Oscar Wilde

Wisdom from a 50 year old – Me

No this is not one of my “ancient wisdom” pieces all though I am sure there is someone out there who will quip something about my age….. The wisdom?

A person with experience should not be a victim of a person with an opinion

This isn’t specific to any one thing, meaning you may have a lot of experience dating. You may be an experienced gamer, you may have experienced abuse of some kind…. Whatever the condition is experience is paramount. Everyone has opinions, it doesn’t mean those opinions are wrong either.

Ideally in life when you can, if you can, seek out people with experience first, cultivate opinions second. Also, do not discount yourself when considering people with experience. You are after all an expert in yourself, or becoming one. You’re instincts are likely based on your experiences and that is the path to true wisdom.

Don’t let people with an opinion speak into your life and victimize you with attempts at shame or guilt. I post this because we are on the cusp of the holidays and for many of us that means interactions with extended family and friends who are all “experts” in something. These experts, and their opinions can sometimes have a dramatic negative impact on you and in your life.

You are here, you are present, you are coping, and you are surviving. You are putting together minutes, hours, days, weeks, months and years of life and you are moving forward. Opinions come and go, anyone can step into your life for a minute and give a dossier on what they see. Ignore them, seek people with experience, including the expert on you, you.

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6 years of data – WOW

So once again while surfing the web I came across a pretty interesting piece here . So, over the last 6 years the Crisis Text line has accumulated location statistics as to where they are getting texts from. The Crisis Text line is a nonprofit organization that provides free counseling to those who text the line. It’s a great tool for those who wish to maintain their anonymity.

So, they did a simple data collection on where the texts were coming from. This is an example of how companies do use your information, but that is another post entirely. Essentially what the data shows us is proximity matters, which I covered in a recent blog post here. That post was data from India that I stumbled on and this recent article confirms, for me at least that proximity is a huge issue worldwide.

The concept is simply, the closer you are to mental health resources, the better outcomes you have. I know its fairly simple, but its application is tricky. Meaning you could have a hospital in a small population area that has great mental health services so then demographically the statistics for that area would be skewed against macro trending data (did your eyes just glaze over with the stats talk? 😊 )

From the article: “There has been a correlation in rural places with less mental healthcare and increased mental health issues,” said Philbin. 

A fifth of Crisis Text Line’s texts come from some of the lowest-income zip codes. One in 10 come from rural American counties in states like Tennessee, Wisconsin, and Virginia, which have the least access to mental health treatments for children. Some 56% of people texting the app said it was their first time trying to get any kind of care.”

Of course, lower income zip codes usually equate to lower resourced medical care facilities. So, where you live does in fact matter if you have mental health issues. While it is true that the world is becoming more connected faster, anxiety can snowball fast to the ultimate disaster loss of life.

Ideally what we can do as citizens is begin to engage in the political process to encourage policy makers to encourage mental health services into future health care legislation. While I am not a fan of government mandates, I think there are viable funding mechanisms through grants and institutional structures that can increase mental health services and thus create better outcomes.

Examples might be: Funding a mental health professional(s) in U.S. schools as part of a wellness dept. State and local wellness officers who monitor and report on mental health outcomes at the local town level.

What this data shows us is macro/large scale data sets and that’s good. Drilling down to the next level, like, what towns in Alabama had the higher rates of mental health issues, allow us to target resources more accurately.

Hobbit Hole

The wisdom of Tolkien…. Again….

“There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit or There and Back Again

I’ve looked for things, I’ve looked for peace of mind and to no avail. I have found Anxiety, Stress and depression. Did I want to find these things? A part of me did, how else can I confront, overcome and reconcile these issues?

I’ve looked for other things, I’ve looked for happiness and have succeeded. I am married for 20 years with a great family who understands that I have anxiety, they are just not in tune with the depth but that’s okay.

I’ve always been averse to popular notions that -sound- foolish. “look within yourself” or “the answer lies within” I have been foolish not to apply these simple sayings to my historic behaviors. The answer to many of the I’ll of my life have in fact been my reactions to what I perceived others thought. Of course, I couldn’t really know, I have no way of knowing the operation of someone else’s mind.

I’ve looked for it, the answer. The answer to why I am predisposed to consider what others think. Perhaps it is a societal norm? Perhaps a social construct I am bound to in the subconscious? Or perhaps I need to continue looking at myself and find what has been there all along.

I am okay, I am normal, I am to critical of myself, I am an expert in me.

It’s not really what I was after, but I will find it. The wisdom of Tolkien once again astounds me.