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In a gee-whiz kind of article in the science section of the Telegraph (UK), the author describes how depression can be attributed to inflammation.
“It’s pretty clear that inflammation can cause depression,” Professor Ed Bullmore, head of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Cambridge told a briefing in London to coincide with this week’s Academy of Medical Sciences FORUM annual lecture which has brought together government the NHS and academics to discuss the issue.
“In relation to mood, beyond reasonable doubt, there is a very robust association between inflammation and depressive symptoms. We give people a vaccination and they will become depressed. Vaccine clinics could always predict it, but they could never explain it.
But there is good news! Doctors can treat depression . . . er . . . inflammation with
Oh no, it must have been a typo or an oversight. Why would you list all those pale imitations of hypnosis without the real thing? This treatment of hypnosis depresses me. I really need to take more deep breaths and write in my gratitude journal. But before I do, may I just say, let's suppose that everything in the article is true. That there really is a physical cause for depression, furthermore, that it can be easily treated with anti-inflammatories like, say, aspirin. Who is to say that inflammation is the ONLY cause of depression or that this treatment will cure depression in ALL people?
Oh well, as the French say, "plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose"—"usually translated as "the more things change, the more they stay the same."
Personally, I like transcripts. They give me a sense of what actually happened in a session. Carl Rogers included lots of transcripts in his book "On Becoming a Person". They were very helpful to me, because I could see something that he hadn't included in his analysis. It isn't easy to analyze yourself! I don't think you need to include as many as he did, but actual examples are useful, as long as they are really transcripts including the client's responses, rather than made up for illustration purposes.
It's better to say that computers don't perform like a brain. After all, the Artificial Intelligence computer movement is trying to catch up with the human brain, not the other way around. Personally, I find the computer analogy useful. You just have to realize that human memory management is more advanced than computers which put every bit of data into a separate storage location and for later retrieval. The human brain manages data as it stores it, generalizing and forming / reforming rules so that the past experiences can be applied to future situations in a generalized way.
A way to understand the process is that the brain is not storing facts and hard data as much as it is creating metaphors that can be applied to new situations.
Hi Jan - Good point about dissociation. That is an approach that needs to be handled carefully, but dissociation can be framed in a way that is very helpful for the person. For example, I knew someone who had been diagnosed as bipolar. She had the classic symptoms of extremely behavior, such as major mood swings, going on spending sprees, and attempted suicide. I asked her what is was like being her and part of her response was -- with every thought, I have to decide if it is the bipolar talking or me.
It can be useful for a person to differentiate between the unwanted behavior and the "real" person underneath. It transforms the behavior from what might be perceived as a character flaw into something that the person is aware of and has strategies to deal with (other than will power!)
I pointed out this metaphor to a counsellor who works primarily with high school students. She liked it and told me she introduced it to two students on the basis that it was a description by someone else struggling with procrastination. She said they both found it helpful, particularly the distinction between playing in the dark woods and the happy playground. It was a helpful recognition that there is no joy in the distracting behavior. Instead, there is the conflict between what they are doing and what they feel they should be doing.
Agreed, Roy. As Barry said above, the presenting problem can be something else, like chronic hopelessness or fears about the future. But I don't think you intend your own experience to be the measure of the number of people that have the problem. It has been estimated to be about 4% of the adult American population. But the reason you have worked with less than 10 clients in this area is that people may not realize that hypnosis can help.
Interestingly Barry, the reverse is also true, that depression can be a symptom of chronic procrastination. See https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2695217/ It was beautifully summed up by an anecdote I heard a doctor tell about a patient who came to him with a history of depression treatment. The patient summed it up saying that the psychiatrist put her on anti-depressants, which made her feel better, but she still didn't get her taxes filed.
If the blogger on chronic procrastination had your training in NLP, I think he would agree with you. Here is what he says:
"You need to show yourself you can do it, not tell yourself. Things will change when you show yourself that they can. Until then, you won’t believe it, and nothing will change."
It is very much a question of their internal representation about how powerful / powerless they feel in their ability to control the monkey.
There already is one here: http://hypnothoughts.com/antonio/group/74/skype-hypnosis-hypnosis-on-skype
Feel free to post there and breathe some new life into it!
Google "Procrastination" and you will find lots of well meaning material. Finding a perceptive and detailed description of the personal experience of chronic procrastination, let alone recommendations about the desired state of mind, is rare. Recognizing that not everyone's subjective experience of procrastination will be like this, the use of this imagery must be introduced cautiously to see if it resonates with the client, but if it does, this imagery is powerful. What I particularly like is that it is realistic without being overly negative.
My caution would be to be careful handling the monkey imagery in this metaphor. It would be too easy to characterize the monkey as "bad", a behaviour to be gotten rid of. No, the monkey is an important part of the person and needs to play. The goal is to get the monkey playing in the Happy Playground rather than the Dark Playground.
Here is the description: http://waitbutwhy.com/2013/11/how-to-beat-procrastination.html
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