Thursday, October 20, 2011

Mount Union Lecture

     My experience at Mount Union was awesome. Dr. Tamara Daily was a great host and I look forward to our next event. GM


‎"On October 12, 2011, retired NFL punter Greg Montgomery Jr. presented the Annual Mental 
Health Awareness Lecture at the University of Mount Union in Alliance, Ohio. Mr. Montgomery 
shared the story of his diagnosis with Bipolar II Disorder and the challenges he has faced in 
creating his own path toward recovery. Mr. Montgomery challenged the audience to think about 
Bipolar Disorder in particular and mental illness more generally in the broader context of life 
experiences, family relationships, and individual responsibility. Using candid personal 
reflections, Mr. Montgomery shared his belief that living well with Bipolar involves both 
respecting the illness and learning to use it to one’s advantage. The evening’s most potent
 message was that people experiencing depression and anxiety have the power within 
themselves to choose more productive and fulfilling paths and limit the negative impacts of toxic
emotions."


                                 -  Dr Tamara Daily - Dept of Psychology - Univ of Mount Union

Denial

I received this note from a close friend who's in 'the program'. In my humble opine, there are many parallels between  the triggers of  both abuse/addiction and mental illness. My point of  "unilateral remorse is needed in order to achieve true recovery"....'The Why'.....must be uncovered and dealt with. Denial is a large hinderance which is conveniently(and often) overlooked...........


Monty,

       I think thats a larger part of the overall denial as part of the process. The whole family is in denial. Those who dont understand might not initially have access to understanding because they dont have the disease. Its hard to understand your part in something when you don't understand WHY its happened in the first place. Thats a tough hill... See More to climb when all you want is for the person you love to "be better"....its the "fixer" which lives in all of us. But to get down in the trenches and have to "put in work" for that loved one when the perception and problematic thinking is "that is their problem and I am just here to support them" is a different concept altogether. Thats where we separate the talkers from the do-ers. Agreed.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Living Bipolar (and Enlightened)

      For the last couple months, my girlfriend and I have been reading 'Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life' by Dr. Wayne Dyer. In this book,  Dr Dyer examines the 81 verses of the Tao Te Ching (The Way of Life)  written by philosopher Lao-tzu over 2000 years ago. Within each verse, as in any spiritual text, there is a powerful message that can be examined, discussed and applied to our lives. In the 17th verse, coined by Dr Dyer as 'Living as an Enlightened Leader, gives us a nice point of reference. Not only does it advise us on how to lead, but also to figure out our past (the Why). I  feel to acknowledge the roots our pain, deal with them, let go and move on is a very brave act. Choosing to change our minds(our ways of thinking), take action  and mentor others that are suffering, even braver."

                                                                  -  GHM, Jr


"With the greatest leader above them, people barely know one exists.

 Next comes one whom they love and praise.

 Next comes one whom they fear.

 Next comes one whom they despise and defy.

 When a leader trusts no one, no one trusts him.

 The great leader speaks little.

 He never speaks carelessly.

 He works without self-interest and leaves no trace.

 When all is finished, the people say, "We did it ourselves" "

                         - Lao-tzu from Tao Te Ching



    Here are a couple thoughts  by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer's from his book, Change Your Thoughts--Change Your Life;

     "You can personalize it by substituting the words parent or teacher for leader. 1st you must stay in the background and become an astute observer of what's taking place; then ask yourself how, without interfering, you can create an environment that will help everyone act responsibly

.  Whatever your decision, you'll be well aware of the need to create an environment where everyone will be able to say, "We fixed it ourselves without the need for any interference from anyone--we really don't need a supervisor."

  This approach involves suspending your desire (ego) to be seen as a strong authority figure.

  Truly inspiring leaders get results by their own example: encourage others to be responsible and do the right thing, but not by proclaiming and bragging about their impeachable management. They create space for others to be inspired and to achieve their own greatness. When the time comes for receiving accolades, they dissolve in the background, wanting everyone else to feel that their accomplishments arose from their own leadership qualities. The supreme Taoist leader always leaves people to choose and pursue their own way of life, their own conception of the good. The view of a self-styled authoritarian is not the way enlightened leaders see themselves; rather, they raise the energy of an environment through a viewpoint that elevates lower inclinations.

In the 17th verse, the Tao offers 3 other ways of choosing to be a leader.

1. To make a difference in the lives of others, resolving conflicts through love. By being an instrument of love and making an effort to praise others, this leader stays in harmony with the Tao. The draw back is that using the approval and affection of a leader for motivation means turning control of one's life over to that leader.

2. The ineffectiveness of fear as a leadership style: if I can get you to do as I desire by using a weapon, then you'll only behave in these ways as long as I have the power to threaten you. When I leave, my influence over you departs as well.

Studies have shown that students in the setting of teachers who were considered strict disciplinarians, they were well behaved when the feared individual was in the room, yet when she or he departed, the classroom turned chaotic.

The opposite was true of instructors who viewed education as an opportunity to praise and encourage students: their presence or absence had almost no noticeable impact. This is a great thing to keep in mind if you're a mother or father!

3. Least effective means for managing others is to use tactics that will encourage them to despise you, for the moment they leave your sight, they'll defy all that you say and stand for. Children who despise a parent tend to emulate the hateful tactics to which they were subjected, or they detach themselves completely from that doctorial adult and spend years attempting to heal the scars from the terrible treatment.

Instead of believing that you know what's best for others, trust that they know what's best for them. Allow others to share their thoughts about the path they see for themselves. Let your position be known, but also convey that you trust them to make the right choice. Then step back and peacefully believe that the way you look at this situation will change. Offer praise when those if your charge are making their own decisions, even when their behavior may conflict with yours. Trust yourself to give the best response by not seeing yourself as knowing what's right. "When a leader trusts no one, no one trusts him."

                                       -  Dr Wayne Dyer


      After reading this a couple times, you will start reflect and see where you were inspired and/or discouraged in your life. Take note of when you felt the desire to perform for your parents, teachers, coaches and bosses. In contrast, take note of when you were turned off and despised those in power. The reason I'm asking you to do this is that I truly believe we need to "go back in order to move forward". Once we discover which 'hot buttons' were pushed in our lives and take the time to 'go there' once again, we'll know again how its feels and then choose to make a conscious effort to never do the same to others. Wisdom is the product of experience, pain and growth. A mistake is only a mistake if we don't learn from it.

      Many specialists in the field of mental health and addiction/abuse want us to simply 'move on'. To somewhat allow our inner circle to sit on the sidelines and give us 'support'. When in reality, we need everyone to 'go back' with us and join us in our recovery. This doesn't mean we constantly harp on the reasons of our pain and use them as a crutch. But those who we feel had an impact on our lives (good and bad) should be made aware of their actions. I feel,  through true remorse from those that pained us (and we them), the recovery (discovery) process has a much better chance of being completed. JMHO