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BEFORE WE DIG IN:

 Lighter fare for the summer. I like jokes and glowing testimonials:

JOKE: SENIORS PERSPECTIVE OF FACEBOOK: For those of my generation who do not, and cannot, comprehend why Facebook exists: I am trying to make friends outside of Facebook while applying the same principles.

Therefore, every day I walk down the street and tell passersby what I have eaten, how I feel at the moment, what I have done the night before, what I will do later and with whom.

I give them pictures of my family, my dog, and of me gardening, taking things apart in the garage, watering the lawn, standing in front of landmarks, driving around town, having lunch, and doing what anybody and everybody does every day.

I also listen to their conversations, give them the "thumbs up" and tell them I like them.

And it works just like Facebook.

I already have four people following me: two police officers, a private investigator and a psychiatrist.

TESTIMONIAL:  Seth Godin has written nearly 20 books and with every one of them I finish reading the book and say "Whoa - what just hit me!" I once had the experience of a fighter/attack jet fly very low over me faster than the speed of sound. It was really strange because I saw the jet approach but there was no sound. It flew over me, still no sound. And then BOOM - the sound finally arrived. I've found reading Seth Godin's books are sort of like that. I don't quite get the full force of them until after afterward. And then they hit me - like a sonic boom. This book is no different. Somehow Seth has hacked into the subconsciousness of anyone who has dreamed about trying something different or as he says "make a ruckus." It could be starting a business, a blog, making a career change or anything that has an element of fear and uncertainty. Particularly if it's the fear of what other people will say. Or the fear of failing. This book addresses fears. It will inspire you to make that big jump RIGHT NOW. It inspired me to start my podcast. And I know this sounds weird but this particular book reminded me of the first time I parachuted out of a plane when I was in the Army. It was noisy, disorienting and maybe a little bit frightening. But there was an Army sergeant (called a jump master) standing by the door who was screaming at you when it was your turn to jump. Go! Go! Go! And I went. And you know what? Everything turned out OK. The only difference is that in his book, Seth doesn't scream at you. He reasons with you. He encourages you. He tells you you'll be better for the experience and that the only thing you'll regret is not going for it. --Douglas Burdett (review on Amazon of “What to Do When It’s Your Turn” by Seth Godin)

SHARP CLUB 25 is coming soon. I have been a psychotherapist for 25 years and will be opening The Sharp Club to you--with a treasure trove of insights from my experience, training, books, magazines, seminars, and various connections. Stay tuned.

The following Dig is a treasure from the past. I can’t remember if I already used it this year, but even if it is a double duplicate, in my not so humble opinion it is well worth the read.

Having trouble reading this Dig? Read the fully formatted Dig on my website, www.FindWisdomNow.com. It will look much better, have proper spacing, and be easier to read.


MENTAL HEALTH 911 (part 2)

the following story is told with permission, and written with my gratitude

Dear Lost Puppy,

I figured something out about mental health this week that might help you—you whom I care for, you to whom I wish vast amounts of peace, self-respect, energy and clear, uplifting thoughts.

A woman was sitting on a plane last week, coming home from Florida to Westchester County Airport, where she expected her husband would pick her up. She was reading the letter that I wrote to you and her finger accidentally hit a button on her IPad that brought her email trash up on the screen. She discovered to her astonishment and horror that her husband had written a suicide note to me at some point while she was away for these few days. He never did send me the note, but she got to read it while she was trapped on a plane five miles above earth, a few hours from her destination. Nothing but sweaty palms for the rest of the trip. This is the state of mind where nothing can help, a fact that no self-respecting self-help author dare admit among the ever cheery row of books and optimistic magazines that implicitly judge our sorry efforts and sad ways.

When she got off the plane, there was no one to meet her at the passageway exit off the plane or at the baggage claim area, nor (with fear escalating) in the lobby of the airport. She walked outside and saw no familiar car, no familiar face, and hoped for what would normally be a nuisance—that he was late, that there was a traffic jam, that he did not leave on time, that he even forgot to pick her up, and was home mowing the lawn. Any of these anger inducing scenarios would be heaven for her. The ultimate darkness puts a lot of things in perspective.

She looked around and then all of a beautiful sudden she saw her car coming down the road and her precious husband sitting in the driver's seat in all his glory. She cried when she got in the car and eventually began a long conversation with him about the note, his depression, medication, and love. She also went for ice-cream with him, dear lost puppy, because you'll recall that I had written that the lies of darkness "are no match for love and ice cream and Mozart and the start of a new day, with every sunrise we take oh for granted" and having just read that, she decided it would be most appropriate to get some ice cream. I felt honored that my letter served such a delightful purpose—the celebration of life, love, dignity, and blessed relief.

