Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions

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Tragic Magic
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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Tragic Magic » Fri Oct 20, 2017 8:50 pm

Yeah you guys are pretty amazing, it's true. As expected my excitement from this morning has passed now and I feel "normal" again. I couldn't take my mind off my story idea all day though and I barely got any work done. I've got gooseberry fool loads of notes and plot details and plans jotted on my phone though which I've been making throughout the day so hopefully I get another creative boost at a time I can start putting pen to paper. It's something I do really want to do but I feel like I need to make a start when a creative blast hits me.

Edit - Yeah, my mood's definitely dropped again. My wife is going to work now so I'm just going to go to bed as I haven't got the drive to do anything.

Last edited by Tragic Magic on Fri Oct 20, 2017 9:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Karl
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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Karl » Fri Oct 20, 2017 9:22 pm

jawafour wrote:* No, it wasn't for sexy times :lol: .

Please Jawa, just acknowledge my advances. :cry:

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by jawafour » Fri Oct 20, 2017 10:38 pm

Tragic Magic wrote:...my mood's definitely dropped again.... I'm just going to go to bed as I haven't got the drive to do anything.

Sometimes it helps to just rest and get some sleep, Tragic. Hopefully you’ll feel a little better for it in the morning.

Karl wrote:Please Jawa, just acknowledge my advances. :cry:

I’ve always said that you’ve got a great set of GameBoys, Karl :wub: .

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Hime » Fri Oct 20, 2017 10:47 pm

Tragic Magic wrote:Yeah you guys are pretty amazing, it's true. As expected my excitement from this morning has passed now and I feel "normal" again. I couldn't take my mind off my story idea all day though and I barely got any work done. I've got gooseberry fool loads of notes and plot details and plans jotted on my phone though which I've been making throughout the day so hopefully I get another creative boost at a time I can start putting pen to paper. It's something I do really want to do but I feel like I need to make a start when a creative blast hits me.

Edit - Yeah, my mood's definitely dropped again. My wife is going to work now so I'm just going to go to bed as I haven't got the drive to do anything.

It may be something completely different but I'd add a little bit of caution in that I seem to get prolonged periods of the feelings you're describing. I've always had an addictive personality but my mental health issues started 4 years ago following a particularly horrible breakup and the end of a fling soon after and I threw myself into work, taking on every bit of overtime and booking nights in hotels so that I could do longer hours, nip into Tesco to buy a new shirt and some food then sleep. Not long afterwards I had what my first panic attack while driving and things haven't been right since.

I'm in one of the worst periods since then and again it comes after a house move and passing a very difficult engineering authorisation at work, both very positive things but I was utterly absorbed by them for 6-8 months.

I hope this doesn't come across as negative but just a warning that sometimes these highs can bring crushing lows.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by gamerforever » Sat Oct 21, 2017 9:44 am

I’ve come off citalopram largely because i’ve put pn so much weight over the past year - anyone else had this side effect with anti depressants or seratonin enhancers?

It also made my head fuzzy, like I didn’t care about anything or anyone and just couldn’t focus on my work or anything!

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Green Gecko » Sat Oct 21, 2017 12:09 pm

Yes citalopram causes weight gain, for me it was a positive side effect but I also worry about cholesterol so I try to cut down on cheese, I pretty much never eat sweets and I eat whole foods and a bit of meat. Only weigh 10 stone though, I've dropped to below 9 in the past.

I've been on citalopram for years now so I find it difficult to identify with any fuzziness, I may just have completely adapted to the medication.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by still » Sat Oct 21, 2017 12:11 pm

Green Gecko wrote:I've been on citalopram for years now so I find it difficult to identify with any fuzziness, I may just have completely adapted to the medication.


Ditto.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Tragic Magic » Sat Oct 21, 2017 12:13 pm

I saw weight loss as a side effect for citalopram and was keeping my fingers crossed :lol: I don't think I can afford to gain any weight :dread:

Woke up again this morning with my head full of ideas so I've spent a good few hours in front of the computer typing. Managed 1000 words so it's been slow going but I do feel good for having created something and I hope I can continue with it. It feels like I've done something productive.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Green Gecko » Sat Oct 21, 2017 12:14 pm

Then again I may have just completely forgotten what it's like to have a sense of focus if I had one, I've always struggled with focus outside of intensely creative activities and takes me a long time to get started. I think there are other aspects of focus and resourcefulness that need to be applied to subvert any potential side effects. It does need a lot of mental will regardless of what medication you are on in my experience with a depressed existence.

