Saturday, March 15, 2014

Clinical Depression is in a Class by Itself When it Comes to Depression

When you hear the term Clinical Depression, what comes to mind? Clinical Depression is a serious illness. This illness can affect the way you feel, the way you act and the way you think. Like other conditions it is a disease and doesn't make you a loser. It is a condition that must be addressed. Functioning like you did in the past will not be easy. Activities that you once used to find entertaining may fail to interest you anymore. Clinical Depression results in long term hopelessness and feelings of remorse. Unlike a cold this isn't a short term condition. You won't feel sad for a few days and then just get over it. Clinical Depression is long term. Clinical Depression is a mental disorder characterized by a pervasive low mood and loss of interest or pleasure in usual activities. The general term depression is better used to describe a temporary depressed or sad mood. By contrast, major depression is a serious and often disabling condition that can significantly affect a person's work, family and school life, sleeping and eating habits, and general health. In Western countries, around 3.4% of people with major depression eventually commit suicide, and up to 60% of all people who commit suicide have depression or another mood disorder. Depressed individuals have a shorter life expectancy than those without depression, being more susceptible to medical conditions such as heart disease. However, depression may be over diagnosed, and current diagnostic trends arguably have the effect of medicalizing sadness.

Every part of your normal life can be impacted by Clinical Depression. A change in thought patterns and confusion are common. Your will is no longer your own as this condition affects your very behaviors and moods. It will affect your sleep patterns and eating habits, turning your life onto its head. It's possible that instead of being able to do your work or to focus on a task like school, you'll wonder how it was ever possible. Clinical Depression will target the way you deal with people. You'll become a stranger even to yourself.

The understanding of the nature and causes of depression has evolved over the centuries; nevertheless, many aspects of depression are still not fully understood, and are the subject of debate and research. Both psychological and biological causes have been proposed; the neurotransmitters serotonin and norepinephrine have been implicated, and most antidepressants work to increase their active levels in the brain. The question of whether there are two separate conditions, or a continuum of a single disorder has been researched since the 1920s. These two sub-groups have shown identical clinical courses, and in 1980 the term major depressive disorder was coined for the combined continuum, and has become widely used.

Common Symptoms of Clinical Depression

There are different forms of clinical depression with different combinations of the following symptoms:


* Sleep disturbances-insomnia, oversleeping, waking much earlier than usual
* Changes in appetite or eating: much more or much less
* Decreased energy, fatigue
* Headaches, stomachaches, digestive problems or other physical symptoms that are not explained by other physical conditions or do not respond to treatment


* Loss of interest or pleasure in activities that were once enjoyed, such as going out with friends, hobbies, sports, sex, etc.
* Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
* Neglecting responsibilities or personal appearance


* Persistent sad or "empty" mood, lasting two or more weeks
* Crying "for no reason"
* Feeling hopeless, helpless, guilty or worthless
* Feeling irritable, agitated or anxious
* Thoughts of death or suicide

Treatment for depression depends on many factors, including the severity of the condition, the persistence of the symptoms, and the person's personal history with the illness. For many forms of depression, a combination of psychotherapy and antidepressant medications can be an effective treatment. Antidepressant medications can relieve symptoms of depression, while psychotherapy may help you cope with ongoing problems that may trigger or contribute to depression. Most patients are treated in the community with antidepressant medication and supportive counseling, including various forms of psychotherapy; admission to hospital may be necessary in cases associated with self-neglect or a significant risk of harm to self or others. A minority with severe illness may be treated with electro-convulsive therapy (ECT), under a short-acting general anesthetic.

For the more serious cases of clinical depression, electro-convulsive therapy can be helpful for people who haven't responded to other treatments or who can't tolerate antidepressants for other reasons. During electro-convulsive therapy, an electric current is passed through the brain to induce controlled seizures. Experts aren't sure how electroconvulsive therapy relieves the symptoms of depression. However, it's believed the procedure may affect levels of neurotransmitters in your brain.

Depression may also be caused in part by an overactive hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA axis) that is similar to the neuro-endocrine response to stress. These HPA axis abnormalities participate in the development of depressive symptoms, and antidepressants serve to regulate HPA axis function.

Depression may be connected to sleep abnormalities, or variations in the circadian rhythm. The REM stage of sleep, in which dreaming occurs, tends to be especially quick to arrive, and especially intense, in depressed people. Although the precise relationship between sleep and depression is mysterious, the relationship appears to be particularly strong among those whose depressive episodes are not precipitated by stress. In such cases, patients may be especially unaffected by therapeutic intervention.

As mentioned earlier Clinical Depression is not a personal defect. It is not an illness that you can wish gone out of your life. This is not an illness that will be cured through self- control or self-treatment. It will take a long-term effort - weeks, months or even years of treatment - to control this problem. People have been known to attempt suicide if this condition isn't treated. The reasons for the depression may seem known to you. However many different factors might contribute to this illness. Typically, it is a group of factors that lead to Clinical Depression. Your psyche, genetic factors, or even the environment might contribute.

Biological issues such as chemical imbalances can lead to Clinical Depression. Feeling sad and depressed is often a normal reaction to a stressful life situation. For example, it is normal to feel down after a major disappointment, or to have trouble sleeping or eating after a difficult relationship break-up. Usually, within a few days, perhaps after talking to a friend, we start to feel like ourselves again.

Clinical depression is very different. It involves a noticeable change in functioning that persists for two weeks or longer. Imagine that for the last three months you've slept more than 10 hours a day and still feel tired, you have stomach problems, you're unable to cope with life, and you wonder if dying would solve all your problems. Or, imagine not being able to sleep more than four hours a night, not wanting to spend time with family or friends, and constantly feeling irritable. And when friends try to reach out to you, you get even more upset and bothered. You lose perspective, and you don't realize that what you're experiencing is abnormal. You want to just "wait it out," and you don't get help because you think it's weak to ask for help or you don't want to burden your friends. Stress might also cause this illness. Many areas of your life can be causing stress that affects your psychological make up. Our lives are filled with all sorts of potential pressures that can wreak havoc with your system. It's well known that alcoholics and drug addicts often contract Clinical Depression. Don't hesitate to consult a medical professional if you or anyone you know shows signs of this disease.

What Are the Different Types of Depression According To Symptoms

Types of Depression

Depression is diagnosed by studying a person's behavior and by evaluating his/her state of mind. Many people are not aware that there are several kinds of depression. Medically, several different types of depression have been diagnosed and identified based on the symptoms of depression displayed by people.

Based on their symptoms the following paragraphs contain a list of the
Different Types of Depression

Agitated Depression
Symptoms are an agitated state, both mentally and physically, irritability, restlessness and sleeplessness. These symptoms are the opposite of most other kinds of depression.

Anxiety Depression
Being panicky is a common symptom of this type of depression. The person will also suffer from social phobia and will have panic attacks. Some types of stress disorders are also considered as symptoms of this type of depression.

Atypical Depression
Symptoms like unusual weight gain with an increased appetite along with mood swings are common in people affected by this type of depression. Other symptoms include sleepiness, heavy feeling in the limbs and a fear of rejection.

Bipolar Disorder or Manic Depression
This can be identified by extreme variations in a person's mood. Happy moments will include a feeling of ecstasy, sleeplessness, an urge to talk and an increased activity along with overconfidence. This can last a few hours or for days together. However, the person may change suddenly and inexplicably.

Catatonic Depression
The person is insensitive to his/her environment and may desist from doing necessary chores, or will look aimless. Symptoms similar to Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), which include repetitive actions, are part of symptoms of this type of depression.

Chronic Depression or Dysthymia or Dysthymic Depression
Affected person remains depressed for nearly two years. Disturbed eating and sleeping patterns are easily noticeable in the affected person. The person also suffers from a feeling of hopelessness, fatigue and low self-esteem besides displaying an inability to concentrate.

Clinical Depression or Major Depression or Major Disruptive Disorder
A lack of interest along with fatigue, disturbed sleep, a feeling of worthlessness, confusion are the symptoms that indicate clinical depression. In some cases, the person suffering from such kinds of depression may also harbor suicidal tendencies.

The symptoms are a milder version of manic depression. Irritability and an unpredictable mood, lessen their chance of succeeding with work or social relationships.

Double Depression
The symptoms are similar to Dysthymia. However, these symptoms can occur for a period of about two weeks.

Dysthymic Disorder
Symptoms like an irregular eating pattern, fatigue, irregular sleeping pattern, a feeling of low self-esteem along with hopelessness and an inability to concentrate are common in people suffering from this type of depression.

Endogenous Depression
A person suffering from this type of depression will seem depressed and confused. There will be no apparent reason for the depression. Since there are no external stimuli involved in this type of depression, the person's body chemistry or a change in the level of hormones is considered a cause.

Existential Depression
The person suffers from chronic fatigue, which can be a result of domestic or social disturbance. The person also displays a general lack of interest and does not have a passion to do anything.

Melancholic Depression
The person loses interest in pleasure of any kind and does not show delight even when good things happen. There will be a marked variation in the person's appetite and weight. A strong feeling of guilt overcomes the person accompanied by excessive movement. All these symptoms will be stronger in the early morning hours as the affected person will wake up early.

Medication Induced Depression
Prescription drugs like analgesics, antibiotics, stimulants, steroids and sedatives, antifungal medicines as well as drugs to control the heart, all induce some degree of depression. The depression persists for the duration of the medication.

Neurotic Depression
A feeling of self-pity, embarrassment, guilt or shame overcomes the person. Some types of phobia and the symptoms of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder are also common. Such symptoms are common during a particular time of the day like evening for example.

