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DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop Archives
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Ky Offline
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Post: #31
DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

Thank you.

You sound very creative. I think that you can accomplish wonders, whether in short films, writing, or some other art, if you put your mind to it. I say this mostly because I wish and hope it to be true for me, but that's how you know I mean it.

An interesting story, and there's even more of a lesson to be learned there. While you don't have schizophrenia (at least, as far as I can tell), unlike your aunt you need to take responsibility for the well-being of your mind, find support and assistance, and overcome problems related to your family. In fact, I think you've already done quite a bit of this, but there is still work to be done.

While writing might seem like a thing of the past for you, I have a humble recommendation; why not keep a journal of some kind? Each entry can be as brief or as long as you want, but importantly you should update it with what you're feeling or what you think of personal events as they occur. By reading it back occasionally (or, heck, simply writing it) you might understand yourself a bit better, which is important to good mental health and, in my opinion, is something everyone should do.

Shall I continue asking questions?

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(This post was last modified: 12-23-2013 11:02 AM by Ky.)
12-23-2013 11:01 AM
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xcriteria Offline
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Post: #32
RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

(12-21-2013 06:03 AM)vonunov Wrote:  Sorry, I just have to jump in here to point something out. Maybe it's a bit pedantic, but I feel the need to mention it, and maybe if I do people will stop criticizing themselves over something they're not even doing.

This is a wall of text: http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com/wiki/Wall_of_Text

It's not a synonym for "TL;DR" -- you do yourself a disservice in describing a well-divided post of yours as a wall of text. This term is generally a negative evaluation of a post, and there's nothing wrong with having a lot to say as long as you use paragraphs. A lot of the posts that seem to describe themselves this way just aren't that terribly long besides.

No need to worry about it so much. Smile

That comment raises a very important issue, which merits a whole discussion. I shared it in the G+ Conversation community at (link to see what the people there have to say.

On a psychological note, I've felt substantial criticism (internal and external) for my desire to write at length. At times I've been concerned that it could be called hypergraphia, especially when I haven't been around anyone who's wanted to provide specific feedback, or (what Roz Hussin) calls metacognitive coaching.

Unfortunately for people like me, who have a strong desire to write, but also a need to figure out how to better do so, most forms of therapy, as well as education (writing classes, writing labs) don't really suffice. Therapy is usually talk, and "education" tends not to delve very deeply into the mind, or cognitive processes.

Beyond stepping back from self-criticism over writing long things, there's the very real question of how to learn to write things that are interesting, understandable, and compelling for interaction partners or an audience.

A couple of my exchanges with DoA illustrate what I mean. I've written some long-piece-of-text, and people not only have a "TL;DR" response, but read the text and then get lost or overwhelmed.

Likewise, I've also tried dumping my thoughts into visual layouts. Some of them are huge, and many of them incorporate blocks of text (even threads like this.) However, as much as I can get into a flow state and find building them very interesting and meaningful, some people (like mpoole) have reacted with a sense of overwhelm, not knowing where to look first to process all the information.

For example, here's one of these:

Hidden stuff:


http://prezi.com/k1myh97d4tur/untitled-prezi/

(This will take some time to load... once it does, you may have to zoom out to see the whole layout, then zoom in and navigate as desired. It has embedded videos as well.)

This is an incomplete layout... I had the idea of building it out even more, but Prezi gets extremely slow once layouts are of a certain size. And, I'm wondering how to build things that people can better navigate, or that I can better translate into familiar formats like a documentary series, and/or course, in a way that motivates the bits of content I try to reference.

With all of this, I see a problem Justin Schwamm has also discussed: a lot of people don't find traditional textbooks interesting to read. With hypertext, all kinds of new ways to present information are possible. Likewise, in a world of so much information, many people feel like large amounts of time go by without learning much in typical education environments, or even in coaching and therapy (depending on the situation.)