Tragic it is very important to recognise small gains and achievements like that so well done, I hope you can repeat the "do the things and make the things" which is literally my mantra this past few years I.e. Trying not to have any reasons about stuff that are ultimately all in my head and get on with things to feel like you are leading a meaningful life, what is meaningful is totally up to you, and that is the hardest part about the "good enough / not good enough / what if / why not" loop, as no one can maintain this sense of direction and purpose for you, although they can help, no one can make you feel successful or satisfied or whatever defines happiness for you.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by jawafour » Sat Oct 21, 2017 12:24 pm

Tragic Magic wrote:...Woke up again this morning with my head full of ideas so I've spent a good few hours in front of the computer typing... I do feel good for having created something...

Green Gecko wrote:...Tragic it is very important to recognise small gains and achievements like that so well done...

I support Gecko's words, Tragic - you've done well to take action, manage negative thinking and give your creativity an outlet :-) .

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Tragic Magic » Sat Oct 21, 2017 1:14 pm

Thank you guys, it really does feel good. It's only a small thing but it feels like a big victory and it's definitely a rewarding outlet. I just read through my morning's work and was surprised by how pleased it made me. When I used to draw and paint I would absolutely hate my finished pictures and find fault with everything about them. But this feels revitalising.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by jawafour » Sat Oct 21, 2017 1:20 pm

Tragic Magic wrote:...When I used to draw and paint I would absolutely hate my finished pictures and find fault with everything about them...

Yeah, I know that feeling, Tragic. I think it's because you're so close to the creation; you spot tiny things that most folk won't even notice or be bothered about. Things can always be improved but there is a point where you gotta think "that's fine now... it's good enough". If you later identify aspects that you think you could have done differently, take that experience into your next piece of work!

Of course, that makes it sound easy and it's not :) .

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Karl » Sun Oct 22, 2017 10:26 pm

Genuinely good on you Tragic. When you've finished you'll have to let us read it! :D

I really wish I had a creative outlet but I have a kind of odd system of working that makes it difficult. I tend to have long stretches of time where I struggle to focus, and then bursts of motivation that see me doing weeks' worth of work over a few days. Can anyone else relate to this?

I find I can't really be creative in those periods of low focus -- partly due to attention wandering, but mostly due to feeling guilty about 'working' without working. Then when the motivation comes, I burn myself out on the actual jobs I have to do and I don't have enough fuel left in the tank for personal projects.

So far my job/PhD is flexible enough that I can have this weird, possibly-unhealthy pattern and still be praised for being highly productive and motivated. :slol: Feeling pretty lucky about that. If my time were micromanaged more closely by higher-ups I think the cracks would show for sure.

Interested to hear if anyone else on here is reading this thinking "me too!". :)

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by smurphy » Sun Oct 22, 2017 10:58 pm

Karl wrote:I tend to have long stretches of time where I struggle to focus, and then bursts of motivation that see me doing weeks' worth of work over a few days. Can anyone else relate to this?


Who says it's weeks worth of work? And if it is, why doesn't the period leading up the burst of work count as work, too? The older I get the more I realise that anyone who does any kind of creative/thoughtful/passion-driven work for a living or serious hobby almost has to go through these cycles. There's this myth that people in these areas work continuously 9-5 as if it was a 'normal' job, and that in not doing so you're lazy or a failure. I'm sure some people manage that, but from what I can tell it's very, very rare.

I've been trying lately to just let myself play games for a while, or read, or do nothing and not feel bad about it. It's very difficult, but I'm trying hard. And it's good because I don't burn out, and when the motivation or inspiration returns I'm ready to go at it 100%, and truly enjoying blasting out a ton of work.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Green Gecko » Mon Oct 23, 2017 12:28 am

Smurphy is basically correct. I often go through the same things, I literally "napped" my way through some joinery decision making earlier today, although possibly a form of meditation. Both Einstein and Da Vinci used to do a similar thing iirc, falling almost asleep to allow the brain to make obervations and devise unhindered by concious reasoning (worrying), often by allowing otherwise disparate thoughts and concepts to flow together. They would wait until they fell asleep long enough to hear a pencil fall out of the hand and tap on the ground, wake up and continue.

But I now genuinely explain to some customers that I have spent a week thinking about and envisioning this image, this design etc. And have just started drawing.

It helped that my mother has also been depressed in past and present an as a mental health worker and art therapist she strongly believes depressive periods of low mood are normal and even productive parts of the creative process without which the constructive and realisation parts of the cycle could not happen. The correlation between creative and some scientific disciplines is well documented because a degree of self criticism is absolutely essential to progress.

