side of issues in my life that I don't see much or at all. Ever time I go to a session, it's like a period of self-discovery; I learn something new. Whether it be a coping strategy, or suggestions to help me be more considerate of others, I benefit immensely. It's similar to going back to school in a way, only the quizzes, tests, and final exams are life itself. This takes multiple choice to a whole new level!

A Rare Moment
Upon leaving my therapist's office, I began to feel a sense of understanding how things in life worked - not just my life, but everyone else's. To me, it harkens back to the scale theory. We try to balance the scales as best as we can; however, we don't always manage that. To do this would be considered perfection according to my theory. It was all starting to make sense. The door to understanding was slowly opening. I could begin to see a ray of hope shining from within. It was a great feeling. If it wasn't the key to the universe, it definitely was a plausible theory.

Which Way?
As I entered my dwellings, I still felt fine about all this. I sat down in my 'office chair' and began to get caught up on emails, reading blogs, and the like. For that moment, everything seemed OK. I had no pressing worries, nothing seemed to pervade my mind. This is indeed a rare occasion, as I am usually troubled by something. As expected, the feeling began to get too good. Slowly, my mind began to think deeper and deeper, which also brought on feelings of anxiety and almost a panic. I remember seeing a cartoon on the television and I began to think about how the characters were feeling. I noticed one of them was angry and the others were in turn angry as well.

Emotional Feedback
I started to dwell on this more and more, until it spun completely out of control. My heart began to race, and it seemed to ache a little as well. A good analogy to this would be using a delay pedal on a guitar. If you set the depth to a reasonable level, you will just get a few echo repeats, which is a very nice effect. However, if you set it all (or nearly all) the way up, the echos begin to regenerate within themselves and the unit goes into "self-oscillation," literally becoming just noise and the original sound gets lost in all this. I attribute my "out-of-control thoughts" to this phenomenon. My brain "self-oscillates" with these thoughts over time, and what was once a beautiful moment becomes a sheer mess. This is why when I'm having a good time or things seem to be really good that I start to wonder when the "depth control" is going to be "turned up" and the chaos begins. Even things such as watching someone punishing their child for being bad, is nearly an ordeal. It totally exhuausts me mentally, as well as physically.

Another Theory
I brought up to my therapist that I remember lots of useless tidbits of information, which in some contexts could be useful; however in day-to-day life they are really meaningless for the most part. She suggested that my mind is like a sponge, absorbing all this. This could also be applied to emotions. When am around a positive environment, I tend to soak it up, and it influences me in an obviously postitive manner. However, when I am subjected to a negative environment, I do the same thing, and I literally let it overtake me. If someone else is feeling down or angry, I tend to sympathize to the point of almost feeling their emotions. In the past, this has caused me to become a rebel in occupational situations, a renegade in social situations, and just a pain in the ass. Sometimes it's great that my mind soaks things up; other times it's almost a curse that I wouldn't wish upon anyone.

Going To Extremes
I know that my mind tends to have the belief that everything in life is "all or none." No matter how hard I try to find that "happy medium," it tends to go right back to the extremes. It appears to me most of the time that there is no grey area; only black or white. This would suggest that I have borderline tendencies; something of which I was terrified of. Fortunately, I don't manifest all the symptoms of the disorder, such as violent separation anxiety, and manipulation of others. I have done a little research and have found that those who suffer from bipolar do have these tendencies, and they sometimes overlap. I have often wondered many times if I was mis-diagnosed. It is a possibility. I do not wish to keep elaborating on this, for fear of the emotional feedback self-oscillation phenomenon. Until I find a way to keep it from spinning out of control, I will be subject to a very intense and extremely dynamic life. I am definitely in for one wild ride. It's time to put on the safety belts, helmet and be prepared as best as I can.

More theories later.

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