Needing positive connection before being able to do anything

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Biscuits

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Needing positive connection before being able to do anything
« on: December 10, 2016, 09:21:55 PM »
Hello

I suppose this is a bit of a "does anyone else get this" post. All my life I have struggled with what feels like an outside force that destroys my motivation and ability to function. All I could describe it as was pain which came up when I needed to do something - whether it was something I didn't want to do like a chore, or something I did want to do like learn a new skill. Of course I spent most my life thinking I was selfish, lazy and spoilt and just tended to whip myself continually to get stuff done. Unfortunately it turns out this is not a sustainable way to live, and I ran out of energy.

I only really figured out what it is recently. Its like every day, when I wake up, I need a certain amount of positive connection with others before I can function. I need to speak to people I like, get some kind of positive reinforcement. Daft stuff like they think I am funny or like something I made, or I can help them with some topic or other. Once the 'tank' is topped up, the pain goes away, the feeling of being strangled, and I can do things. Last night for example I got back to a project I had started and stopped on because I felt happy. Then today, I woke up, felt awful, back to being strangled. And I cant do anything. When I try: Pain. Have had many many types of therapy, meds and so on. None of them really ever seemed to understand it, beyond unhelpfully labeling it an approval addiction / offering advice that didnt work.

Its incredibly frustrating because I know how much I can do and how much I enjoy the creative process, but my body just cant do it until I get that feedback. And of course, the world isn't there to give that to me all the time, people have their lives to live. It makes me feel like a balloon with a hole which I keep trying to inflate but it needs constant input all the time. And when it happens at work ... yeah. Not good :(

Any thoughts, similar experiences, suggestions?

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radical

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Re: Needing positive connection before being able to do anything
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2016, 10:17:12 PM »
I'm having a series of treatments which involve repeated (before and after) madras tests.  It is a depression inventory and what you describe comes under 'lassitude' for me.

I know exactly what you are talking about, and the difference that some kind of human connection makes to it.  What also makes a big difference is lifting depression.  For me the dependence on others for motivation is debilitating, it puts far too much of my energy ,meaning, motivation and needs  at the whim of the feelings and attitudes of others  (and others being present, in person or in my head).  I see it as unhealthy and a kind of addiction, with withdrawal causing symptoms of depression.  I'm not wild about the concept of codependence in many ways, but it is a useful framework for this problem.

I so want to find strength and motivation within.  it's a dependence I'm forced to work on now, given my isolated circumstances, yet........ i feel I'm not getting there, and don't know where to look in myself.

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Three Roses

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Re: Needing positive connection before being able to do anything
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2016, 10:22:14 PM »
Biscuits, I relate to this very much. I can't say what it is or how to fight it - not yet. ;)

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Biscuits

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Re: Needing positive connection before being able to do anything
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2016, 12:00:48 AM »
Hello guys

Thank you both for your replies :) I think it has a lot to do with a sense of that "bad person feeling". I wake up, and the sensation I have is like someone is about to storm in the room and shout at me for all the stuff I've done wrong, or for being late, or for being a POS generally. Just that sense of being really tense and scared and priming myself to have to fight back, potentially make things worse etc. Just like "I know that everyone hates me right now, and I need to know I am ok. I need them to let me feel I am ok". Thats why its so hard, somehow some part of my mind can never quite feel safe in that regard. I guess its not gonna be interested in learning... I dunno, say a foreign language, when just even that basic sense that people are about to unload on me, be disgusted, become aggressive etc. Once I get past that (some days I dont but I find propranolol helps a lot) I can function.

I guess the question for me is how to learn to really feel safe, without constantly feeling like I have to earn it all the time. I know how its meant to happen, in therapy, but it just never has.

Ehh just blathering really, thanks for listening :)

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Three Roses

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Re: Needing positive connection before being able to do anything
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2016, 12:29:02 AM »
Hey, I wonder if we could make ourselves do meditation first thing in the morning, after waking up, and if that would help? :O

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sanmagic7

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Re: Needing positive connection before being able to do anything
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2016, 02:13:00 AM »
o my heart, 3 roses, this morning, before i got out of bed, i did about 15 min. of simple mindful breathing.  i'm not very good at it, kept going off into thoughts of other things, but kept bringing myself back, breathe in, breathe out.  i also got more sleep than usual.  don't know if these things have anything to do with anything here, but for the first time in a long time i felt - relaxed.  that's a very strange feeling for me, cuz i'm usually tense and can't relax of my own accord.

and, after my nap, i did the same thing, but for about a half hour.  again, i hardly ever was able to stay spot on without going off on mental tangents, but i kept bringing myself back, breathe in, breathe out.  and i had more energy today than normal as well.

i realize this might not exactly be meditating, but it was an attempt at the simplest form i know of, and i really did feel calmer and more motivated.  i even danced a little, which i haven't had the strength to do for several months.  you may be on to something there.

so, biscuits, maybe something like that will help you as well.  i don't know.  i just know for me it was a revelation.  but, i relate to what you're saying.  many times i'm lackluster during the day, but when my hub comes home and i'm getting that good vibe from him, i have more energy and just feel better.  it is weird.   today i felt it before he came home.  here's hoping!

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Dee

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Re: Needing positive connection before being able to do anything
« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2016, 03:03:37 AM »

I find that everything I do is for other's and not for me.  This has been going on for my entire life.  In therapy they are trying to get me to do things for me, internal instead of external motivation.  I find that hard.  This has changed the way much of my therapy is done.  I no longer turn in meal plans.  The first time I was given a book to read I went back the next week and said I read it twice and here are the notes.  My therapist keeps telling me that isn't what she is looking for.  It is a self-esteem thing for me.