Post Partum Depression
Women experience post partum depression after pregnancy. Symptoms like irritability, grief, crying and a feeling of fragileness in women are common after delivery due to this type of depression.
Psychotic Depression

Hallucinations, a state of delusion and hearing voices in the head are common with people affected with this type of depression.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
A feeling of sadness and fatigue sets in as soon as the season changes. This kind of behavior may occur only at a certain time of the year and for the rest of the time the person stays normal. Sensitivity and emotional reactions to the amount of daylight at a particular time of year can be easily noticed in the sufferer.

Situational Depression or Reactive Depression or Adjustment Disorder
This is something different from mood disorder. Symptoms like insomnia, varying levels of appetite, worrying continuously, withdrawal from social and family activities, strong feeling of sorrow and a lack of enthusiasm in response to relocation to a new place, natural disasters, bereavement, etc. identify a person suffering from this type of depression.

Substance Induced Depression
An emotional disturbance and irritating behavior brought about by overuse of medication or self-medication identify a person suffering from this type of depression. Overuse of alcohol also causes a similar effect.

Unipolar Disorder
The affected person suffers from a feeling of sadness and a lack of interest in almost all activities. These symptoms can last for months.

Depression though common, should not be considered lightly. The above list of different kinds of depression indicates that depression occurs in more than one form and affects in different ways. Hence, a correct diagnosis followed by correct type of therapy becomes important.

Adrenal Fatigue - Top 5 Facts

Adrenal fatigue is a medical expression related to a compilation of imprecise symptoms including fatigue, inability to sleep, anxiety or nervousness, body aches, feeling run down, depression and digestive problems. Adrenal glands are endocrine glands that are located directly above the kidneys were specific hormones are secreted to help the body deal with daily life events and activities. When these adrenal glands do not function the way they are supposed to, a series of symptoms can occur giving way to a syndrome known as Adrenal Fatigue. Signals can include depression, weight loss, low blood pressure, body aches, fatigue, anxiety, and loss of body hair, nervousness and insomnia. Blood tests can be performed by a doctor to determine the exact function of the adrenal glands.?

There are a series of medical belief systems that claim adrenal insufficiency is caused by high levels of chronic stress. The theory, while unproven at this point, is that adrenal fatigue is caused by stress and the inability for the adrenal glands to keep up with the demands of continues high levels of stress and tension. While blood tests cannot conclusively detect the total adrenal activity because they are not sensitive enough to detect adrenal function; however, the body is and that is where the plethora of symptoms come from. The body's reaction to the lowered adrenal function spurs the body to respond with body aches, headaches, nervousness, fatigue, insomnia and other unspecified symptoms.

While there is still much to learn and understand about Adrenal Fatigue, there are certain facts that can be displayed and discussed in order to better understand the toll and stress this challenge can cause to the human body. The top 5 facts relating to Adrenal Fatigue are as follows:

• Anyone can experience symptoms. Because we all experience stress and strained situations during one point in life or another, anyone is susceptible to adrenal dysfunction. A high crisis situation, a death in the family, stressful deadlines at work or at school, problems within a relationship or between children and parents; all of these situations have the ability to create stress and tension, resulting in the inability for the adrenal glands to produce their hormones needed to deal with the elevated stress levels within the body. No one is exempt from adrenal dysfunction; therefore, anyone can suffer from this issue.

• Adrenal Fatigue has a list of common symptoms associated with the adrenal gland inability to properly produce enough hormones. These symptoms include: Loss of Stamina, extreme fatigue, insomnia, prolonger exhaustion, weight gain or weight loss, dizziness or feeling light-headed, lower blood sugar levels, lower blood pressure, decrease sex drive, inability to heal properly from common infections such as a head cold, the flu, bronchial infections, and other respiratory illnesses; increased anxiety, depression, the desire to eat foods higher in sugar, or caffeine, the inability to concentrate, cloudy short term memory, and depression. While this list of symptoms is not all-inclusive, these are the most notable and common indications of Adrenal Fatigue. One should make an appointment with their physician if they suffer from three or more of these symptoms and discuss the prospect of this issue.

• Adrenal Fatigue is treatable. Visit with your doctor about treatment options and what is available and suitable for you and your specific condition.

• Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome was coined in 1998 by Dr. James L Wilson. He coined the term for individuals who suffered from decreased adrenal gland function who suffered from the before mentioned symptoms. The concept of Adrenal Fatigue is relatively new, but there are a plethora of treatment options available.

• There are a variety of supplements available over-the-counter. There adrenal supplements can help increase the body's ability to produce Cortisol which can help overcome this syndrome. Visit with your doctor before taking these supplements to see which one is right for you.

What Are Some of the Telltale Signs of Depression?

When it comes to depression, things may not seem the way they once were. Little things that once made a person happy might not bring any joy anymore. In others depression might show different signs, but there are certainly some telltale signs of depression you can watch for.

When you have determined that there is depression present, you don't need to instantly go for pharmaceutical pills that can harm your body. There are some natural methods and alternative therapies available to treat your symptoms.

If you find yourself upset all the time, and wanting to cry this isn't normal. These blues you are experiencing if they last for a long period of time are part of depression. They can be helped with some therapy as well as certain herbs such as St. John's wart.

Do you find as they days pass by you don't have the energy to do very much? You sit and just stare off into space as the day rolls on by. As a result you don't give the attention that your job and personal life has? This is another sign of depression. But alternative therapy and herbal treatment can help you avoid the pills that you may fear taking.

Maybe it feels like no matter what you do there is no solution to any problems in your life. You feel hopeless and can't figure out a way to work past it. This is another one of the telltale signs of depression.

When you find you are unable to sleep or you sleep more often because it is all you can muster to do, you need to begin looking out for ways to battle your depression. Left untreated it can only get worse and not better. You are the first person who can take action and find someone that can help you.

Should death seem like the best solution to all your problems, and you feel unless God takes you away you won't be happy you need to get help for your depression. This is one of the most serious telltale signs of depression, and can be treated with alternative therapy.

Anxiety and Stress can also be ways to mask depression. If you suffer from a severe form of either one of those you may be dealing with depression.

When what you eat changes to a level of shock you might need to take a second look. Depression makes some people eat more, while others may lose their appetite as a whole. When you find you are consuming a different amount or you focus more on comfort foods take a look and consider what has changed in your life. Seek help in getting it back to where it once was.

A lack of overall wellbeing in your life is another one of the telltale signs of depression. Less energy or an increase in pain will be other things to watch for.

As you can see there are many telltale signs of depression. You may experience one or all of these symptoms, but don't instantly think you are going to need to take pills. Instead look around for a good naturopath that may help you in learning about alternative treatments including herbal supplements that can help you get back to the person you were before you dealt with depression. It is possible to feel good again.

Botox Treatments Improve Mood And Symptoms of Clinical Depression!

Did you know that your facial expressions alone can alter things like your heart rate, or even your skin temperature? There is a growing large body of psychological research supporting the "Facial Feedback Theory" - the hypothesis that facial expressions can affect and influence brain function every bit as much as does the brain in the way it directs and controls facial movements. The seemingly simple act of smiling apparently induces the releasing of certain chemicals in the brain that makes people feel better. And when people frown, increased levels of the chemicals leading to a depressed mood are circulating around. So did you frown because you were sad, or were you feeling sad because you frowned?

In the 1870's it was Charles Darwin himself who proposed that it was possible that "you feel the way you look" just as much as "you look the way you feel" because of a feedback loop that supplies facial expression information back to the brain to tell it how it should be feeling. The brain then responds with the appropriate neurochemical releases - generating happy or sad feelings - as the face has suggested. A 1989 study had people watch a cartoon, then rate how funny they thought it was. Some of the study participants were asked to smile while watching whether the cartoon struck them funny or not. Those asked to smile consistently rated the cartoon funnier than those who were not asked to smile. Were the "smilers" more likely to be amused because they were in a happier state of mind? A 1991 study concluded that frown muscle activity was a reliable predictor of depression as well as depression therapy outcome. So even if you can't muster up a fake smile, would those simply frowning less be less unhappy? What would happen if you could get someone to frown less?

Researchers realized that there was a tool that they could utilize to test that interesting question. The gold standard for definitively limiting the ability to frown and make other types of "negative" facial expressions- Botox簧! Botox簧 - the great eliminator of the frowning, tired and stressed-out look for millions of people every year - long known to simultaneously boost the spirit and mood as well.

A 2006 study took patients in treatment for clinical depression and gave them all some Botox簧. Almost all of the patients showed clear signs of improvement in their depression, independent of other factors, within the weeks following their Botox簧 session! Their symptom improvements paralleled the improvements in their appearance. Amazing! Still not convinced?

In March, 2012, at the 20th European Congress of Psychiatry, a similar study was presented which further supports the "Facial Feedback Theory" that facial musculature and expressions can both reflect and influence mood. Patients suffering from clinical depression and undergoing treatment were also treated with a single session of Botox簧. An incredible 80% of the patients showed strong and sustained improvements in their depression, by both depression level testing scores and psychiatric interview scores. This included those patients who had responded poorly to their prior conventional treatments! 30% of the studied patients showed a full remission of all depression symptoms! The onset of alleviation of symptoms and the duration correlated with the onset (1 - 2 weeks) and duration (3 - 6 months) of the effects of Botox簧 in minimizing the frowning and wrinkling we associate with expressions of sadness, fear, anger, or stress. Positive effects on mood elevation were seen in nearly all the Botox簧 treated patients, including those with even modest softening of frown lines and wrinkles.

