Women Living Well Seminar

Mind and Body Connection


Name:  Amy Campbell
Username:  acampbel@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Forum Question for Week 4 Depression/Mood
Date:  2002-04-10 17:22:41
Message Id:  1781
From your experience, how does the range of ones moods affect ones performance -one's ability to live, work and play in a community and what are things that you do to change moods when it is necessary?
Name:  Hedya
Username:  haryani@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Mood
Date:  2002-04-10 20:39:00
Message Id:  1782
For this question, most of my experiences tie again into issues of anxiety, since I have found that to be what impacts my moods the most. In less specific cases, however, I find that being outside/in a light-filled environment puts me in a better mood. There are also times when being around so many people throughout the day can be overwhelming, at which point I can either retreat to my room or to "private" spaces on campus. I find that I deal best with being in a bad mood of whatever sort after I have time to myself to sort things out. Then I can usually resume normal interactions with others.
Name:  Kate Lenahan
Username:  leiaewok@aol.com
Subject:  exercise
Date:  2002-04-10 23:03:20
Message Id:  1784
Exercise has greatly helped my mental health by providing moments of study-free time. Also, I have generally tried to schedule exercise around large blocks of free time when I know I will have the time, but Kate's talk made me realize that I could also fit it in even if I had very little time to spare. I've also found exercise to be easier when it is outside in nice weather.
Name:  Liz Bonovitz
Username:  ebonovit@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Depression/Mood
Date:  2002-04-10 23:06:07
Message Id:  1785
I would definitely say that mood can make a huge difference in people's lives. When I'm in a bad mood, I definitely do not enjoy spending time with people as much as I usually do. I find that for me, I am better able to work and enjoy myself when I'm in a normal/good mood (which, luckily for me is most of the time!). When I'm in a bad mood, I love to sleep or exercise depending on how tired I am. That usually fixes me right up!
Name:  Monica Locsin
Username:  mlocsin@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Depression
Date:  2002-04-11 00:04:32
Message Id:  1788
From your experience, how does the range of ones moods effect ones performance -one's ability to live, work and play in a community and what
are things that you do to change moods when it is necessary?

I definitely have my moods! When I am in a good mood, I am inspired to do better in work or in activities. When I am in a bad mood, I could care less about anything happening around me and I just dont want to talk to anybody. I am generally a happy person and when I am depressed people usually ask me why but I dont like talking about it. I try not to let my bad mood get the best of me so I go out and just walk, have a nice drink or I talk to my boyfriend and best friend and after that everything is better!

Name:  Sherolyn Oh
Username:  soh@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Moods
Date:  2002-04-11 00:11:03
Message Id:  1789
Bad moods and frequent fluctuations in my mood negatively affect my performance in a community. When I'm having a bad day, it's harder for me to focus on my work, be productive, and socialize with others. I just want to hide in my room and be alone. When I'm in a good mood and my moods are stable and constant, it's easier and much more enjoyable to be active in the Bryn Mawr community. Spending time alone and listening to music are things I do to change moods.
Name:  Rabia
Username:  rqureshi@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Moods
Date:  2002-04-11 13:37:32
Message Id:  1793
I thought that the most enlightening thing I heard yesterday was a comment by Professor Grobstein about the way the brain itself regulates moods and behaviors. It was fascinating! I have never heard it explained to me that we are up and down fairly regularly in order to make sense or understand the world around us--which is also up and down fairly regularly. Again, it was quite remarkable to see how our brains function. We are truly blessed to have the ability to think and discern and function on a day-to-day basis. As far as my moods are concerned, I am a deeply observant Muslim and I hope that my actions are a testament to that. As a Muslim, my daily prayers as well as my unrelenting faith in the One God keep me upbeat and optimistic. If however, since I am human, I do get a bit down, I find comfort in hearing the recitation of the Qur'an (Muslim holy book) or simply by taking a walk and enjoying the beautiful world around us. We all experience mood changes and indeed, for me, these changes only testify to the fact that we are a product of our environments and that, as the Professor was saying, perhaps our environments may need reform, not necessarily we ourselves.
Name:  Lelani
Username:  lsanchez@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Mood/Depression
Date:  2002-04-11 18:04:43
Message Id:  1794
I think that I have major mood swings every now and then. I don't really try and change them, but rather try to just let it be. Like if I'm having a bad day, I chalk that up under "Bad Day" rather than trying to force myself to be happy. Sometimes, you just have to allow yourself the discomfort/luxury of being miserable.

