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Peter Mullen


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Have you ever felt hopeless. How do you personally deal with hopelessness. What keeps you from being paralized by this feeling.

self explainitory


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    Aug 1 2013: not felt hopeless so far, even when things are black I usually think they'll get better, possibly because I don't get myself into too serious messes, I avoid people and situations that might drag me down.
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      Aug 2 2013: Thanks for the response. That clearly is a great idea, staying away from negativity. The sad thing is there is a neurological, physiological component to helplessness, that millions are victims of. That has been clearly demonstrated by decades of research. The problem is the balance of things like serotonin in the human brain is unimaginably complex. The therapies, and medication regimens are expensive,and require careful monitoring, to minimize side affects, and liver damage. I'm so glad that, you and most people can get past the feelings by self correction, and exercise. For millions unfortunately the imbalances of brain chemistry are serious maladies that can lead to serious life threatening consequences. For them it's not just a simple matter of positive thinking and a walk on the beach. The pharmaceutical companies have their vested interests, and doctors aren't quite up to the task unfortunately in many cases. Consider yourself lucky. Thanks for the response.
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        Aug 2 2013: why do you mention this, Peter, are you advocating for taking medication? Do you take it yourself?

        One thing that I think keeps me positive is not going out at night, I'm usually in bed by 7 or 8 PM, and then rise around 5AM. It feels more positive and natural. Another thing is to avoid going to bars, bars seem to have their bad side. And to avoid illegal drugs.
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          Aug 3 2013: I do not take medication at all. "That is only a personal choice". I do not advocate taking any medication unless the problem is "severe, and debilitating", if there is some other remedy such as: (diet ) (keeping really busy) (being with friends) (Exercise) (counseling ) a person is better off without medication. "That is not medical advice !" That is just my opinion. I personally feel there are far to many medications used in our society today.The costs are enough to "cause" depression if one is on a modest income. The side affects can be worse than the condition. I believe the (system) of Psychiatry,and pharmacology is corrupted by ( MONEY ) In many ways it's still in the dark ages. That is not meant as an insult to the many dedicated, loving, hard working practitioners who heal millions, and do their best every day to literally save lives of severely depressed people, and other mentally ill patients. People with "severe" depression are different. It's a clinical state, where people are at serious risk of (life threatening symptoms) caused by severe abnormalities in (brain chemistry) cases like these, simple remedies make little difference. Then medication may be indicated. It is very easy for people, who do not suffer from these conditions to judge people suffering this condition as weak, lazy and other misconceptions. A prominent condition is unbalance in (serotonin) Administration of medications for it require long term treatment, experimentation with doses, careful monitoring by trained medical professionals to guard against organ damage from the medication, even worsening of the condition. Despite huge advances in brain science, the brain remains in some ways a black box that we are just barely beginning to comprehend. More than just chemistry, it's a tricky business. You are so right about getting up early, good sleep, and not taking (unprescribed) drugs especially alcohol. It's complicated. That's what this discussion is all about. "IDEAS".
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        Aug 3 2013: so what was your purpose in starting this conversation, Peter? Do you yourself feel hopeless, and you were looking for ideas to combat it? Or you would like to help people who feel hopeless, and you are looking for ideas to share with them? Or some other purpose?

        Another thing that gives my life meaning is combating noise. For example, just today I was talking to a truck driver about excessive noise coming from the loading dock at the supermarket across the street from my apartment. I know a lot about combating noise, and I think it could be a problem for some people that might lead to hopelessness, but it's a very complicated topic, there's a lot to effectively fighting noise, if it turns out you or someone else is interested I can share, but I'm not sure hardly anyone could be as good at it as me, I'm an extremely sophisticated person.
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          Aug 3 2013: To help millions of people around the world who feel hopeless like the 81 veterans per day that commit suicide in America because their congress, and their countrymen have abandoned them. To help the millions of victims of war, and militarism ,and patriarchal religious fundamentalism who's lives have been destroyed, and are dying of poverty, wounds and hopelessness. That's why.
        • Aug 14 2013: I'm interested in combating noise, (more-so in such social communications).

          And to answer Peter's question, I found the book Learned Helplessness, to be very insightful.
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        Aug 3 2013: In what way do you think veterans feel their congress and countrymen have abandoned them?

        What is your stake in this, Peter, are you a veteran, or related to a veteran? Or maybe you just have empathy for the people you consider victims, so what are you going to do, gather ideas on this conversation and then share them with people...how? Via the Web? Not a bad idea, you're already getting a start by putting them right here on TED conversations. Or do you intend to actually go to war-torn places?

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