There is also the social feedback loop component to the "Facial Feedback Theory". The "misery loves company" versus the "laugh and the whole world laughs with you" sort of thing. If you look happier, you "attract" happier people around you, which then makes you feel happier. The opposite certainly happens if you look sad or mad. And if you have too dark and too gloomy a look, it can really get bad as others tend to withdraw from you. You will likely end up alone and isolated, thereafter feeling even more dejected and sad. But clinical depression is an entirely different situation, where the chemical balances in the brain are off, and are biased in the "unhappy" direction. It seems incredible that a "forced change" in facial expression could affect those balances so significantly by a direct and somewhat mysterious connection between the face and the brain.

So, it is clearly not as simple as the concept that anything that makes us look better, such as any type of cosmetic surgery or procedure, will also be likely to make us feel better and happier. Apparently, we all have within us the ability to trick our very own brains into a better mood with our face, even if our face is "lying" to it. Then when our brain feels happier, we really are happier, and now the "lie" has becomes the truth. Wow! The brain has the face under constant surveillance, so it can figure out how it is supposed to feel. That means you can tell yourself how to feel. "Put on a happy face" has a whole new meaning, doesn't it? And if you just don't have it in you to smile more, at least try not frowning quite so much. A little Botox簧 sounds like a pretty good idea, too!

List of Foods That Fight Depression Symptoms

Feeling sad and blue for a moment is part of life. However when it is always what you feel and would not go away which then affects your daily life, it may be already called depression. The causes of depression not only include biological reasons but it is also linked to the psychological, physical and social happenings in your life. These reasons can lead to further problems.

If you feel helpless and hopeless that it seems that the world has turned against you and you can never do anything to make the situation better, then you are experiencing one of the symptoms of depression. Aside from that you might be experiencing loss of weight and lack of appetite. Your activities of daily living can be affected and even sleeping problems are experienced.

If ever this happens to you or to someone you know, you must know how to fight it. You can get rid of depression to a lot of natural ways and one of that is through the choice of foods. There are certain types of food groups that will help you get rid of depression. Through this, you can go back to your normal life or help a friend fight the depressing moments of life.

First of all, you need to include in your diet foods which contain Vitamin B and iron. Lack of these contents in food can lead to depression especially on the different types of Vitamin B which is for mental health and balance. Eat foods rich with Vitamin B and iron like sweet potatoes, chicken, avocado, black beans and meat, green leafy vegetables and cereals.

Next on the list are foods that are rich in Vitamin E and zinc. Vitamin is known for its antioxidant effects and strengthens the red blood cells of the boy while zinc is the food that increases energy and fights the weakness felt. They are contained in foods like wheat, whole grains, nuts, pumpkin seeds and of course in vegetables and fruits. They are said to fight the symptoms of depression.

Calcium and selenium helps get rid of depression. Calcium is thought to induce sleep wherein a depressed person finds difficulty in doing. Moreover, selenium boosts the energy and thus creates an uplifting mood to a person. Calcium is found in milk, dairy products, cheese and broccoli while selenium is commonly found in mushrooms, wheat and sea foods and poultry products.

Lastly, carbohydrates and omega 3 fatty acids have been proven to fight depression symptoms. Carbohydrates in particular provide you with a happy mood with the increased level of tryptophan that leads to the production of serotonin. They can be found in wheat products and bread. Omega 3 essential fatty acids which are good for the heart and relieve depression are found in fishes like tuna and salmon and canola oil.

Depression can be relieved with the help of these vitamins and minerals that you can include in your diet. To be able to get rid of this suicidal deviated condition, make sure that you have the right choice of food in your diet.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Healthy Joke

"Always laugh when you can. It's cheap medicine"- These words from the prolific comedy writer, Larry Gelbart, seem to describe best what most of us know from our own experiences with laughing: it not only makes us happier, it also makes us stronger and, in many cases, healthier.

When I first came up with the idea of creating a new humor web-site, my goals, I have to admit, were quite modest. I always loved dealing with funny materials, and the site gave me a chance to know some jokes that would later help me turn even the dullest social gatherings to an orchestra of roaring laughs.
But it wasn't until I started getting responses from people visiting the site that I began to realize how important even a couple of good jokes a day can be.

I became really interested in this phenomenon called humor and laughter, and began to ask myself if apart from it's obvious social benefits, it also has a real physical influence. In recent years, brain-scientists has been exploring the positive responses of the body to funny experiences, a subject that has been mostly neglected and over-shadowed for ages by studies about depression, fear and anger. Though in it's early stages, already some small studies imply that brain activity from humor can reduce feelings of pain, prevent negative stress reactions and boost the brain's biological battle against infection.

There are also various groups of scientists and doctors who are working hard to push forward some non-conventional treatments that involves laughter as a form of therapy. Within the field of Psychotherapy, text and handbooks have appeared, all advocating the application of humor (One "Psychohumorist" even offers advice heavily loaded with humor on how to deal with life and work-related stress). There is an Interdisciplinary American Association for Therapeutic Humor (AATH), that promotes the healing power of laughing and humor. There are even guidelines on how to form your own local laughter clubs, which purportedly can help you achieve such idealistic goals as personal health and happiness. Around the world this kind of Laughter clubs, where people meet in circles, hold hands together and start laughing as if there is no tomorrow, are spreading quite rapidly.

Laughter becomes an important tool in keeping a healthy way of life and in treating mental and physical problems, whether big or small. While it is not always clear what is the direct influence of humor on the physical body and what is the biological response it creates, it is quite clear today that there is a beneficial effect of humor and laughter on the body, mind and spirit, and that attention only to the physical body when trying to keep a healthy being or during treatment in illness will yield only a partial or temporary recovery.

For me, the scientific researches and the testimony of both patients and caregivers, emphasizing how important a good laugh was in the therapy process, were all in harmony with the reactions I got from visitors in my site. An elderly man from Florida once wrote me that "It is with the help of laughter that I keep winning the battle against all sicknesses."

I'm not sure if a few jokes could promise us life of eternity, but I now know that it is exactly this kind of simple stuff that helps different people from around the world enjoy life a little more. Even if humor doesn't make us live longer, it sure does make us live better, and if it is thanks to my humor site that someone in this world could improve his life with a smile, then it sure has made my life richer and more fulfilling.

Depression - Sad? Get a Hobby

When we have too much time for ourselves different thoughts would bombard us, and most of the time the thoughts that would dominate are negative thoughts, mainly because its memories of negative traumatic events that would stick with us for a long time.

For this reason, experts agree that distractions from destructive thoughts could help prevent depression triggers and decrease the chances of experiencing this destructive condition.

Hobbies are an effective distraction. It keeps the mind busy while giving a feeling of satisfaction, especially when you start seeing the output of your efforts. Here are a few hobbies that are easy to learn, cheap, and an effective way of killing time:

Scrapbooking is a practice that dates back to the cavemen, or at least that's what most people would say of the drawings and accounts written all over cave walls. Fortunately, with the availability of materials it is easier to compile memories in pages of a book sans the danger of falling from a cave's ceiling. You can use an old phonebook or used notebook as your album, and then you could paste photographs, recipes, quotes, or trinkets that would represent a wonderful memory that you want to keep. Scrapbooking is therapeutic as it encourages you to compile good memories and allows you to hone your creativity, stimulating your brain cells.

Learn photography. Photography is an emerging art that is gaining recognition across the art world. It is an opportunity for those who may be challenged when it comes to using a brush on canvass but has the eye of a painter knowing a good composition from an ordinary one. Photography is also an opportunity for you to explore the outdoors in search for a wonderful subject. More importantly, it allows you to appreciate beauty and see ordinary things and events with a new perspective.

Stamp and coin collecting. Collecting is one of the easiest hobbies known to man, but the challenge can be exhilarating. Looking for an item that would complete your collection can be a bit of a challenge. Philately, or stamp collecting, can prove to be very challenging, especially these days when snail mail are becoming obsolete with the advent of technology and the fast changing world of communications and correspondence. Other interesting items to collect are coins and currencies, shells, model cars or vehicles, comic books, and movies.

Painting and art. If you want to learn a new skill, painting or other forms of visual art like sculpture and pottery can be very stimulating. It serves as an avenue for you to vent your frustrations while stimulating your creative juices. It helps you to transform your frustrations into beautiful creations that would eventually cheer you up. Other art forms that can be explored include music, dance, the written word, and performance art.

Stitching and crocheting. Having too much time on your hands allows for disturbing thoughts to sneak into your mind. Instead of sulking and spending too much time thinking about the past, train your hands to create beautiful and usable items by learning the art of stitching or crocheting.

Being busy with productive activities allows you to take your mind away from worrisome thoughts. Hobbies are one way of keeping yourself busy, choose one now and experience the wonder of learning a new skill.

Don't Let Your Marriage Fall Apart - Learn to Identify the Signs of Depression

Did your marriage start out good but now you feel that your marriage is falling apart? Are you looking for a way to restore your marriage to the way that it was, and not just brood about your situation? If the answer to these questions is yes then you should consider the possibility that your spouse is suffering from depression and look for help in that area.

Depression a major reason for marriages to fall apart. The reason for this is simple; a depressed person doesn't see any good in the world, can't appreciate being loved, and doesn't show any signs of appreciation. Not exactly the skills one needs to build a happy marriage.

In this article I will present 3 signs of depression. If you notice them in your spouse then you should immediately look for ways to help them overcome this debilitating disorder and be able to once again  have a happy and fulfilling married life.

1. Fatigue, always tired. There are two reasons why depression  causes its sufferers to be tired. Firstly, it is a defense system so they won't have to face the world that is so black to them. When you sleep (if you can) you don't see anything.  Secondly, the lack of interest in everything in their life actually causes physically tiredness.

2. Trouble concentrating and forgetfulness. One of the most common signs of depression is the inability to concentrate on even simple tasks. Following simple directions becomes hard, to read a book and follow the plot becomes difficult, and sometimes it is hard to concentrate even on simple household chores. One of the reasons for this is that their lack of interest causes them to be inattentive.

