MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES: WHY IT’S SO EMBARRASSING

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“The battle is real.”


In the United States, millions of people suffer from mental health issues in this country. And the reasons for these issues are very broad and wide. The only issues that I can speak about directly are my own. That’s right, I have dealt with issues concerning mental health for the greater portion of my life. And the issues have been anxiety, depression, and a slight case of bipolar. The majority of it is anxiety with the depression coming soon after. So if I had to break down my internal issues, it would be 70% anxiety, 20% depression, and 10% bipolar. Some stuff is in my head and can be dealt with, while others will never go away. And what’s interesting is that, that internal anxiety that stems from fears have made me more urgent in life. But why would a person like me, as smart, kind, thoughtful, become the three categories?

Well, for starters, it comes from a lack of interest in what everyone else in your peer group is doing. We might see that sometimes as a good thing in life, but it can be bad as well. When you begin to lose interest in the activities of your age group, you feel uncomfortable. Why? Well, when you can’t connect to people your age, you begin to isolate yourself from the group. The conversations that they have and what triggers in you, makes you feel weird. They all are talking about going to the movies or a music festival. But you have no interest in any of the age appropriate fun. And the activities that do spark interest in you, is so past the other kids your age. I never dated also because thinking about dating was more interesting than actually dating. So I lost my virginity late in life as well.

And that lack of interest and inability to connect makes you depressed. Because you are considered weird by your peers. Yet it wasn’t until I became an adult I realized that I was not weird, I just thought in regards to things past my age group. All the other young people my age want to go to SXSW, Coachella, or Lollapalooza; I am trying to become a great writer and academic. Then it hit me, there are plenty of people my age who think the same way as myself. Plenty of people who have become introverts because we see things as it pertains to the world that takes us out of our age group. When your peers are trying to figure out what nightclub to go to on the weekend, you’re trying to gain intellectual capital to catapult yourself into success. Your lack of interest in one area, heightens your awareness in other areas, giving you the ability to think in a way most your age don’t. You view the world a lot more wide and broad, and not as myopic.

In the end, my brain has grown as it pertains to the way I see the world socially, politically, and economically. And I’m not referring to a one sided view. Perspective, a perspective that allows me to see the world from others viewpoint that I would normally not agree with. I walk the streets and observe humanity in our natural element and gain my insights into the world through daily interactions. Most people my age are not walking the street people watching as a means to understand the human construct. So my anxiety and depression stems from not connecting because the inability to be interested in anything my age group is interested in, yet I don’t want to be around people much older. It has taken me 30 years to understand and hopefully as I reach middle age, my life will be want I wanted it to be 20 years prior.


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BRINGING YOU TO THE EDGE: WHY AS MEN WE MUST CHECK OURSELVES

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“Don’t let her make you just as emotional.”


 When we get in arguments as men, we tend to get to the same level of anger as the woman in the argument and it boils over. You are being pulled into this person emotionally, and cannot let that get to you. And the reason is because as men once we get emotional, it becomes how can I hurt this person the most. What can I say to get this person to shut up. Why, well we’re in charge of physicality. And that is not to say that as a woman you are this lesser in society (we know that given you birth our children). But what I will say is that men tend to carry ourselves in a more physical way with our emotions, whereas women are more internal. And what do I mean by men not letting the woman’s anger get to you; this is what I mean.

In any argument, one person is always trying to gain the upper hand over the other person. And with that comes insults that are thrown for what appear to come from deep down inside. And with the person trying to gain the upper hand, you will always have someone say something that they regret. And usually, it is us as men. Why is it us as men? The reason why us as men get to that point because once we reach the boiling point we try to hit you with anything to tear you apart. It’s to crush anything and everything you thought you had inside to give. But it most often result in us stopping before hand. Because that realness in how we feel could cut you deep. Which might ultimately make you out to be worse than the woman you’re arguing with.

Now, men typically say things we feel out of rage when feeling rejected in some sort. So we stoop to a much lower level than the woman to try to make her feel less because we can’t have her. And it has to do with checking our egos. But the other reason is that we hate to lose arguments so we say the worse thing we feel to win. Because in life to men, this battle is a zero sum; there has to be a winner and there has to be a loser. And in the moment of fighting, I have to win and you have to lose. So we will try to bring you down emotionally, to bring ourselves up in the fight. So in the end, we try to win at all cost, or least end the conversation when we want to end it. And once we feel we have lost control, we go to extreme measures to end the conversation. But what we really end of doing is saying something that shows us in a much worse light than the woman.


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KEEP QUIET AND KEEP WORKING: WHY WE PROTECT PEOPLE IN POWER WHO DO WRONG

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“Power can corrupt to be covered up.”


