Sunday, August 4, 2013

General Apathy

I was reading the introductory paragraph to my blog this morning and saw that I used the word general apathy.  I often tell my clients that wanting life to be exciting and an adventure all of the time is unrealistic and often thrill seeking is an addiction.  However, this morning I ran across an article on my Face Book (you can follow me there at by Andrea Balt written on July 31, 2013.  It was her 30th birthday and the title of the article is, 30 Questions to Ask Yourself Before You Die.  It was published on if you want to find the entire article.   I found her article to be very thoughtful, so much so that I wanted to use it on my blog to help you deal with general apathy.  It is so easy to fall  into apathy that often times we find ourselves living in it rather than visiting it from time to time.
The first three questions real like this:  How much have you loved?  What do you love doing that you are not doing? What person or type of person would you choose as a life companion?

Perhaps the first question answers the third question.  Le's talk about how much have you loved?   What type of person are you?  Are you generous with your love or do you withhold love until other people prove their love?  What is love? What is the difference between love and compassion?  It is interesting that one question leads to several other questions.  And perhaps one answer to waking up from apathy is to keep asking yourself questions and let the answers evolve from within.  For instance,  if you have never really loved then you live in a protective shell that keeps you from sharing your self with others.  In affect psychology we call often call that protective shell,  shame.  Shame is a biological system within that gets triggered easily and then interrupts our positive experiences and our positive actions.  As a result, shame hinders us from loving ourselves and others.  Yes, that is not a typo nor incorrect grammar,  we have many selves.  That is why our lives are very complex and in that complexity it is often hard to get ourselves to work together in our best interest.

Which part of you is preventing you from loving enough?  If you have loved then you have been hurt by love because the two go hand in hand.  You cannot love and expect never to be hurt.  The people we love are the ones closest to us and thus the ones that are capable of doing the most hurt.   You can think of love as a boot camp for personal growth.  The more you love the more opportunity avails itself for you to be hurt, but the flip side o that is the more opportunity for you to be thrilled with the companionship of life full of a significant other, friends, family, and colleagues who truly do love you and you love them.  It is hard to remain apathetic when you love.  Also, realize love is more than a feeling, it is a choice.  We choose to love and we choose who we love.  Love may feel like something that happens and then you may falsely assume that when you don't feel that "love" anymore you are no longer in love.  Loving and being in love are dances to the same song.  Sometimes you don't feel it but you choose it and other times you do feel it and can't imagine not feeling this way.  

So, the first question, "how much have you loved?"  is worthy of true introspection and a few more blogs on the topic.  Until next time, pledge to love enough and see how it changes your daily life.  Dr. D.