The byproduct of this is that they become even more depressed because they feel so incompetent.

3. Change in sleeping and eating patterns. This symptom is not limited, as a lot of people think, to sleeping more and eating less. Not everyone who suffers from depression sleeps all day and doesn't eat. In some people, the depression causes  a completely opposite symptom; they eat much more and have problems sleeping.

The problem of sleeping also manifests itself differently in different people; sometimes they can't fall asleep and sometimes they wake up during the night or very early in the morning.

If your marriage started of good but now you feel that your marriage is falling apart and you notice some of these signs in your spouse for more than a week or two then you should get outside help as quickly as possible. Depression is a serious and dangerous disorder that won't just go away. Take care of it as quickly as possibly and begin to live the marriage that you used to have.

Dysthymia - A Mild Form of Depression

Dysthymia is characterized as a depressive disorder that is less severe than major depression. It is often characterized as chronic depression. Those who can be diagnosed with this disorder have symptoms of mild depression for at least two years, and they feel blue or depressed more often than not during that time.  

Those who suffer from this type of chronic depression often feel irritable, lack the ability to concentrate, experience sleep disturbances, have low energy or feel excessively tired, have low self esteem, and experience feelings of hopelessness. Sufferers of dysthymia often eat too little or too much. But the dominating feature of dysthymia is feeling blue, or depressed. 
Although dysthymia sufferers do not live with severe depression, it is more chronic and can adversely affect your life by keeping you from being productive and enjoying life. 
Those who suffer from this disorder should seek treatment, as there are therapies that can treat and cure this disorder. There is no reason why someone should live with depression, even mild depression like dysthymia. 
If you suffer from symptoms of dysthymia, it is important to educate yourself about the treatment choices available, and find one that suits you. There are a number of available, including traditional treatment and alternative remedies. 
Traditional treatment involves prescription medication and psychological counseling, and many have been helped with this combination. Others have had little success with traditional treatment in treating their depression and have sought other alternative treatments such as natural remedies, acupuncture, and hypnosis. 
Among those who have tried traditional treatment involving prescription antidepressants and psychological counseling, about half of those who tried taking antidepressants stopped taking them due to unpleasant side effects. 
Of the people who were able to tolerate the medication, about one-third did not experience relief from their depression. Some people do tolerate prescription antidepressant therapy well and do experience relief from their depressive symptoms.
Psychological counseling has been found to be effective in treating dysthymia, and it is recommended to anyone who is experiencing any kind of depressive symptoms. 
In addition to traditional therapy for dysthymia, there are other alternative treatments available to those who prefer more natural treatment methods. Recent studies have shown that a number of these alternative treatments are just as effective in treating dysthymia and mild depression as the traditional treatment, and in some cases they are even more effective. 

Positive and Negative Stress

As human being, you need stress to thrive, excel and enjoy live. This is called positive stress. However, positive stress can become negative if it is not balanced and managed efficiently. Your goal is to aim for a positive stress phase.

Signs of positive stress

1. Increased creativity: not only in making or creating things but also in developing new ways to solve problems or finding better ways of doing things.

2. Increased productivity at work and on a personal level.

3. A general feeling of wellbeing, happiness and joy. It is your birthright to lead a happy, fulfilled live during your stay here on earth.

4. An immune system that functions optimally and is able to resist illness, infections, and cancer. Even if you are surrounded by people carrying all sorts of germs, you simply will not become ill.

Warning signs of negative stress.

1. Reduced productivity and creativity: nothing works the way it should. Everything is too much for you. You struggle or cannot find solution to problems. Because you are terrified of making the wrong decision, you end up not making any decision at all. You are unable to concentrate or remember things. Depression starts in much the same way.

2. A reduce feeling of wellbeing, joy and happiness: you no longer enjoy anything and don't look forward to anything. Everything is a burden. These symptoms can be precursors of depression unless you take proper precautions in time.

3. All sort of unfortunate things happen to you. You become so preoccupied with the daily stress of living that, you are unable to focus or concentrate. This easily lead to car accidents, you drop and break things or lose them. You cannot remember anything; you cut yourself on a regular basis etc...

4. You start avoiding social contact. Shunning people for a long period is also a sign of depression. Remember that socialising is one of the basic human needs.

5. Your immune system functions poorly and suffers from colds, influenza, allergies, chronic fatigue, anxiety etc... Unless you take the necessary steps to restore your equilibrium.

6. The ageing process accelerates because of the increased metabolism associated with sustained, unmanaged stress. Free radicals and other waste products accumulate add cell activity deteriorates resulting in premature age

Depression Test

You might be feeling depressed, but are you depressed enough to see a doctor about it? It's always difficult to tell if what we are experiencing is a normal level of sadness or true clinical depression that requires treatment.

About 30 years ago, researchers published a depression self-assessment in a medical journal called Applied Psychological Measurement. The scale presented in that article has been used by many doctors since to determine how depressed a patient is and to measure the effectiveness of treatment.

The following statements have been adapted from that scale. Read each of the descriptions below and think about how you've been feeling and behaving over the last two weeks. For each statement, try to decide if it's something that has been true almost every day, not true at all, or somewhere in between.

1. Have you had little interest or pleasure in doing things, even things that you used to enjoy doing before?

2. Have you been feeling depressed, down or hopeless?

3. Think about your sleeping patterns. Have you had difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep? Or have you been sleeping much more than usual?

4. What about your energy levels? Over the past two weeks, have you felt tired or felt like you had very little energy?

5. Have your eating habits changed at all? For example, have you had a poor appetite with little desire for food? Or have you been overeating?

6. During the past two weeks, how often have you felt bad about yourself? Have you felt like a failure, like you have let yourself or your family down in some way?

7. Any trouble concentrating? Do you have difficulty focusing on television or reading?

8. Have you begun speaking or moving very slowly, enough that people have noticed? Or have you become restless and fidgety, unable to stay still?

9. Have you entertained any thoughts of suicide or of hurting yourself?

If you have been experiencing several of the feelings or behaviors described above fairly often over the last two weeks, you may be experiencing depression. You should contact your doctor and talk about how you're feeling. Your doctor will probably repeat a similar assessment to the one above and may prescribe antidepressants. The quicker you begin treatment, the sooner these troubling symptoms will begin to disappear.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Reduce the Level of Stress in the Family

Stress is the part of one's day to day life. Though, a little stress is necessary in one's life because it makes a person mentally strong and well prepared for all the situations in life, thus it makes a person really strong. A person can overcome his fears by handling a little amount of stress in life. But as everything should be in a limit. Excessive stress can lead to depression and anxiety. Thus it affects even the health & mind of the individual. There can be number of ways by which a person can reduce the level of stress. These are as follows:

A) One must laugh at all the Funny Quotes found in the family magazine: the funny jokes that one reads in the magazine can bring a smile on everybody's face. Such light moments can reduce the level of anxiety & depression. These quotes are always filled with humor and fun thus liked by all. These converts all the serious moments into light and fun filled moments. Any family sitting together and enjoying together is good for making the bond between all the members really strong.

B) Exercises: daily exercising is really very useful to reduce the level of stress. One must do regular yoga and deep breathing so as to make things really easy. One should follow a routine of exercising daily for at least half an hour. A person can see a noticeable change in the stress level. One could be able to handle their stress effectively. Thus a person's muscle relaxes to a great extent and thus has a better and relaxed good night sleep.

C) Meditation: meditation is one effective method to reduce the level of stress in a person's life. This is the simplest way to get rid of the stress level and anxiety in any person's life. It has been followed since hundred years all over the world. Meditation can be practiced by any person. It does not require rigorous training period. One just needs to be determined to follow meditation. It can be done at any time of the day but morning should be preferred. This is very an inexpensive method to reduce the level of stress in any person's life. 

D) Reading: if one reads continuously one can overcome their stress level and can control their depression level and anxiety. A person gains a lot of knowledge by reading and is able to deviate one's mind from all the tensions. A person should read family books so as to learn new ways of bringing all the members of the family close to each other. Good books motivates a person to do right thins in life thus even increase a person's moral values and thus help a person become a better person in life. Thus even the family life of the person becomes much better. 

E) Massage: Massaging is one more effective way to get rid of stress. A person is able relax all his muscles by going for a massage.

Mood Disorders and Orthomolecular Medicine

In any given 1-year period, 9.5 percent of the population, or about 18.8 million American adults, suffer from depression.

1. Major depression is the leading cause of disability. The indirect and direct costs of mood disorder illnesses totals over 43 billion dollars a year. Depression and related mood disorders rank behind high blood pressure as the most common reason people visit their doctors.

Most individuals who consult their medical doctor for mood disorders are placed on prescription medications.

And in fact as many as 10% of the U.S. population has taken one of these medications. Prescription antidepressants sales reached a total of 37 billion in sales in 2003, which came out to $9 million more than was spent on treatments for the heart, arteries and blood pressure.

2. The largest growth spurt in antidepressant use has been among preschoolers, ages 2-4.

3. In 2003 over one million American children were taking an antidepressant medication.
4. However, several studies show that between 19-70% of those taking antidepressant medications do just as well by taking a placebo or sugar pill.

5. These studies help explain why most individuals may initially benefit from taking an antidepressant drug only to find that the positive affects soon wear off. Some may switch from one antidepressant drug to another. And while patients are attempting to correct their mood disorders with prescription dugs that may or may not be more effective than a sugar pill, all of these drugs have potential, sometimes serious, side effects.

Prozac has been associated with over 1,734 suicide deaths and over 28,000 adverse reactions.6
Prescription antidepressants can cause depression, anxiety, addiction, suicidal tendencies, tremors or involuntary muscle spasms, and senility. Yes, prescription antidepressants and anti-anxiety drugs can and do cause depression and anxiety.