The photo above is of legendary film producer Harvey Weinstein. Weinstein has been in the news over the past week since the allegations of his sexual misconduct over the years emerged. Now that he has been removed the Weinstein Company, the conversations are starting. So many people are now saying that they knew something was up. Actresses are stating to now come out and share their stories. But, how come no one came out sooner? And it has a lot to do with having a position of power. A man like Weinstein is at the top of the heap in the entertainment business. So no one would dare come out and state how they genuinely felt. Only a chosen few have stated how they felt and the rest kept quiet. And now that he is ostracized, it’s in the books that we can all now talk about Harvey. So what is about power that keeps people quiet?

As children, we are raised to be honest and stand-up. Then once we become adults, all the rules go out the door. We find ourselves defending people that we would otherwise never defend. Because it’s easy to say that we are these stand-up people when there is nothing on the line. But in that space and time, it’s harder to go against the grain. And the higher the person sits on the totem pole, the harder it is to talk. So if you work a regular 9-5, and see misconduct you get nervous. But at this level you can anonymously give the name of the person/people involved. On the other hand, when looking at a company the size of Enron, you can understand why it’s a tougher go. But a woman did flip on Enron, yet ever since then, she has been a pariah in the financial sector, even though she is a hero to the masses.

Which is a main reason as well that people don’t talk and protect the ones in power. It’s also because when the time comes to testify, you will be ostracized later on. Why, well because so many people might be conducting the same type of business. So they applaud because they are happy it’s not them getting penalized. And in the end we all keep quiet when we see things happening. Because no one wants to feel the repercussions of being ousted for talking. So keep quiet, and keep your job; then talk if something is ever uncovered. It’s ugly, but that is the harsh reality of living in our society where power reigns supreme.


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POOR MAN’S HUNGER DRIVE: WHY PEOPLE FROM A CERTAIN SOCIOECONOMIC GRIND HARDER THAN OTHERS

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“A thick-skinned path to success is tough for people with soft skin.”


As a young man pursuing my career as a writer, photographer, and filmmaker; I will be going through these up and down periods in my life. But what has prepared me for that was growing up in a poor household. With everything that is a downside of life at the bottom, there is this upside. And that upside is that you have this willingness to succeed that no one else has in life. So many people who aim to succeed leave their parents house and return after college having to move back home. But there are the ones who moving back home is not an option because home is not available anymore. These are the students who take college more serious and work through school rather than indulge in a social life. They realize that there is no backup after college and must be working to attain something.

But what are some other reasons as to why the kids born into a household of substantial means don’t have the true grit as the poor. And it goes back to the adversity. When you watch professional athletes, a lot of the greats have come from these poverty stricken environments. They have all the odds stacked up against them and they fight like their lives depend on it. How many well to do kids fight like their lives depend on it? It’s because they work to succeed, but they have a support system there to aid them. When you don’t have anything, and you are put in a position where you’re forced to be better, then you may ultimately win. It has a lot to do with survival. If you took a person from the upper class and told them to hunt in the safari of Africa for food it would be harder than a homeless man not knowing where his next meal will come from.

In the end, for the reasons above are the main reasons why some people of wealth cut their children off financially. Because they want their children to know how to face adversity. What if the family fortune is lost for some reason or another. Then what you’ll have is a self-destruct kid. They have never known what it was like to hustle in life. Now they have to do something and don’t know where to start. So you must throw them out into society and make them fend for themselves. If not, then you’ll turn into an enabler and it could ultimately hurt the child in the end.


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YOUR VISION NOT ANYONE ELSE’S: WHY THEY DON’T BELIEVE IN YOU

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“Don’t expect them to believe in you.”


Someone I work with today was informing me that they have had enough and it was time to pursue their purpose. They were about the quite work and embark on their journey to their own personal greatness. It struck me as odd because this was a person who worked a lot, but now they were quitting. But I am embarking on my own journey, and I don’t know what road it will take me down. And that’s when it hit me, I don’t know this person’s inner workings. Maybe they feel that they have it figured out and things are finally making sense inside of their heads. The pieces are starting to come together and everything is working out for the best. But what is it about the people who don’t see your vision? They can not see you past what you are in the moment, and it takes them longer. Sometimes they never turn around, and only live to see you falter.

The reason being is that they may now have passions of their own, or they might not want to see you above them. If you are working a dead-end job and someone is above you, why would they want to see you prevail in life. They might hate their job just as much as you hate yours, but at least they have the upper hand over you. What happens when you overshoot the runaway of what they expected. Your airplane was never supposed to have made it out of the gate. But you have managed to fly off the runway and into the sky. So much so that you are cruising at altitude while they are still at the terminal watching you soar in the air. And that is when it sinks into their head that they must try to say something, anything to get you to stop working.

Because if they give you the confidence to keep pushing, then what is there out here for them. And that’s when you learn that there are people who look at life in the scope of their failures is your success. If you doing so much and they are not where you are, then what does that say about them. So they have to bring you down a few pegs. But if your life is in so much of a wrecked place, do something about it. Don’t try to bring someone else down because you have not landed on your feet. You are not where you thought you would be by now, so in an attempt to not feel alone, you want to keep them where you are in life. This also falls into the whole crabs in a barrel mentality. You are fine by me, so long as we all are stuck in this one place together. And that’s when you have to make moves to separate yourself.

