Why keeping yourself busy never treats depression

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Feeling bad? Just keep yourself busy!

Whether its depression or a serious breakup you won't spend a lot of time searching before you come across the keep yourself busy advice.

The problem with the personal development field is that so many people repeat what others say just to fill their blogs with new posts. The fact you should be aware of is that so many of those common advice are actually scientifically incorrect and even harmful in some cases.

In order to understand why keeping yourself busy might not be a good idea when it comes to depression or breakups you should get an idea about the way your mind works and the reason you experience certain unwanted emotions.

How Unconscious thoughts can make you feel worse

Lets suppose you were so busy talking to someone on the phone that you were totally unaware of your surroundings and in the same moment a friend of yours came to borrow 10 dollars from you.

In such a case your friend will keep trying to draw your attention but after few failed attempts he might just take the money from your wallet and leave. Now when you realize what happened, maybe in few hours, you might actually feel bad.

Unconscious emotions work the same exact way. When you don't become aware of the negative thoughts flying in your brain they just accumulate in your subconscious mind and hurt you later.

So while you think you are keeping yourself busy your subconscious mind is actually working in the background and piling up the negative thoughts to form horrible emotions.

But i am already busy, where do the negative thoughts come from?

You might wonder, how do negative thoughts visit your brain if you are already busy?
We experience negative thoughts when we come across certain triggers in our external enviroment. (see also Where do emotions come from)

Lets suppose you had kidney problems and was asked not to drink anymore. Now whenever you see someone drinking you will remember your problem and might feel bad.

In such a case if your mind wasn't busy then you might have the chance to calm your subconscious mind, give promises that you will stick to the treatment routine or use self assuring self talk. (see also Where do automatic negative thoughts come from)

Now what if your mind was busy? The negative emotions will just accumulate at the back of your mind and change your mood. This is also one of the popular reasons why you experience mood swings that you can't understand.

In my book, The ultimate guide to getting over depression i said that when you become unaware of the triggers that change your mood on the unconscious level you will experience mood swings that seem to happen for no reason.

Why ignoring your emotions is a horrible idea

In my previous articles i explained how your mind uses emotions to alert you of your existing problems so that you take a positive step and start dealing with them. Now what do you think will happen if you ignored the message and kept yourself busy?

Its the same thing that would happen if you saw your house burning then tried to keep yourself busy not to feel bad!

When you ignore an emotion it becomes stronger. After all your mind wants nothing but to see you starting on a soloution and that's why emotions intensify when you give your back to them.

Keeping yourself busy might not be a good idea in many cases since the plans needed to end your problems always require your conscious presence. The best way to solve a problem is to face it not to give your back to it.

The book The ultimate guide to getting over depression was released by 2knowmself, the book provides a 100% guarantee for feeling better else you will be refunded. 2knowmysef is not a complicated medical website nor a boring online encyclopedia but rather a place where you will find simple, to the point and effective information that is backed by psychology and presented in a simple way that you can understand and apply. If you think that this is some kind of marketing hype then see what other visitors say about 2knowmyself.

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