7. Those suffering from anxiety are commonly prescribed one of the benzodiazepine (tranquilizer) medications, Ativan, Xanax, Klonopin or others.

National surveys show that 5.6 million adults over the age of 65 are now taking tranquilizers.

8. These medications are associated with numerous unwanted side effects including poor sleep, seizures, mania, depression, suicide, ringing in the ears, amnesia, dizziness, anxiety, disorientation, low blood pressure, nausea, fluid retention, tremors, sexual dysfunction (decreased desire and performance), weakness, somnolence (prolonged drowsiness or a trance-like condition that may continue for a number of days), and headaches.

9. Over 73,000 older adults experience drug-induced tardive dyskinesia (tremors or uncontrollable shakes). For many, these tremors are permanent.

10. Orthomolecular Medicine

Fortunately for those looking for a safer, often times more effective way to beat mood disorders, a group of progressive minded physicians helped pioneer a new way of treating mental disorders, known as orthomolecular medicine.

In 1968, two time Nobel Prize-winner Linus Pauling, Ph.D., originated the term "orthomolecular" to describe an approach to medicine that uses naturally occurring substances normally present in the body. "Ortho" means correct or normal, and orthomolecular physicians recognize that in many cases of physiological and psychological disorders health can be reestablished by properly correcting, or normalizing, the balance of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and other similar substances within the body. And unlike drug therapy, which attempts to cover-up the symptoms associated with a mood disorder, orthomolecular medicine seeks to find and correct the cause of the illness.

Where do the neurotransmitters come from?
Neurotransmitters are brain chemicals that help relay electrical messages from one nerve cell to another. Neurotransmitters are produced from the amino acids in the foods we eat. Amino acids join together in different patterns to form a protein. Eating a protein rich food allows us to replenish our ongoing demand for the essential amino acids. Half of the amino acids are essential. This means our bodies can't manufacture them and we must get them from the foods we eat (protein). Certain amino acids along with certain B vitamins and minerals produce the neurotransmitters. The amino acid tryptophan turns into serotonin. The amino acid phenylalanine turns into epinephrine. Amino acids are the raw nutrients needed to manufacture the neurotransmitters, which regulate our moods.

What do neurotransmitters do?
Neurotransmitters help regulate pain, reduce anxiety, promote happiness, initiate deep sleep, boost energy, and mental clarity.
The neurotransmitters that cause excitatory reactions are known as catecholamines. Catecholamines, epinephrine and norepinephrine (adrenaline) are derived from the amino acid phenylalanine.
Inhibitory or relaxing neurotransmitters include serotonin and gamma-amino butyric acid (GABA). The neurotransmitter serotonin is produced from the amino acid tryptophan. GABA is produced from the amino aid glutamine.

Amino Acid Replacement Therapy
The most popular antidepressant drugs are known as selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRI's). SSRI's including the drugs Lexapro, Prozac, Paxil, Celexa, and Zoloft are supposed to help the brain re-uptake the serotonin it produces. It is analogous to using a gasoline additive to help your car get more mileage out of the gasoline in your tank.
Unfortunately, many of the individuals who suffer from mood disorders, don't have any serotonin in their brains to re-uptake. A gasoline additive poured into an empty gasoline tank doesn't help much, if at all.
No one is born with a Prozac deficiency. However, people can develop a serotonin deficiency. Orthomolecular medicine uses amino acid replacement therapy to correct serotonin and other neurotransmitter deficiencies. I've found this approach to be just as effective (if not more so) than prescription antidepressant medications.
I've found very few problems with mixing amino acids with prescription anti-depressants. In fact, ninety percent of my patient's are initially on prescription antidepressants when I first start them on amino acid replacement therapy.
Over the years I've used various questionnaires or tests to determine which amino acids needed to be recommended. I've been using the questionnaire below and have found it provides a quick and accurate assessment tool to diagnose a person's brain chemistry.

Brain Function Questionnaire

The "S" Group
If three or more of these descriptions apply to your present feelings, you are probably part of the "S" group:
o It's hard for you to go to sleep.
o You can't stay asleep.
o You often find yourself irritable.
o Your emotions often lack rationality.
o You occasionally experience unexplained tears.
o Noise bothers you more than it used to; it seems louder than normal.
o You flare up at others more easily than you used to; you experience unprovoked anger.
o You feel depressed much of the time.
o You find you are more susceptible to pain.
o You prefer to be left alone.
Serotonin is a hypothalamus neurotransmitter necessary for sleep. A lack of serotonin causes difficulty in getting to sleep as well as staying asleep. It is often this lack of sleep that causes the symptoms mentioned above.
Serotonin levels can easily be raised by supplementing with the essential amino acid L-tryptophan, but dietary supplements of L-tryptophan are banned in the United States.
However, 5-hydroxytryptophan (5HTP), a form of tryptophan, is available over-the-counter and works extremely well for most patients. Patients should start with 50mg. of 5HTP, 30 minutes before bed. They should take on an empty stomach along with 4 oz. of grape juice. They may need to increase this dose, up to 300 mg. per night. Individuals who don't have trouble sleeping at night but do have other symptoms of the "S" group might want to take 100 mg. of 5HTP three times daily, with food. 5HTP doesn't usually cause drowsiness when taken with food.

The "G" Group
If three or more of these descriptions apply to your present feelings, you are probably part of the "G" group:
o You often feel anxious for no reason.
o You sometimes feel "free-floating" anxiety.
o You frequently feel "edgy," and it's difficult to relax.
o You often feel a "knot" in your stomach.
o Falling asleep is sometimes difficult.
o It's hard to turn your mind off when you want to relax.
o You occasionally experience feelings of panic for no reason.
o You often use alcohol or other sedatives to calm down.
The "G" group symptoms are from the absence of the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). GABA is an important neurotransmitter involved in
regulating mood and mental clarity. Tranquilizers (benzodiazepines) used to treat anxiety and panic disorders work by increasing GABA.
GABA is made from the amino acid glutamine. Glutamine passes across the blood-brain barrier and helps provide the fuel needed for proper brain function.
A deficiency in L-glutamine can result in foggy thinking, anxiety, depression, and fatigue.
Usually only a small dose of GABA is needed, 500-1,000 mg. twice daily. Some individuals may need to take it three-four times a day. Like most amino acids, GABA needs to be taken on an empty stomach.

The "D" Group
If three or more of these descriptions apply to your present feelings, you are probably part of the "D" group:
o You lack pleasure in life.
o You feel there are no real rewards in life.
o You have unexplained lack of concern for others, even loved ones.
o You experience decreased parental feelings.
o Life seems less "colorful" or "flavorful."
o Things that used to be fun aren't any longer enjoyable.
o You have become a less spiritual or socially concerned person.
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter associated with the enjoyment of life: food, arts, nature, your family, friends, hobbies, and other pleasures. Cocaine's (and chocolate's) popularity stems from the fact that it causes very high levels of dopamine to be released in a sudden rush.
A dopamine deficiency can lead to a condition known as anhedonia. Anhedonia is the lack of ability to feel any pleasure or remorse in life. Brain fatigue, confusion, and lethargy are all by-products of low dopamine.
The brain cells that manufacture dopamine use the amino acid L-phenylalanine as a raw material. Like most cells in the hypothalamus, they have the ability to produce four-five times their usual output if larger quantities of the raw materials are made available through nutritional supplementation.
Start your patients with 1,000 mg. of L-phenylalanine one-two times daily on an empty stomach. If they don't seem to notice any benefits, keep increasing the dose, up to 4,000 mg. twice a day. If they experience a rapid heart beat, agitation, or hyperactivity, have them reduce or stop taking L-phenylalanine.

The "N" Group
If three or more of these descriptions apply to your present feelings, you are probably part of the "N" group:
o You suffer from a lack of energy.
o You often find it difficult to "get going."
o You suffer from decreased drive.
o You often start projects and then don't finish them.
o You frequently feel a need to sleep or "hibernate."
o You feel depressed a good deal of the time.
o You occasionally feel paranoid.
o Your survival seems threatened.
o You are bored a great deal of the time.

The neurotransmitter norepinephrine, when released in the brain, causes feelings of arousal, energy, and drive. On the other hand, a short supply of it will cause feelings of a lack of ambition, drive, and/or energy. A deficiency can even cause depression, paranoia, and feelings of apathy.
Norepinephrine is also used to initiate the flow of adrenaline when you are under psychological stress. The production of norepinephrine in the hypothalamus is a 2-step process. The amino acid L-phenylalanine is first converted into tyrosine. Tyrosine is then converted into norepinephrine. Tyrosine, then, can be supplemented to increase norepinephrine (and dopamine). But too much tyrosine can cause headaches, so I usually recommend L-phenylalanine replacement first.

1. Robins LN, Regier DA (Eds). Psychiatric Disorders in America, The Epidemiologic Catchment Area Study, 1990; New York: The Free Press.
2. Beth Hawkins, A Pill is not Enough, City
Vol 25 issue 1225 Minneapolis MN.
3. JAMA February 23, 2000;283:1025-1030,1059-1060
4. Drug report barred by FDA
Scientist links antidepressants to suicide in kids
Rob Waters, Special to The Chronicle
Sunday, February 1, 2004
5. Joan-Ramone Laporte and Albert Figueras, "Placebo Effects in Psychiatry," Lancet 334 (1993):1206-8.
6. Death and near death attributed to Prozac, Citizens Commission on Human Rights.
7. Whittle TJ, Wiland Richard, The story behind Prozac the killer drug, Freedom Magazine, 6331 Hollywood BLVD., suite 1200 Los Angeles, CA 90028. 7. Monthly Prescribing Reference Haymarket Media Publication Nov 2005, New York NY.
8. Sidney Wolfe, Larry Sasich, and Rose-Ellen Hope, Worst Pills Best Pills.
Pocket Books New York, NY 1999 pg179.
9. Sidney Wolfe, Larry Sasich, and Rose-Ellen Hope, Worst Pills Best Pills.
Pocket Books New York, NY 1999 pg11.
10. Sidney Wolfe, Larry Sasich, and Rose-Ellen Hope, Worst Pills Best Pills.
Pocket Books New York, NY 1999.

