The Story of My Student’s Anti-Depressants & How Much Reaction Won

That’s right.

Remember the time my student turned to anti-depressants?

After meeting her at the base of my condo, I felt that there was a “aura” of disparity that was surrounding her. What she normally used to be and what she was at that moment.

After going up the elevator, she had a frown on her face and just didn’t see up-beat like she normally was. Upon entering my condo, she sat down and just looked unenthused. I sensed that something was wrong….she wasn’t happy with her life.

How does a doctor, making a significant amount, fall into such a state? Well, 48% of doctors in America are depressed, so that statistic wouldn’t be too uncommon.

After going over her motivations, taking her through a series of things i normally do and figuring out her center, she was completely unmotivated to do anything. She wasn’t living. The personal development category had hit rock bottom, and so were three other categories.

That day she went home and bought some anti-depressants. Luckily, she told me…and I said..

Wtf are you doing? You’ve identified the problem? People on anti-depressants either don’t know (don’t wanna know) or just masking/numbing what the actual problem is!

Arsenio

She felt my emotions through a message and quickly got off of them. She took literally one, and threw the rest away because she knew what the problem was.

Three days later she signed up with a gym and a few other activities to stop being so redundant with her life.

A few months later, she’s full of joy. I saw her again and I felt a radiation of positivity that I haven’t felt since she came back during a semester break 3 years ago (from Australia). She’s challenging herself and looking towards a job at the USA Embassy.

See, for those of you who believe depressants are going to help you, you’re wrong. You’re numbing the pain. You’re not facing what’s not working; whether it’s your shitty family, terrible job, or boorish friends. Once you isolate the problem and create a solution, those depressive feelings will go away….

…..such as what happened with my ex-student.

Coaching Session 002: The Follow-up With My Colleague — Changes Are Happening!

So, if you guys haven’t already read the blog or heard the podcast about my colleague who is/was depressed, I suggest you do that, first.

Now, just recently I had my colleague make some significant changes in her life.  I had her write down the list of everything she likes to do, passions, what are her strengths, and other things.  I’ve struck gold with it.

Over the next week, she seemed a lot happier.  She paid $500 bucks for dance lessons, and this was awesome because she’s always dancing at work.  She committed to fitness by making videos on Instagram, showing herself doing squats and other exercises.

Shortly following that, she sent me her list in regards to the positive things about her and this is what she wrote.

  1. What are my natural gifts? Making people laugh.
  2. What are my skills? Organizing and acting.
  3. What do I enjoy? Dancing, singing, taking photos.
  4. When do I feel most alive? When I’m with friends.
  5. What am I passionate about? (still undecided)
  6. What brings the greatest joy in my life? Good work, taking care of my mom, good family (all conditionals though — nothing in the present)
  7. When do I feel best about myself? Helping others.

 

Strengths

Listening

Challenges

Commitment

 

Now, her natural gifts, skills and enjoyment interlink with each other, but there are still some areas that she’s not exactly sure about and that we need to tap into.  Also, living in a country like Thailand, most people aren’t good at giving positive reinforcement and feedback with peers.  In the spot where it says “what have people always said I’m really good at,” there wasn’t anything.  This isn’t an issue, but culturally speaking, this isn’t good.

Nonetheless, she did message me and tell me that she feels much better and she claims that it’s fromt he medication at the psychiatrist.  However, that’s actually the problem. With Fish Oil, Vitamin D tablets and 20 minutes of exercise a day, she can wick away those “depressive thoughts.”

That’s the next big step in my coaching with her.

Podcast

The Terrifying Fact of Depression

It’s all……THOUGHT.

That’s right.  Let me superimpose it for you.

THOUGHT

Think about it.  Our mind, which is home to trillions of cells, can and has created everything around you at this very moment.  The environment, relationships, feelings, assets, friends, everything!

When I came to realize this back in early 2016, I literally unfriended every coworker I had because I was becoming them.  They would degrade me, look down upon me, and insult everything about Thailand and I was quickly becoming just that.

Was I depressed? Nope.  I had the conscious awareness to realize I was going down a very dark road. A lot of people don’t have that conscious awareness which then leads to depressive thoughts that accumulate over time and form thoughts on suicide.

The feeling of “not being enough” in the world.  I’ve had those feelings 4 years ago.

But what if I told you it can all be undone with just your thoughts? Literally, your thoughts create everything. Your thoughts have created depression (for those of you suffering) and a lot of people don’t even know what thought is.

