Change your mind, and you change your world.
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Makes sense to me! by Tobias 6 days ago
I've got some emails about my games from someone who's clearly mentally ill. They're... definitely something. (Quote: "All filthy conduct, fornication and ''intimacy'', in thought, word, desire or deed, flings the soul into a sewer beneath every low beast.") Makes me think though about how everyone's thoughts make perfect sense to them, even the severely delusional. If my thoughts were bizarre, would I even know it? Also, loneliness. That's fun.
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New Year's Resolutions 2017 by Tobias 2 weeks ago
Here's my list of resolutions for this year. Or I suppose they're more like goals rather than habit changes; I doubt that vague things like 'get fitter' or 'study better' would be worth adding since they're hard to assess and even harder to maintain for long periods. They tend to come in waves and spurts. So yes, these are what I hope to be able to say "yes, I did that!" about by the end of the year:
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2016 is dead!! by Tobias 2 weeks ago
As the world outside explodes in celebration, and people surely bond with and appreciate their many loved ones and all that, I'm here alone in the quiet of this little room, as always. I don't actually mind though, at least not at the moment; I've been keeping frantically, giddily busy recently with something inane and rather selfish that I'll talk about in another post. For now, I'd like to review last year's resolutions; I'll write new ones in a separate post.
I haven't updated this thing in a while. I'm not dead. Yet. Though I still often feel as if I'd rather be, or if I already am in some sense. I mourn the apparent death of my once vibrant and fulfilling creativity in particular. A shame about that. Anyway, in the last few weeks I've been depressed - as usual - though I've also had enough tastes of actual happiness to motivate me to seek out paths to a better place. I feel I've also come to some realisations about the root of most of my psychological problems. Now that I've finished the rather draining academic assignments that have been eating up almost all my time recently, I'd like to write about everything here for my own benefit; it does seem to help to get it all out.
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Egoistic Relative Deprivation by Tobias 2 months ago
The last couple of days were - for the first time in a long time - actually nice; I felt as if life were worth living, and the thought of ending it didn't enter my mind at all. It's because I made a conscious decision to shift my thoughts from sulking about receiving insufficient love, to giving love unconditionally for its own sake. The difference in the way I and the world felt was astounding; I felt as if the problem had been solved, the way to happiness revealed. Sadly, I seem to be slipping off that path again already...
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Immutability? by Tobias 2 months ago
Can we ever truly change, I wonder? I notice a pattern repeating; it feels as if I'm losing my only friend for exactly the same reasons that I lost my girlfriend, when I had one all those years ago, despite spending years telling myself I'd learn and grow from my mistakes and become a better person. I'd still like to think that's possible, but it's a disheartening position to be in, feeling from observations of yourself that perhaps you're just beyond repair...
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Student Social Comparison Survey by Tobias 2 months ago
I'm surrounded by thousands of people here at university, but I spend most of my time alone, frustrated at my lack of connections. But I don't know how to form new ones. I keep wondering how many people are in the same position... so I wrote a survey to find out. I'd like to know what you think of it, if you read this!
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Longing for Bonds, Peace, Death by Tobias 3 months ago
I haven't updated this in a while. I've returned to university, and I arrived with hope that things might get better for me... They haven't. I've been trying to write this post for days, but it's been difficult to turn my scattered thoughts into writing. Here's another attempt...
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Caricatures, Sort Of by Tobias 4 months ago
What I find most interesting about art is that it allows us to see another's subjective view of the world; I've talked about this a bunch of times before. So I prefer stylised works such as caricatures over photorealism (why paint what a camera could produce?). Extreme caricatures aren't the direction I want to take my own art in, though I do like the idea of exaggerating features to capture the 'essence' of an appearance rather than just its literal, objective features.
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Summer's End by Tobias 4 months ago
I'll be returning to university tomorrow, and there's a lot on my mind. Specifically about personal growth; to what degree it's possible for me, whether it's more visible to others than oneself. I'm going to ramble in a stream-of-consciousness manner in this post, partly so then I can sort through my thoughts, and partly because I'll personally find it interesting to compare the weather of my mind at this point in my life with how it might be in a few months' time.
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Autistic Scientists vs Moody Artists by Tobias 4 months ago
I was recently wondering whether I had autism, as I feel out of place, think oddly, and struggle socially, but some reading suggests that perhaps that's just because I'm a moody artist.