I think there are better ways for people to learn large amounts of things, with less waiting, wasted time, and unnecessary mistakes. This principle even applies to something like the question of how a person goes from being a novice in a field like psychology or coaching, to being a certified expert. I've been to a number of certified experts, and I think overall they've only had limited insight into where I've been at in my life, what my issues have been, and what I've needed to figure out next steps.

So, I think there's room for improvement. And all this seems like a step in the right direction. Smile

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12-23-2013 12:28 PM
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xcriteria Offline
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Post: #33
RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

(12-23-2013 11:01 AM)DoA Wrote:  While writing might seem like a thing of the past for you, I have a humble recommendation; why not keep a journal of some kind? Each entry can be as brief or as long as you want, but importantly you should update it with what you're feeling or what you think of personal events as they occur. By reading it back occasionally (or, heck, simply writing it) you might understand yourself a bit better, which is important to good mental health and, in my opinion, is something everyone should do.

I've found this useful at times, but at many times I've ended up not writing. I've also found making video journals to be extremely effective, and a good compliment to writing. Just like you're saying about writing.. recording and watching, video can be both therapeutic, and a good form of learning.

Another point: The internet makes it easier for people to share journal-like writing or videos with others. This raises questions of what to share, relative to writing in a private journal or recording videos meant for personal use. It also opens up possibilities for feedback, and simply connecting with others.

One issue I've found, though, is the question of what details to share when it comes to others I'm interacting with. Often, in order to effectively explain a scenario, it's necessary to provide background that involves other people or "characters" in the story.

Justin Schwamm deals with this issue in his shared-journal-style daily blog posts by referring to others by first initials, and describing some of his colleagues by the "composite" labels Ms. X and Mr. Y (generic factory-mindset teachers.) This allows him to share his thoughts and experiences, including referring to specific others in situations, while maintaining privacy.

There's also the question of what to share totally publicly, vs. to a limited audience. One can usually find a limited audience by talking to a therapist, or even friend or family member, but I've found it very useful to have a larger limited audience, so there are more voices in the mix. One solution I've found for that is a private G+ community I set up, which is mostly a photo journal for the time being, but I'm hoping it can be a step toward more.

(EDIT: If you want to see some of my journaling from years ago, here it is...)

Hidden stuff:

http://xcriteria.livejournal.com/

There's even a reference to seeing a therapist in there... perhaps there are some lessons in that. Check out the Dec. 27, 2004 post in particular.

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(This post was last modified: 12-23-2013 01:33 PM by xcriteria.)
12-23-2013 01:17 PM
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82744180714101 Offline
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Post: #34
RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

I hadn't thought of hypergraphia. It seems to have largely to do with compulsion, though. Is it like that for you? I'm all too familiar with having to push back against the urge to keep explaining and clarifying (or being cut off in the attempt to do so, in speech), but I'm not sure whether this tendency is quite the same thing hypergraphia deals with. Is it neurotic in general? I suppose, then, we have the question of whether the writing or its results, the distress from within or without, adversely affect daily life.

That aside, and unimportant altogether if this is a source of distress for you despite what terminology may correctly be applied to it, we might look at what aspect of the writing is problematic. I question whether it could be length alone. Plenty of long works are written and read all the time. It seems like you also suspect it has more to do with the organization of concepts than with how many there are and how deep they go. Standards for this can be pretty low depending on where you go on the internet, the least of which is often to start a new paragraph when the subject vaguely changes, so as not to post an actual wall of text. It's improved from there by considering the confinement of a topic mostly within a paragraph or set of them, and effective flow from one paragraph to the next, and so on. The more content there is, the more difficult it is to scan easily without help from the formatting and the more unpleasant it can be to process.

It intrigues me that I can talk so about this without being any good at it, but that seems to be how it goes.

