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Thursday, November 18, 2010

More "Out of the Box" Thinking

Yesterday I did not wake up depressed. But I was depressed when I woke up this morning so I decided to try the "out of the box" idea. It was very interesting. What it did was to involve me in a rational, back and forth, conversation with myself. I guess in a way I must converse somehow with myself anyway when I decide to do a song or counting exercise the minute I realize I'm depressed. But the conversation is so minimal that I never even realized, before, that I must have been having it. It seemed to me that I always just went directly to some dumb exercise by a quick unilateral decision. There was never any debate about it. Then I doubled down on the exercises when I got sidetracked by depression again, and continued to do that as long as the pain was bad, or until I took up my daily chores and then, in doing them, the depression always disappeared.

This time the conversation was more prolonged and obvious.

"Okay, so I'm depressed. So that means I'm ' in the box. So that means I need to think out of the box to connect to my "self."

"Okay, I'm connected. Now what?

(This was really interesting what I said to myself next.)

"So now you are thinking "out of the box" and deciding what you want to do about your depression that's "in the box."

"That's in the box, but I'm not in the box, right?"


(I then noticed , without verbalizing it in a conversational way with myself, that the hopelessness was no longer there. The mental anguish brought about by feelings of futility seemed gone and what remained was only the physical symptoms.Pressure and squeezing in the chest area, pain in the chest area, hard to breath, tight throat."

Then  the converstion  with myself continued.

"So the hopelessness and sense of futility is gone. This means that you can get the neocortex working without doing the exercises. So you can access your rational neocortex right away even when you're depressed.


But you still have the physical symptoms and if you don't want to endure them or be aware of their discomfort, you can do the mind exercises and just be aware of some dumb song. Or you could just get up and get dressed and get busy with yard work.

I got dressed, got myself some water, walked the dog, cut some roses for the house, and went out to do yard work. By the time I looked around for my hoe and shovel, the depression was totally gone.
A. B. Curtiss

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