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The Nocebo Effect by Tobias 4 months ago
My previously asymptomatic brain tumour is now symptomatic, after having a conversation about it with the neurologist and dwelling on it without distraction for days. I strongly suspect psychosomatic symptoms rather than literal, physiological growth of the tumour manifesting 'real' symptoms, yet having that belief on the conscious surface of my mind apparently isn't enough to dispel the worrying sensations.
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You Matter, I Don't by Tobias 4 months ago
I've been reading a lot recently, and many signposts seem to converge on the same path: in order to escape my sorrows, I should kill my Self.
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Relief! by Tobias 5 months ago
After weeks of waiting, depressed and hopeless, bracing myself to hear that my brain tumour would mean the end of my life as I know it in some way or another, I've finally found out what's going on with it and... well, it's a relief! It's not great news, as such, but it's better than the worst-case-scenarios I've been envisioning for ages.
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Metamorphosis? by Tobias 5 months ago
I went to the hospital today to talk about the test results of the biopsy on my brain tumour... though my mind's been elsewhere lately. Can I change what I am? Do I even want to?
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The Death Throes Of All Things by Tobias 5 months ago
I was amusing myself to the point of tears last night by altering the speed of music. Oh, the silly things that make me laugh.
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Poking Mongo by Tobias 5 months ago
Have you heard of Pokemon GO? I doubt it; it's quite obscure. By sheer chance, though, I've managed to stumble upon it, and - in a continuing effort to distract myself from the darker things in my life at the moment - I've been poking ∞ Mongo ∞ a bit recently, and would like to ramble a bit about it.
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Perception of Bodily Proportions by Tobias 6 months ago
I'm trying to distract myself from my brain by working on games, as that's really all I've known for the past few years. Uncertain of which of my various projects to direct my attention towards, I found myself drawn to one called Cultivate, where you design and look after little humans whose variable appearances are generated purely by code. While I should be adding features in order to make it into a playable game, instead I seem to spend an awful lot of time just looking at the people it randomly generates, thinking a lot about attractiveness and how we stylise our bodies in art. How drastically skewed proportions still register as human, how we're drawn not to realism, but to that which surpasses it...
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Respective Perspectives by Tobias 6 months ago
I find it interesting how many people envy those whose situation is different to their own, no matter what the respective situations might be... The prince who wants to be a pauper; that kind of thing.
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Egos by Tobias 6 months ago
I'm due to have my sutures removed later today, so I'll be able to see the scar on my forehead for the first time. How much hair they shaved off. I'll also be able to wash my hair for the first time in ten days... which I'm looking forward to, since it feels so awful right now. Ten days... Hard to believe it's been that long, really. I think I'm getting better, slowly. But as the visceral novelty of brain surgery and hospitals loses its edge and fades into memory (though not as much as I might like; the daily physical reminders are a bugger), the same old negative thoughts begin to seep back in. As such, I'd like to do something I planned to do before all this. I'd like to use this blog to have a dialogue between my conscious self (in the sense that it's the self of which I am conscious; the Freudian ego), and my conscious self (in the sense that it's spiritually 'awakened', as opposed to the 'unconscious' fog of earthly delusions). Could be interesting.
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Home, resting by Tobias 6 months ago
I got home... yesterday? I think it was yesterday? Or maybe the day before? The last week or so has been a blur, mostly. But I'm home now, resting and recovering. Not better - I feel godawful - and I still have potentially bad news waiting for me next week, but for now I'm on a road to recovery. I've been experiencing a lot of bizarre sensations both physical and psychological during the process...
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Hospital People Watching by Tobias 6 months ago
I'm still in the brain hospital. I've talked to more human beings in the couple of days I've been in here than I have the whole rest of the year, probably. It's really interesting how in falling apart, people come together to support those they might not otherwise...
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I survived! by Tobias 6 months ago
I had brain surgery a few hours ago, yet I live!! And still feel like me. Yay. My head feels like there's a knife stuck in it... But I'm in a hospital ward (my first time ever) and nurses are looking after me. Seems the surgery went well... Though it's not all over yet because the tumour might still need treatment. For now, though, phew.
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It's A Tumour by Tobias 6 months ago
I'm currently in hospital, waiting for brain surgery tomorrow. I had a scan today to get a better idea of what might be in my head... I fainted when I was told that it was a tumour.