Hypertext gives us a great advantage in this, though. A well-written index page can be the thing allowing the reader to grasp how multiple web pages come together with relevance to an overarching subject. Links among these content pages in their body text can also help provide paths to follow for those readers who are interested in further details about something, and in the really great content, they can just as well be ignored without a loss of vital understanding of the subject the current page is dealing with. They also make for serendipity for the reader who's wandering through the content rather than opening it all systematically from the index. This is something I've been meaning to try for with my own content, though I'm afraid what little I have cranked out that wasn't intended for some niche group deals with such disparate topics that I'll be hard-pressed to form links.

Hell if I know what the answer is to all of this. It just seems obvious that more aids to scanning and prioritizing content become necessary as the content grows. Paragraph breaks alone aren't so helpful beyond a point, and while hypertext is a nice leap forward, it seems like there must be far better techniques, and probably ones tailored to purpose: explaining for entertainment, teaching for retention, persuasion, and so on. I understand that there are techniques of writing for various purposes, but I'm not sure whether the same consideration is widely given to the optimal organization of the writing, and it seems like there must be some great way of conveying ideas that escapes us at present.

Anyway, I'll try not to derail DoA's Therapie Shoppe too much more.
12-23-2013 01:18 PM
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Ky Offline
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Post: #35
DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

No, go ahead. I think your discussion is going somewhere; I'll just work around it.

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12-24-2013 03:31 AM
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xcriteria Offline
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Post: #36
RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

vonunov, there are so many points I'll reply to there when I'm back at a real keyboard, but I'll hit on a few here now.

One is, I don't think hypergraphia is the best term for me, but at times I have written a lot of things like word and phrase lists, in addition to various lengths of text and recorded speech, and image arrangements.

I wouldn't call it a compulsion, but more experimentation. My bigger problem has been long lengths of time with no or very little mental energy, creative impulse, and the like.

One technique for developing creative ability is 'freewriting,' which involves writing whatever comes to mind. This can lead to material to work with, form new mental connections, or at least process and clear out mental junk. A related practice is 'free association' from psychoanalysis, and another is what Carl Jung called 'active imagination.'

Back when I was 21, looking for books on how to recover and develop my mind, one I found was called The Artist's Way, by Julia Cameron. Like many books I've purchased, I only read some of it (tl;dr), but one basic concept she suggested is called Morning Pages. Basically, every morning, write several pages of whatever is on your mind. This is a form of freewriting, less focused than a journal.

What's the line between freewriting, creative journaling, and writing or speech characteristic of mental illness?

If it's causing impairment or distress, that could be a sign of a problem, and that's technically how disorders are diagnosed. But, even producing meaningful output, or taking steps toward doing so, can interfere with one's life uf it's done to the detriment of, say, earning a living, paying rent, or taking care of one's self.

That reminds me of a key clip from Jonathan Fields:



Watch on YouTube

Thoughts on that?

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12-24-2013 08:11 AM
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Michael Merging Offline
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Post: #37
DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

This is all quite interesting but as x knows of me its hard to do any of this when you're mired in depression, this nagging that wont let you go. Do most people know what it's like to stand at the edge of a subway platform and debate and struggle with themselves why not to jump, sometimes having to hold themselves against the wall cause its all just too intense? I'm feeling ok at the moment but overall bleak, even though i continue to get ideas. So thats one thing. im gonna stick with that and see how far i get.

Anyway, sure feel free to ask away.
12-29-2013 06:18 AM
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Post: #38
RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

xcriteria:

I think one of the more important parts of the Wikipedia article on hypergraphia is where it mentions that "most patients do not write things with substance." It mentions such things as writing pre-existing content repeatedly, and going into extreme detail in description of dreams, the day's events, and surroundings. Is this the sort of thing you've done? I'm not sure what you mean by word lists, if they were done just for the sake of writing or for a purpose, etc. In any case, exactly what it is isn't as important as whether it gets in the way of your life.

