When I was a child sometimes if I did something a little bit stupid I got the threat of the men in white coats will turn up in their yellow van and take me away, they worked at the lunny bin, a place where all the lunatics where put. Not a nice thought that someone in my family would want to send me there, I know that this was in jest but however these thoughts stick and set a chain of events through out my life.
After all I was only being a young boy doing young boy things; getting muddy, taking things to bits to see how they work, being mischievous and being the real me and being happy in discovering my own world. I would now call it self discovery.
Unfortunately my self discovery didn’t suit everyone and they wanted my self discovery to be controlled hence the threat of men in white coats.
When I was young I was never too sure whether these threats were real as a I remember one of our neighbours being taken away as she had a breakdown and when she returned she was never quite the same again, I was too young to know the whys and wherefores of why she was sent there but could see how she was when she returned.
So the threat to be good was reinforced.
Perhaps threats were the only thing that worked to curb my mischievousness, my self discovery
The various methods people use to control others will have a compounded effect and prevent a person to flourish fully. Today when I was out walking and thinking what to write, men with white coats came to mind as well as meandering streams and water dams.
Meandering streams and rivers will change their route over time and some areas will silt up and oxbow lakes will form, as for man made dams their efficiency will constantly diminish as silt settles this reduces the volume of water behind the dam. The relationship between men in white coats and dams is that the silt is the doubt and worry that slowly reduced our performance to live being our authentic self and enjoying our self discovery.
The introduction of men in white coats may well have been the start of my depression and anxiety, the first part of the silt of depression. There was many more things but without the first grains of silt the other things may not have silted up so easily.
So what can be done about it?
Firstly don’t scare children with idle threats to get them under control.
For yourself, if you are reading this you probably realise that depression and anxiety are common place and you may well be also suffering. I’ve found that things can be done without drugs, my bad days I took St Johns Wart, I guess I wasn’t that bad but then I don’t really know as I’ve never compared notes with anyone else.
The secret I’ve discovered is that if I know where I am in time and space depression and anxiety magically disappears. When I first discovered this it didn’t last long and I couldn’t do it on my own but over time I’m self sufficient in my time and space. I see it as a bubble or circle when I feel safe it can be as big as it wants however when things get tough i need the circle to be as small as possible so that I know exactly where I am in time and space. When I am really in the here and now my depressive and anxious thoughts can’t get to me. These skills are taught in mindfulness but to get the full set of skills Alexanders discovery of the head neck and back relationship in relation to being in the here and now really clears away the silt of depression.
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