Dysfunction is Evidence of Our Humanness (Guest Post)

Dysfunction is Evidence of Our Humanness (Guest Post)

By Dr. Robert F. Mullen 

There is a joke that circulates among mental health professionals. Why do only 26% of people have a diagnosable mental disorder? Because the other 74% haven’t been diagnosed yet.

We are all psychologically dysfunctional in some way. “Mental illnesses are so common that almost everyone will develop at least one diagnosable mental disorder at some point in their life” (Scientific American).

Why do we treat the mentally ill with contempt, trepidation, and ridicule? We are hard-wired to fear and isolate mental illness, and we have been misinformed by history and the disease model of mental health. There are four common misconceptions about psychological dysfunctions. They are (1) abnormal and selective, (2) consequence of behavior, (3) solely mental, and (4) psychotic.

Let us deconstruct these misconceptions, beginning with the latter.

A dysfunctional person is psychotic.

There are two degrees of mental disorder: neuroses and psychoses. When someone sees, hears, or responds to things that are not actual, they are having a psychotic episode. While few persons experience psychosis, everyone has moderate-and-above levels of anxiety, stress, and depression. We are universally neurotic. Since the overwhelming majority of mental disorders are neuroses, we are all dysfunctional to some extent.

A dysfunction is abnormal or selective. 

A neurosis is a condition that negatively impacts our emotional wellbeing and quality of life but does not necessarily impair or interfere with normal day-to-day functions. It is a standard part of natural human development. One-in-four individuals have a diagnosable neurosis. According to the World Health Organization, nearly two-thirds of those reject or refuse to disclose their condition. Including those who dispute or chose to remain oblivious to their dysfunction, we can conclude that mental disorders are common, undiscriminating, and impact us all in some fashion or another. Many of us have more than one disorder; depression and anxiety are commonly comorbid, often accompanied by substance abuse.

A dysfunction is the consequence of a person’s behavior. 

Combined statistics prove that 89% of neuroses onset at adolescence or earlier. In the rare event conditions like PTSD or clinical narcissism manifest later in life, the susceptibility originates in childhood. Most psychologists agree that they are consequence of childhood physical, emotional, or sexual disturbance. Any number of things can cause this. Perhaps parents are controlling or do not provide emotional validation. Maybe the child is subjected to bullying or from a broken home. Behaviors later in life may impact the severity but are not responsible for the neurosis itself. It is not the fault of the child/adolescent, nor reflective of their behavior. There is the likelihood no one is intentionally responsible. This disputes moral models that we are to blame for our disorder, or it is God’s punishment for sin.

A dysfunction is solely mental.

To early civilizations, mental illness was the domain of supernatural forces and demonic possession. Hippocrates and diagnosticians of the 19th century looked at the relative proportions of bodily fluids. Lunar influence, sorcery, and witchcraft are timeless culprits. In the early 20th century, it was somatogenic. The biological approach argues that dysfunction is related to the brain’s physical functioning, while pharmacology promotes it as a chemical or hormonal imbalance. However, the simultaneous mutual interaction of all human system components—mind, body, spirit, and emotions—is required for sustainability of life and sustainability of dysfunction.

The disease model focuses on the history of deficit behavior. The American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) brief definition of neurosis contains the following words: distressing, irrational, obsessive, compulsive, dissociative, depressive, exaggerated, unconscious, and conflicts. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), published by the APA, uses words like incapable, deceitful, unempathetic, manipulative, difficult, irresponsible, and incompetent. 

Moralists and the ignorant assume the ‘mental’ are weak and dishonorable, their behavior bizarre and illogical. The urban dictionary labels us silly or stupid. Adolescents derisively assign the term mental to the unpopular, different, and socially inept. These negative and hostile aspersions on our character are supported by public opinion, media misrepresentation, the mental healthcare industry, and the disease model of mental health.

This ‘defective’ emphasis has been the overriding psychiatric perspective for over a century. The disease model is the chief proponent of the notion that the mentally ill are dangerous and unpredictable. We distance ourselves and deem them socially undesirable. We stigmatize them. The irony is, we are them.

  • Over one-third of family members hide their relationship with their dysfunctional child or sibling to avoid bringing shame to the family. They are considered family undesirable, a devaluation potentially more life-limiting and disabling than the neurosis itself.
  • The media stereotypes neurotics as homicidal schizophrenics, impassive childlike prodigies, or hair-brained free-spirits. One study evidenced that over half of U.S. news stories involving the dysfunctional allude to violence.
  • Psychologists argue that more persons would seek treatment if psychiatric services were less stigmatizing. There are complaints of rude or dismissive staff, coercive measures, excessive wait times, paternalistic or demeaning attitudes, pointless treatment programs, drugs with undesirable side-effects, stigmatizing language, and general therapeutic pessimism.
  • The disease model supports doctor-patient power dominance. Clinicians deal with 31 similar and comorbid disorders, 400 plus schools of psychotherapy, multiple treatment programs, and an evolving plethora of medications. They cannot grasp the personal impact of a dysfunction because they are too focused on the diagnosis.

