Depression: interconnection

After watching this video, I could empathize with the author over how irritating or “you just don’t get it”-ness that first co-worker could be. (at the risk of the pretentiousness of self-reference, my post on “advice”)  I get it, the juxtaposition of their good mood and optimism against your own, or the seeming (not necessarily so) superficiality or naivete of optimism.  Or the short-sightedness of it all – look, a smiley face and a bunch of balloons can’t fix this thing…

[and not to mention the viewpoint some psychologists’ take, that there is a “tactic” depressed/addict people use to, from the psychologists’ POV, essentially refuse treatment and justify remaining where they are, by saying that they are unique, they are special, they are different…they are immune to treatment…. i.e. “well rehab (therapy/meds/AA/etc.) will work on those guys, but it won’t work on me, because I’m different” – some psychologists’ disdain this type of response as they see it as the person refusing help, or arrogance, or justification or whatever, and hence part of the treatment regimen (AA, etc.) can involve essentially trying to break apart someone’s sense of uniqueness and reinforce commonality – “no, your depression/addiction is not so different from everyone else in this room” and so on – another rant for another day, the pros and cons of perceived individuality and communalism, relevance to treatment, etc. and nuances of finding a middle ground – respect that each person’s issues are individual to them – no one is a textbook disorder – while finding a way for a person to believe they are treatable, so that they don’t give up.  A sense of community may help, but does not necessarily have to mean sacrificing uniqueness…blah blah blah]

All of which is one way to say that – on the one hand, a cheery person trying to cheer up a depressed person could be ineffective because it is irritating or short-sighted or naive or whatever, but it could also be ineffective because the depressed person is downright resistant to it, for any number of reasons.

(insert some speech about “walls” ……self-help people and their beloved analogies – isn’t self-help, if being peddled by someone else, actually then not self-help?; walls, fences, can I build a moat instead?)


However, good intentions.  The idea of some coworker going out of their way to daily send you something nice or cute or funny, sounds like a good idea.

Remember those chain letters, and then chain emails? send this spam to four people, who in turn must send it to four different people and so on, constructed in a way to spread to a network of people?  What if, combining the concept of chain letters with Pay it Forward, something similar was constructed, except, instead of spreading spam, it’s sole purpose was to spread things meant to brighten someone’s day.  Doesn’t have to be the ubiquitous cat videos either.  A photograph, a comic strip, a joke, a Monty Python clip, a picture of a piece of artwork, a bizarre Etsy creation, the longest Rube Goldberg machine (Kinetic King1, Kinetic King2, videos; xylophone),  coke and mentos experiments, something wacky, a thought piece, whatever.  (provided there was some guideline, such as keep it PG-13)  There could be a way to make that work.

only…what if I don’t want to give out my email address, and hence the problem… (anonymity and the internet, I know…) but there still might be something to it.  that, daily, people receive a little random something and you yourself can also send out a little random something, which has the additional benefit that it encourages you to spend time looking for something nice and the idea that you are doing something positive, however small, towards someone else.  A random act of kindness movement for the lazy and internet-accessible.  just a thought.

and now for mood-breaker moment of the day:

I’m not particularly in a “cute little things” mood, but more of a pensive one.  So here’s two videos to encourage thought…

Oh, Don Hertzfeldt, what is the point of it all?  Is he trying to make a statement that each person is an island unto themselves, alone, but exactly the same as everyone else? that it’s all about noise?  that, no matter the species, there is the overarching commonality of the noise and chaos of it all, juxtaposed with the infinite quiet of space? or that there is no meaning, and that is the meaning? that it is randomness and repetition and meaningness is a joke.  Or maybe he finds the color blue calming?

Brows Held High,Blue,” (YouTube) (and, if you watch the video, I did use IKB for the font color here)


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