But I really think that the quote from the *Unquiet Mind* made more sense then I could ever hope to make.

"I honestly believe that as a result of it I have felt more things, more deeply; had more experiences, more intensely; loved more, and have been more loved; laughed more often for having cried more often; appreciated more the springs, for all the winters... Depressed, I have crawled on my hands and knees in order to get across a room and have done it for month after month. But normal or manic I have run faster, thought faster, and loved faster than most I know."
Kay Redfield Jamison, An Unquiet Mind

Name:  Nicole Pietras
Username:  npietras@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Mood Talk
Date:  2002-04-11 18:29:14
Message Id:  1795
When I am in a good mood, I find that I work better. However, if I am in a bad mood I find that all I want to do is either sleep, watch tv or read a book and I cannot always do that when I have work to do. When I am in a bad mood and it is necessary to do work I usually put on upbeat music and it helps to make me feel better.
Name:  Ana
Username:  asalzber@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Mood
Date:  2002-04-12 10:19:12
Message Id:  1796
I have found that moods are simply a matter of perspective. If I'm not feeling that great, I try to alter my perspective and see things more positively - or at least more objectively.
Name:  ashley
Username:  lgarriga@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  moods
Date:  2002-04-12 13:46:28
Message Id:  1797
When I am in a really poor mood, I can't do my work, I keep to myself, and I pretty much just hibernate in my room. When I am just in a generally bad mood, I will still go out with my friends, but my temper is shortened, I don't participate in conversations, and I kinda space out. When I'm in a good mood, I'm all ready to go out, have fun, and laugh all the time. Now if my friends and I could just get all our moods together on the same day, that would be nicer... I guess I don't really work to "change" my mood. You have to be wanting to change it, and when I'm in a really poor mood, it's just easier to retreat into that and do nothing; there seems to be something comfortable about it. I find that going out with my friends does seem to lighten my mood - someone always says something funny or stupid, and then I have to laugh.
Name:  Kristina Davis
Username:  kdavis
Subject:  depression
Date:  2002-04-12 15:57:00
Message Id:  1798
I find that when I am in a bad mood or depressed, I tend to do my work faster. Although, if I'm anxious then I can't do any work at all. I thought this week's presentation was very interesting because of the multimedia aspects. Professor Grobstein presented depression in a different way than I expected. I had anticipated that we would hear a lecture about linical depression, so it was a refreshing change.
Name:  Meghan Lammie
Username:  meggums@hotmail.com
Subject:  Exercise and Health
Date:  2002-04-12 16:51:39
Message Id:  1799
I know that exercise is a wonderful part of everyday life, which can be incorporated in many different ways. I think that exercise can be anything: from walking long distances (like walking downtown and back) to doing a defined physical activity, like playing a sport, doing an exercise tape, etc. Since life is so busy, however, I try to do little things. Sometimes I take the stairs instead of the elevator, stretch after getting up, and try to maintain a "non-sedentary" mindset. This leads to an awareness of the body, which means, I think, that I can "exercise" anytime of the day, no matter where I am, in order to clear my head, or to concentrate better on what I am doing. And I've found that this increased consciousness has helped me to feel a bit more energetic about life in general.
Name:  Meghan
Username:  meggums@hotmail.com
Subject:  Depression
Date:  2002-04-12 16:59:43
Message Id:  1800
I enjoyed the manner in which Prof. Grobstein presented "depression," in the sense that he made a distinction between the medical model and the bio-neurological model of "mood variation." I would have liked to have seen a little more "clinical" depression explained, however, especially in conjunction with the Headache Seminar presented by Dr.Kerson at the beginning of the semester, and the Anxiety talk given a couple of weeks ago. That said, depression is a very big part of our society, and I think it is something that hits just about everyone at one time or another. When I am depressed, while it's never severe, I definitely feel incapable of doing anything.
Name:  Shanze
Username:  smunir@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  mood disorders
Date:  2002-04-12 22:14:12
Message Id:  1801
From my experience, I think ones mood plays a very important role in ones performance. If I'm in a bad mood, I don't like to work, i don't like talking to or seeing people as they get on my nerve, and I basically think very negatively of life. On the other hand, the reverse is true when i'm in a good mood. To change my mood, I just need to get away from people and things and be alone for awhile or just sleep. Then, hopefully I get into a better mood.
Name:  Shanti Mikkilineni
Username:  smikkili@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  mood
Date:  2002-04-13 14:39:15
Message Id:  1802
Mood can definitley affect my ability to work. If I'm in a bad mood or feeling down then the work seems pointless and it's really hard to force yourself to do anything. When I'm in a good mood, it seems that everything is fun and enjoyable. My mood can determine that manner in which I approach any task. The happier I am, the better is my performance. When I'm in a bad mood, I find that I spend a lot of time focousing on it and thinking about it and in order to change my mood, I need to remove myself from my thoughts and do something. I usually exercise or spend time with my friends and I find that that helps get over my bad mood.
Name:  Elizabeth Marcus
Username:  emarcus@brynmawr.edu
Date:  2002-04-13 15:16:42
Message Id:  1804
For me, my range of mood tends to dictate how porductive I am. For example, if I'm in a great mood, I'm more likely to tackle a paper that seems impossible to write. However, if it's "just one of those days" and I don't feel particualtrily great, it's much more of a challenge to write a paper or do something that I'm not looking forward to. It helps greatly to surround myself with friends and my running shoes. The combination of knowing that there are friends there to run to usually does the trick because they tend to be feeling many of the same things I am. If all else fails, I good run helps fix everything since I'm physcially tired to protest doing the work and my mood gets much better.
Name:  Nana Ama
Username:  nadomboa@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Depression/Moods
Date:  2002-04-14 00:35:16
Message Id:  1805
First of all, I think the lecture was excellent even though it did not follow the trend I expected it to follow. In think it is very healthy for depressed people to think of depression as a "variation" and not an illness. This would help them live and deal with it better which could, in effect, reduce the effect it could have on their performance.
Moods definately affect ones performance and even reduces ones zest for life. When am in a very bad mood (usually for as long as a week), I usually give my self a break. I take time off, leave campus (for instance I go to swart to walk around or to do some work in a different environment), do something different,like go to the movies, go to philly etc. That helps a little bit ... but at least it make a difference.
Name:  Jennings
Username:  amayne@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  mental health
Date:  2002-04-14 13:53:30
Message Id:  1807
I was very excited by the lecture on wendesday. So many of the topics covered were applicable to my life. I am so happy I'm taking this course. It has provided so many useful lectures that relate to my lifestyle.
Name:  aeronwy
Username:  hhuang
Date:  2002-04-15 01:32:17
Message Id:  1810
i think this is a very cyclical thing... how you feel affects your performance, and (this is certainly true of hard-driving bryn mawr students) your performance affects your mood. when someone is nice to you, especially unexpectedly, than you feel better and you are probably then nicer to the next people you meet - the whole random acts of kindness idea. when i need a kick in the pants, i just put on my favorite music and sing to it. i might call my best friend or i might go to sleep. if i'm at home and it's during winter break and i usually don't have a lot to do, i'll re-read my favorite book. sometimes i watch frasier reruns and munch snacks, always a fun time. basically, i indulge in things that are sensually reasurring, and the comfort associated with these actions is usually strong enough to overwhelm a bad mood.

