The Feeling of Schadenfreude, an experience with the dark side of joy

To better understand this topic, I’m gonna need you to drop the myth that any one emotion is remotely ‘good’ or ‘bad’. Drop it. In the end of the day, all you are left to do is to simply feel them.

However, it all goes without saying that our emotions are indeed complexed. Feeling emotions to later identify what they (really) are and how they came about is the best way to working through it. You must allow your emotions to flow.

Life doesn’t exist in shades of black and white, and this same principle applies to our emotions, too. There are times we may feel sad, which may come off as a generally negative feeling, albeit a normal emotional response to pain, there also exists its darker counterpart, despair.

The same goes for the feelings of anger and hatred.

Love and lust.

Faith and greed.

But what about our happiness? Could a word that sounds as purely innocent as to what it means really have such a negative, extreme aspect? Is our happiness capable of bringing harm to oneself and to others?

Allow me to introduce to you a really cool-sounding German term Schadenfreude, which means “defective joy“. This oxymoron is used when a person’s sense of pleasure is derived from the pain and calamities that befall on others.

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Showing Empathy – Love in its truest form

There is a lot more to having empathy than just putting oneself in someone else’s shoes. You are validating their feelings, too. You are willing to see past their faults, blessings, and problems. You’re seeing them for who they are.

It’s not their vulnerabilities that has gotten your interest, and there is only so much that you can do for them. At times, you may even feel powerless, as you watch them pick themselves up from a distance. After all, life is not without its hardships.

Empathy is more or less like a special, unspoken bond you could have with someone else. It is the basis of compassion; to relate to someone in all their wonder. At that moment, you are being present with them, without the concern for self-interest; and without condition. That sends the right message: “I’ve got you.”

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An Introduction to Schizophrenia

What do you understand ‘Schizophrenia’ to be ?

Do you think of a hypnotic spinning wheel ? A mind-bending pattern of colourful zig-zags ? Whispers in the wind ? Hallucinations of demons ? An inexplicable murderous urge ?

Those can be correct, yet the mental condition in reality is often more subtle.

In media it is often portrayed as an other-wordly experience, affecting our thinking, emotions, and actions. Hence, it is known by experts as a psychotic disorder.

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Venting Frustrations, When Anger Takes Over

Anger. While it is not the easiest emotion to harbour, it is surely among the most tempting to give into. Why is it, that you ask? We feel angry because it helps us to regulate pain.

It is always easier to get angry than to get hurt.

Whenever you feel angry, you must allow the emotion to flow. The best way out of an emotion is to simply feel it.

With that being said, you shouldn’t dwell on the feeling any longer than you have to. The problem when we focus solely on our anger and its triggering events is that it intensifies, and it gets to the point of getting annoying.

This brings us to a whole new other level of anger: frustration. Anger manifests into frustration when we get upset or annoyed by how prolonging we find our situations to be. By dwelling on it, we’ve essentially ingrained the emotion into our subconscious minds.

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The Cognitive Triad: The cycle of depressive thoughts

It is said that there is always an underlying cause for depression. If there exists a cause, there will subsequently be its effect. This is clear in theory, but in practice the cause is a lot harder to discover than the effect. In the case of learned helplessness, the source of the issue is buried deep within the subconscious mind, masking it further.

Here, let us take a detailed look at the American psychiatrist Dr. Aaron T. Beck’s explanation for depression. In his famous theory, he sheds much needed light on how our subconscious thought patterns are at fault for our depressive states.

In this article, I will clarify Dr. Beck’s perspectives and outline the best treatment and management strategies for depression.

Bonus content: At the end of the article, there are some fun trivia about depression, and the career and peers of Dr. Beck.

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The Idea of Learned Helplessness: Understanding a cause of depression

This one goes out to the people at the back. To all those who who struggle in silence but make it out alive against all odds.

Learned helplessness is but one of the causes for depression.

Here, let us take a look at what ‘learned helplessness’ really is and how it affects someone suffering from it. Towards the end of the article I’ll outline the best way of overcoming this way of thinking.

So, stick with me; I’m certain that in one way or another this article will can be of use to every single one of us!

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