I just saw a lady jump 17 floors to her death yesterday.  Two weeks ago a young boy was suffering from depression and hurled himself over an indoor balcony, killing himself in the process and sending people into pandemonium just 30 minutes north of Bangkok.

Get this, one was a student and the other had a 4-year-old child.

So, what is thought? I tried breaking it down in my podcast down below.

 

Feelings of Sadness – Identified The Problem & Set Myself Up To Win

I, just like everyone else, have the same problems just like any other human being on this planet.  There are times that I get sucked into a state of mind that I can’t escape for several hours.  A feeling of discontent; probably stemming from a mishap, miscommunication, and depreciation of another human being.  Yes, someone who I thought was awesome turned into a needy, materialistic princess.  This past Tuesday was Day 1.  I knew that it wasn’t going to work, so I distanced myself immediately and she vanished.  However, that void needs to be filled.  Because the void isn’t filled yet, there was a feeling of emptiness throughout the day that put me into a melancholic state of mind.

So, what did I do?

Step 1: Look Back At The Wheel of Life

So, because the Romantic Relationship aspect of my wheel plummeted significantly, this explains why I’m experiencing such feelings.  Someone just walked right out of my life.  Understandable.  The feelings I had going on explained my current state of mind.  Anytime a category falls very fast, very quickly, you’re going to experience ‘negative’ feelings.  Not talking to her anymore means that void is open.  The void is open and it has to be filled.

I went on to ask myself ‘what areas of my life am I neglecting currently? Friends and Hobbies. 

Sure, I went on a trip to Kanchanaburi recently, but then it was overshadowed by constant nagging and resulted in a fallout.  I need to also look back and ask myself, “what am I doing on a routine basis that brings me joy?” Sure, running and working out, but I’m talking about in the friendship realm.  My best friend, who I’ve known for the longest, is a goner.  Someone who I spent a great amount of time talking to on a routine basis is now gone. A couple others’ communications are decreasing significantly….so what should I do? MAKE NEW FRIENDS!

There’s an app I use on a routine basis that landed me three purposeful relationships as of late; most notably, a teacher in Costa Rica that gave me an email that changed my life (later podcast). These people can come and go, though.  In retrospect, history has shown that I can create some lifelong relationships with some individuals.  I decided to sign up for some activities with the gym I go to.  There’s a massive park activity happening on the 16th of December where a lot of people will compete in a competition.  This is where I can meet likeminded people who are on the same wavelengths as me.  BOOM! I never used to do this because of work obligations, but now it’s time to become selfish and put “me” first.

This will fulfill the void soon and I’ll be able to meet people.

Practice What I Preached: Keep Myself Busy

Depression, which I don’t have, happens because you’re focusing too much on yourself rather than other people.  On days I have a lot of free-time, I schedule blogs, podcasts, videos, do writing, research, set up ads and other things.  I keep myself as busy as possible and this works because I take my mind off things I cannot control (circle of concern) and focus primarily on things I can control (circle of influence).

Anytime you’re in the gutter, look at the eight categories: personal development, physical environment, romantic relationships, fun & hobbies, family and friends, career, wealth, health.  When you do this, you can identify the problem and solve it rather than letting it seep into your next workday, week, month, or even year.

Podcast

How To Cure Depression In Fourteen Days

Psychiatrist Alfred Adler, “you can be cured in fourteen days if you follow this prescription.  Try to think every day how you can please someone.

There are a few things that I’ve talked about in my podcast, and there are some things that I told everyone that I would prefer writing down so you guys can have it at hand (for those who are reading around the world).  Here is what psychiatrist Alfred Adler said to his patients. *Long Story*

Melancholia is like a long-continued rage and reproach against others, though for the purpose of gaining care, sympathy and support, the patient seems only to be dejected about his own guilt. A melancholiac’s first memory is generally something like this: “I remember I wanted to lie on the couch, but my brother was lying there.  I cried so much that he had to leave.”

Melancholiacs are often inclined to revenge themselves by coming suicide, and the doctor’s first care is to avoid giving them an excuse for suicide.  I myself try to relieve the whole tension by proposing to them, as the first rule in treatment, “Never do anything you don’t like.”  This seems to be very modest, but I believe that it goes to the root of the whole trouble.  If a melancholiac is able to do anything he wants, whom can he cause? What has he got to revenge himself for? “If you want to go to the theater,” I tell him, “or to go on a holiday, do it.  If you find on the way that you don’t want to, stop it.”  It is the best situation any could be in.  It gives a satisfaction to his striving for superiority.”