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Brain Tumour, Pokemon, & Disconnection by Tobias 6 months ago
I'll be spending next week in hospital, having brain surgery for what may very well be a malignant tumour. I'm genuinely not scared at all. I just feel numb, still because my life's so deeply dissatisfying that I feel I have so little to lose.
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Brain's Breaking by Tobias 6 months ago
I wrote in a (surprisingly) ∞ recent post ∞ about how I'd travelled for hours on trains to see a neurology specialist who, despite not having seen my brain scans, just dismissed me as a hypochondriac... I got a phone call from that neurology hospital just now telling me to expect another appointment soon; it seems he actually got and looked at my scans finally and changed his mind about there being nothing to worry about.
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Terrible Time by Tobias 6 months ago
I think too much about all the wasted opportunities of my past, and the bleakness of my future. This isn't wise! But it's so alluring when your present's so empty, and when society has so many time-bound milestones you're expected to achieve. How much am I too old for already?
I've been simmering with frustration since yesterday about the feeling that what the world wants is not what I am. The feeling of being trapped by conditioning, genetics, preferences, fears. Though I originally started this blog in order to challenge my own negative, irrational thoughts by doing research about how best to overcome such things, I'm in such a foul mood right now that I just want to write out some snarling, ineffectual rant about what's bothering me, just to vomit it out somewhere so then it'll stop swirling around in my mind and I can focus on other things. Maybe it's not a good idea. But I'll do it anyway.
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The Impotent Prisoner by Tobias 7 months ago
I feel as if the 'me' that roams around and interacts in the real world is a completely different person to the 'me' that hides in my room alone for the entirety of almost every day. Getting out and being active gives me a kind of confidence and cheer that's absent when I'm stuck entirely in my mind. I just wish I had a chance to be that me more often! I did on Monday, though the 'imprisoned' me has prevented me from writing about it until now. I also went to sit outside in public and the sun just so then I could overcome certain fears and read some emails I referred to in the previous post...
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Sleeping, Eating, Monkeys by Tobias 7 months ago
I'm not happy with my life at all. There's just so much I want to change! Often I think about all this with a sigh, depressed, hopeless about the mountain I feel I have to leap over, but I've just been lying in bed going over similar thoughts in a more motivated, hopeful way. I'd like to make use of this mood to write - for my own personal benefit - a raw train of thought about the changes I'd like to make.
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Talent Pools by Tobias 7 months ago
So much of 'success' in life is about being in the right place at the right time and knowing the right people... You could have tons of skill or 'talent', but it usually requires the right nurturing environment - and the contributions of other similarly skilled people - in order to be used to create something amazing. But where do you even find people whose skills are on the same level as your own?
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Social Hallucinations by Tobias 7 months ago
A number of comments from both friends and strangers recently have made me particularly aware that my thoughts are especially irrational. This is a huge concern, since it's not like anyone chooses to think irrationally. In their minds, everything makes sense; it's only when an outside observer comments that they can get an idea of how far their train of thought has strayed from reality.
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Entreating Eternity by Tobias 7 months ago
Those who have faith make requests of their god(s) or the conscious universe in order to get what they want from the world... While I've always thought the idea rather ludicrous, I've recently been wondering whether they're onto something.
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Facing My Face by Tobias 8 months ago
I've been meaning to make a vlog, and after putting it off for ages due to dreading seeing myself on camera (something I normally avoid), I just experimented with it a bit... I just want to get my thoughts off my chest, since it was quite unnerving!
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Struggling by Tobias 8 months ago
I'm currently sitting staring into space, on the verge of tears; moving any muscles feels like a monumental effort. My mind is filled with thoughts of hopelessness, failure and death. In short, I'm struggling. Perhaps writing out my thoughts here will help, difficult though it is to muster the energy to do anything at all.
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Summer Plans by Tobias 8 months ago
As I said in my previous post, I'll be very isolated for the next few months... but rather than seeing it as a stretch of soul-sapping emptiness, I'm trying to see it as a gift of time, which I can spend on various things. I'm going to write about a few of those things here.
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Following a Firefly through the Dark Fog by Tobias 8 months ago
Almost all my time recently has been spent revising for the final exams of the first year of my Psychology university course, though I had my last one today. It's a bittersweet feeling, ending this chapter of my life, but it means that I can finally get around to making all the things I've been wanting to make!