When I talked to them, their immediate thought was that he needed to restart his antidepressant medication. My immediate thought was different. I knew almost intuitively that his real problem was not a chemical imbalance. It was loneliness. His wife is his constant companion and she had left him all alone in an empty house. The devil paid him a visit and soon the dark voices thoroughly convinced him that he had never amounted to much, was basically a burden to her, and that the world would be better off if he crashed his 57 Chevy into a wall at ninety miles per hour. Oh the nonsense we believe when we are in a room by ourselves, with only the Devil for company, with only our sadistic superego yammering at us, with only the blues playing in our soul.

Beware of your surroundings when you are all alone, dear puppy. We are usually most lost when we are alone.

Do not be ashamed that you need others to help you. We all do. The most mentally healthy people are the ones who have gotten the most help.

If you ever think of crashing your 57 Chevy into a wall, never forget that you will break someone's heart. Forever. Forever is a long time. You have the heart of other people in your hand and this is utterly true, utterly real, and unutterably important.

Please understand that the voice of darkness speaks with utter certainty and that voice will point out your faults with lethal conviction. The Devil has no ambiguity or doubt. The Devil does not play fair. He is the prosecuting attorney. The darkness wants to kill your days, will kill your days—with fear, with loathing, with abuse, with anything, anything, anything that will do the trick.

You may think that I am being melodramatic, dear lost puppy. To the contrary, I can't be serious enough or do justice to these matters. Not even the words of our best poets can adequately convey the life altering impact we have on one another or the pain that descends upon us, ever so slowly that we do not notice its approach. Or the darkness pounces on us so quickly that it leaves us wordless and breathless and overcome. In a way, words themselves distance us from the raw immediacy of darkness, the eviscerating gruesomeness of evil. And how often we use words intentionally or unconsciously to distance from the brokenness of the world. We joke, we theorize, we judge, we blame, we repeat clichés. All so distancing, so far from the pain.

Or we can speak about these dark things so often that we grow numb to what they mean. Take loneliness, for example. It is a word we have said and heard thousands of times. We say it over and over again, as we do words like panic attack, anxiety, depression, shame, guilt, low self-esteem. And we dispense our advice, in reply, with words that are also repeated ad nauseum—"don't beat yourself up" and "move on" and "put yourself first" etc. etc.—and sometimes I think the very point of these words is to dull us to consequences and to the fact that no one is doing anything about these problems, including no one is trying to articulate words that come close to conveying the pain or a fresh, sharp understanding or a crisp solution to the problem, or at least a fresh tear. We are inured to our ineffectiveness, accustomed to the merry-go-round of habit and addiction and the nightly news of misery,

Thus, loneliness becomes an expected, gradual reality that is just part of "it is what it is" when, in fact, loneliness is a trapdoor that plunges us suddenly into the cold and slimy basement where we silently scream in agony, but an agony that we have also grown so used to that we could, alas, alas, alas, take our life and think that the only regret to come our way will be that we messed up a nice car.

This is what struck me, this week, for the first time ever, dear lost puppy. It struck me how suddenly we can be plunged into madness. It struck me how fully immersed we can be in that madness even though it is so sudden. We can be painfully crazy in less than ten seconds, even in less than a second.

And loneliness is not the only trap door.

We know that we need to do something very crucial. We don't do it. Like it or not, we plunge into despair.

We know we should not eat another drop of food from the buffet. We get another plate. We sink deep and fast into self-loathing with every bite.

We're going along minding our own business, feeling good about the day and ourselves, when a guy in a Porsche goes by and he's got a pretty woman in the passenger seat, and suddenly envy grabs us by the throat and we are consumed (consumed!) with envy. The beauty of the day, the beauty of us, is erased by a car and a blonde. Just like that.

The moral of the story is pay attention, dear puppy, the world is filled with illusion and trapdoors and poison. The moral of the story is that we all get lost and we need to find one another more quickly and go out for some ice cream.

Love. Respect. Peace. Gratitude.

Bob Beverley


Next week we find a treasure from the past.

Chat then;

Bob Beverley

P.S. Sharing wisdom is absolutely necessary in this oft foolish world. I'd be honored if you pass THE DIG along to your friends.


Copyright 2017 FindWisdomNow.com.

Bob Beverley is a psychotherapist in the mid-Hudson Valley of New York State, USA. He has written Peace Etc. A Journey Through Open Heart Surgery and Other Scary Things, Written to Lessen Your Anxiety, Whatever It May Be; Emotional Elegance (with an Introduction by David Allen; Dear Tiger: A Book for Tiger Woods and For Us All; How to Be a Christian and Still Be Sane and The Secret Behind the Secret Law of Attraction (with Kevin Hogan, Dave Lakhani and Blair Warren). All books are available on Amazon, except "Emotional Elegance" which is available at www.emotionalelegance.com

Bob is available for motivational speaking, consultation, and psychotherapy. Bob is the leader of a unique, life-changing experience called THE SHARP CLUB.

His website is FindWisdomNow.com where you can discover advice that has, as Bob says, "been road-tested in the emotional emergency ward I have always worked in. What I have to say is not a stage show. My audience comes back next week." Bob can be reached at Bob@FindWisdomNow.com