A recent study of 289 clients in 67 clinics found that 76.4% were misdiagnosed. An anxiety clinic reported over 90% of clients with generalized anxiety were incorrectly diagnosed. Experts cite the difficulty in distinguishing different disorders or identifying specific etiological risk factors due to the DSM’s failing reliability statistics. Mainstream medical authorities cite the poor reliability and validity, and inattention to human experience of DSM criteria. The recent head of the National Institute of Mental Health believes traditional psychiatric diagnoses have outlived their usefulness and suggests replacing or augmenting them with easily understandable descriptions of the issues.

Because of the disease model’s emphasis on diagnosis, we focus on the dysfunction rather than the individual. Which disorder do we find most annoying or repulsive? What behaviors contribute to the condition? How progressive is it, and how effective are treatments? Is it contagious? We derisively label the obvious dysfunctional ‘a mental case.’

Realistically, we cannot eliminate the word ‘mental’ from the culture. Unfortunately, its negative perspectives and implications promulgate perceptions of incompetence, ineptitude, and unlovability. Stigma, the hostile expression of someone’s undesirability, is pervasive and destructive. Stigmatization is deliberate, proactive, and distinguishable by pathographic overtones intended to shame and isolate. 90% of persons diagnosed with a mental disorder claim they have been impacted by mental health stigma. Disclosure jeopardizes livelihoods, relationships, social standing, housing, and quality of life.

The disease model assumes that emotional distress is merely symptomatic of biological illness. The Wellness Model focuses on the positive aspects of human functioning that promote our wellbeing and recognize our essential and shared humanity. The Wellness Model emphasizes what is right with us, innately powerful within us, our potential, and determination. Recovery is not achieved by focusing on incompetence and weakness; it is achieved by embracing and utilizing our inherent strengths and abilities.

Benefits of the Wellness Model

  • Revising negative and hostile language will encourage new positive perspectives
  • The self-denigrating aspects of shame will dissipate, and stigma becomes less threatening.
  • Doctor-client knowledge exchange will value the individual experience over the diagnosis.
  • Realizing neurosis is a natural part of human development will generate social acceptance and accommodation.
  • Recognizing that they bear no responsibility for onset will revise public opinion that an individual’s neurosis is the result of her or his behavior.
  • Emphasizing character strengths and virtues will positively impact the self-beliefs and image of the afflicted, leading to more disclosure, discussion, and recovery-remission.
  • Realizing proximity and susceptibility of dysfunction will address the desire to distance and isolate.
  • Emphasis on an individual’s value and potential will encourage accountability and foster self-reliance.

The impact of neurosis originates in childhood; recovery is a long-term commitment. The Wellness Model creates the blueprint and then guides and supports throughout the recovery process by emphasizing our intrinsic character strengths, virtues, and attributes that generate the motivation, persistence, and perseverance to recover.

The biblical adage treat others as you want to be treated takes on added relevance when we accept that we all experience mental disorders. In fact, dysfunction is evidence of our humanness.


Dr. Robert F. Mullen is the director of ReChanneling Inc, an organization dedicated to the research and development of methods to mitigate symptoms of psychological dysfunction and discomfort.

A referenced copy of this article is available via rechanneling@yahoo.com.

For more from Dr. Robert F. Mullen click here.

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Why Retail Stores Are Using Branded Face Masks?

Face masks have not remained useful only as protective gear but have become an important part of our wardrobe with other apparel. New and unique designs of masks are finding their way in the stores and people are demanding branded logo face masks matching with their main outfits.
Face masks have become an effective way to advertise your brands and products. With everyone wearing the mask it is a very simple and easy way to promote your brand by using your logo over them.

Big Brands Designing Branded Logo Face Masks

As more and more states are making it mandatory to wear the face mask, many big brands have started designing masks in their signature style. Many brand owners have developed masks with their logos printed over them.
The big brands like the NBA and WNBA were the first ones to use face masks for their brand promotion. Many other companies follow the trend. For instance, Disney has come out with masks featuring its popular Mickey and Minnie Mouse character. The masks have also made their way in the sports circles. The National Football and Hockey Leagues, NFL, and NHL along with Major League Soccer have designed masks featuring their respective teams. Many other institutions and marketers including Universal Music Group, Alice+Oliva, and Atoms have also released their masks for promotional or marketing activities.

Why are Retail stores using branded logo Face masks?

With the spread of COVID19 across the nation, the cloth industry was helplessly witnessing a quick collapse. However, during the tough times, some of the more aware retail store owners were closely watching the actions taken in China during and after the lockdown phases.
They observed that China had made it mandatory to wear masks to all its citizens after the reopening. The retailers anticipated that the same trend will be followed in the USA as well and therefore they started designing and using branded logo face masks in their retail stores. The decision paid off to many retail stores and now the demand for these masks is growing day by day. It has prevented many retail stores from a possible close down.

Final Words

Every business owner is trying to find out new ways to survive during the current pandemic. Retail stores have found a unique way of sustaining their businesses at the time when the cloth industry was witnessing a complete collapse. They could survive the brunt of the pandemic by using the branded logo face masks and now they are searching for new ways to design the face masks to grow in the market.

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Unrealistic Relationship Goals

A conversation to set clear expectations of what you’re looking for should take place early on when you first start to talk to a person so the two of you can be on the same page. Yet, unrealistic goals can end a potential relationship before it even starts.