That’s an interesting take.  It seems that everyone, including myself, who is or has been depressed…uses the personal pronoun “I” quite often.  I’ve been depressed three times (if I can recall) in my life, and it was all based on my personal wants and needs.  There was one time that I felt like a spec in the world and that I wasn’t wanted anymore, but I snapped out of that in a minute and a half.

In my podcast, I go over some stories and how you can rid yourself (possibly) from depression.  This is unlicensed, but it is professional.

Would You Take A Million Dollars For What You Have?

There was a man a long time ago who was walking in his loathe; completely destroyed and disinterested in life because his family-owned shop completely failed.  He was on his way to the bank to see if he can acquire some money so that he can move to another city to find a “job” until something happened in the middle of the street that changed his life forever.

Back in 1934 there weren’t wheelchairs like there are today.  This man, who had no legs, was trying to make his way across the street with slabs of wood on each side of his body.  Suddenly, both the loather and the wheelchair man locked eyes and the disabled man said, “well, how you doing today, sir? Fine day, isn’t it?”

As this man, who went by the name of Harold Abbott, stood there looking at this man…he realized how rich he was.  He had two legs and he could walk.  He felt ashamed and self-pity.  Later, he made an oath to himself that he would be happy, cheerful, and confident.  Ultimately he went to the bank and doubled up on the money he originally wanted to ask – getting the money in full.  He then moved away and got the job….all because of that incident.

He wrote on the mirror of his home, “I had the blues because I had no shoes. Until upon the street, I met a man who had no feet.”

Why don’t you stop right now and ask yourself: “What in the hell am I worrying about?” In life, about 90% of the things are right and 10% is wrong.  Instead of making that 10% wrong seem like 90%, how about focusing on the 90% that is right?

There are people on the planet today searching for a meal everyday, but you…yes, YOU, have the luxury of reading this particular blog.  This particular sentence.  That’s a luxury in it’s own.  Have you eaten today? Do you have family and reliable friends? Do you have arms, legs, and feet? Then what the hell are you complaining about?

Podcast down below for the stories!

The High Cost of Getting Even

Throughout my life, my brother and I were never particularly fond of each other.  One would say that the opposite was always jealous of him, and the other would call the opposite a selfish person.

Over the years, both my brother and I had gone through the sibling rivalries, as most brothers do.  The constant fighting that ensued over 2 decades was just too much to bear any longer, so I found a small window of opportunity to say, “excuse me, thanks…but no thanks. I want to wish you the best of luck in your future endeavours and I’ll see you if we do ever cross paths again.”

Yeah, two decades of his constant psycho-babbling to my mother to try to convince her that I was a selfish human being.  I didn’t try getting even over the years, and thanks to what ever higher entity that stopped me from doing so, because it just wasn’t worth it in the end.

If I tried doing anything, especially during the heated exchanges in most commonly known as my mother’s living room, he would definitely react immediately.  You never want to try to fight fire with fire, as the saying goes.  I learned a great amount of self-control over the years and I’m fortunate enough to have removed myself from escalating  quarrels that would’ve resulted in cops being called (as they were once before).

No, I didn’t hold, and I continue not to hold a speck of hate in my heart of my brother; on the other hand, he can go on a ramble about how I want to keep all my hard-earned money to myself instead of giving the copious amounts to my mother.

When we hate people, we let them have power over us.  We let them control our appetites, our sleep, our emotions, and even our reactions.  Can you imagine the joy that would be beset on my brother if I ranted about him on my podcasts for the next 20-50 years? He would feel that he’s the winner.

Let’s try not to get even with people, because we’re ultimately going to hurt ourselves more than them.

Podcast: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/12458958

A Simple Way To Make A First Good Impression

Walking up to everyone, smiling before shaking their hand.  You will be remembered, why? The emotional reaction behind it.

Lily Singh, who’s a prominent Indian-American youtuber, mentioned Jimmy Kimmel in a chapter of her new book titled, “shake what your momma gave you.”

Jimmy began laughing in confusion as to why he was in that specific chapter, given the fact that his hips are definitely a big lie (lol).  Lily retorted by saying he has a tremendous character.  One day, both of them walked into a room somewhere in Hollywood and although everyone had already known who Jimmy Kimmel was, he still walked up to every single person in that room and shook their hand.  That’s a man with class.

Have you ever had a terrible day and then you saw yourself staring at a baby who was in pure joy? This baby ends up establishing a connection with you and either they will stare at you ominously (like in Thailand LOL), or they will smile at you.

