Showing posts from December, 2013

My Last Day of 2013, Celebrating Holidays, and the Joys of Personal Growth

The Sun Behind the Trees A picture from today Looking back on the year 2013, I can say that all in all this year was the best year of my life so far. I feel I’ve accomplished a lot this year, and made my life better than it was before. I won’t bore you with much detail, but, among other things, I’m especially happy with my personal growth. The thing with self-work is that it may be very difficult in the beginning, but the more you grow, the easier the process gets. Don’t get me wrong, it’s never easy, but when your self-esteem grows, when you feel safer, when you become more aware, when you have intellectual, emotional, and moral clarity, then even in hard times and difficult situations your emotions don’t overwhelm you, you consciously understand what’s going on in you and around you, you understand reality better and accept it, you are able to handle stress better, make more rational decisions, take better care of yourself, and be a much more mature person in general. After doi

Holiday Depression and Stress

The holiday season is a cheerful or ordinary time for some and a depressing or stressful period for many. It’s advertised by the culture as a joyous time of the year, but since most of the society is extremely anxious, depressed, and dissociated, a lot of people’s anxiety and depression creep to the surface. A person is expected – by others or by themselves – to feel happiness, vitality, connection with others, and gratitude. But many actually feel anxiety, loneliness, tiredness, sadness, shame, guilt, hate, confusion, and hopelessness. A person looks around and (falsely) perceives others as being happy: singing songs, buying gifts, spending time with their families and friends, eating, drinking, and partying. They look at themselves and at his or her emotional state, and they feel bad and confused. A lot of people feel guilty and shameful that they don't feel happy. “It seems that everybody’s having fun, but I feel depressed.” “What is wrong with me?” “Everyone’s enjoying their

The Psychology of the Horror/Thriller Genre – A Look at "Dexter," "The Fall," "Silent Hill 2," and "Identity"

This blog post is mostly for my own amusement, but I hope others will find some value in it, too. In my adolescence and adult years, I was always drawn to horror/mystery/thriller type of TV shows, movies, and video games. In the past, playing horror video games gave me the opportunity to unconsciously connect with the fear, confusion, hurt, despair, anger, and terror that was inside of me – because that's what I was feeling in my childhood, adolescence, and even in my adulthood. By playing horror video games, I could recreate these unpleasant feelings in a controlled environment where I could fight my inner and especially outer demons, and actually defeat them. In a virtual world, I wasn't completely helpless and powerless like I was in real life; I had some control. I got something similar out of TV shows and movies, too – I got to feel these unpleasant, unprocessed, and very familiar emotions, and not to feel alone with them. That's how repetition compulsion works. W

The Difficulties of Journaling – And Some Useful Tips

Yesterday, on the Self-Archeology Facebook page one person posted a comment saying that it’s very hard for them to keep a journal. I’ve heard similar things from my clients, friends, acquaintances, and I’ve had difficulties with journaling myself, so I decided to talk about this topic in more detail. There are different ways to journal . For example, some people much prefer an audio log or video log to a written/typed journal. So, it might be useful to experiment and see what fits you the best. What stops you from journaling? I found it to be true that the main difficulty people have with journaling is fear . Here, I will talk about some of the most common fears. Sometimes people are afraid that they are not doing it right , that they don’t know HOW to journal. There’s no right or wrong way to do it . Everything you say is important and might be useful in some way. And nobody will punish you, laugh at you, humiliate you, or hurt you if you don't do it "optimally.&quo