Relationship Ultimatum One Week After Talking

  • It’s one thing to give a person an ultimatum to decide whether they want to be in an exclusive relationship with you when the two of you been talking on a regular for about 3 months. However, it’s unrealistic to give an ultimatum in less than a week, when the person is likely to still be trying know you more, since they haven’t spent much time around you.

Demands To Become A Top Priority Almost Overnight In Their Life

  • If an individual wants to know more about you, they should be able to find a way to set aside some time for you, no matter how busy they might be. Still, you can’t expect everyone you initially meet to make it a priority overnight for their life to evolve around you. I say that because most people got key friends and family they have been knowing for years already before you entered the picture.

What are some other unrealistic goals that you feel some people set when they first start talking to someone?
For the original post click here.
If you enjoyed this post be sure to check out the writer blog, where you can read more relationship advice posts, money advice posts and life advice posts. You can also check them out on Twitter and Instagram.  

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How Make Your Life More Interesting And Meaningful

Don’t we all strive for doing something interesting every single day? Don’t we all get up from bed thinking today would be awesome?
I am sure we all believe that. But what are the things that we can do all day long to make our lives more interesting, meaningful, and full of fun? So here in this post, I have listed down the top 5+1 simple activities which can make our everyday life awesome!

  1. Do Some Chop-Chop!

Yes, you heard me correct. Don’t know cooking? No worries. Why don’t you help your mother with cutting some veggies?  This will help you release some dopamine and you will definitely feel good. And if you know a bit of cooking then, my friend, make something delicious for your family. They will be thrilled and so will you!
Interesting Life 1

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

  1. Peekaboo! Surprise Your Old Books

Sometimes we grow up by forgetting those small things that made our earlier days so much special and memorable. From childhood, books have been a constant companion as we paved our way towards adulthood. It is always great fun to peep through your old books’ shelf. You would realize there are so many memories hidden within every nook and corner of your old books. Who knows, you might come across some love letters from your high school sweetheart!
Interesting Life 2

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels

  1. Set Up Home Plants

The idea of home plants is growing rapidly. You don’t even need to go out and buy these items. Just lookout for some beautiful plants from your garden or someplace nearby. Take out some cool pots, unused for a long time, from your store. And use your creativity while arranging these home plants all-around your dining, bedroom, kitchen, and even washroom.
Interesting Life 3

Photo by Designecologist from Pexels

  1. Call Up Your Old Buds!

It is always special to call up your buddies with whom you haven’t had a talk for a long time. When you do that, you would feel so much happiness and joy which cannot be compared with anything else. Your old pals know you better than anyone on this planet. You have shared everything with them, starting from your first break-up sad story to going out on a long drive with your first newly bought car. Just remember what you can’t share with your closed ones, even parents, you can easily do that to your old buds. And they would always welcome you with your hands wide open.

  1. Knock-Knock the Artist inside You

You need not go to an art school to be good at drawing, painting & sketching to be an artist. You can literally do anything and everything to wake up the creative you from within. Well, you can make some paper boats with colourful papers and showcase on your shelf. There are plenty of people who doodle on any sheet of paper using whatever they can get nearby and convert it into a unique piece of creativity.
Interesting Life 4

Created by Shobhangi Rudra

  1. Visit The Strong Traveller!

You might be interested in reading some amazing blog posts such as Top 10 best weather places in the World, PONDICHERRY: Where Souls meet Country and Backpacking through New York. Also, you might be interested in knowing the top 3 Easy-to-Make Breakfast while Travelling Around the World. Lastly, you may find plenty of self-grooming posts such as Introduction to Content Writing- Gateway towards PASSIVE INCOME to develop yourself so you could follow your dreams and live life as you have always wanted!
Interesting Life 5
Arkaprabha Das is the Founder & Editorial Chief at The Strong Traveller. He has always been a man of many caps. Apart from being an MBA professional, he is a full-time freelance writer and possesses the mind & heart of a true entrepreneur! You can always reach out to him at thestrongtraveller@gmail.com.