When I was micro managed and given arbitrary deadlines in my longest job I REALLY wanted to tell my bosses to strawberry float of sometimes, because whatever I did was generally excellent and of value and they knew that to the extent I constantly got away with apparent zero time management. And at university before that in order to not constantly be penalised and thrown out it was finally recognised after years I had serious issues structuring and observing time and so I had a learning agreement that literally allowed for infinite deadline extensions. I got 67.995% for my total BA despite every single unit being late at least once, I think my record was an entire year late for my first essay.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Banjo » Mon Oct 23, 2017 7:21 am

Last night, my ex made it publically known that she is seeing someone. Since she dumped me god knows if she has dated anyone else, but this is the first 'known' one, and it really, really stings. Perhaps more than I was even expecting, and I knew it was coming.

The thing I'm noticing more is how my depression manifests. In the last 6 months I've made a decent effort of keeping my body and mind occupied that I wasn't being as put down as I had, and last night I could almost very literally feel it starting to consume me again. My body started feeling very weak, all of a sudden my appetite vanished, sounds started to get distanced. It was weird, and a little scary. Perhaps a good sign that I am able to take a somewhat reflective stance, as last year I was lost in it for weeks at a time, and maybe this could be a way of showing progress.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by still » Mon Oct 23, 2017 7:31 am

Banjo wrote:Last night, my ex made it publically known that she is seeing someone. Since she dumped me god knows if she has dated anyone else, but this is the first 'known' one, and it really, really stings. Perhaps more than I was even expecting, and I knew it was coming.

The thing I'm noticing more is how my depression manifests. In the last 6 months I've made a decent effort of keeping my body and mind occupied that I wasn't being as put down as I had, and last night I could almost very literally feel it starting to consume me again. My body started feeling very weak, all of a sudden my appetite vanished, sounds started to get distanced. It was weird, and a little scary. Perhaps a good sign that I am able to take a somewhat reflective stance, as last year I was lost in it for weeks at a time, and maybe this could be a way of showing progress.


Definitely a good sign as you can actually see it coming on as a result of your thought processes after 'bad' news. It took me years to realise that the way I was thinking was contributory to the way I was feeling. (Can't say I've got that much better! but the underlying knowledge definitely helps.) Good luck.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Green Gecko » Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:25 am

Observing your condition is a powerful thing, although I'm sorry to hear that, I recall times when I was improving overall when I looked at how I felt objectively.

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Karl » Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:37 am

Banjo: knowing yourself well enough to say "this is what I feel like, and this is why I'm feeling it" is very important when managing depression in my experience. I'd echo Still and Gecko in saying that it's definitely progress to be recognising the symptoms & processes this early on. I'm sorry to hear you're having a tough time of it at the moment with your ex though.



smurphy wrote:
Karl wrote:I tend to have long stretches of time where I struggle to focus, and then bursts of motivation that see me doing weeks' worth of work over a few days. Can anyone else relate to this?


Who says it's weeks worth of work? And if it is, why doesn't the period leading up the burst of work count as work, too? The older I get the more I realise that anyone who does any kind of creative/thoughtful/passion-driven work for a living or serious hobby almost has to go through these cycles...


Green Gecko wrote:...But I now genuinely explain to some customers that I have spent a week thinking about and envisioning this image, this design etc. And have just started drawing...


This made me feel a little better, thanks both. It's good to hear that other people in creative/knowledge industries have similar experiences and cycles.

It can be tough to talk to colleagues and other people in the same industry about this kind of thing, because you're scared you'll come off as lazy or a chancer. One of my fears is that people will suddenly realise I'm not good at my job (though I know on a conscious, objective level that I am at least quite good at it).

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PostRe: Depression, Anxiety, or other Mental Health Conditions
by Banjo » Mon Oct 23, 2017 12:18 pm

I suppose the real pain is knowing just how far I am from being 'okay'. At the risk of pulling a Clarkman, I have led a fairly exciting year and have managed to do, see and achieve a good deal, yet a big part of my mind is still firmly locked in that past state. No matter how much I told myself that this day would come sooner or later, it still completely put me on my arse. I have got some stuff going on in my life to keep me pro-active; activities, social promises and some skills I want to pursue, but it does still feel like I'm using them to mask from what I really want, which is sadly not an option anymore.

It's that sucky, feeling, knowing that it never really goes away, just trying to prep more for when it will give you a knock, and hope it doesn't completely tip over your life. I mean, strawberry float, last year was that for me, so much time spent in a hole being both unable and unwilling to climb out.

On the plus side though, I have way better hair than the new dude and far greater fashion sense.


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