JUST ONE LOOK
the purpose of our work is to rid humanity of the fear of life, one person at a time
Just One Look Method Testimonials Getting Help Blog & Podcast Articles Forum Donate Newsletter Books Videos International
Download the free PDF ebook:
The Just One Look Method  (314 Kb)
Die Nur-ein-Blick-Methode (439 Kb)

Just One Look Forum Archives

Recovery and Rehabilitation

<<< Back to forum index page

Cbt

I wonder what the relationship between the looking, 'the fear' and cognitive behavioural therapy could be? I have thought about going to see a therapist to help me break out of my social fears. Also, I've been thinking lately how I am more broken than most people I've met on these forums as I don't feel like I've made any progression at all really. I'm silent in the company of others. The drugs and booze last year gave me some relief, however, I am back to square one.

Sure there will be some interesting ideas. How would it relate to the focused attention? I like to think once certain beliefs change in the brain of a 'looker' they will be changed forever. Maybe im just hopeful.

Hey Jim, you're not more broken than most people you've met on these forums. I've been in the company of many 'seeker types' for years and this is a common trait in what us 'seeker types' believe. Many times, seekers like us tend to think we're the 'worst case'...and express concerns and go through the many of the same experiences and thoughts/feelings as you. I think even John himself has this idea - Like he says, 'If it could work for me, it will work for anyone.' I think a lot of us seeker-types think that! But it is this very suffering, in many cases, that bring us to teachings like this and motivate us to 'awakening'. Seeker types, in many cases, suffer a lot more than people not interested in all this..in finding 'the Truth'. The plus side is that we can really awaken and find true peace and happiness because we have the motivation to put the time and effort in.

Since I studied mindfulness meditation previously before coming to John's teaching, I am aware of the CBT and MBCT practices and there are some good studies related to those teachings and successfully dealing with conditions like PTSD. I prefer the simplicity and intention behind the SDA exercise to these though. Several days ago, I made the intention to do the SDA practice all the time. I have usually been doing 3, 10-20 min formal sessions spread out through the day and, now, throughout my day, my intention is to always have some part of my attention on following the breath. In doing some research, it looks as though this is something Buddha himself recommended as his main practice. If you google the term 'continual breath awareness' you will find other people who have had this idea come to them as well. I was actually posting in the 'comments' section on some YT's about continual breath awareness and giving the link to John's teachings. For me, the intention behind doing something like this is all important and what motivates me, so to hear John talk about this intention makes all the difference for me. (Check John's article on mindfulness vs. SDA practice and conversation #9 on YT).

If having social anxiety when sober causes you enough suffering, you may be motivated to do the SDA exercise more and even try doing it all day the way I'm describing. If you are using any type of drugs/medications to help you, I wouldn't recommend stopping them 'cold turkey' just because you are doing the SDA exercise or other practices you believe to be helpful. (But don't do more either! You could even consider a gradual taper depending on what you are using). Being involved with a spiritual healing group for years, I saw this was a common idea for some people to take on. Like people who needed glasses or hearing aids would not wear them because they felt like, since they were doing this healing practice, they were showing faith/belief that healing would come. This isn't how it works at all. Take someone wearing glasses. When their eyes were healed, they would all of a sudden start to get blurry vision through the glasses and have to take them off..and they could see clearly. Same goes for people taking medicine. A lot of times people would ask if they should stop taking their medicine because they were doing this healing practice. There were medical doctors in this healing group and they would always tell people never to do that. When they no longer needed the medication because they were healed of the condition, they would either start to forget to take their medication - or it would start making them sick. They would then go to the doctor, if they started getting sick, and find they were healed and didn't need to medicine anymore. Extreme examples I know of were people addicted to substances like heroin and, one day, they would forget to take the heroin! Seriously - they had no desire for it anymore.. Now, imo, the SDA exercise is an evolution of the healing practice in the group I was involved in. It really does come down to learning to focus the attention on what you want. The way John describes it, like on conversation 9 on YT, is brilliant.

Jim Glover

I wonder what the relationship between the looking, 'the fear' and cognitive behavioural therapy could be? I have thought about going to see a therapist to help me break out of my social fears. Also, I've been thinking lately how I am more broken than most people I've met on these forums as I don't feel like I've made any progression at all really. I'm silent in the company of others. The drugs and booze last year gave me some relief, however, I am back to square one.

Sure there will be some interesting ideas. How would it relate to the focused attention? I like to think once certain beliefs change in the brain of a 'looker' they will be changed forever. Maybe im just hopeful.

The relationship is that all psychotherapeutic treatments recommended by the professionals are invented, tested and applied within a context of fear. Will they work for you? I don't know, but keep in mind what we are looking at here is a life from a point of view that the professionals can't possibly understand. Personally I can see value in talking to a therapist, for the sake of conversation, but I wouldn't allow myself to rely on anything other than my own experience to guide me, ultimately.

I can second that once a belief is dispelled for a "looker" it is dispelled for good, that's my experience. We talked about it before, but I'll just ask straight up anyway, are you doing the SDA exercise? Cause it's when I put all my eggs in that basked, instead of looking around for a better option trying this and that, that things really started happening fast for me.

