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May 29, 2024 10 mins

What happens when you spend all of your time thinking about your problems? 

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Speaker 1 (00:00):
Yeah, I think we've got it all backwards. It's one
more thing.

Speaker 2 (00:03):
I'm strong and getty, one more thing.

Speaker 1 (00:10):
I don't know if we've ever just played a clip
of another podcast on our podcast. Seems a little weird,
but I came across this. It was floating around social media.
This author, Abigail Schreyer, who's written a bunch of different things,
got a lot of attention. But anyway, this particular aspect,
given my dislike of most therapy and my experiences with

therapy both for me and my family and my kids,
and the many thousands of dollars spent, and how little
good it did, if not more harm, I thought was
really really interesting. So this is from the Joe Rogan
podcast with an author who's written a book about this
sort of thing.

Speaker 2 (00:48):
I never really.

Speaker 3 (00:49):
Considered that, and tell your book. Until I heard the
title of your book and I've read synopsis of it,
I never really considered it. I never considered that thinking
about your problems all the time and talking about your
problems all the time literally make the problems grow.

Speaker 1 (01:05):
That's right.

Speaker 4 (01:05):
I mean it's the number one symptom of depression, is
what they call rumination, This pathological obsessing over your pain. Yeah,
that's why stuff like exercise. That's one of the reasons,
aside from chemical reasons. One of the reasons that doing it.
You know that running errands is good for your mental health.
Getting out of your house and accomplishing anything, yeah, is

good for you. But sitting around talking and thinking about
your problems, that's a bad habit. And the best cognitive
behavioral therapists and others, you know, the dialectical behavioral therapist,
the ones who do really well with depression. The first
thing they do is try to break on that bad pattern.
But a lot of therapists just indulge it.

Speaker 1 (01:46):
Yes, a lot is in practically all of them. What
you do every week is go in and restate your
miserable situation, whatever it is, and talk about it some more,
and then give them a bunch of money and come
back next week and ruminate on it some more. Sometimes
for years at a time.

Speaker 5 (02:04):
Yeah, I was clicking around about this book and other
things and having it come across a piece in the
National Review which talks about this book bad Therapy, Why
kids Aren't growing up With Jonathan Height's brilliant new book,
The Anxious Generation, How the Great Rewiring childhood is causing
an epidemic of mental illness, and it's all of a piece.
It's all just a constant focus on your own mental health.

It sounds revolutionary to say in the modern world, but
just just get stuff done, you'll be happier.

Speaker 6 (02:33):
Yes, Katy, Well, no knock on on therapy, But I'm
thinking about.

Speaker 1 (02:37):
People need to knock on therapy all day long.

Speaker 6 (02:40):
Well, I and I am too. I went through it
and it's just not but it's not for me. There's
good therapy helps lots of people.

Speaker 1 (02:46):
I know people have been helped, but most of it's
crap and a waste of money.

Speaker 7 (02:50):
But I'm thinking about what she said there, and the
people that I know that are actively going to therapy
weekly are my friends that talk the most about their
problems all the time. And I wonder if there's like
an if it carries over, like once you open that threshold,
you just now you just talk about them.

Speaker 1 (03:07):
What's interesting is like the knock on American culture back
in the day was nobody talked about their problems and
kept them inside, and that was supposedly awful, unhealthy. Maybe
it was maybe we just got it wrong with the
pendulum swinging too far the other direction, or maybe that
was the way people are kind of designed to deal

with them. You just try to put them out of
your mind and move on. I don't know, but the
focusing on it and talking about it all the time
doesn't seem to be working for people. It's a great.

Speaker 5 (03:41):
Industry, yes, and sells a hell of a lot of pills.
If I wish I had one one thousandths of a
share of all the money that has been made on
questionable psychiatric pills. That's one of the uh one of
the failures of capitalism, I think, is the nexus between

private equity industry and medicine. It's really perverted the doctor
patient relationship in a lot of unhealthy ways.

Speaker 1 (04:14):
But the talking therapy. You go in and so you
had a bad mom who treated you poorly, and you
go in and you talk about that every week for
decades in some cases. Yeah, I know lots of people
that have done that, and I just why is it
ever going to change?

Speaker 2 (04:31):
Yeah? I just I don't have.

Speaker 5 (04:33):
All I have is my own experience and that of
some people I've known very well who've dealt with similar things.
But number one, I'll tell you from my experience depression
is entirely inward facing. If you can outward face and
interact and accomplish things and look at other people and
their needs and their challenges and their pain, that is
the best cure for depression in the world.

Speaker 2 (04:53):
Getting out of your own head.

Speaker 5 (04:56):
And the second thing that just occurred to me, And
this is an oversimplification, but you know what, Like I'm
always saying, the two things human beings do is underthink
and overthink. And I think this may be one of
those overthinking things in that you remember, we've talked about
what you do, that's your priorities. How you spend your time,

those are your priorities. I don't want you know any
blah blah blah no. What's really important to me is
blah blah blah no. The way you spend your time
and attention is what's important to you. And if you
spend all of your time and attention on your problems,
that is the that's the occupation of your life. And
I've got to believe that all of us have an identity.