6 Reasons Why Reading Increases Positivity

By Elli from NeedtoRead
Everyone strives to be more positive, happy, and healthy. It’s a goal we all have in mind, and subconsciously try to work towards day by day.
But what if I told you that reading isn’t always just a pastime, and can actually help you obtain this goal?
#1. Different Points of View
When you’re reading a book, each character will have a different point of view about what’s happening as the story unfolds.
You get to choose what side you’re on based on all of their perspectives and ideas, which is a good tactic to use in reality, as well!
This will help you to understand what other people are thinking in your daily life, and find solutions for yourself based on the different perspectives of the people you interact with.
Being able to sympathize and understand someone else’s point of view of a situation will help you become more positive, understanding, kind, and hopefully give you a better outlook on life.
#2. Inspiring Characters
Have you ever read a book and been inspired by your favourite character to change your habits to more positive ones? To use your kind heart to help others?
Books always find a way to impact how we behave, and the outcome is usually a positive one!
Inspiring characters will help you figure out what your goals are, and what you value most.
#3. Someone Understands You
There’s something about reading that can really take a toll on what you think about yourself.
I used to have a lot of social anxiety, so much that I would even avoid interacting with my closest friends, for the fear that I would embarrass myself.
I began to become more attracted to books as a way to vent my feelings, to become friends with the characters that felt like they didn’t fit in, the same way I did.
Over time, I began to feel my confidence increase. Knowing that how I was feeling was more common than I thought, I was able to fight back, and gain more control over my fear of talking to others.
#4. More Educated
If you want to be more educated about the world around you, reading a variety of books is a great way to learn more.
From reading both fiction and nonfiction books, you will learn more about how the world works, how people think, and more, based on what the book you’ve read is about.
There are millions of books on different topics, so there are definitely some that you’ll be interested in; maybe you’ll even find a topic that you didn’t know you were passionate about until now!
#5. A Feeling of Community
For every series of popular books, there’s always a fan group somewhere. A great place to find people who like the same books as you is through social media!
Talking to other people, even if they’re strangers, about a book that you enjoyed will give you the feeling of community. You’ll also get the opportunity to learn about people from other countries and walks of life, since most online fan groups are international.
#6. Discovering What Really Matters
While reading about a character’s life, you might begin to think about your own on a deeper level.
What’s most important in my life? Who do I want to be?
Reading about fictional people finding themselves will, in a way, inspire us to work towards doing the same. They give us the confidence to keep going, to keep pushing out of our comfort zones until we finally reach where we wish to be.
In the end, we know that reading can’t make us more positive on its own, but it can certainly help. What do you think about reading? Has it helped you somehow?
For more from the writer click here.
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I Don’t Think We’re Ever Going Back

By Xandria 
I’m writing this from my bedroom in my parents’ house. I’m working on a small desk in the corner of the room, and there’s a cool breeze coming in from the window in front of me. Sounds pretty great, right? This is day 35 of quarantine for me, I only leave the house to get groceries for my family once or twice every two weeks and maybe, sometimes I go for a walk to get some fresh air and clear my head. I’ve been working from home for the last 6 weeks, and I might be the only person in the world that doesn’t completely hate this situation.
It’s a strange world we’re living in, we’re stuck in our homes as a means to stop the spread of a virus we can’t seem to slow down. Stuck is also a weird word to be using at a time like this, when having a home, a job to work from home, full cupboards and fridge are immense blessings – it’s the farthest thing from being stuck. There’s many without homes, many who’s jobs don’t allow the flexibility to work from the safety of a house. There’s also those who have no jobs, those who don’t have any idea when they can do their next round of groceries. I don’t take that lightly. I find myself being deeply thankful for every little thing I have. In a time that some might argue is so easy to focus on the bad, I find myself searching for the good. The world before the virus is gone, it’s something I don’t think we are ever going to get back. Not because we won’t ever bounce back – but because each of us, every single person on this planet, will forever be changed by this.
Since this whole ordeal started, since the virus made its way to Italy it dawned on me that there might be a much larger reason for why this is all happening. For the first time it’s like the whole world is on pause, people have no choice but to be present in the moment and take everything day by day. Isn’t that the way we should have been living all along? This is thought that has crossed my mind many many times. Shouldn’t we be living a life that is full of gratitude, a life that is in no rush whatsoever, a life that’s not bound by a schedule, a life with no fear. Maybe this is the Universe’s way – God’s way – of telling us to go back to basics, maybe this is His way of showing us that we really are all in this together. That in a world separated by race, politics and religion, maybe just maybe, this is His way of showing us that there really isn’t anything separating each of us. That when you really look at life for what it is, we are all the same. We crave that human connection, we have always been all in this together. I don’t know when or how this will all end, but when it does we’re going to have to begin again, together. The way we should have all along.
Stay strong my friends. Stay positive and choose joy every day, search for joy every single moment you can. When we finally get out of this, we’ll hug a little harder, love a lot further. We’ll cherish every trip to the grocery store, and every family gathering a hell of a lot more. I promise you that. And from now, until the day this is all over; stay present, take deep breaths and take comfort in knowing that time will heal, time will pass and soon this will be over.
Stay safe.
Xo, Xandria
Website: imxandria.com
Instagram: @xandriadsilva
Twitter: @xandriadsilva

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Death, Trauma, And The Pandemic: A Personal Look

By Law Matheson
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or medical professional; This is not medical advice or scientific fact; the following article is simply my personal findings on studying Covid-19 via the Internet. The following article is not intended for anything more than a personal opinion piece.)

To those that do not know me-

My name is Law Matheson.

I am a resigned academic high school teacher gone, rogue amateur historian.

I say ‘resigned’ because I was placed into an impossible decision. Keep doing what I loved (teaching), but I had to pass off erroneous, and downright harmful school curriculum- or I could do the hardest thing that I have had to decide- to walk away from my passion consciously.

I camped out on the prairies of North Dakota from November 2016- February 2017 protesting DAPL and their evil practices- until I was arrested for “Obstruction Of Government Function.”

In January of the same year, before getting arrested, other protestors and I traveled from North Dakota to Washington D.C., where we protested Trump’s ‘Inauguration.’ Occupy Inauguration, after we were done with the security gates, we had a (huge) round dance just blocks from the Capitol. Traffic stopped be damned.

I would do everything I did- again.

2019 and I had settled down in my home state of Maine once again. I found a job in a new career that I quickly fell for. I had found my dream job.

Upper-Management quickly dashed those dreams.