I don't have much to say about this, and I think the reason is that I'm in the opposite position to that described in the video. I don't have anything that pulls me out of bed in the morning, at least until I would feel worse for staying in bed any longer. I want that, though. I want something that makes me lose sleep, stop talking to people, forget to eat, and jeopardize my career (and I don't mean meth). It would even be nice if it were worth it, but honestly, I just want that hunger again. I have just landed a job, though, so I might soon find myself without so much time to feel aimless.

I keep a journal, and I try to go off on tangents about things so as to get the mental mechanics going, but I tend to do it before bed, when I'm already super tired and don't really want to deal with it, so it doesn't go as far as it probably should. I'll try doing it in the morning instead and see how that changes things. I've been playing with that Vipassana meditation recently, though I tend to get distracted with little things and forget to do it regularly. It is refreshing and an interesting way to see how the metacognition goes, though.
(This post was last modified: 12-29-2013 08:16 AM by 82744180714101.)
12-29-2013 08:05 AM
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Ky Offline
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Post: #39
RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

(12-29-2013 06:18 AM)Michael Merging Wrote:  This is all quite interesting but as x knows of me its hard to do any of this when you're mired in depression, this nagging that wont let you go. Do most people know what it's like to stand at the edge of a subway platform and debate and struggle with themselves why not to jump, sometimes having to hold themselves against the wall cause its all just too intense? I'm feeling ok at the moment but overall bleak, even though i continue to get ideas. So thats one thing. im gonna stick with that and see how far i get.

Anyway, sure feel free to ask away.

Action is difficult when you feel trapped. While my depression, oddly enough, did not leave me with any thought remotely close to suicide, it still instilled a feeling of helplessness that exaggerates mortality. The truth is that we are more powerful, more durable, and more compassionate beings than we give ourselves credit for, and we have within us the will to act.

I'll start with this, as soon as you're ready to answer: How goes the thought-recording so far? By what means are you doing it?

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12-29-2013 09:01 AM
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Ky Offline
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DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

In light of recent events, bump.

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01-02-2014 11:28 AM
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xcriteria Offline
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RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

(01-02-2014 11:28 AM)DoA Wrote:  In light of recent events, bump.

Which events do you have in mind?

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01-02-2014 11:37 AM
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Ky Offline
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RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

(01-02-2014 11:37 AM)xcriteria Wrote:  
(01-02-2014 11:28 AM)DoA Wrote:  In light of recent events, bump.

Which events do you have in mind?

Spammageddon, for one. That threw off quite a few conversations and threads.

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01-02-2014 11:39 AM
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Ky Offline
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DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

Stickying this thread, in case anyone needs this in the present or future.

It's also important to note that I am not the only one offering assistance of this manner. I've heard that there are other users willing to lend an ear, and of course everyone has their two cents to give about people's life choices. Still, if you need quick, reliable, and not-necessarily-professional help, I'm right here.

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04-27-2014 02:40 PM
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brainiac3397 Offline
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Post: #44
DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

I just bought a blazer, pants and an ascost which cost altogether $320($191 pants 50% off, $391 blazer 55% off, $112 ascot 55% off). Am I going through a mid-life crisis?
( Biggrin )

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(06-14-2013 08:02 AM)Potato Wrote:  watch the fuq out, we've got an "intellectual" over here.

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04-28-2014 10:05 AM
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Ky Offline
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Yes, yes it does. My advice: Buy an expensive car next. Biggrin

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04-28-2014 10:18 AM
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DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

Already there! I want a brand new Mercedes S550.

Sum one give me 100k.

And afterwards, at my age, is it a trophy wife I should be aiming for, or just a bunch of beautiful models and a couple of mistresses?

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(06-14-2013 08:02 AM)Potato Wrote:  watch the fuq out, we've got an "intellectual" over here.

