Category Archives: Tackling Depression The Same Way I Tackle Computer Games

Tackling Depression The Same Way I Tackle Computer Games – Part 3.

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Tackling Depression The Same Way I Tackle Computer Games – Part 3.

So, I am coming to the end of this idea as I am running out of ideas. I hope it has helped someone, or made people smile at least. So, here are three more ways that ideas from computer games can help tackle depression.

Use Gadgets.

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Much like Batman and his trusty Bat-Belt, which is helping me through the next hardest instance of Batman: Arkham Origins there are a few gadgets out there that can help ease you through a depressive period. You can also use gadgets that are not intended for the purpose of fighting depression in different ways.

One thing I did was set reminders on my phone to give me a little pick me up and boost general confidence. I would set a little message to pop up in a few days to cheer myself up. I have a rubbish memory so I often forgot about them by the time I got them. My usual message was ‘Dear David. You Rock! Lots of love, David.’ I would read them and think ‘Aw, that was nice of me.’

There are a host of relaxation or mediation apps out there and some very good ones can be had for free. I really like Dr Monica Frank, but there are enough that you can pick and choose. Ten minutes of relaxation can really take the stress out of a day and help you deal with situations more calmly.

Finally, chart your depression on your phone. I recorded when depression would hit and if there was anything obvious that led to it or made it worse. from this, I was able to learn that there were certain triggers that I could later either be ready for and expect or avoid altogether.

Solving Puzzles.

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Now, the last idea segued into this idea so neatly, it was almost like I planned it. If you, like me, have spent a lot of time trying to figure out dastardly clever puzzles from the Resident Evil games, you know how vexing they can be. Yet, the pride in solving them without using the internet is immense. Once you have charted your depression, you can start trying to figure out the puzzle of depression. Or try to. As with many of my ideas, I believe there is a certain strength that can be found when you actively try and take control of depression. It may not work at first, or at all, but it feels good to be on the front foot and try and beat it, rather than letting it have it all its own way. Look for links to what makes you down, think how you can make your life easier. Each person’s depression is unique to them, so you will have to do the ground work. I believe it will be helpful when you do.

Ask The Village Elders For Advice on Your Quest. 

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Invariably in an RPG, I will get lost or plain forget what it is that I am doing. I need advice. Who to go to? Easy, there is always a village elder who can give some advice, even if it is needlessly cryptic, about how to get past the next challenge of my quest. I personally believe that talking to a therapist is a great way to ask for help in tackling your depression. They can guide you past the choppy waters. Also, asking your friends for help can be comforting. I asked my friend the other day if he ever got angry for no reason and then angrier for getting angry for no reason? He said ‘Of course.’ It easy to think that what you think is crazy and no-one else feels the same. Simply by asking a question, it can be a relief to find out that you are far from the only person who thinks a certain way. It really can help alleviate the loneliness of feeling no-one can help you or advise you. There is a comfort in simply sharing your fears; once you get over the fear of talking about it at all.

If you have any of your own ideas on how computer games can help tackle depression, then please feel free to share and comment.

Take care buddies,

David.

Tackling Depression The Same Way I Tackle Computer Games – Part 2.

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Tackling Depression The Same Way I Tackle Computer Games – Part 2.

So, I have had a few more ideas about this. I say a few, I mean a lot. I will share a few today and more in the days to come.

Get A Companion.

In World of Warcraft, you can get a host of companions to travel by your side. My favourite was Mr Pinchy because it was the same as the lobster Homer Simpson had for a pet before eating him. So, in real life, get a pet. A pet can help improve mild and moderate depression. I have two pet Degus (Chilean ground squirrels) and when I am feeling a little down, I go over and teach them to high five me,or as I call it, ‘Paw on Paw.’ It does make me feel happier. The good thing about a pet is that I find easier to be down in front of a pet than my girlfriend or my friends. I don’t feel the same level of social embarrassment. Besides, as long as I am feeding them they don’t seem to mind either way. I will one day get a dog, and that will be the best.

Clean Out Your Inventory.

Again with World of Warcraft, you always hit a stage where you are miles from anywhere and all your bags are full. I ended up trashing grey items to make space rather than running back to the nearest town. The days before they gave you a mount at low levels were a bugger. So, today, I did a good old clean of my flat. I find it is soothing for me to clean and helps me clear space in my flat and more importantly, space in my head. It is a kind of mental de-cluttering. Give it a go. Throw out old clothes. Treat yourself to some new ones. If you, like me, have little money, charity shops are for the win.

Rethink The Encounter.