My Former Employers were not properly educating or preparing my former Students- so I started a Creative Collective – Renaissance Rising – where my former students, new students, individuals across the globe, and myself can all learn and grow together!

RenRising is a growing Collective- Consider Collaborating Your Skills And Passions With Ours?

I start all my blog posts with a Lesson Outline (as if this was class)- I decided to leave it here for y’all to experience.

I am incredibly grateful to Pooja for the opportunity to reach more like-minded individuals. IF you like this blog post please ‘Like’ this page and Subscribe to Pooja’s page (if you haven’t already- it’s amazing the diversity of guest bloggers on this blog!)- but also please stop on over at Renaissance Rising today to experience a Creative Collective like no other!

I am going to start this blog post rather abruptly. Originally for Easter weekend, I had a comparative and contrasting blog series planned to re-examine the spring equinox holiday.

However, a friend of mine died yesterday. Unrelated to the coronavirus- as of what is coming out right now. Little is reported at this time.

Rather than continuing as planned- the class will be adjusted.


-Trauma Detour

SARS-CoV-2 pandemic

is already causing mass panic and global economic downfall, but now I have to figure out how I am going to manage through not being able to bury my friend because of extreme social distancing regulations and strict laws with harsh consequences.

No Funeral service.

I have buried a few friends, more than I care to count. I have even had a few friends that I was unable to attend the burial- which is almost harder than the funeral service- at least then you are around mutually grieving individuals. Alone you are so- isolated.
Grieving alone blows.
And not in a good way.
Call me crude, call me crass, we all mourn differently.
Burying a friend never gets easier.
But it shouldn’t.
Consider the alternative- you get used to burying friends?!
I have buried over 10 close friends and family; I have mourned over 20 loved ones and relatives all said and done; I have attended a handful or more funerals, memorials, or celebrations of life beyond that.

The sad truth is, once your first friend dies- it never stops after that.
It doesn’t get easier.
I am thankful for that.

Life and death go hand in hand.
For death can only happen to one who has lived- this it does so indiscriminately.
To live is to know that it ends in death, yet that’s not a limit, but the goal- be the best, love the hardest, and do the most you can before that day.
This is real success.
This is where happiness is found-
In the pursuit.
Simply showing up for the day is more than half the battle.

Do Not Get The Wrong Idea- I am Not Promoting Social Gatherings- Take It For What It Is Meant To Be- Uplifting. Photo by fauxels on Pexels.com

How often do we put something off-

only to finally do it, and then realize it wasn’t as hard as previously assumed.
If you have children, younger siblings, nieces, nephews, cousins, grandchildren, grandparents, or the neighbor’s child- and you are their primary source of essential day to day needs- then you understand this.
Shit gets hard.
The world is fucking brutal.
You call it quits, and it kicks you in the nuts and then kills your dog just to make a point.
The very first day that you don’t show up for your loved ones like you always had makes the second, then the third, and eventually the fourteenth day of not showing up that much easier.

Soon you are thinking of suicide.
Let me be blunt here- suicide is a selfish answer.

Is that the politically correct answer?
Hell no.
Do I stand by it?
Hell yes.
You know why?
I contemplated suicide myself more than once when I was a teenager, did not follow through, but have survived countless other friends that have.
It was a struggle for a long time.
Growing up gay in a small community with predominately Christian beliefs made being different and standing out a social death wish.
Sure, you would be alive on the outside, but you were dead on the inside.
Yet, I could never go through with the act of committing suicide.

When I was only ten years old, I became an uncle.

The honorific of ‘Uncle’ did not mean much to me at the time- but what did matter was my niece’s affection towards me.
She was innocent.
She was as close to ‘holy’ as I could conceive of as a ten-year-old.

If something so sacred could love me- maybe I was worth love.

Shortly after I was blessed with another niece, and another, and a nephew, and another nephew, then another niece! I am thrilled to say that it hasn’t stopped there- I now have 10 nieces and nephews- not all family is blood.
Being an Uncle has gotten me through the hardest things I have ever had to face-
Being molested by a respected male in the community who was sexually assaulted by his father before him.
Left with no choice but to call off the wedding with my best friend because she is a woman and I love men.

Even Standing Rock.

Stand Up To Your Fears. RenRising.com

My fellow protesters

and I were called ‘Snowflakes’ for our efforts.

To this day, I do not understand that.

I was sprayed across the face with complex bear mace, I endured sound cannons, bean bag guns, water cannons in 14-degree weather. When the winter set in and weekend warriors were nowhere to be seen, I starved for the cause; I went days with dehydration: I sacrificed everything for what I believed.

No ‘snowflake’ endures and survives that.

My nieces and nephews showed me the other side- even when they did not know what they were doing.
After I was arrested, I was next to homeless in Oregon, and then unable to return to my former life in the suburbs of Las Vegas- a dear friend bought me a plane ticket from Nevada back to Maine.
By this time, I had not only struggled to survive through camping out in the winter on the planes of North Dakota for my beliefs, but I also strapped myself to the security fence surrounding Donald Trump’s “Inauguration” to prevent middle-aged white men from attending his parade. My friends and I risked arrest, police brutality, and at one point, almost having a cop cut my thumb off with a power saw.

Recovering from that was difficult.

