Lofty goals for a new year!

In this non-comprehensive series I’ll be taking us through decolonizing perspectives on both traditional mental ‘disorder’ diagnosis, as well as symptoms associated with mental illness and well-being. I’ll also address the dangers of pop psychology.

Together we’ll question:

  • How do we define mental illness vs mental health?
  • What is comparative suffering and why do we practice it?
  • What is resilience and what can society do to reinforce it?
  • What does traditional psychology get right and so very wrong about mental health?
  • What roles do discrimination, systemic oppression and inter generational trauma play in mental health?
  • What is the meaning of encultured codependence and how does it prevent us from achieving world peace? (A concept created by moi.)
  • What can we do as individuals and as a society to use a decolonized perspective of mental health to promote collective healing?
  • Is there really something wrong with us or are we just having a perfectly acceptable response to perfectly ridiculous conditions? (Hint: you’re perfectly wonderful.)
  • How does traditional mental health ostracize…a lot of people?
  • What are the gaps in traditional mental health services?
  • What are realistic things we can all do to live well in spite of bad stuff?

My guess is, we’ll discover more questions than we answer and hopefully grow along the way.

Each week (or two, I’m still recovering from last year) I’ll post on a new symptom, condition or diagnosis related to mental health. There will be multiple posts for each letter of the alphabet (Admittedly, I fear X, why and Z but, I’m crafty.). As the series gets going, feel free to leave suggestions or requests in the comments.

That being said, while I am a licensed clinician, this series is in no way intended to diagnose or treat anyone’s mental or physical health conditions. This series is intended for philosophical exploration, education and possible entertainment purposes only. Please consult with your own healthcare providers for your treatment needs. Please also know that while I will openly question diagnostic definitions and interventions, I continue to adhere to all ethical codes and practicing laws as part of my commitment to my profession, just like Gabor. I mean he’s a famous doctor who talks openly about taking ayahuasca. I’m a huge fan of his work but I don’t drink pineal punch. I just wanna question authority and love people.

Ready? Set. Go!

21 thoughts on “Mental Health A-Z

  1. Go on questioning. I was a bit shocked to see an article saying it disagreed with Gabor’s theories about addiction as i believe strongly in his take on it..that said I dont believe in using any mind altering substances due to my own addiction background.. but maybe it works for some people.. Sting went on that journey.. I read about it in his autobiography..

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  2. I was just going to read your post today, thinking “I don’t have to comment on EVERY post.” But here I am…

    I’m glad you brought up “resilience.” It was something my therapist mentioned I look up, last week. Another reference she had was Mark Manson’s “Mind Mending.” I like to look into these things, but am easily distracted and find my focus is extremely intense, but transitory.

    You mentioned codependence in another post, months ago. I started looking into it, then, but got distracted. “Encultured codependence” sounds interesting. It makes me think of inherent trauma, in a way. But my knowledge isn’t much more than a card catalog, you know.

    I’ve been having an ongoing conversation with my dad on how we may never really know our true selves when we are so heavily influenced by everything, since birth (maybe earlier?). Maybe that’s what meditation is for? I understand how community is built by conformation. The direction of our society is based on us being cave people, survival of the fittest, safety, competition and status (probably originally used for mating and leadership). I don’t know…stuff like that. What would be a better iteration of society?

    Another point. Something I appreciate about Mate is that he admits having a big ego. I normally balk at big egos. But I think that he brings it up might help ease it in my mind. I’ve also seen people with good ideas fade out, over time. It’s like movie sequels. How often can they come up with unique and interesting concepts before they just start repeating themselves. There might be opportunities to offer the same information in different contexts, creating fresh understanding and improving across the board education. I think effective, healthy, and supportive politics would benefit in the same way. Framing is everything!

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      • Jung and Mate as mystic/shaman. I can see that. Was your dad a fan?
        I’m often surprised by how many people haven’t heard of Gabor but everyone knows about McDonald’s.

        Liked by 1 person

      • It’s our weekly walk in the prairie. He’s warming up to it. We talked a little about challenges that might cause us to lock up our feelings. At one moment, he said he wanted not to talk about it. I realized that I’m not trained and am glad to have the reminder to “just shut up!” On the other hand, he is a reader. Maybe I should just get him a book. Though I’m wondering if I should wait until the world calms down some. We’ve got a pandemic that isolates us from the world and our contacts, and politics that confuses and separates us from vital connections in our world. I live in one of the state capitol cities. We are expecting thugs next week. It’s an uncomfortable moment, to say the least, uncertain.

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    • Your thoughts are always welcome here B.
      Monday kicked my arse so I needed sleep before I replied.
      I haven’t heard of Mind Mending but Mark Manson sounds very familiar. Resilience is still a bit of a mystery. Internal vs external…we’re designed to heal, which is good news.
      Gabor talks specifically about the importance of becoming our authentic self. Codependence is the complete opposite of authenticity. It’s people pleading for survival to the point where ‘we’ no longer feel like we exist because all we do is work for, take care of or make other people ‘happy’. I’m excited to write about encultured codependence but I gotta get through the A’s and B’s first.
      I was listening to an interview with Reid Tracy last week (ceo of Hay House publishers) and he said Louise Hay used to that basically, there’s nothing new under the sun but it’s the work of artists and storytellers to re-tell the old stories in new ways so they can reach new people. So, you’re 100% right. Same info. Different context. Sometimes, fresh understanding.


  3. Codependence…Yes! I think this is the hardest thing for me to overcome. We are taught to follow the crowd. I lost my career that was twenty-five years in development six months before my marriage broke apart. I still don’t know if I’m more hurt by missing the relationship, or the fact that it ended at all, or that I will never know another closeness like that. But with so many milestones and unanswered questions about what the hell am I supposed to do, I studied the acceptable format our culture uses to define the American Dream. Alright. It took a bit before I was on board, going full time into college at around age thirty, going through the correct process until losing it all, years later. And once you are out of the loop, the system doesn’t allow you back in. Since then, I’ve been working on my own business. Yes, I want to make money, but enough to live comfortably for the first time since my early forties. I’m signing on to do volunteer work, something I used to do when I felt for secure about myself. I found that sometimes I need to take actions that a healed person makes, before being fully whole. It’s like training. I like people. But society is not people. It’s an unwieldy boat made with old technology.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The acceptable format of the American Dream…a mouthful. Maybe, since so many of us are failing to realize this dream, it’s time for us to live new dreams?
      I don’t think I was ever in the loop😂
      I also love what you said about society cannot people. I like people too but society makes us not our selves. So maybe that’s the answer: authentic humanity equals humane society.

      Liked by 1 person

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