Category Archives: Psychobabble

What To Do When The World’s Crashing Down

I’ve had a couple of major sky-is-falling crises in my life. Times when everything was going wrong, and my brain wasn’t helping matters one bit. Money stuff was all wrong, relationships were going to shit, and my anxiety was through the roof. Every waking moment was a nightmare because of depression or grief, and there was no end in sight.

Maybe you’ve never had an era in your life like that, or maybe you’re feeling a little queasy seeing someone talk about it so openly. Either way, let’s figure out how to weather the storm. Let’s punch disaster in the nuts. How?

Survive.

That’s number one. I know it seems trite, but sometimes all you’re capable of is crouching down and covering your head as the blows rain down. You won’t win the round, but you’ll make it to the bell. ... continue reading.

The Anxiety Tripwire: My Intermittent Problem With People

Hi. I’m Ian Harvey, and I’ve got social anxiety.

Consider the following: You’ve spent a year of your life learning a skill, then several more honing it as a hobby. You get licensed, you’re good at what you do, and… nothing. Your brain vapor locks at the thought of actually executing your craft. Thousands of hours sunk in, and your hand drops the paintbrush, or your feet go numb when you strap on the tap shoes.

That’s where I was on Tuesday, all dressed up and no place to go. I’m a massage therapist, and I can’t bring myself to see clients.

The whole massage thing was completely out of left field in the first place. I was a weird kid in high school, with too much Dungeons and Dragons and too little self-awareness. I thought that hugs were only about the arms, and that wishing hard enough could make my crush come around and see the real me. I had hair down to my mid-back and a sweet collection of Hawaiian shirts. ... continue reading.

How to Kick More Ass: Accessing Your Wisdom and Inspiration

Think back to the last time you really outdid yourself. Maybe it was at a business meeting, or on a school project. Maybe you whipped up this amazing loaf of banana bread, or crane kicked a bully to win a karate tournament.

There's not even a guy there.
Credit: Haley, via flickr, CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

I’m serious, think back to instances of yourself surpassing your own expectations, because this proves two things:

  1. You are capable of great things.
  2. Your expectations are bullshit.

Riddle me this, Batman: How did you manage to exceed your expectations? Was it dumb, luck, the stars aligning? Waking up on the right side of the bed and having a decent breakfast? No matter how you justify your low expectations, they’ve been wrong in the past, and they’ll be wrong again. Self-limiting thoughts and language are real psychological phenomena, and we’ll talk about them more in the future, but today we’ll skip straight to kicking ass. ... continue reading.

Feel Depressed A Lot? Please Go Get Medicated, You Jerk

Hey. I know we barely know each other and all, but let’s pretend that you’ve been feeling shitty, off and on, for a long time. And by “off and on” I mean “pretty much always feeling shitty but you’re doing okay, so can’t we just drop it?”

This may not apply to you. Please accept this video of dogs in slow motion as consolation and enjoy your day. Otherwise, let’s talk.

Let’s define clinical depressionYou don’t have to be paralyzed by despair to qualify, you don’t even need to be really, really sad. The one defining characteristic of depression is that it disrupts your ability to live your life. While this is fine and dandy after something terrible happens, what if your low mood is screwing your life over for no obvious reason? ... continue reading.