sometimes i need to make myself angry when i'm not - usually when i have to channel that emotion for some kind of writing, like an application for a non-profit agency or writing a paper in which i've been asked to take a role. in that case i think long and hard about the supposed injustice i'm supposed to be ranting about, and really dwell on it. eventually i can usually work myself into enough of a passion that the work gets done.

Name:  Jennifer Prince
Username:  jprince@brynmawr.edu
Date:  2002-04-15 12:27:29
Message Id:  1811
There is no doubt how powerful someone's mood can be. I think one of the most important things one can learn is how to curb those feelings. You have to be able to take yourself aside and take a break...breath.. do something. I sometimes just have to leave the situation. Sometimes that means leaving the room, blasting music, leaving the library. After a certain point or rather a certain mood, people turn off and allow the mood they are in to be destructive. ITs hard not to. I'm convinced that its a talent.
Name:  Sarah G. Kim
Username:  sgkim@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  moods
Date:  2002-04-15 18:02:53
Message Id:  1815
I once heard somewhere that you can choose to be in a good mood, and for the most part I believe it to be true (at least for me). There are going to be lots of things that have the potential to put you in a bad mood, and of course once something does, everything after that becomes more fodder for a bad mood/depression/etc. I am thankful that I do not have to struggle with genetic or biochemical effects of depression and mood alternation because even with the things that I do have to deal with, it's really difficult to do so. I think it's true that you know yourself better than anyone, and you know your moods too. It's a matter of being in tune with them, not denying them, but finding a way to overcome it.
Name:  Nitya Thomas
Username:  nthomas@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Exercise
Date:  2002-04-15 19:23:45
Message Id:  1817
I try to integrate exercise into my day atleast 5 times a week. I normally try to work out for atleast 1 hour at a stretch and if I do not have a block of one hour free, I generally will not exercise at all instead of just doing a little. I liked Kate's comment - "All or nothing". I've been trying to incorporate even small amounts of my exercise into my day from then on and it really has made a difference. Even a little bit of exercise seems to invigorate me and improve my day greatly. I find I have alot more enery throughout the day and feel alot less lethargic on the days that I exercise.
Name:  Molly Finnegan
Username:  mfinnega@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  depression, etc
Date:  2002-04-16 15:48:20
Message Id:  1843
I think our society needs to rethink the way we perceive depression and mood. I think it's okay sometimes for people to be so sad that they can't do their "normal" jobs or responsibilties. I feel it's a normal part of life and i think everyone should be able to take time when they need it to NOT do school or work. Obviously there's a point when depression becomes destructive. I do get depressed, but it's usually a seasonal thing, so I always know I'll feel better at sometime. My depression is like a yearly Hamlet crisis, my opportunity to think way too much about everything. It clears me out and I feel so much better afterward. But dealing with depression AND school is a problem.

