Optimism

Wed, 07/30/2014 - 00:23 -- BlueWinds

I am a much happier person now than I was six months ago. Or a year ago. Or two, or five, or ten, for that matter. I won't say I'm doing the best I ever have, since I had a pretty idyllic childhood, but the past four months have been the nicest of my adult life.

Why? Well, I think the biggest change is something personal I'm not quite ready to share with the wide web (ask again in another six months), but beyond that has been a very intentional attempt to be kinder, more caring, more upbeat, more charitable and more optimistic.

And you know what? It's worked. I smile more. I like people better (though I still don't like crowds - I'm more Hathawa than Wend, and always will be).

 


I've often been borderline depressive. Never diagnosed - but I suspect that's as much because I didn't have anyone close to me to drag me to the doctor's office when I didn't come out of my room except to eat for a month at a time. It was just normal, the way I went through life.

I still do feel that way, some days. The power of magical thinking isn't a miracle cure. But at least now I have a better baseline to compare against - to realize that "this is not normal, I am thinking strangely" when I decide that getting up to eat is more effort than it's worth.

 


Basically, every time I notice I'm having a negative thought - no matter how innocent - I ask myself: "Is there a better way to think about this?" Earlier, I had the thought that a coworker was an idiot for introducing a security hole. Then I realized I was being negative, and decided that I would instead think that he was clearly focused on the front-end, and I'll have to carefully look over any server work he does.

Same thought both times, equally true, but one makes me annoyed and the other reminds me of what he's good at.

 


This is not advice. I am not selling anything. I just wanted to share, because I like to share when things are going well. I hope you are all well too!

Comments

AColonyOfAnts on

My dreams have been more perverse as of late.  I'll probably have to pin that one on you.

ab1189 on

Always good to hear things are going well. Sounds pretty hard to do changing the way you think. Especially in the beginning. Should do it as well, although i cant really get myself going on it. 

Anyway, good to know things are going fine :).

Voduxe (not verified) on

As the old folks often say, "Happiness is a choice." I have found that to be true, more or less. I'm smiling with a glass of whiskey in my hand, though. Your thoughts?

Voduxe (not verified) on

Happiness is a choice, according to many an elder I have conversed with. So are a great many things, though. My way of remaining happy is based, at least partially, on a scientific theory. "Entropic Balance", I believe? Correct me if I'm wrong, please. Basically, entropy, or chaos, is in an overall constant state. If entropy is reduced in one place, it must rise in another. If i'm having a really bad day, someone else is having a really good day, and vice versa. All I can hope is that if I'm having a good day, the person having a bad day really deserves it.

AColonyOfAnts on

Not a scientific theory.  Wouldn't want to give people the wrong idea about what a scientific theory is now.

Anonymous (not verified) on

Hi, I am new to commenting here.  I would just like to say I like your game quite a bit.  The girls in it are very attractive and can't wait to play your next game (btw, I don't mind you focusing more on female characters, I after all find lesbians hot.  P.S. this is not a statement objectifying women, and I respect all forms of sexuality).  Also, optimism is good.  While it won't improve anything over night, nor will it work in all cases.  Just having it does improve your life.  Its not necessary, just really nice to have.  Keep on working on your games, and keep that optimism.

Vestrina on

Good to hear that things are looking up for you.  Or rather, that you're looking up at things. :)  Funny how perspective can make such a big difference.

Jonas (not verified) on

Glad to hear that you are doing, or at least actively trying, to do better! I love the game and wish you the best! :)

Danny (not verified) on

Hi Bluewinds,

 I've been lurking on your site for a while and always meant to actually post something. :) I find your comments about games and life to be really fascinating especially since it's from a female perspective, which is rarer. I find myself having similar issues of depressiveness but nothing purely clinical. I know a lot of happiness is really determined by yourself and always will be. It's something I need to work at also, but I'm glad you seem to be having a lot of success. Also I go to Sakuracon every year, not sure if you go there, but I love visiting Seattle.

BlueWinds on

Thanks for stopping by - I really do like hearing from people, brightens my day whenever there's a new comment to read.