I was not sure I was going to make it once or twice.
Yet my dear friend bought me a ticket home, and my nieces and nephews became the end goal. I was in no state to see them regularly. I was a hairy, bearded, mess; I was traumatized and paranoid; I was angry, scared, confused, and I felt isolated.

I did not feel worthy of my nieces and nephews’ innocence.
Rather than give up-
I fought to earn that right back.
They saved me again.

I was back in Maine for 4/20/2017.

I had just turned 27, and I had seen war for the first time.

Some will argue that point with me- they do not get to. They were not there.

I know others were younger when they first saw war- but it is never easy.
No amount of studying can prepare you for personal trauma.
It isn’t even the trauma itself that is the worst.

All trauma varies and is not equal- yet no matter what caused it- living through the aftermath is far worse.

That is my personal opinion only, but a single moment can be forgotten- day-to-day has to be struggled through.

Thankfully I had anchors to keep me tethered to this life (and it is only expanding!)- but not everyone has that.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I have lost at least five friends to suicide at a young age.

They had so much to live for- but it was cut short.
I will repeat my earlier statement- it was selfish.
That burns to read and is harder to swallow.
Suicide may “solve” one problem, but it creates a world more.
As a survivor of multiple friends’ suicides- please think of us (your friends); we will have to carry the burden after you are gone.
Reach out to us, Friend- if any decent human being knew their friend was seriously on the edge, they would drop everything and be there any way they could (safe social distancing or not)- allow us that chance.
We are isolated physically more than at any time in global history.

Yet we are the least ‘alone’ as we could be.

How can we with Big Brother on both sides of our phones, laptops, doorbells, and nanny cams?
Jokes aside, we have the internet.


The very thing you can credit for allowing access to my blog post.
Never before in history have we had access to knowledge at our fingertips, the ability to learn or connect from anyone, anywhere, or as many accommodating applications that allow us to talk with friends and family as we do now.
That is the reason you should not feel alone.
More and more people across the planet are reevaluating what is most meaningful to them- and seeking it out.

This is a cause for celebration.

Isolation got you down?

Unpack that hobby you have been putting off.
Get out a blank notebook page and start researching something that has always eaten away at you.
Get lost in the great stories written by brilliant minds you always told yourself you would.
Put your phone down and pick up your child.

Now is the time.

Do not waste it.
Do not wish it away.

Treat this as any lesson you ever had to learn in life- do that- learn from it.

I do not believe death is an end,

but a goal- live the most, be the most, learn the most before – that time.

That’s how you win this game.

I will be honest- when I am hurting, it is hard for me not to become aware of all the other hurt and sadness around me. 
I am generally in control of this sense, but when I am hurt, I get weak; when I am weak, I stumble and fall. The end never seems far away.
Yet every time my foot scrapes the ground and threatens to take me down- I pick my foot up higher next time, I square my shoulders a little more. I learn what I can, and I move on. Soon I am not stumbling or falling- as much. To not stumble and fall is unnatural in this life.
Dracula may not seem like the story to turn to for inspirational words, yet this sentence has stuck with me as much as a curse from the undead-

Bram Stocker

Let that sink in.

Failure is not an end- it is a lesson to take away from to succeed next time.
Death is not an end- energy and matter cannot be created or destroyed. What is your Soul but energy and matter? Therefore, I believe that when we die, our energy and matter are recycled back into Mother Earth.
The Sacred Cycle Of Life.

I have been more honest and raw in this post than I ever intended. I can thank my partner for this blessed post. I do not know how it will be received, but I know that mental illness has been stigmatized and looked down upon far too long- but no more!

Trauma affects everyone differently.

To assume or enforce a formula for such is evil.
Grief and mourning are natural.
There is no joy without sadness- no mountain peak without a valley floor.
Keep in mind, Students. I am not a doctor. I do not hold any medical or psychological degree. This is not advice on how to live your life or what to do in any given circumstance. This is simply a retelling of my life with personal (hindsight) comments.
Never forget you are not alone.
None of us are alone.
Should the power go out, the internet stop running, and darkness descends upon humans, animals and plants alike-
Even then, you would not be alone.
The human spirit is power; it is connectedness.
Just as bees and birds navigate life on instinct- humans could do the same if we were only to turn back to basics- nature.
This has been a heavy and unexpected post. I would rather be focusing on research and writing for Easter Weekend- but this was far more important, any other posts can wait.

STUDENTS– if you or a loved one is struggling with suicidal thoughts– reach out to someone. A trained medical professional is best– however, do not let long lines and phone trees keep you from connecting with another human. Reach out to whoever you have- give them the chance to help you– something I wish I could have done for my dead friends.

If you have no one else,

I am not a trained professional- but I am an ear that will listen.
Do not allow more tragedy to befall the world.
We are all in this together.
If we all do our own small part- soon, large parts are better.

We are all in this together. Just don't touch each other. Renrising.com
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An Interview With Nurse Tasha

Read this awesome post by Tiani and had to reblog it! Her sister is actually a nurse and is working hard during this pandemic to save lives. Check out the interview she did with her sister as well as the information listed about healthcare. And if you want to see a part two of the interview be sure to leave some questions for her sister in the comments!