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Flowers by Tobias 9 months ago
Since the world works in mysterious ways, immediately following my ∞ glimpse into oblivion ∞, I randomly saw ∞ this miniseries thing ∞ that dealt with suicide and depression in a way that brought me to tears. Sources call it a dark comedy, or even a sitcom, but I think that's misleading; it's quite intensely emotional and really quite odd. It gave me ideas about how I could use my own creative work to address the issues that are most resonant to me.
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A Glimpse of Oblivion by Tobias 9 months ago
I seriously thought about suicide yesterday. It wasn't just a desire to not be alive; I get that all the time. This was something more potent... My mind shifted into a novel state of dark calm where the idea of ending it all seemed realistic and reasonable; my vision literally seemed to fade half black and all hope disappeared from my heart. I'm feeling better now, but it led to a lot of reflection about the state of my mind and life, and the factors that push people towards this most extreme of solutions to personal problems.
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Neurological Abnormality by Tobias 9 months ago
I had a brain scan, and there's something wrong with my brain.
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On Optimism by Tobias 9 months ago
I have to study positive psychology as part of my university degree, which I don't mind at all since I have an interest in that topic in the same way that someone stuck in a pit would have an interest in a ladder. It's sigh-inducing though reading through lecture slides that talk about how optimists are better at everything and live happier lives, but that optimism emerges from a history of positive experiences. It seems like a vicious cycle; those who are already happy have happier experiences, while those who have had no reason to be happy continue to be miserable.
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Dear Diary... by Tobias 9 months ago
Though I made this site with the intention of writing about various psychological struggles and how they might be overcome, I also planned to use it as a diary of sorts, so I'm going to use this post to basically just ramble about recent personal stuff for the sake of catharsis!
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Procrastination! by Tobias 9 months ago
I've been really struggling with procrastination recently. Funnily enough, one of the things I've been putting off is a research report I have to write about procrastination. I've started on it now, though, and I've learned some interesting things that I thought I might as well write about here.
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Anomalisa by Tobias 9 months ago
While searching for a random film to watch last night, one I'd never seen or even heard of before, I stumbled upon Anomalisa, which seemed like the sort of thing I'd not usually watch but which intrigued me as it was animated. Turns out it contained a surprising amount of explicit puppet sex! But it also resonated with me quite deeply as it explored themes of alienation and isolation. It's the sort of film that'll likely stay with me for longer than most Hollywood blockbusters do, and the sort of art that I wish I could make myself; a true inspiration.
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Breaking My Chains by Tobias 9 months ago
Firstly, I'd like to say that I've been really impressed by the comments here so far! Well, with a couple of deliberately malicious exceptions, but I'm trying not to think about those. There's a lot of thought, depth, insight and compassion in them, and I'm glad to have attracted the attention of people such as yourselves. I'd like to talk about a tangled mess of things in this post, though I'll try to use subheadings this time!
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Soothing Sorrow by Tobias 10 months ago
I've been through a lot of heartache recently, and I've been trying to channel my own sorrow towards helping others. Strangers, mostly, on sites and apps that allow you to anonymously connect with people as a venter or listener. I've tried both roles myself, and it's led to a lot of thought about what actually helps other people who turn to others to soothe their aching hearts.
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From Up on Poppy Hill by Tobias 10 months ago
I just watched the anime film From Up on Poppy Hill, by Studio Ghibli, and I'd like to write a bit about what it made me think about love, longing, family, tradition and such!
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How are you, me? by Tobias 10 months ago
Losing my mind might not be such a bad thing, being the burden that it often is, but I don't feel I've got to that point just yet. One of the reasons I think I still have at least a tenuous grasp on my sanity is because I don't talk to myself out loud yet... But could it be that I should? I've been thinking and reading about this, and it does seem that talking aloud to yourself can have certain psychological benefits.
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Taming the Mind by Tobias 10 months ago
"Wherever you go, you are there". Regardless of what you do or don't have in the world, you always have your thoughts, and those thoughts can mean the difference between heavenly contentment and hellish dissatisfaction. Happiness isn't about what you have; it's about how you think. The mind is like a beast within, and if you don't make efforts to control it - to tame it - then it will control you. Or so I've heard. But I wonder...