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Is it me? Am I the drama?

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Is it me? Am I the drama?

“Is it me? Am I the drama?”

Our mind is a trickster. It tends to view life through a certain lens, but that lens can be tainted by the feelings we are experiencing. This in turn impacts our actions; leading to the phrase: “a self-fulfilling prophecy”. What does your lens look like? If you have experienced a depressive episode in your life, you might identify with the lens of “I’m the problem” or “It’s about me” whether you are aware of it or not. A boss dismisses your idea at a work meeting. A friend seems snippy in a text exchange. A partner sighs heavily when you ask them to take out the trash. These in themselves are small interactions, but our lens can heavily impact how they affect us, our mood, our thoughts, and behaviors. A common cognitive distortion that we turn to is Personalization. We take on personal responsibility for other’s actions or interpreted feelings. Our boss dismissed our idea because they don’t like us. A friend seems snippy because we’re annoying them. A partner sighed because they feel you’re overbearing. There are other hypotheses for these scenarios, however. A boss is under stress from outside sources and feels rushed to get thru a meeting. A friend is in an argument with their partner at the time of responding to your text. A partner may be frustrated with themselves,s as they forgot to do so earlier (we can always hope right?). Regardless, the world does not revolve around you. Not everything that happens is because of you. Depression causes our lens and focus to turn in on ourselves, and not in a positive way. This can have a devastating effect on relationships. When we assume other’s intent or inner dialogue, especially when we’re already in a negative space, we can act negatively and contribute towards a downward spiral in the relationship. You may shut down with your boss and they may notice your disengagement at work and pass you over for a promotion. You may stop texting you friend as often or responding to them and they begin to feel hurt due to your distance. You may launch into a whole speech with a partner about how you are not asking for “too much” with the garbage and it’s “time they pulled their weight around here”, which leads to an unproductive argument. It’s important to express feelings, but equally important to ask clarifying questions out of curiosity for more information to determine whether your feelings are based off of an assumption. Whether you’re in the midst of a depressive episode or find yourself in more of a negative mindset from time to time, consider investing time or mental energy in finding a counseling space to explore this further.


by Olivia Espinosa

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