Rather than repeatedly run at Bane when he is super-charged with Venom when playing as Batman in Arkham Origins, I perhaps should have considered a different tactic. As he was constantly punches me to death, then just perhaps, it is worth avoiding him. If something is not working for you in real life, reconsider how you are doing it. I was on anti-depressants for ages that were making me so much worse. It took me a long time even realise that I could say to my doctor ‘I don’t think these are working for me.’ I mean, he was the doctor and was just this depressed person. Who was I to question him? The answer is I was the one on the medication and I was the one who knew exactly how they were not helping me. The doctor even said ‘Sometimes it is a lottery to find the right tablets that work for each individual.’

More advice to come in due course.

Take care buddies,

David.

Tackling Depression The Same Way I Tackle Computer Games.

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Tackling Depression The Same Way I Tackle Computer Games.

I have had this idea rattling around my head for a while. My brain has recently become quiet enough for me to hear it. What if I tried to tackle my depression the same way I play computer games? Now, this is meant to be a light-hearted look at depression. I hope it also has some useful ideas that might help someone. I in no way mean to demean anyone’s depression or how anyone deals with it. These are merely my thoughts.

I woke up this morning thinking about how to beat Bane on Batman: Arkham Origins. I was getting my sweet derriere kicked by him last night and I thought I needed to change my tactics up a bit. So, if I thought about how to beat a game this much, why not put the same effort into dealing with depression and use similar tactics? This was when a post I wrote a while ago called ‘Max Payne 3 and Beating Levels of Depression.’ This is the link in case you are interested – https://davidmbeecroft.wordpress.com/2014/08/02/max-payne-3-and-beating-of-levels-of-depression/

In it I wrote about how the game made me think of ways of fighting back against depression. Now I have thought about it more, I think computer games in general offer some good advice to deal with feeling down. I shall explore some of my ideas as follows in the upcoming posts. This one will be about…

Buff Your Hero/Nerf Your Enemy.

So, we have all played games where you need to boost your hero so it can defeat the enemy. Well, I am presuming most people attracted to this post have played computer games, but if not, you are still welcome. And play some computer games, they are awesome. World of Warcraft comes to mind on this one. Pally buff for the win. Warlock debuff for another win. Yay, win win.

So we know the enemy is depression. Or anything that can lead to it. So, the buff is in itself a debuff for the enemy. Go make that comfort food (mine is macaroni cheese and southern fried chicken) and make yourself feel good. Put on that favourite sweater that brings out the colour of your eyes to radiant effect. Burst bubble wrap. Do whatever puts a smile on your face. You are already ahead of the enemy now. You have buffed yourself nice and good. How do you debuff him further?

Ok, so you have Divine Shield up and you know the enemy is going to attack at some point. How to make those attacks weaker? Knowing that the attack is coming means you can mentally prepare for that shizzle. If you are doing anything when depressed, chances are that you will feel like you won’t achieve it. That’s fine. Acknowledge it is only a feeling caused by depression and that it has no real bearing on the actual outcome. Perceived fear versus actual risk. That in itself weakens the thought. Do that with all thoughts that come from depression. Just say ‘Ok, that’s how you feel, but, I am going to think a different way.’

Buff/Debuff Combo Attack.

You need your hero to be stronger to survive the attacks? No problemo. Train that bad boy up. Go for a walk. Or a run. Or a bike ride. Or learn how to belly dance via youtube. Just get those sweet chemicals in your body going. Exercise makes you feel good. Feeling good means you are less likely to feel down. And you are now super buff to boot. Win win again right? Every positive thing you do for yourself makes the depression that much weaker. And eventually, that which is made weak cannot attack as strongly. Sorry, too many RPG’s I have played. And too many Yoda impressions I have done.

That Which Does Not Kill You Makes You Stronger.

So what is the end game for depression? When you think about it honestly and without wanting to put a nice coat of paint on it, what else can depression want but to see you dead or as close to it as makes no difference? I am not saying that everyone who is depressed feels suicidal, but some people who are depressed commit suicide. I don’t know about you, but that makes me so angry at depression that I want to punch it in its metaphorical face. It also makes me angry enough that I am not letting that son of a bitch depression beat me. In fact, I say, let’s take the war to it. Why sit around and wait for the enemy to attack? Attack first. Get the first blow in. Let it know that you are willing to fight every bit as hard and dirty as it will.

I can’t in all honesty say what happens after that. As I write this, it is real time for me, and I do not know what my future holds. You might read this months later and I have suffered a relapse and I am down again. Or I might be King of the World. Time will tell. I offer advice as much because I need to encourage myself and equally because I hope it helps someone else. If I can save someone the trouble of working out something about their depression that I might have a suggestion for, then I think it is the ultimate win win.

Take care buddies,

David.