Because in the end, your personal growth is your growth. It’s not up to you to help another adult figure out their stuff in life. You are responsible for your own problems. So as you pursue your dreams, don’t listen to the crowd noise. Your main goal should be to try to tape into the minds of those that love and respect your vision. You are going to always have adversaries, that’s the nature of the game. Just as long as you meet your expectations, that’s all that truly matters.


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LEVELS: WHAT IS THE REAL MEANING OF A LEAGUE IN DATING

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“Is your league a real league?”


When you’re young, you ever hear someone say that you should date in your league? But once you start to get older, you realize that a lot of the leagues you thought were real leagues are not leagues at all. And that is when you are able to navigate around the a lot of the loud noise that you can’t date someone that society says you are not supposed to date. But what is it? What are real leagues? Because when you are young the league is based around what clothing you’re wearing. Or better yet, how physically attractive you are; from your body type to your facial region. You are also determined by how up to date you are on the latest gadget everyone owns. But then you age and realize the true meaning of a league. And that’s when your mind starts to really open up. So why don’t you see that at your young age?

The reason you don’t know what a league is, is because there is to some degree a lack of self-awareness you have when you are coming through your teens and even your twenties. You’re also not as well traversed about the world around you. A league is much more important than just the article of clothing and your body type, it’s how far you’ve come in life thus far. Where are you in relation to most males and females your age. Now this can be difficult because we all have our individual journeys. But you should still be making some type of stride in the direction you want to head in, in life. And if you are making the appropriate adjustments to being where you want to be, then you are allowed to have a league. And who are those people not allowed to have a league?

Well, the men and women who live at home with their parents, yet they demand that the person they date have their lives together. A woman who works a part-time job who demands her man has a substantial means of income; and man who lacks ambition wanting to not have a woman sitting around doing nothing. We seem to think that we’re all being rational in our relationship pursuits, until you ask the question, where are you in life. When you look over your life so far, are you proud to say that you are where you want to be? And a lot of people can’t say that. So if you are satisfied, then you are of the bunch that are on a collision course with greatness. And that my friend is the definition of a league. Asking for the things in life that you are willing to push for and/or have already that you expect from someone else.

In the end, we look on television, inside of a magazine, or browsing the internet. We look at certain people having a certain lifestyle and we say that is what I want. But instead of saying I will build it myself, or meet someone and we can build each other to that point, we want someone else to give us something. But we come into the situation with nothing, acting as if it is something, and that is our basis for a foundation. Then time pass, and you realize your league was a non-league. Now you must play catch-up in life before you get left behind. And hopefully you have not wasted too much time and you can rebound.


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SOCIALLY AWKWARD SUCCESS: WHY WE VIEW THE INTROVERT AS THE WEIRDO

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“I’m not quiet, I’m just in my head a lot.”


People have always told me that I am an introverted person. As a child I was not, but as time progressed, I became more and more introverted. And it was not due to any traumatic events, it came as a result of being in my head so much. I started to conjure up so many ideas and ways in which I could become successful. Then, then more I got into my head, the more I became detached from so many people. And when I say detached, I don’t mean detached in a way where I have lost my sense of humanity. But I mean detached as it pertains to connecting to so many people in my age demographic. The way in which I started to see the world around me changed as well as my interests. I went from looking at life so much one sided, to now having a more balanced view of the world.

So, then if I am so learned and so well traversed, then why do people think I am so introverted. Well, I am introverted during conversations that are not based in substance. In social situations where people are discussing something that does not pertain to something in depth, it’s tough for me. But when having to explain something that is more in depth, I tend to be comfortable. And it’s unfortunate that you get these labels when you are not as social. But the introvert does play a role in themselves being portrayed a certain way. Because you can’t shy away from people and then ask why do they view you a certain way. Because as we all know, first impressions are very important. And I know me myself, I give off bad first impressions. So if you meet me, you have to be around me for quite a while to develop and understanding of me.

Now what’s interesting is that the introverts are so successful a lot of times. Well, how could that be? The reason being that if you are always in thought, you are generally working out problems in your head. You’re not panicking as much, and you learn to deal with more issues as they come. You also learn to embrace the changes in life because you look at life from such a realistic perspective. So when people see you, and they can’t understand why you are so quiet, little do they know you are probably working out a major issue. And it does not have to be your own personal issue. You could have the key to fixing a problem in our society that no one else has found. Then once you find out, everyone is in shock because they assume you lack knowledge because you’re so quiet. When in reality, your silence keeps you listening, and you’re able to detect problems and fix them quicker.

And in the end, the socially awkward, the misfits, the introverted, the weirdo, the unknown; might ultimately be the true success. You can’t assume that people are not in the moment because they are not talking. They might be more in the moment than you are because their senses are heightened. They hear, taste, see, and touch everything; and can state in grave detail what it is they see.


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