All the best

Hey Jim. I'm sorry things haven't turned a corner for you, but I continue to believe they will. I don't know if I was more broken than you, or if anyone else was for that matter (there are some pretty horrific stories if you dig deep in the forums), but I do know the feeling of thinking my suffering would never end. There were times when I didn't think I could take it anymore and the resulting self loathing compounded the pain.

It did end, although it took time, years, and now I have a very different sense of life. When I am alone or with someone who is free of fear, life seems dense with meaning and I can zero in on details, either sound or visual textures. Time flows and life flows without a notion for being somewhere else or wanting something else and, typically, I'm free of a racing, restless mind. When I am with people, however, this can change and, while I'm not suffering internally, I am picking up their fear, discord, and neurotic vibe. I'm wondering if this happens for you. Alone, pretty chill and in flow, with others and feeling the panic of fear? It's hard to get used to and I have to recharge by being alone more frequently at times.

Hey Jim,

I think many people have social fears, including me. But that's okay. You do not need to bother yourself about it; this feeds the behavior pattern even more. For myself I can say that I do not need to be around people that much; I hang out with those people whose company I enjoy - and these are really very few - and I need not force myself to feel comfortable with people I don't want to be with. The recovery is a wild kind of ride of ups and downs even if you try to hold on to one thing it'll eventually make way for something else. You can be certain of that! Peace

Jim, I recently watched the video by Tej, which I thought was very good and thorough, and it took me back to my recovery which was long and arduous like his. He described his social anxiety well. How he was incredibly nervous in meetings, etc. I remembered that I was terrified in meetings and when ever I had to speak in public. I almost couldn't do it. I would have something like a panic attack, my heart in my throat, and voice barely a whisper it shook so much. This feeling of intense anxiety was only an elevation of the everyday normal anxiety I felt constantly. Like Tej, my recovery took a long time, perhaps because of serious pain during childhood, I don't know. Like him, I thought I was going crazy during recovery. I couldn't sleep, thought I was going nuts, thought I was dying by various ways, heart attack, stroke, you name it. My body and mind were in some variation of the 'red zone' at all times. Racing thoughts and adrenaline and cortisol pumping. It was a hellish way to live. Actually, I'm surprised I didn't have a heart attack or stroke.

So yeah, now it's all gone, five years eight months later. My former life seems like another life. I enjoy speaking in public, enjoy meetings, enjoy talking to people, enjoy solving problems, enjoy stressful situations, enjoy my life. I even enjoy the bits of anxiety i feel every now and then. There is nothing else I did which could have accounted for this tremendous change. Nothing. It will pass for you. It will. Hang in there. Do CBT, do the attention exercises, stand on your head, watch Netflix, do whatever you need to do to fill the time until it passes. I agree with John and Tej, and whoever else said it, if it can happen to me, it can happen to anyone. I was a basket case and about as broken as you can get. For some of us it just takes a little more time. Here is the link to Tej's vid, if you haven't seen it. It's excellent.

peace.

Roed, In the context of social anxiety my belief has held very firm that something is wrong. I have managed to change that belief a few times in my life, enough to enjoy life more anyway. and I guess that those techniques are about changing those beliefs and then continually working on it. I'm hoping you are right, once it's really done for me, the belief won't turn up anymore or just won't be able to hold any ground. it will be gone (aw, that sounds too good)

I have actually started to do the attention exercise often when things are quiet, mostly because i never know what else to do with my attention in my free time these days. What to fill the void with but myself? just breathing...

Yes, I know what you mean completely. I have been with some people this year where it was intolerable to be in their neurotic conversations so I just found myself deciding to stay as quiet and calm as possible in their company. Thanks for responding, Jackx

Thank you all for your input here. Very much appreciated smily

thanks, man smily

Jim, I've felt more broken than others as well. You can't be more broken than me (wanna compete? Someone's got to be the top sufferer to win this game...;)

I'm nearing six years into this also and I'm still depressed as heck at times and I still feel helpless and think about death. I can't get things done I feel I need to be doing and I feel just miserable and wasting my life. I don't feel much and hardly any pleasure. And I feel I can't do anything about it. Except SDA which does nothing much on on the spot. I don't seem to make any headway regarding my interest in life and people and things. I started to think about psilocybin for a treatment, but I'd need to look more into it. It seems that there's medical research going on in treating depression with psychedelics like psilocybin. People report becoming more social too, afterwards. It seems to me that this kind of psychoactive substances don't carry any methodology with them and might therefore accommodate our angle more readily than other therapeutic systems. However, I'm a skeptic about this, too. Thoughts about this, anyone?

Maybe psilocybin could lift your mood if you consumed the recommended dose. I recklessly took way more than what's recommended two years ago, plus too much beer and ended up feeling nothing but depression the next day. From experience though, it does seem to change my perspective in the days/weeks that follow though, and my brother reported noticing the beauty of things more after a trip. So, yeh, I don't think there's anything to lose and especially if you took what the professionals recommend.

By the way, I sadly relate to your feelings of helplessness, not getting things done and having hardly any interest in people and life in general. You are definitely not alone, Seppo.

 

This website is operated by
a husband and wife team through
the Just One Look Foundation