Tiani Angela

This post is sponsored by :DP HealthNow 

Did you guys know that Tuesday, April 7th was World Health Day? A day that recognizes nurses, midwives, and other health care workers. I thought it would be cool to actually interview a nurse. Luckily for me, my sister is one of the nurses working on the front lines. We are all so proud of her! img_8646

Before we get into it, I want to give a huge thank you to :DP HealthNow for providing me with a membership.

Now more than ever, we are worried about our health. Telemedicine is a good choice because you can stay home and receive care virtually. It is recommended by the CDC that instead of leaving the house and risking infection, people should call or video chat with a doctor using a service like Teladoc!

:DP HealthNow is powered by DentalPlans.com, America’s #1 online marketplace for dental…

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What They Don’t Tell You About Anxiety And Depression

By Rachel
Feeling anxious, depressed, lost, stuck, empty (often inexplicably) are very common experiences. We often mask over them, and don’t realise that the people around us are feeling them too.
When healed & whole, we naturally feel confident and purposeful. We know what we want to create in our lives, and easily give our energy to this creation. Fear, anger, and futility become virtually non-existent, as challenges are purposefully confronted without taking a toll.
Everyone has the gifts of fulfillment, clear intuition, self-love, and ease of being. The challenge is to restore free and easy access to these states. The block? Emotional wounds.
Most of us are unknowingly carriers of unhealed early life woundings. Becoming who you want to be, who you know you truly are, is a matter of healing.

“Many people are not readily able to feel confident, content or purposeful. This represents a huge loss, because of the realisable potential within each of us.”

Guest Post Pic 1

Contentment, strength, and purpose are natural states of being.

So why is this so often not the case?

Feeling empty, low, flat, stuck, and futile can be feelings that correspond to depression. While worries, nervousness, butterflies, hypervigilence, racing thoughts and hearts, fear of people, are often described as symptoms of anxiety.
I have come to see depression and anxiety as signs of a deeper and often overlooked problem. When the deeper issue is healed, your natural state of wellness and wholesomeness is more readily available to you. In other words, without the chronic hard work you can feel content and enjoy the process of discovering your own life.
Getting the message from the people around you to “buck up” or “shake it off” are entirely unhelpful. These responses amplify self-blame, guilt, and even feelings of shame. Anxiety and depression are not just a matter of power over with will power.

Why can’t I just be happy, what’s wrong with me?!

The truth is that we always orient towards what we think will help. Even the most apparently self-destructive behaviour or negative feeling is a bid for well being. Truly.

What goes wrong?

No matter how many positive affirmations you make, how many times you tell yourself the ‘rational truth’, plan your success strategy, treat yourself to something nice, or go to the gym, the relief is often at best only temporary.
In the long run, these strategies don’t bring you the feelings of wholeness and worthiness that you intend. This apparent failure to be “happy,” is 100% not your fault.
There is a good reason why these techniques only work superficially. They do not clear the root cause of why you feel any combination of low, nervous, worried, reactive, hostile, empty, invalidated, powerless, out of control, helpless, or alone.
The rational mind, will power, and positivity are not the right tools for this healing job. To get out of these painful states and cycles, you need to dive into the belly of the beast and heal the root cause.

You might be surprised…

I have been sharing this with friends, family, and clients for years. You are not the problem, not broken – do not fix. There is nothing missing or defective about you.

What you are experiencing as shame, depression, anxiety, instability, disorientation… is an unrecognised developmental trauma.

In spiritual and energetic terms, this is the wounded inner child. More about that here:

In Psychological Terms – What is Developmental Trauma?

Developmental Trauma is like a block that disrupts our natural balance, leading to feelings of anxiety, depression, low-self-esteem, uncertainty about our role in life, and a chronic nagging feeling that something is “off” without really knowing what that is.
Trauma is also a subjective experience. This is one of the most important things to understand. Trauma has nothing to do with how apparently intense or harsh an event was to people observing it.
It has everything to do with how the adult, teenager, child, toddler, baby, fetus…. experiencing the event felt able to stay safe, valuable, and in control.
Developmental Trauma is an emotional injury that stunts your natural growth. When we endure such an injury as a child, (for example being criticized often, punished too harshly, invalidated emotionally, ignored, controlled, or living in a toxic family home) it does three things when it remains unhealed.

  1. It freezes a part of our consciousness in that traumatising moment
  2. The emotions, sensations, thoughts, beliefs, and wounding of that moment become locked inside of us
  3. We lose touch with our authentic being, which leads to feeling insecure, angry, or disoriented
  4. We form relationships, make life decisions, and favour activities that are driven by the unhealed wounds rather than our authentic nature.

Most Developmental Trauma is Unconscious

We don’t remember what happened, or why we feel the way that we feel. We just feel it. Shadow work is a critical part of healing these unconcious wounds. Our emotional pain in the here and now is the portal to the shadow.
Early life emotional wounding is trapped inside most of us, and relegated to the subconscious. We don’t remember why, but we feel ongoing unhappiness, emptiness, nervousness, low mood, harshness, self-criticism…
The truth of the matter is that many many more people are living with early life emotional wounds than they realise. It only takes one wound to cause unresolveable anxiety. This is because the past echoes into the present. It also means that a single healing can lift a huge weight off.
A single unhealed trauma makes us more vulnerable to future trauma. This is why a relationship break down, an interpersonal conflict, or a bump in the road can knock one person completely off track while another moves through the challenge without a scratch.