Types Of Depression

The term depression refers to a type of mood disorder associated with feelings of sadness, anger, loss and frustration. Although people normally experience these feelings at one point or another, they usually pass within a short time. This medical condition is persistent and interferes with normal daily life yet it is one of the commonest illnesses that affect around 18 million Americans. It occurs in different ways, from mild to severe and as single or recurring episodes. According to many experts, depressive disorders are chronic conditions that need long-term treatment.

It is not clear what causes depressive disorders although experts believe they are associated with genetic, biologic and environmental factors. The sufferers may have unusual levels of neurotransmitters, which are types of brain chemicals. Factors that may lead to the conditions include:

- Biochemical and physical changes in the brain.

- Heredity

- Long-term stress

- Nutritional deficiencies

- Sleep problems

- Some types of medications, such as those used to treat irregular heartbeat, high cholesterol or high blood pressure

- Serious medical conditions like cancer and heart attack

- Social isolation

Types of Depressive Disorders

There are different types of depressive disorders and here are the main ones.

- Major depressive disorder has episodes that last for at least a fortnight and often take up to 20 weeks. Also known as clinical depression, the condition affects how people think, feel and behave. The sufferers tend to feel they do not have any reason for living and experience both physical and emotional problems. They find it difficult to carry out such normal functions as eating, sleeping or studying. Although people may experience several episodes during their lifetime, it tends to occur only once but treatment is often taken throughout one's life.

- Dysthymia is a chronic type of depressive disorder that is relatively less severe. Its symptoms are similar to those of major depressive disorder, which the sufferers are likely to develop, except that they are milder. The symptoms may last for two years or more.

- Atypical disorder is linked to intermittent feelings of elation when those affected experience something good. It manifests different symptoms than the first two conditions. However, its name is deceptive because it is probably the commonest type of depressive disorder.

- Adjustment disorder is associated with the way the sufferers respond to different experiences in life. For example, some people react to the deaths of their loved ones in ways that manifest depressive symptoms.

- Psychotic depressive disorder involves a combination of severe depressive symptoms and some type of psychosis. The sufferers may break with reality and experience disturbing but false beliefs. They may also see or hear things that other people neither see nor hear. The two conditions are known as delusions and hallucinations.

- Seasonal affective disorder, as its name indicates, is associated with changes in seasons and occurs mostly when there is little sunlight. SAD often occurs in the fall-winter season and tends to lift in the summer-spring season.

- Premenstrual dysphoric disorder manifests its symptoms about a week before menstruation and disappears once the period ends.

- Postpartum mood changes occur in between 10 and 15 percent of mothers who have just delivered. Many new mothers experience baby blues because of physical and hormonal changes in addition to the added responsibility. However, this condition is more serious than this normal occurrence.

- Bipolar disorder is rare compared to other depressive disorders. It involves cycling mood changes that go from extreme lows to extreme highs, which is why it is also known as manic-depressive illness. The condition can affect relationships and performance at either work or school and may even lead to suicide. The first symptoms may be experienced during childhood although people tend to miss the early signs. Fortunately, the condition is treatable.

Different methods are used to treat depressive disorders and many professionals recommend the use of both antidepressants and psychotherapy, with cognitive behavioral therapy being the most successful method.

Copyright (c) 2012 Embracing Depression

Difference Between Bipolar Depression and Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar depression is just another name of depression in which patient can easily be diagnosed by a specialist. A specialist usually examines the symptoms of depression present in the patient or ever found in the patient in the past, to make sure the depression is just a simple depression not of the severe form. It is a very critical verdict for the psychiatrists to establish the difference between bipolar depression and bipolar disorder, as both of these forms of depression require different treatments.

Bipolar depression is generally involves sad mood, irritating behavior, you suddenly avoid going to places that you used to enjoy the most, your way of looking at things start changing, you start disliking yourself without any reason, sleeping problems occur. Your mind becomes home for the negative thoughts, suicidal thoughts start taking place into your mind. Women suffer from this type of depression. Bipolar Disorder is also known as Manic Depression, Bipolar Affective Disorder and Manic-Depressive Illness. It is a mood disorder. Almost 1% of the adult population across the world suffers from this disorder. It falls in the category of affective disorders. Women and men both suffer from this type of depression disorder equally unlike other forms of depression where women suffer more.

Bipolar disorder has two types:

1. Bipolar disorder I

2. Bipolar disorder II

Bipolar disorder I

It is known as the classical type of bipolar disorder. It involves long lasting spells of mania followed by long lasting spells of depression. Therefore it is mix of mania and depression. If you experience psychotic symptoms like hallucination and paranoia then it is bipolar disorder I.

Bipolar disorder II

It involves at least one Hypomanic and one major depressive episode. It can be better to call it a mix of hypomania plus depression. People do have misconceptions about Bipolar disorder II and often call it manic episode or cyclothymia. It is not a full blown manic episode or cyclothymia. People suffering from bipolar depression tend to have tremendously low energy, their mind and physical processes seem to retard from usual working, and deep fatigue conditions capture your body. Symptoms of Bipolar depression involve Decreased energy levels, Fatigue conditions, Lethargy (Lethargy is a very serious symptom, it is defined as the drowsiness, torpid or apathetic state of your mind), Almost diminishing activities, Insomnia (sleeping problem, you do not get the proper sleep), Hypersomnia (Oversleeping condition, people may sleep more than 20 hours a day), loss of Interest in entertainment stuff and Social cut off. Symptoms of Bipolar disorder are very dramatic and unpredictable as it has two phases of mood swings that are manic phase and Depressive phase. Manic phase has the symptoms of Excessive talking, elevated thoughts, less amount of sleep, extremely high level of energy, Too much sex, Inflated self boasting and in case of psychotic form of bipolar disorder Hallucination and delusion as well are the symptoms of Bipolar disorder. In case of Depressive phase of bipolar disorder the symptoms are exactly the same as bipolar depression.

Depression - Comparing the Costs of Depression and the Costs of Health Insurance

Long-term depression can affect a person's life dramatically. It causes social, emotional, physical, and mental symptoms. It can lead to disability if not dealt with in the long term. There are several theories on what this disorder is exactly. The most common view is that it is a symptom of other diseases and disorders. Some physical diseases can cause someone to feel depressed. That often happens when someone's hormones are off balance and that affects their emotional and mental state. Some people have a genetic predisposition to hormonal imbalances that affect mental and emotional state.

If left untreated, depression can disable a person from doing normal activities. This condition, in its worse state, can make people unable to leave their home and even their beds. Many people dealing with it often overeat or cannot eat as a result. Some lose jobs and friendships as a result. Productivity in their lives comes to slow motion or complete stand still. In extreme cases, it can lead to thoughts of death and even suicide attempts. That is when the real cost of the disease begins to show. And thousands of people every year take their lives after a period of being depressed.

Some people need both medical and psychological help to get through a depression episode. Medical treatments include taking certain medications, screening for certain medical disorders, and treating symptoms as need. Psychological help often requires talk therapy, group therapy, or behavioral interventions. The best results often come when a patient has access to both treatment options. Using one or the other can be useful. But many do better with both. That means the patient needs access to medical and psychological professionals along with proper medical testing as needed.

Why look at these costs? The costs of depression are staggering. Not only are medical costs involved, the person also has financial difficulties due to loss of wages and support structure. It is very important for people with this disorder to have medical insurance in place. Many people that go through one depressive episode will have others. And the best way to deal with the next one is immediate treatment. That means having the resources ready for the next episode and not waiting for insurance to kick in. Medical insurance is the best tool you can purchase. That insurance will give you access to the medical and psychological resources you need to deal with the disorder.

Government Deficit Spending Means More Taxes, High Inflation, and a Weak Dollar

Everyone knows that Government spending today will mean higher taxes tomorrow. Far fewer realize that the huge budget deficits being created now will almost certainly bring us high inflation, even hyperinflation, and a significantly devalued dollar. This year the Government will need to borrow at least $2 Trillion, and if the Obama Administration has its way, trillions more will be needed during the next several years. However, regardless of Mr. Obama's appetite for spending, the magnitude of U.S. public debt and its size as a percentage of our gross domestic output are projected to grow at astounding rates during the next several decades

How will we pay it all back? Historically, the Government raised money by issuing debt that Americans and foreigners alike eagerly held as investments. Currently, Americans, including our Government, and foreigners each own half of our public debt. According to a recent report by Fox News, China alone owns a quarter of our debt and is seen as the most likely buyer going forward, given its rapidly expanding appetite for our debt in recent years. But China too has its own economic problems and is getting serious reservations about increasing its exposure going forward. The other method of repaying debt is to raise taxes, but doing so in any meaningful way during this recession would be ill-advised. So where will the money come from?

The Government will likely have no choice but to print the extraordinary amount of money it needs, which will be highly- if not hyper- inflationary. (There is no agreement on a definition of hyperinflation but suffice it to say that if you quote monthly, rather than annual, inflation rates you're probably there.) Checking inflation won't be easy either. Normally, during periods of high inflation, especially inflation induced by expansionary monetary policy, the Government raises interest rates to choke off inflation. But this time its hands would be tied by a seriously debt overburdened American public that would suffocate from the proportionately greater impact that higher interest rates would have on its household finances; finances dominated by high levels of mortgage, auto and consumer credit. Consequently, the Government is unlikely to curb our prospective high inflation by potentially pushing our economy into another Great Depression.