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04-28-2014 10:28 AM
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xcriteria Offline
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RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

(04-28-2014 10:05 AM)brainiac3397 Wrote:  I just bought a blazer, pants and an ascost which cost altogether $320($191 pants 50% off, $391 blazer 55% off, $112 ascot 55% off). Am I going through a mid-life crisis?
( Biggrin )

You might call it a quarter-life crisis. But any particular reason you bought all that?

Or linked it to a life crisis?

(04-28-2014 10:18 AM)DoA Wrote:  Yes, yes it does. My advice: Buy an expensive car next. Biggrin

My advice: don't. Contingent goal-setting and focusing on symbolic material purchases aren't generally the path to happiness or well-being.

(If you weren't serious, alright, alright...)

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04-28-2014 11:14 AM
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RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

(04-28-2014 11:14 AM)xcriteria Wrote:  
(04-28-2014 10:05 AM)brainiac3397 Wrote:  I just bought a blazer, pants and an ascost which cost altogether $320($191 pants 50% off, $391 blazer 55% off, $112 ascot 55% off). Am I going through a mid-life crisis?
( Biggrin )

You might call it a quarter-life crisis. But any particular reason you bought all that?

Or linked it to a life crisis?

(04-28-2014 10:18 AM)DoA Wrote:  Yes, yes it does. My advice: Buy an expensive car next. Biggrin

My advice: don't. Contingent goal-setting and focusing on symbolic material purchases aren't generally the path to happiness or well-being.

(If you weren't serious, alright, alright...)

I bought cause realistically speaking that's the way I prefer to dress. And it's quality stuff. And I got my paycheck. And I need to update my wardrobe. And I just look amazing in them.

In fact, it's more like a life-success that caused me to go out and buy. Plus the sales lady who helped me out was pretty.

I'm just updating my life from "lazy procrastinating evil genius mastermind" to "well-dressed active evil genius mastermind".

I also have the possibility of purchasing a used and somewhat old(2009) luxury sedan(Cadillac DTS) for not-so-expensive(thanks to my father, who will purchase it, and I will make payments to him for it, if I decide to get it). Not only to drive personally, but also to use for the purpose of financial gain during off-times and at my own pace(as a freelance limo driver of sorts). Of course I have to figure out the licensing and whether I'm eligible.

That way if I lose my current job for some reason, and during college(during my off periods or after classes), I will still be able to obtain cash.

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(06-14-2013 08:02 AM)Potato Wrote:  watch the fuq out, we've got an "intellectual" over here.

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04-28-2014 12:09 PM
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Ky Offline
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RE: DoA's One-Stop Psych Shop

(04-28-2014 10:28 AM)brainiac3397 Wrote:  Already there! I want a brand new Mercedes S550.

Sum one give me 100k.

And afterwards, at my age, is it a trophy wife I should be aiming for, or just a bunch of beautiful models and a couple of mistresses?

Invest (and by invest I mean spend frivolously) in both; the more the merrier. (And, yes, this is clearly a joke.)

(04-28-2014 12:09 PM)brainiac3397 Wrote:  I bought cause realistically speaking that's the way I prefer to dress. And it's quality stuff. And I got my paycheck. And I need to update my wardrobe. And I just look amazing in them.

In fact, it's more like a life-success that caused me to go out and buy. Plus the sales lady who helped me out was pretty.

I'm just updating my life from "lazy procrastinating evil genius mastermind" to "well-dressed active evil genius mastermind".

I also have the possibility of purchasing a used and somewhat old(2009) luxury sedan(Cadillac DTS) for not-so-expensive(thanks to my father, who will purchase it, and I will make payments to him for it, if I decide to get it). Not only to drive personally, but also to use for the purpose of financial gain during off-times and at my own pace(as a freelance limo driver of sorts). Of course I have to figure out the licensing and whether I'm eligible.

That way if I lose my current job for some reason, and during college(during my off periods or after classes), I will still be able to obtain cash.

Oh, that's neat! Good for you! Smile

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04-29-2014 06:15 AM
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