I really enjoyed Paul's presentation very much. Thank you.

P.S. I now have even MORE to argue about with my boyfriend

Name:  Mariah Schumacher
Username:  mschumac@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  mood
Date:  2002-04-16 16:03:05
Message Id:  1844
From your experience, how does the range of ones moods effect ones performance -one's ability to live, work and play in a community and what are things that you do to change moods when it is necessary?
I find that mood can be a positive influence on functionality and a negative influence. When I am in a good mood, I tend to be more focused and energetic and can get more work done. When I am in a bad mood, I can be more appathetic and less interested in completeing work which, of course, can create problems. I find that if I am in a rut and can't accomplish anything, hanging out with friends or my boyfriend helps elevate my mood so that I can go back and get things done.
Name:  Jennifer Vaughan
Username:  jvaughan@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Moods
Date:  2002-04-16 18:45:36
Message Id:  1847
As many people have already said, it is more difficult to function in a social situation when one is in a bad mood, and one feels less motivated to do anything. For my part, I don't tend to get severely depressed, but if I do find myself in a bad mood, I generally take some time to think about the cause, if there is one. If I can do something to fix the problem, fine, but if I can't, then I try to accept that I'm feeling poorly for the moment, and decide not to let it affect my work.
Name:  Alia Preston
Username:  apreston@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Response
Date:  2002-04-16 18:49:41
Message Id:  1848
Moods definatly have an effect on a person's daily life in my experience. If I'm having a really bad day, it's harder to complete the simplests of tasks just due to lack of motivation. On the other hand, if I'm having a really great day, I can get a lot of things done because I am more motivated to so. One of the hardest things is adjusting to your moods and sometimes adjusting you behavior and outlook to deal with situations or people that you don't want to.

When I need to change my mood, I either watch a movie, take a drive and listen to some music or read a book that isn't required for a class. Anything that I find relaxing will most likely change my mood.