Needless to say, deficit-spending-induced high inflation will devastate our currency. The likely combination of high inflation and a weak dollar will further diminish the purchasing power of all Americans, especially retirees living on fixed incomes. Many economists believe that a good proxy for an economy's stability and strength is the stability and strength of its currency, so a weak and unstable dollar will likely tarnish America's star status in the world economy. America will also be seen as a riskier place to invest and cause many investors to flee our capital markets; effects that will further raise our interest rates and weaken our dollar.

I am hopeful none of this will happen, but many believe it will, at least to some degree, if we don't change our spending habits. Given the risk of this scenario playing out, it would not be surprising to see investors favor inflation-hedges such as gold and other commodities and U.S. companies with significant exports abroad. Investors will also shy away from dollar-denominated investments by generally diversifying globally.  The implications for our policy makers should be crystal clear: be extremely careful when spending our money, especially money we don't have and need to borrow.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Demotivation - Dealing With Failure

We hear it all the time; "Fail again. Fail better." "If you want to succeed, double your failure rate" "You cannot be successful without failure" and so forth. These are the words of some of the most successful people in history and now, but what are they on about? Why must we fail in order to be successful? Where does failure fit into the picture?

This is a very good question, and one I have been asking a lot myself lately.

So why so much emphasis on failure? No businessman, newlywed couple, or university student will tell you that failure is one of their objectives in their route to success.

But it seems that highly successful people seem to think so, and boldly emphasise it, repeatedly. Is failure some sort of exotic elixir to reach success? The logic seems to counter our conventional wisdom.

But perhaps experience is a better teacher than logic and they may just be on to something:

1. So what is failure?

Failure, by definition, can be described as the opposite of success; missing the mark, not meeting a desirable goal or intended target.

As a noun, failure can be described as the "non-performance of something due, required or expected"

In speech:

  • The car experienced engine failure.

  • He felt like a failure when he wasn't accepted into law school.

  • The business project was a complete failure.

  • She had failed at her marriage

Two types of failures

1. Utter failure

2. Temporary failure

Both are one in the same, but by illustration they are quite different:

1. Utter failure

This sort is usually the hardest to deal with, It has the highest potential for depression and demotivation.

John had a great idea for a business, his family and friends greatly endorsed and supported it, It was a good idea. When the time was right he left his job, put his home as collateral and invested his life savings into the project.

He ran the business successfully for 4 years and was making good gains.

Things did not go as planned however, in year 5 the warehouse he had purchased for inventory burnt down due to acts of nature and he lost 90% of his stock and almost all his capital in assets.

The insurance company failed to cover the losses and he was left broke, and on the brink of homelessness.

2. Temporary failure

This type of failure can be used synonymously with 'setback', Its outcomes are usually not that severe and can be viewed upon as lessons:

Peter also had a great idea for a business. He invested large sums of money into it and ran it successfully for 4 years. In year 5 his business started to grow and the tasks became too much for him to handle on his own, so he hired help, and enter his lifelong friend Bob;

Bob turned out to be not the best manager; he was the cause of a lot of staff resignations that year and during his tenure the company lost a quarter of its key clientelle and the business profits slumped.

Peter had failed his business, temporarily, he could find an easy remedy to the problem and learn from his error in judgement.

John on the other hand had it harder. He experienced utter failure and defeat. He had to start over or move on to a new project. He had more work to do, more to deal with, he had to get his life back together.

Both men had failed, but on different scales, both were left demotivated and discouraged, neither were failures however.

Failure was an event that happened to them which both could learn and grow from. A fitting word of encouragement to one of them who fell into depression would be "Just because you failed once at something does not mean you will fail at everything." ~ Marilyn Monroe

2. What we learn from failure

Maya Angelou once said "You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, and how you can still come out of it."

Failure truly is a humbling experience, but it is an excellent tutor.

If we can learn from failure it teaches us much, things we thought we knew about ourselves but actually didn't. Through quite self-reflection and honest introspection in our lowest times we find out who we are, our passions, and what we are good at.

Failure says "You're not as good of a salesman as you think you are, so improve" or "You're a bad financial manager, get advice or learn how to budget."

Failure steers us in the right direction, it says "That's not the route you should take, take this route instead."

And slowly through a zigzag motion of several setbacks and dead ends we arrive at our destination, battered and bruised, be we arrive nonetheless; stronger, wiser, more confident and bolder than we were before.

In engineering, the greatest inventions come about after a large degree of failure, for instance Thomas Edison demonstrates this well when he says: "I have not failed. I have found 10,000 ways that won't work."

Failure can be progress.

When the engine fails, we learn that something is wrong with it, and fix it so we avoid imminent disaster. Failure teaches us to plan for failure so we minimise the risk, thereby getting toward our goal much quicker.

3. How we learn from failure

Human beings learn in many ways -- through education, the internet, people, literature, experience and so on. But primarily our brain is hardwired to learn in one of two ways; play and errors in judgement;


If you've ever stuck your finger in an electric wall plug or touched a burning stove as a child, you learnt quickly not to do that again. The feeling of pain discouraged repeated behaviour as the experience of it was unpleasant and undesirable.

In early development toddlers learn exclusively through play; by touching, tasting, feeling, smelling and hearing the world around them they learn what the world is about. They learn to walk through trial and error and after many many falls.

When the toddler grows up they continue to learn through play and repeated failure. They fall, cry, climb, and fall some more until they can successfully and skillfully climb up that tree.

To adulthood the same process continues, we never stop playing. Games just take on new and different forms.

When we make mistakes we learn, much like in our youth. Failure is unpleasant yes, it is uncomfortable. It is undesirable and is an inconvenient hindrance in our path to our goals, but it is necessary. To fail is to learn, to learn is to grow. To grow is to progress.

4. How we deal with failure

Once upon a time there were twin boys born of an alcoholic father. In adulthood one became an alcoholic and the other a successful person. When asked why he was such the alcoholic responded "What would you expect, my father was an alcoholic." When the other was asked the same question he also responded "What would you expect, my father was an alcoholic." Both had choices and both chose a path.

Dorothy, was abused by her father throughout her childhood. Her father passed away when she was 20 but throughout her adult life she blamed him for everything that happened to her; her depression, her ill health, her poor relationships, her finances, her poor social relations etc.

Her father had passed away 25 years prior but his presence was still felt by her and he still held power over her life, or so she thought, for actually the power was in her mind. There are many stories of people who went through similar challenges and great difficulties in their early life but made a success out of themselves by turning their situation around. Our success is determined by how we deal with failure, either we can let it beat us or we can let it teach us.

5. Maximising On failure

There are certain lessons that can only be learnt from hard failure. There are countless stories in history where people used bad situations and turned it to good, people who maximised on their failure and seized the opportunity and did something great in their plight, to name just a few;

John Milton did his best writing while blind, sick and poor

Beethoven composed his greatest work after he went deaf

Daniel Dafoe, author of Robinson Crusoe wrote his book at his lowest, as a failure in prison.

Sometimes our greatest feats await us in our lowest times. It is all about how we deal with the situation that counts. Either we can be glad we went through the experience and came out bigger better and stronger, or we can dabble in self pity and depression.

So you got pregnant and you don't know what to do. Or you just failed the year in school and you feel like a failure. Or your marriage didn't work and you feel like you've failed everybody, including yourself. Or perhaps your business idea didn't work and you've just let down a lot of people and their families. Does that make you a failure? Does that mean you have failed at life? Does that mean your world is about to end? No. No. No.

This too shall pass. Girdle up your loins. Straighten your upper back. Stand fast. You were born a champion, a winner. Champions lose sometimes, this is but a minor defeat. You will get through it. As hard as it seems, you will get through it. You will come out stronger and wiser than you were before. You cannot give up, hang in there, these are your memories, your scars, your passions, your testimony of living. Memories you will keep and cherish forever.

When asked why she spoke so much on failure, J.K. Rowling responded:

"Simply because failure means a stripping away of the inessential, I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me.

Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged. I was set free, because my greatest fear had been realized, and I was still alive, and I still had a daughter whom I adored, and I had an old typewriter and a big idea. And so rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life."

She continued...

"You might never fail on the scale I did, but some failure in life is inevitable. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all - in which case, you fail by default."

Theodoore Roosevelt once said "Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor souls who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."

The Mind-set

It is said that when he [Sophocles,] was told of an impending invasion by the Persians, he tucked his head down and continued to plough. We imagine that to the news bearer his conversation went something like this "Theophilus, Must I too adorn sackcloth and throw ashes in appeal to the gods? If they will war then let be, it is for us to hope and deal with it as it comes. "

Problems can happen at any moment, nothing is guaranteed.

When they come we should see them as learning experiences. We should ask ourselves what can I learn from this that I will value in the future?

Rejection and failure, frustration and setbacks - all these things are fuels to our success. If you've ever been rejected you will know that passion that burns inside.

In one of his speeches Zig ziglar once said "on occasion you've been told that you can't do this or that, or have no skills or talent for this or that. If you overcame those negative comments and did what you were told you couldn't do, you smile at the memory of the satisfaction you gained by proving them all wrong. You didn't listen to what they said and succeeded in spite of and in some cases, because of their doubts of you"

Most success stories we hear validate that most people who "make it big" experience several failures on their way up. Every day is an opportunity to start over, and every failure can be a learning experience that prepares us for success.

