Trapped By Greed

Greedy man holding debit card while typing on laptop

More Money, More Problems

Materialism is so relevant in modern-day society, that it’s very easy to become obsessed with it. Becoming trapped by greed involves your excessive admiration and pursuit of material goods, even at the expense of relationships, morals, values and your soul. Greed has no boundaries; it can infect anyone at anytime.

Greed is a particular problem in modern-day society because we are easy to be awed by fancy cars, exotic houses, expensive brand name clothing and advanced technological gadgets. We are also living in an ultra-competitive society where a lot of people strive to get ahead of others academically, intellectually, financially and physically.

As evidenced by the college scandal in America, even celebrities who have millions of dollars are willing to sacrifice their integrity in order to secure a spot for their teenager at an ivy league school. It seems that the more you have in wealth and materialism, the more you continue to seek it.

The greatest rapper of all time, The Notorious B.I.G. wasn’t lying when he made the song, “Mo Money, Mo Problems.” Because for many, there seems to be some truth to this saying: when you start to accumulate wealth, you also start to desire more in the flesh. It becomes a psychological addiction to accumulate more material goods.

As with alcohol and other drugs, the brain releases great quantities of dopamine when you accumulate more material goods. When dopamine is released, you relate materialism with the sex-like or high-like feeling of the dopamine rush. So your mind becomes programmed to keep chasing wealth and materialism; this is what is meant by being trapped by greed.

The way to help alleviate greed is to focus on others. Rather than storing up treasures for yourself, you can become involved in the community or start meaningful and honest charities that are meant to help people who are struggling. When you redirect your energy onto helping others, your desire for materialism will start to dissipate.

There’s nothing wrong with being motivated to accumulate wealth, but know the fine line of modestly purchasing objects once in a while versus extravagant purchases every other day. Don’t become trapped by greed; as with any deadly sin, it has the potential to rob you of your soul. And what good does that do to you?

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Taking A Break From Yourself

White man standing with silver reflective mask on face in front of yellow lights outside

Giving Your Ego A Break

Your ego is the mask that you put on in the morning, along with your outfit and hair product. While the latter two are necessary, you can leave the former tucked into your bedroom from time to time. Taking a break from yourself is done by giving your ego a break at the same time. The ego is your sense of self-esteem or self-importance.

Taking a break from yourself is important because it helps you to integrate new thoughts, beliefs and information without overloading your state of mind. You can do this by leaving your ego at home from time to time; give it days off where it can relax and take a breather. What holds people back from doing this is the fear of vulnerability without their ego present.

Whenever you are stroking your ego on a consistent basis, you’re contributing to its inflation; it only grows bigger and bigger is not always better. Bigger egos contribute to more emotional insecurity and uncertainty, poorer relationships and riskier behaviors and decision-making. Bigger egos inflate your natural (healthy) narcissistic traits; natural is good, but supernatural is risky.

Over time, you’ll actually feel better about yourself after having given your ego sufficient breaks. So the question arises, “if I’m leaving my ego at home and my ego is my mask, then what will I be wearing today?” This can be answered with, “why do you have to wear something on your face?”

People want to see the authentic you, and nothing shines brighter than your true self minus the ego. The ego is not meant to be worn every day; utilize it when you need it most, like important meetings, dates, job interviews or any situations that require you to put on your best performance.

But these situations should not be every day, and you should learn to utilize your ego less and less, even in high-pressure situations. The more comfortable that you become without your ego, the more confident, relaxed and joyful you will feel. And your ego will also become a better representation of yourself, when given sufficient time to unwind and rest in the comforts of your bedroom.

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Succeed — Cristian Mihai

Here’s the thing about being human: you are given a lot of crutches in life, but they are double edged swords. They make you feel better for a while, but you’ve got to give up your power… Put the blame on someone else or something else… Fate, some god, the economy, other people, society, or […]

Succeed — Cristian Mihai

Behavioral Issues In Children

Sad boy with dark hair leaning on white chair

Children Will Be Disrespectful

All children display behavioral issues to a certain extent. But there are children who are sent to special behavioral schools because their behavior is deemed to disruptive or inappropriate for their regular schools. Behavioral issues in children are not uncommon and children will be disrespectful; this is something that should be expected.

Children who are sent to special schools for their behavioral issues come from many different backgrounds. Some were raised in single-parent homes where the absent parent was not there to provide them with structure, discipline or even love. These children may end up rebelling out of anger.

Some children were raised by parents who were not responsible from the start. These parents tend to be selfish, involved with alcohol or drugs or do not have the instinct to properly raise their children. When children are emotionally neglected, they become lost in their ways, and utilize their anger to take it out on others.