There was a day I was walking out of my favorite restaurant (Wine Connection) and this child literally ran right up to me and hugged my leg with a big smile.  I poked his stomach and he nudged at me.  I walked a meter before seeing his parents smiling at me — BOOM! My day was made!  Children have the personality of a dog essentially……huh? Arsenio, what the hell are you talking about?

Think about it…..what other things do you see on the planet that makes you smile instantaneously? Babies and dogs….why? They have nothing to complain or worry about.

Professor James V. McConnell, a psychologist at the University of Michigan, expressed his feelings about a smile. “People who smile,” he said, “tend to manage, teach and sell more effectively, and to raise happier children. There’s far more information in a smile than a frown. That’s why encouragement is a much more effective teaching device than punishment.

“You don’t feel like smiling? Then what? Two things. First, force yourself to smile. If you are alone, force yourself to whistle or hum a tune or sing. Act as if you were already happy, and that will tend to make you happy. Here is the way the psychologist and philosopher William James put it:”

“Action seems to follow feeling, but really action and feeling go together; and by regulating the action, which is under the more direct control of the will, we can indirectly regulate the feeling, which is not.”

Podcast: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/12362134

Don’t Let The Beetles Get You Down

Does anyone remember the scene out of U-571 where depth charges are being dropped on a Nazi Submarine (but captured by the Americans) during WWII? Here, let me refresh your memory.

Here’s a dramatic clip and a story of a man named Robert Moore.  He said back in 1945 he had learned the biggest lesson of his life.  He was under 276 feet of water off the course of Indo-China.  He was one of eighty-eight men aboard a submarine named Baya S.S. 318.  While in the submarine, they had discovered a small Japanese convoy on radar…so preparing for the attack, they also saw a Japanese destroyer escort, a tanker, and a mine layer.  So, the minelayer spotted them and they went 150 feet underneath sea level to avoid detection, and rigged for a depth charge.  They turned literally all electricity off, including the fans to avoid making any sounds.

Three minutes later, six depth charges blew up around them, pushing them down to the ocean floor at 276 feet.  For the next 15 hours, this minelayer pummelled them.  Robert was beyond terrified and at that given time, he remembered all the bad things he had done.  All the absurd things we have a tendency to complain about such as being a bank clerk before joining the Navy – dealing with those obnoxious customers.  Not being able to afford a car, house, some of the pettiest things.

He quoted, “how big all those worries seemed years ago!  But how absurd they seemed when depth charges were threatening to blow me to kingdom come!”

He promised himself, “if I ever saw the stars and sun again, I would never, never worry again. NEVER! NEVER! NEVER!!!

Podcast: 

Toxic Workplace Environments

We’ve all dealt with them before.  Those toxic colleagues who seemingly complain about every detail in their lives; and at the same time, you find yourself in the heart of it all, or do you?

We make a choice everyday to think the thoughts we think, to speak the way we do, and to be in the lives of other people – whether it’s good or bad.

My first job in Thailand wasn’t the prettiest.  In fact, it was the second worst job I’ve ever had in my life.  My health was in shambles, lost 5 kilograms, wasn’t happy, was battling the trials of tribulations that Thailand was throwing at me.  On top of that, I had an extremely evil boss that threatened by visa and work permit everyday.  One foreign teacher was depressed and the other one was a two-faced, under-the-cover racist.

What did I do?

I left.  I left without looking back.  Although I tried keeping in touch with the Irishman, I realized that it was a one-way street and that he lied about EVERYTHING (and I mean things like getting five females numbers in one day), so he was dropped like a bad habit.

The job following that was even more difficult because the groupthink that was happening.  Gen B workers absolutely hated me because they thought I was putting more effort into my private classes than I was teaching some of the worst students in the south of Thailand.  Even though that’s true (lol), they were pro-culture Thais…meaning they didn’t accept any new ideas.   By the end of my tenure, I ate in my classroom, never scanned my card when I left at the end of the day, and never talked to anyone in general.  Talk about leaving the most sour taste behind.

The last job I had in the public school system was horrendous.  One day I woke up and asked myself, “Am I happy? Absolutely not.  What are you going to do about it? Leave.  When? Thursday.”  Four days later – I left.  I literally got my last check in the evening and never went back to the school because I was always stressed and pissed off because the students would scream f*** you at me.

If you’re not happy with your working environments, tackle the problem head on. Don’t be in denial. I love doing the wheel of life because it keeps me grounded and level-headed on the categories of my life.

Podcast: https://www.spreaker.com/episode/12097912