Success is not final and failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts. ~ Winston Churchill


" Most great people have attained their greatest success just one step after their greatest failure." ~ Napoleon Hill

" Discouragement and failure are two of the surest stepping stones to success." ~ Dale Carnegie

" Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently." ~ Henry Ford

"Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed to an equal or greater benefit." ~ Napoleon Hill

"If we will be quiet and ready enough, we shall find compensation in every disappointment." ~ Henry David Thoreau

Depression, Panic Attacks and Kundalini Energy

Hectic lifestyles and a propensity towards diseases have given rise to cases of severe depression and panic attacks. While medicinal treatment as well as therapy is used mostly to alleviate the negative impacts and effects of these ailments, recent studies have shown that using the Indian concept of Kundalini healing can help to cure these psychological ailments permanently.

Let us begin by examining what the two interrelated illnesses of depression and anxiety signify. Studies have shown that panic attacks and accompanying depression are the most widespread psychological problems as they can manifest due to a number of reasons and can be triggered off by various factors that we encounter in daily life. Regular stressors such as traffic jams, financial worries and arguments can create a tendency towards these ailments.

According to medical data, people who are prone to anxiety have a core biological susceptibility that increases the risks. Anxiety follows a defined path. People develop a fear of a certain situation or encounter which causes them to have calamitous thoughts regarding the same. These negative thoughts continue to expand until the individual is rendered almost helpless by the fear.

Consequently, the individual tries to avoid that situation and over time, the avoidance actions as well as multiple physical symptoms of the stress become aggravated and develop into a chronic illness.

Anxiety is known to often be by accompanied by depression. Depression can be understood to be chronic levels of feelings of sadness, helplessness, hopelessness, distress and despair. The effects can cause a problem in every aspect of life, be it personal, social or professional.

The symptoms of anxiety and depression include trembling, sweating, heart palpitations, and dizziness. Breathing problems, stomach ailments and chest pains and discomfort too indicate the onset of an anxiety attack.

It is important to understand that the effects of anxiety disorders and depression, such as anger, disinterest, fear and despair also work to cause more of the same illness, thus transforming into both causes and effects.

The ailments form a vicious cycle and give rise to other lifestyle problems such as malnutrition, stress and inefficiency. Seeing as to how these illnesses can damage an individual's life in a variety of spheres, ranging from mental and emotional to social and professional, it is imperative to be able to cure them effectively.

As mentioned earlier, while medicines and therapy do help, the Kundalini form of treatment has gained much recognition and appreciation of late. While it is an extremely popular phenomenon, the method is still gaining recognition.

Let us study the concept and how it can be used to cure depression and anxiety related health issues. The term "Kundalini" is a Sanskrit word that can be literally translated to mean "coiled". It refers to a certain intuitive, subconscious, and often inherent life force that is visualized to lie coiled or curled at the base of the spine in one's body.

According to lore, the Kundalini force is to be visualized in the form of a sleeping serpent or a goddess that rests coiled at the base of the spine.

It is believed that this life force or power can be awakened as needed to combat various illnesses of the heart, mind, soul and body. By description, the Kundalini energy force is said to constitute a part of the "subtle body" covert, almost hidden components that one is not consciously aware of but can delve into, should the need arise.

It is believed that the Kundalini energy force falls into the category of bodily energy points such as the various Nadis (channels of energy) and the Chakras (the centers of energy) that are used in Yoga, Tantra, Chinese Acupuncture and other forms of alternate medicine and healing. The Chakras are all said to possess unique properties and special healing powers that can be used to overcome health problems and ensure a healthy and wholesome way of living.

The use of Kundalini techniques implies awakening this sleeping energy by the means of methods of breathing, physical exercises, chanting, visualization techniques and following a life of ascetics. The Kundalini energy is said to then travel upwards from the spine to the head, where it strengthens the mind by bringing in a state of psychological illumination and enlightenment.

Let us now study how Kundalini energy is to be used to cure depression and anxiety. It is believed that the depression is caused by confines or injured areas of the brain which could have been caused due to some arrested development.

These damaged areas are referred to as the Miasmas and it is believed that they have been caused due to some stressful factor and have been further augmented due to prolonged stress. One of the practices advised in order to be able to cure the depression is to spend significant amounts of time in the sun. It is believed that sunbathing along with sun gazing helps to lift the spirit, release the Kundalini energy and overcome the state of mental fugue that clouds the spirit and dampens hope.

Depression is also said to be caused by deficits in serotonergic levels and exhaustion of the noradrenalin adrenergic receptors. This also causes excess secretion of the hormone aldosterone which has sodium retaining properties, causing salt and fluid retain in the body. Regular exercises and intensive Yoga are to be practiced daily in natural environments in order to be able to overcome these effects of depression.

Greenery and fresh air are imperative during Yoga as they help to clear the mind and air the body, thus also lifting the spirit and battling negative thought processes.

It is said that this exercise serves as a form of movement therapy induces rehabilitation of the brain by creating new brain cells that form healthy neural connections and do away with the prior ailing ones.

This awakening of the Kundalini energy must be accompanied by a healthy and happy environment which comprises of strong emotional bonds of love, caring and mutual trust because a happy and content frame of mind is required before being able to tackle serious problems of the brain.

More Than Inspirational Quotes for Difficult Times

No matter who you are or how successful you are, everyone has periods of "being down" on life or yourself.

These "down" times lead to negative thoughts, which can lead to poor productivity and for some, can lead to different levels of depression. Minimizing and ultimately eliminating these time periods will allow you to make remarkable progress in your life.

Think about it. If you were always "pumped up", full of positive energy and passionate about every day, how incredible would your daily contributions be to your life?

How many "rags to riches" stories have you read or watched, where people overcame insurmountable obstacles in spite of terrible things happening in their lives. They achieved their goals by never quitting and always believing in their dreams/vision.

Energy is the most powerful force in our universe. If you have ever read about or discovered the "law of attraction", you know what I am talking about.

Unfortunately for some, negative energy seems to travel much quicker and is in more abundance than positive energy. Understanding how to overcome negative thoughts and replace them with a high level of positive energy is paramount.

By identifying and utilizing some natural, readily available energy boosting techniques and strategies, you can increase your positive energy levels and sustain them for longer periods of time. Whether you believe in the law of attraction or not, everyone can agree that the better you feel, the more energy you have, the more you can accomplish.

The resources I have outlined below are extremely effective tools for attracting and conveying higher levels of energy. They are simple, but highly effective if you consistently work at it. The trick is finding purpose in everything you do, say and listen to; if you do you will find the energy you need.

Strategy: Commit to identifying negative thoughts and words on a daily basis. Negativity starts with you, you make the choice! Whenever you find yourself using negative words in your daily conversation you are heading in the wrong direction.

Create an arsenal of inspirational messages. The Internet is filled with free motivational and inspirational quotes of the day. Don't just read them and move on when you find ones you like. Write them down! Look at them daily and test each one of them out when you are "going negative". Some will work better than others. Put the best ones in a journal of some kind and title the page; inspirational quotes for difficult times.

Here are a few inspirational messages you can use if you like:

* "There is only one success--to be able to spend your life in your own way"........Christopher Morley
* "The secret of success in life is for a man to be ready for his opportunity when it comes"....Earl of Beaconsfield
* "A mistake is not necessarily a crime. Wherever you can extend forgiveness, especially to yourself, you free up energy. Your energy is a quantity you can exchange for anything you want in life".......Unknown
* "The majority of men meet with failure because of their lack of persistence in creating new plans to take the place of those which fail"........Napolean Hill
* "Consider the postage stamp; its usefulness consists in the ability to stick to one thing until it gets there"..........Josh Billings

There certainly are common themes in these quotes - can you see the important elements of preparation, persistence and mindset? Life is not as hard as most people make it out to be, if you view life in its simplest forms, things will tend to be easier.

Weapon Number Two - Inspirational Messages from books. Not only will you find inspirational quotes, but you can add paragraphs and stories to your positive energy cache. Copy them into your journal, so you can access them much easier than keeping a book with you at all times.

* "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" by Robert Kiyosaki
* "The Science of Getting Rich" by Wallace D. Wattles
* "Think and Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill
* "Why we Want you to be Rich" by Trump and Kiyosaki
* "Secrets of the Millionaire Mind" by T. Harv Eker
* "The 4-Hour Workweek" by Timothy Ferriss
* "One Minute Sales Person" by Spencer Johnson
* "Power vs Force" by David Hawkins
* "The Game of Life and How to Play It" Florence Shinn

Weapon Number Three - Inspirational messages from Movies. Movies are a great example of how finding a purpose for your actions can change everything. I come across people all the time that say movies and television are a waste of time. In some cases this is true, but if you are watching a movie with the intended purpose of leisure time mixed with a motivating boost how can this be deemed a waste of time? Here are a few of my favorites:

* The Aviator
* The Pursuit Of Happyness
* Radio
* Braveheart
* Men of Honor
* Rudy
* Life as a House
* Patch Adams

Weapon Number 4 - Inspirational Messages through Music:

I am certainly not going to "touch" this one. Out of the five sources of inspiration and motivation, music is by far the most personal of the "tastes". However, music can be extremely powerful. It can change moods and attitudes within seconds. There is a reason music is played in the locker room of almost every sporting event before the game. It fires the players up! The other powerful thing about a song is that you can bring it into your consciousness at any time without the song actually being played. You can hear the music or lyrics in your head and use it to your advantage.

Weapon Number Five - Inspirational Messages through Events and Situations:

Everyone has a moment of glory or an achievement they can think about at any time - a time when you won a "hard fought" game; you "aced" a test or passed when you did not expect it; you thrived under pressure, made someone laugh or had someone sincerely thank you for a job well done. Write these moments down, think about them regularly and learn to use them when you need it most.