Healing Developmental Trauma

Although the body has matured into its adult form with the passage of time, the unresolved wounds of the past are held within as energies that continue to radiate the frequencies of the wound. We can conceptualise this fragment, this trapped energy, this wound – as an inner child.
The goal of healing is integration. We want to integrate the fragments of our consciousness (the lost and wounded inner children that each represent an emotional wound) back into a whole.
We want to bring the pieces of ourselves back into wholeness.
When we access the past trauma and heal it, we can shut off the ‘trauma alarm.’ The scattered mind and negative states are replaced with a feeling of security. In other words, you restore your natural path.

A trauma is frozen energy.

Parts of you are frozen in the past. This is called fragmentation. Not all of you is here and now.
Guest Post Pic 3
Negative states and emotions that are rooted in developmental traumas can be difficult to detect, because we are either used to them, subdued by them, or resigned to them and they have become the norm.
This new norm is actually a distortion that makes it difficult to experience natural states of happiness, security, and purpose. A negative repeating pattern in life, a chronic negative emotional experience, ongoing interpersonal conflicts or fears, are a sure sign of developmental trauma.

Although we may grow up in surroundings that are seemingly ‘ok,’ having no need to battle with abject poverty, starvation, or war – the loneliness, emptiness, sadness, and worry can remain intact.

These are telltale signs of an emotionally wounding childhood, are so often symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Healing is a gradual process. Every healing process that you do restores your original wholeness. There is no prescribed way to heal. In fact, different people will require different processes, be drawn to different techniques or schools of thought, and ultimately are able to heal.
I love to combine energy healing with psychotherapeutic work to resolve symptoms of depression and anxiety, by working with the real wounds.
Since we are made of mostly energy (including our thoughts and emotions) it is important to consider that our psychological injuries are non-physical. This makes energy healing an important part of your healing work, including shadow work, and inner child work.

Rachel is a spiritual psychotherapist, energy healer, and spiritual empowerment teacher. Her goal is to provide you with the information and presence you need to heal your past, restore your natural ease of being, and self-actualise.

For more from the writer click here.
For more on how to heal the inner child click here.
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Email me on(guest posts welcome!): insomniacwithanaccent@gmail.com

The True Heroes Of Our Time

By Andreas Cvetkovic Destounis
One thing I hope will happen as a result of the corona-outbreak is that more and more people will acknowledge the real heroes of our society. And I’m happy to see that there has been an increase in this acknowledgement. We have seen more and more people showing their gratitude to their countries health-care workers, working in hard conditions trying to help people. But this shouldn’t have started with the corona-outbreak and it shouldn’t end when the outbreak ends. And it shouldn’t be limited to health-care workers only.
I got my first job in 2017 when I started working at a daycare. I had of course gone to school and university, and there we learned about other heroes. When we were small children our hero was Pippi Longstocking. In high school it was Winston Churchill. In university coffee was our hero as it could keep us awake. When I started working at the daycare I noticed how unaware I had been of our society’s real heroes for the first 21 years of my life.
I remember that the first day working at the daycare was a very messy one. No one seemed to really know what part of the daycare I was going to work at, and I was moved around several times just within the first hour. Since that day in the spring of 2017 I have worked in several different daycares in my hometown of Stockholm up until the middle of 2019. So I have my fair share of experiences. But I didn’t need nearly that much time to understand why that first day was so messy. It actually just took a few days. And that in turn led me to understand that it wasn’t Pippi Longstocking, Churchill or coffee that were our true heroes. The true heroes of our modern society were my coworkers at the daycare. (Even though coffee helped me, as well as my co-workers, while working at the daycare. So we can still count it as a hero).
Low pay, long hours and tiring work with a lot of responsibilities are a few things that define working at the daycare. I can’t speak for other countries, but I can speak for my own country of Sweden. And here this definition is hardly unique for people working at a daycare. The same goes for nurses, police-officers, taxi-drivers, among many. I constantly hear on the news of police-officers and teachers quitting their jobs because they can’t take it anymore, and of nurses and taxi-drivers having to work overtime for free because, well, they just have to.
I had heard about all of this even before I started working at the daycare. But just like a lot of people, I didn’t give it a second thought. After working at a daycare for some time, I could suddenly sympathise with them.
That first day that I mentioned earlier, it was messy because the staff at the daycare had so much workload that they couldn’t pay attention to me. As I said, I have worked in several (seven to be precise) daycares, and the thing that was constant in all daycares was the frustration and anger of the staff. And also the high number of staff seeking help for mental-health problems. I often just wanted to sit down with them and tell them that everything will be alright, even though I knew that it probably wouldn’t.
As an ending I want to go back to what I said in the beginning. Up to now I think that a lot of people are unaware of the heroes working these types of jobs, just as I was before I started working at the daycare. But the corona-outbreak has made it obvious what heroes they are. Health care-workers have to risk their health working with corona-patients, staff at daycares and supermarkets, as well as bus drivers, have to risk their health coming in close contact with people who might very well have the virus. All while the rest of us are being told to stay at home. And this has made people see them as the heroes they are. Let’s hope it persists when the outbreak is over. The next time you go to the supermarket or ride the bus, please make sure to show your gratitude to the person behind the counter or the wheel.
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