I don't generally go to anime conventions unless I'm running a booth - not a huge fan of crowds, and all the merchandise doesn't do much for me.

Cadmium (not verified) on

Hey Blue,

Another lurker turned commenter here haha. But this post and the thoughts in it are a bit similar to my own. I also had a pretty great childhood, with the exception of not really having friends up till highschool and then only a few. But various events and being constantly barraged with what appears to me as small turns of misfortune have turned my world view a bit sour. Add to that the fact that despite being now in my mid twenties, I share approximately 15% of the interests most people my age do, which makes wanting to go out and overcoming my innate reserved nature to meet new people very difficult.

So add all that together and you have someone who is just pretty unhappy with how things are, wanting to have friends to hang out (I just recently moved far away due to getting a job, so there's that at least) but not really wanting to be friends with most of the people I'd meet. And also similarly, I've been of the opinion "I already know that I'm depressed some of the time, and I doubt a doctor is going to going to get past my thorns if they try and help me, so what's the point?" 

That said, so long as I'm not left to brood by myself for long stretches of time, I'm pretty balanced mood-wise. And usuallty all it takes is someone who is like me in some respect (be it interests or whatever), who can understand why I'm the way I am and doesn't just brush me off, and suddenly bam, cheerful and bright mcgee, as it were. 

I guess I wanted to share my story with someone like that and that's the whole point of this haha, but yeah. It's rough, but we will muddle through. Have a great day! 

BlueWinds on

Hey Cadmium, thanks for poking your head out. :)

I tend to only have a few friends, but that's in large part because I only want a few - no idea what I'd do with the huge basket full that people seem to lust after.

People that share interests are hard. >.> If I may make a guess, you don't drink much? That seems to be the primary interest of people our age (mid twenties). I definitely know the feeling of meeting a group and having absolutely nothing to talk about.

Cadmium (not verified) on

Got in (mostly) one. I can't stand beer and gee, guess what everyone else seems to love for some reason? Just give me some vodka or rum and coke and I'll be dandy. Maybe a Midnight Mongolian if I'm at the right bar. I drink for taste and relaxation rather than intoxication. Proven by the fact I've only been fully on what I'd classify as drunk twice haha. But yes, that and sports tend to be what people our age are into. And the worst part about having nothing to talk about is two fold. First, you feel like you're not there. Second, if you are not there to the others, why /are/ you even there? (logical side of me: well you can meet new people / emotional side of me: people here are going to be just like this lot and you aren't gonna have a good time) But if you try and leave you feel crappy because either someone asks "leaving so soon?" or no one even notices and says goodbye.

Which brings us back to the topic of friends. Yeah I agree. I like having a group of close friends. I don't mind having a decent share of acquaintances though. You pretty much have to in this day and age to get anywhere. 

Boots (not verified) on

Quick question, where do I put the bug report?

BlueWinds on

In general "Contact Me" on the right, or if you register you could attach the file here in a comment.

Though I hate to say it, but I'm not currently fixing any of the bugs reported. ^^;; More interesting to work on the new game (which, I should note, is going slowly but well).

Anonymous (not verified) on

I had a falling-out with my best friend about a year ago, and I'd been see-sawing between sad and angry ever since. That negativity ended up seeping into all other aspects of my life, up to the point that I really didn't like being around other people anymore.

When you posted this a month ago I realized I really missed being a nice person and feeling good about things, so, like you suggested, I started making a concious effort to gauge whether my emotional responses to sitations were fair and productive. It turns out most of them weren't, and I was able to stop myself from getting caught in those negative mental feedback loops.

Thanks a bunch, Blue. Your blog post got me feeling cheerful for the first time since last June.

super on

Optimism is a good thing to be selling!

 

..Unfortunately, I'm not in the mood for buying anything right now.

Anonymous (not verified) on

Optimism never really works for me, I actually enjoy having pessimistic thoughts about undesireable possibilities and coming up with methods to avoid them. It feels like I'm one of those genius characters that plans for everything, which I find very fun.