Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Brainwash Yourself

I have been thinking a lot recently about how the mind works and what it can do to the body. It amazes me the power behind thought, its ability to raise you up or destroy you. There was this woman I knew named Rosemary. She has since pasted away from cancer a few years ago. She was about 80 years old. The whole time she was living with terminal cancer, she would be outside my apartment complex talking to people, doing her own laundry and her own shopping. She was always happy to tell me that she got her new test results and her tumor was now smaller.

In fact when my xbf and I moved into that apartment complex she was the only person to talk to us. Being of an older generation, she still liked to know her neighbors and was not raised in the isolated world we all live in today.

I often think of her because how was it that she was happy (though I know she must have had bad moments) and I would fall to pieces? Is it really chemicals in the brain that are unbalanced in my head or is it something else?

I have been observing my thoughts and images in my head recently. Keep in mind some variation of these thoughts have been playing for about 18 years now, so they are very ingrained in my mind. That in itself causes changes to take place...more on that later.

My thoughts usually show me suffering in some way or another. This can be suffering from a medical problem, my parents both being dead and me sitting alone in a quiet house, sick and alone slowly losing my mind. Fainting while driving and killing myself or someone else. Bleeding to death and suffering as I fade away. Medical tests going wrong and leaving me crippled or unable to walk, take care of myself or think. Being trapped some place, ill and having to be left at the mercy of idiot people around me to try to help me. I worry about how doctors, dentists, people in general, esp. straight males will perceive me when I break down from anxiety, shake or throw up. I have had bad experiences in the past with that. It almost seems as if people get angry with me because I am unable to control my own body. "Just Relax!!", "Suck it up" and "Get over it." are all things that have been said to me as I lay there trying to do what they are demanding anyway.

A few weeks ago I started thinking about the differences between me and other people and what I have seen displayed in other people who suffer from anxiety and depression. What came to my mind was "Brainwash Yourself". Brainwashing is done all the time after all, esp. in modern society. The TV and Radio is nothing short of a mass brainwashing going on. It implants thoughts and ideas. It tells us how to dress, what to eat, what music and shows are popular. That is why I stopped watching TV. Even when you stop the information flow comes at you through the internet. After all like everyone else I know "John and Kate plus 8" are getting divorced. You have to ask yourself, what does it matter? Why do people even care? This information is streamed at us from every direction.

My point is if other people can brainwash us. Then we must be able to brainwash ourselves. There is a book, that if you haven't read is called "Brave New World". In it they live in a society where everyone is happy and they pop a pill called Soma all the time. Messages are played while they are at work such as "I am a good worker and I am happy with my job." The "science" behind it in the book is "62,400 repetitions equals one truth."

What if I started lying to myself most of the time, forced thoughts that I am not a smoker even if I am smoking. That I feel well even when I don't. That pleasure is pain. That I never get nervous even when I am? What kind of brain changes would take place over the long term?

When a person plays a violin an area of the brain lights up that doctors can see using a scan. When someone has been playing the violin for a long time, say professionally that area of the brain is thicker, it has more connections. Should the professional violin player stop playing for a long time, the brain slowly unplugs the connections, because it is no longer needed. That being said, when I or anyone else has anxiety, the thoughts that are running all over the place are doing so for many months or years. What changes have taken place in the brain? They already know the longer an anxiety disorder goes untreated the hard it is to overcome.

So the new game I will start to play with myself is seeing if I can brainwash myself out of this or at least some of it. I will still be complete honest in my blog aka negative, but the rest of the time in my head I plan on telling myself I am not a smoker, in fact I never smoked at all. Stuff like that. If I get any results in time I will post them. If you have anxiety, depression, addiction or worry, try it for yourself and see if it helps.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Omg I am so happy I stumbled upon your blog...I loved what you had to say and totally agree. I have gone/am going through the same things!
I feel that the whole brainwashing thing is totally true...I kinda did the same thing with my smoking as you are. I had been smoking for about eleven years. I started when I was 18 years old. A little over a year ago I was swimming and all of a sudden I realized that I was having trouble breathing. It was kinda scary...and I am not one to get scared too easily lol
So after that day I decided to somehow start to "brainwash" myself into not liking smoking. Whenever i went to smoke or throughout random parts of the day I would tell myself things like smoking is gross, it stinks, its so unhealthy, why am I smoking, etc. etc...
Now I am not going to say that I have 100% quit...but eventually I began to smoke less and less. To the point where now I will go a week or more without a cig. I won't even crave one or think of one most of the time. Its crazy lol I mean if I have a drink I may have one..but then I feel gross or just don't finish smoking it. I have not bought a pack in over two months. Now who knows I cannot predict what will happen in the future with smoking, but hopefully it stays this way for a long, long time lol
Oh and I am also an addict but am not using now. I am on suboxone for maintenance (different from methadone) And you can say I have suffered from some kind of depression..maybe sometimes still do.

Ok so this went waaayyy longer than I thought haha hopefully the smoking thing worked out for you but if not then maybe one day...you never know =)


Thanks again for what you wrote!