And then there are the children who were born with a neurodevelopmental disorder or developed a mental illness at some point during their childhood. These children may have autism, ADHD, intermittent explosive disorder, conduct disorder, disruptive mood dysregulation disorder or even childhood schizophrenia.

Children with neurodevelopmental disorders or mental illness may struggle much more than their peers, due to the nature of their illness. Parents often become frustrated and worried, not knowing what to do with them and how to better help improve their behavior. These children also become easy targets of bullying once they enter school.

Whenever a child is being disrespectful or demonstrating behavioral issues, do not be quick to jump to conclusions; in other words, do not allow your implicit bias to control your perception of them. These children, oftentimes, have a story behind their behavior; get to learn their story and you will become much more understanding of their situation.

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Life Is A Trail Of Memories

Person holding gray photo of three girls near chainlink fence around house

No Tolls On Memory Lane

The beauty of life does not always lie in the present moment. You can find the beauty in a small center within your brain called the hippocampus; the memory bank that holds your accumulated experiences. Life is a trail of memories and its beauty lies within your recollections of the past; there are no tolls on memory lane. Feel free to endlessly navigate.

One of the best ways to relax your mind and alleviate your accumulated daily stress is by putting on a nice tune that takes you mentally back to pleasant times in your past. Engaging with your trail of memories that lie within your mind is quite soothing and can make you feel happy and appreciative of life’s beautiful moments.

With good memories also come bad ones, but you don’t have to dwell on those. As a matter of fact, if your mind hasn’t already repressed them, you can voluntarily suppress them. You can do this by identifying your bad memories and no longer paying attention to them; act as if you have never experienced them in the first place.

The saying “don’t live in the past” is very true, but why not stroll down memory lane from time to time, especially if you’ve had good experiences which you can reminisce on. Memory lane is like a gift that you can endlessly enjoy; unless suffering from a neurological disorder that impacts your retrieval of memories, you can utilize this gift indefinitely.

And what can be even more pleasant is taking a stroll down memory lane with someone who you have experienced good times with in the past. Besides your version of the story, your friend, family member or acquaintance can paint an alternate version from their persecutive; their details can contribute to your memory lane.

So what are you waiting for? It’s easier than E-ZPass to hop onto memory lane. Enjoy it!

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Getting Things Done

Man with headphones on working on computer near large window

Full Dedication To The Task At Hand

The difference between people who get things done and those who don’t is full dedication to the task at hand. Procrastinators often have difficulty with full dedication to one particular task; their minds wander from one idea to another. We all experience non-pathological flight of ideas, but we have to learn how to tame our thoughts and urges and remain focused on the task at hand.

Unless you have an untreated mental illness, there should be no reason why you cannot master the art of full immersion in one particular task at hand. For instance, if your research mentor wants you to have a full abstract done by Monday at 1 p.m., you should be able to spend the entire weekend getting the abstract done without any distractions.

When you’re fully dedicated to the task at hand, it means that your focus lies solely on that task. There are no other plans that should be interfering with your objective, but it is important to take breaks throughout the day. Without breaks, you will only stress yourself out, become irritable and perform subpar.

Why is this concept of full dedication important? Besides the idea that you’ll become more efficient at accomplishing tasks, it also helps with your mental health! When you avoid procrastination and focus on getting things done, your self-esteem improves in the process; you start to feel better about yourself and develop more confidence in your abilities. You become the best version of yourself.

So rather than procrastinating from now on, motivate yourself to always stay focused on the task at hand, especially if it’s an important one. The more that you practice becoming more disciplined, the easier the process will get down the road. And when the process gets easier, guess what ends up benefiting? Your mental health.

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

The Invisibility Of Depression

Depressed man standing in front of large window

Sadness In The Shadows

Depression is like an invisible dark cloud that hovers in the stratosphere, looming all around us and ready to attack when in our weakest states of mind. The invisibility of depression can be observed through the actions of those affected: avolition, abulia, apathy, anhedonia and more. Sadness in the shadows is much more common than you would think.

Just because someone may not act like it or talk about it, does not mean that they are not experiencing depression. Many suicides that occur are never seen coming, “He was the last person I imagined would ever do that”, “She always seemed so happy! I never saw any signs of depression in her.”

You can never assume that every person who you meet is showing their true feelings. Many people mask their depression out of fear of embarrassment and ridicule. It’s not easy nor comfortable to experience depression: it lowers your self-esteem, makes you feel worthless and crashes your self-confidence.

With the symptoms mentioned above, it’s no surprise why many people find it difficult to share their depressive feelings with others. The fear of people not understanding or the thought of others viewing them differently is sometimes too much to handle. They prefer not to take the chance and just deal with the symptoms in the shadows.