I'm the whatever guy, I'm the athlete, I'm the good
looking woman, I'm the go go achiever here at the
car lot or whatever.

Speaker 1 (05:46):
I'm the surly bald guy with RBF right exactly.

Speaker 5 (05:51):
But if your identity becomes I'm the depressed, anxious person.
Everybody knows that about me. They're sympathetic towards me. I'm
taking a pill, Bubba. If that becomes your image, you
can't let your image go. You can't abandon yourself image.

Speaker 1 (06:05):
Yeah, that's a tough one, and I've known that. I
got to make sure that doesn't happen with my son
that just to gets so locked into that identity of
his various problems.

Speaker 2 (06:14):

Speaker 1 (06:15):
I've known people whose identity was I was sexually abused,
and that was it fit into everything of the worldview.
I don't know. There's the Bromide axiom rule, whatever it is.
Focus on your problems and the problems grow. Focus on
the solution, and the solution grows. I've found that to
be pretty damn true.

Speaker 2 (06:36):
Wow. Yeah, that's a good one.

Speaker 5 (06:38):
So a quick excerpt from the book, as Shrier notes,
is helpful to remember that your feelings are at the
center of everything all the time.

Speaker 2 (06:48):
Thing is new, it was not always.

Speaker 5 (06:50):
Thus, she recalls two pieces of advice that parents of
gen xers and of earlier generations would prefer to their
children knock it off and shake it off. The first
didn't over it explain, it credited kids with a common sense,
or nudged them to develop rules, had exceptions and workarounds.
But knock it off single to parent's disinclination to become
entangled in them, and shake it off didn't solve the

worst injuries, but it did a hell of a job
playing triage nurse to kids minor heartaches and injuries, proving
to kids that the hurt, or fear or possibility of
failure need not overwhelm them. I like that, Hey, knock
it off, You'll be fine as a method of triage,
if the purse, if the kid made it clear, infinitely clear,

like convincingly clear, no I'm not okay. Well, that's when
you offer the treatment.

Speaker 2 (07:37):
But if in the huge majority of times, the kid.

Speaker 5 (07:41):
And then they're playing thirty seconds later, that's brilliant triage.
What a great way to put that.

Speaker 6 (07:48):
Oh the amount of times I heard my dad say
walk it off, Kate, Yes, sir, I was kind of
I would flop every now and then. Paul Lebron on
the basketball court, he could tell when I was actually hurt,
and you gotta.

Speaker 2 (08:01):
Throw your arms up.

Speaker 5 (08:02):

Speaker 6 (08:02):
Oh yeah, the theatrics were there, just he wasn't buying it.

Speaker 8 (08:06):

Speaker 1 (08:07):
How about the old world's tiniest violin?

Speaker 2 (08:10):
Do that he's mad?

Speaker 6 (08:11):
That's a classic.

Speaker 1 (08:13):
He plays that a lot too.

Speaker 2 (08:15):
That's a classic. You know.

Speaker 5 (08:17):
Part of it, I think, and you know me, I
believe that balance in all things. We need men and
women and compassion and order, and it's got to be
in the right mix. I just think we've become so
feminized as a society. The doting mom who falls to
her knees as the kid is skinned his knee.

Speaker 2 (08:34):
You, oh, my honey, being my own own it's okay.

Speaker 5 (08:38):
Oh, that's become like eighty percent of American life. And
the dad says that it'll be fine, or splash a
little water on it, go play, you'll be great. That
is now so completely out of fashion. We're making our
kids nuts. It's seeing the message you don't have to
be afraid, this will be fine.

Speaker 2 (08:57):
That's great. That's a gift.

Speaker 5 (08:59):
That's not that, And it's portrayed as like being cold
hearted me yeah, or mean or unsympathetic. No, that's a
gift you're giving the kid. Hey, you're afraid. I can
tell you don't have to be.

Speaker 2 (09:11):

Speaker 1 (09:12):
I've had the experience many times in my life with
my parents, with coaches, whatever, where some teachers something happened
and and basically they say I get over it or whatever,
and then you just kind of think, well, I guess
nobody cares, so I guess I'll get over it now.

Speaker 5 (09:27):
I remember the summer I was working on a farm
and I lost both my arms and the thresher r
and my dad yelled at me get back to work.
Must have been difficult, I pointed out, Then I have
no arms, and he listened, you're, oh, man.

Speaker 8 (09:50):
True story is true story, pe teacher. So we're out
there running and some of us started complaining to him,
and you know, we're getting cramps, we're hurting, and he
has sick already, puffs the cigarette and goes, just keep running,
just keep running.

Speaker 1 (10:03):
There you go, Huh, it's a different era, different.

Speaker 2 (10:07):
Soaking down a long, long dart. Huh yeah, tells us
to keep on running.

Speaker 8 (10:12):
Well, I guess that's it.
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