Symptoms of Depression and Passivity

  • Sadness that does not abate

The passive person is often sad in part because they do not actively grieve their missed opportunities, sabotaged relationships, passed over for promotions and much more. When depression is not bio-chemical it is usually brought about by repressed and denied emotions that continually build into full-blown depression.

  • Loss of interest in activities previously enjoyed

When people feel like they are not going to succeed, or have been told since a young age that they can’t succeed, eventually they withdraw from social, sports, and recreational activities and become more and more sedentary.

  • Unintentional weight gain or weight loss

The more they withdraw, the more their weight becomes a problem, and the more their weight becomes a problem, the more they withdraw. Passivity is a real Catch-22. Comfort food—which is packed with calories and sugar—becomes increasingly important. Sugar is a contributing factor in depression and passivity.

  • Difficulty sleeping, or continual oversleeping

Insomnia plagues the passive person. As lethargy sets in, sugar intake increases, sleep cycles get out of whack. Many passive people find the only time they are comfortable is when they sleep and sleep and sleep.

  • Energy loss

All of the above ends up in energy loss. They feel tired and drained and since energy is the key to active engaging of life they feel life as abandoned them. The feelings of worthlessness increases, they become irritable and hard to be around. They lose interest in sex and become constant complainers with unexplained ailments and excuses as to why they cannot be more engaging.

Because those around the passive person eventually becomes frustrated with the passive person who usually has so much unrealized potential they also become uninterested and eventually avoids the passive person. As Edrita Fried, author of the book, Active/Passive, points out, this includes the therapeutic community who withdraws from treatment and refers their clients to other clinicians.

The passive person who is depressed finally receives some help from non-therapy psychiatrists or personal physicians in the way of anti-depressants that mostly mask the real problem sometimes for decades.

If a person is living a half-lived life, not achieving, not engaging life, experiencing little or no success in career, relationship, or creative endeavors how could they not be depressed. If the passive person is going to therapy say one hour per week and taking a serotonin re-uptake inhibitor once a day but are living their waking life with a less than satisfying relationship, going to work that holds little or no passion, wanting to be something they feel forever alludes them, how could they not be depressed by the passivity that plagues them?

 

Announcement – I will be offering 2-Day Intensive Sessions in Austin, Texas beginning September 1, 2016

I’m pleased to announce that after a break from offering my 2-day Intensives in Austin, Texas, I am now making those available again starting September 1, 2016 at the Austin Men’s Center, thanks to Director Bill Bruzy.

As most of you know Austin is not only charming and beautiful, it is a convenient location for clients especially from the Midwest, Southwest, and West Coast.

I will continue to offer the Intensives at my Mentone Cottage in the mountains of Northeast Alabama.

I hope you will pass the word along to clients or friends who would like to engage in my nontraditional approach to coaching, counseling, and teaching.

Passivity – Part I

Solving the Problem of Passivity

Passivity is the compulsion to pursue the opposite of what we say we want. This compulsion left unidentified and dealt with leaves us unfulfilled at best, sabotages success and at worst depressed, hopeless and feeling victimized.

“I don’t care. Whatever you want is fine with me.”

“It is not the job I want but in this economy you really can’t be choosy.”

“He’s not perfect but I’m thirty-five years old. Nobody’s perfect. I’m sure we will grow into love.”

“I’d love to write. I’ve always dreamed someday I’d write but I have kids and a job. Not everybody gets their dreams to come true. Maybe when I retire…”

“I can’t believe what is going on in Washington these days. They are all idiots and con men. But there’s nothing an average Joe like me can do about it.”

“Go ask your father. If he says yes, then it’s okay.”

“That’s the way the cookie crumbles.”

“It’s just not in the cards.”

“It’s not God’s will.”

“I guess I’m just unlucky.”

“Some people get all the breaks.”

“It is what it is.”

Does any of the above ring a bell? If they do you may have some areas in life where passivity rules your attitudes, behaviors, personality and decisions. Perhaps you have settled for less than you felt you deserved or you “adapted” to your present situation or relationship rather than changing them. Did you “cop out,” give up, quit and become hopeless and helpless feeling like you were a victim of fate rather than a creator of your own destiny?

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Unfortunately, many people have developed a greater connection to loss and feeling less than; they settle for unfulfilling relationships or careers that never quite achieve their creative potentials. Surviving, rather than thriving, has become the state that many of us are not only used to but are compelled to pursue.

As one highly successful surgeon said to me who was growing increasingly wary of settling said, “I always feel I am half the husband, half the father, half the friend and half the doctor I know I can be even though I’m considered to be very successful in my field.”

I said, “It sounds like you are living a half-lived life.”

“Exactly! But I am fifty years old. I don’t want to say this at sixty or seventy. I want the second half of my life to be a much fuller, satisfying life, but I’m not sure how.”

I’ll tell you what I told him. By coming out of denial, identifying the parts of your life where passivity prevails, working with the origins of your passivity, becoming aware of the signs and behaviors and acquiring new, but tried and tested tools, information and insights that will serve as solutions you can fully engage life, work, relationships, creativity, parenting, grand-parenting and much more.

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