Hiding your depressive feelings is what makes up the invisibility of depression; no one can see it if you don’t reveal it to others. It’s as if you’re wearing an invisibility cloak, but deep inside there is something tortuous and potentially deadly brewing. That’s why it’s so important to keep fighting for the end of mental health stigma.

As long as the stigma prevails, the invisibility of depression will continue striving in the shadows, attacking potential victims at its first opportunity. The importance of eliminating stigma cannot be stressed enough, and this can only be done with openness, support, comfort and honesty.

The DSM Ready community calls on everyone from all walks of life to come together and help eliminate mental health stigma. Together we can and we will!

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

The Worst Part Of Chasing Someone Is The Uncertainty, The Self-Doubt, And The Drained Energy — Thought Catalog

The worst part about chasing someone is that you’re convinced this could be the one. Otherwise you wouldn’t bother. Deep down in your gut, you feel like you would be a good fit together. You feel like you would make a perfect match. And sometimes, it feels like your person feels it too. But you’re…

The Worst Part Of Chasing Someone Is The Uncertainty, The Self-Doubt, And The Drained Energy — Thought Catalog

Sexually Isolated

Brunette woman lying in bed wearing blue bra holding cell phone

Try Masturbating Less

We have all experienced sexual isolation. It occurs whenever you are not in a relationship, dating or hooking up with anyone. Sexual isolation can last for a few weeks, months or even years; the emptiness sometimes feels like eternity. When you have been sexually isolated for so long, you almost forget what it feels like to experience the touch of another person.

Sexual isolation can occur for many different reasons:

  • You are on a dry spell and haven’t had any luck or success
  • Your interests currently lie elsewhere
  • You are too preoccupied with your career
  • You have no time for dating
  • You have high standards and no longer want to just “hook up” with anyone
  • You have trouble meeting people in person or on dating apps
  • You are too preoccupied with pornography

. . . and the list goes on. Whatever the reason, one common theme during sexual isolation is too much masturbation. With the flood of hormones, solitude and high sexual motivation that you experience on a daily basis, it becomes a challenge to not “release” through the act of masturbation.

Some also spend way too much time watching porn, further contributing to the problem. The solution comes down to this: try masturbating less! While not backed up by science, it seems that the sexual energy which you hold onto when not masturbating can be displaced elsewhere, such as pursuing a mate.

It comes down to personality, but there seems to be some consensus among people who have tried this technique. This is because when you frequently masturbate, you use up all your energy and desire in the act, falling back down to square one. And the cycle just tends to repeat itself.

Not only that, but sexual isolation can also make you feel guilty and even sad; your self-esteem can plummet when you come to the realization that it’s always just you, by yourself in the privacy of your room. But when you masturbate less, you begin to develop more self-respect by proving to yourself that you are not always a wild beast ready to jump to climax.

The bottom line is that we have all experienced sexual isolation at some point in our lifetime, and almost everyone would agree that it’s an unpleasant experience. To get yourself out of this situation, try masturbating less and using that reserved sexual energy to get out there and mingle more often.

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Keeping Yourself Stimulated

Bored black man sitting on red fire hydrant near yellow automobile

Dealing With Feelings Of Boredom

Boredom is one of the most horrendous feelings: it drives you crazy, makes you feel worthless and can even contribute to depressive symptoms if experienced for long enough. Keeping yourself stimulated on a daily basis is very important in order to avoid boredom. But many struggle with self-stimulation.

Self-stimulation are the key words because it means that you derive pleasure from your own doing; relying on others is not an option. When you learn how to stimulate yourself with various activities, you are taking responsibility for your state of mind: you are avoiding boredom and remaining mentally engaged with life.

But when you rely on your environment to become stimulated, that can be hit or miss, especially when relying on others. People who are dependent struggle with this a lot: they experience a low self-esteem and rely on others to feel stimulated, important and worthy. If you are suffering from dependent personality disorder, then something such as attending a support group at a community-based organization can prove to be helpful.

It’s very easy to fall into the trap of boredom; we all experience it at some point through out the week, even if it’s for brief moments. In a way, boredom is a natural feeling because we are not robots that are assigned endless tasks on end; just the act of taking breaks from what we do can lead us to feel bored and unsure with ourselves.

But the difference is not allowing boredom to linger any longer than it has to; terminating it as soon as you detect it is key. And you can do this by keeping a mental list of positive activities that you can attend to when the situation permissibly arises. By knowing ahead of time which activities you can become engaged with, you can easily avoid and/or put an end to boredom.

What are your thoughts on boredom? Feel free to share your experiences and advice with The DSM Ready community, so that we can all learn from each other on how to better improve our lives together!

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)