Name:  Diana La Femina
Username:  dlafemin@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Depression
Date:  2002-04-16 22:23:49
Message Id:  1851
In my life I have come into contact with depression in many ways. I have had friends and family suffer from minor ailments to serious conditions, and each time was unique and extremely difficult for me to help them through. I have found that depression isn't something that you can turn on or off, it is something that exists with you for all your life. I have seen moods switch at the drop of a hat, I have seen a manic depressive, now known as a bi-polar, go from outrageously happy to suicidal in an hour. I have been with friends as they have had their stomach's pumped after they have tried to O.D. I have talked and cried with friends when all they want to do is end thier life, they could not find anything to live for. I have helped people deal with parents after they have cut themselves, burned themselves, and done other forms of self-mutilation. I have learned that these moods do not just interfere with your life, they RUN your life. These thoughts are with you constantly, and no matter how you try to mask them, you can't hide them from yourself forever. But I have also learned that these thoughts and actions make up some of the kindest, sweetest, most wonderful people in existence. So, do moods affect our lives? Moods ARE our lives, they make up who we are and how we act and deal with things. Depression should never get in the way of you being happy, and no matter what the cause of it is there is help. It just takes a while for a person to realize that, and until they do it is these moods that govern who they are.
Name:  Alice Goff
Username:  agoff@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Rejecting the classification of mood
Date:  2002-04-17 00:46:35
Message Id:  1855
Moods are a constant part of being alive and I understand that. I would, however, like to take issue with the common classification of mood, dividing them into "good moods" and "bad moods". I don't think that these constructs of mood-quality are either correct or effective. By assigning sadness, for example, as a bad mood represents to me a cultural judgement on what it is to be sad. Obviously here, sadness is seen as a negative thing, a state to be avoided or eliminated. Turn that frown upside-down. I think great progress could be attained if we were to stop passing judgement on mood as either good or bad, and instead just except the emotial variations that are a constant and natural part of daily life. Perhaps a great deal of the anguish and misery that comes from being in a "bad mood" comes not from this mood itself, but from the stigma our society holds against being in a "bad mood". If we could accept mood, perhaps it would not cause us so much grief.
Name:  Rachel Wright
Username:  rwright@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  moods
Date:  2002-04-17 09:35:15
Message Id:  1858
Do moods effect my day to day life? Of course, when I am in a good mood I want to be around people and they want to be around me but, having lived with family members who suffered severe depression (and having had minor bouts myself) depression is much more than a mood. Mood makes it seem like something temporary, something you can shrug off, but people who suffer from depression cannot just strug it off. Day after day you wake up feeling terrible no matter what the circumstance and of course that effects a person even more. During the summer after my sophomore year, I was very depressed but had not found the words to tell someone. My usually neat room was a total wreck and I was mean to my family and friends all the time. I had temporary lost my regular personality and finally one day my mom asked, "Are you unhappy or something?" kind of casually and I yelled "Yes!" What a release. Until I could recognize the problem, there was no way that I could understand my own changing behavior and that made me even more depressed. This quick question helped me begin to break out of a cycle.
Name:  Greta Tessman
Username:  gtessman@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Depression
Date:  2002-04-17 10:07:02
Message Id:  1859
When my mood changes I definitely notice the change in my performance. It's a normal part of being human that you experience mood changes that affect your performance because you would suffer if you were constantly excited and happy (your body can't be aroused all the time) and the same is true if you are in a slower sad mood (body is at a resting state). Luckily MOODS are inherently temporary and it is ok to experience a variety of them. It is only when this "sadness and inactivity" hits an all time low and persists for weeks or months, making you unable to do things you used to enjoy and withdraw from friends and family, that it may be considered depression and help should be sought. Otherwise, a varity of things can affect mood: sleep, good/bad grade on a test, weather, food, exercise, etc.
Name:  Natalie
Username:  nmerrill@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  moods
Date:  2002-04-17 10:18:38
Message Id:  1861
I have to agree with Alice. Sometimes, bad moods aren't so bad at all. They help you identify exactly what frusterates you and annoys you so that when you're in a good mood you can avoid those things. It also is a good relationship tester. If you've been in a pretty bad mood for awhile and your friends still hang out with you, you've got some pretty good friends. Good moods are desirable too of course for more reasons I guess than wanting to be in a bad mood. But if we don't experience the lows then the highs will never seem as sweet.
Name:  C.D.
Subject:  Moods/Depression
Date:  2002-04-17 10:22:34
Message Id:  1862
A person's mood dramatically changes the type of life a person leads. Moods like depression can physically and mentally harm a person to the extent which they find carrying the simplest tasks, getting mail, taking a shower, or talking on the phone unbearable. If moods did not affect people in their daily lives we wouldn't have fields of psychology and psychiatry in the medical practice. What do I do to change my mood? Play music, talk on the phone with close personal friends and family, and remind myself that I make my mood...my mood should not be making me :)
Name:  emiko saito
Username:  esaito@mindspring.com
Subject:  Moods/Depression
Date:  2002-04-17 11:12:02
Message Id:  1864
In some ways I feel the same about moods as I do about anxiety. I feel that it is necessary, if one were in a single mood all of the time, one would not be able to gauge the significance of a certain situation or event. It is all comparative. In most cases, I think that the mind has a way of coping with situations and problems, in reaction, one has different moods that are mostly appropriate and necessary in order to function. As Professor Grobstein said, there is a range of moods. A problem occurs at the extreme ends of this range, for instance in bi-polar disorder - mania to depression. These cases significantly impair one's ability to 'live, work and play.' As I said, to me, moods are a necessary and natural process, I don't try to change my mood, I think that it would be against whatever nature that is behind it for me. If anything, I try to isolate the factors in my mood change and try to adress those issues. Moods are only a marker for factors which influence your life.
Name:  Nitya Thomas
Username:  nthomas@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Moods
Date:  2002-04-17 11:16:33
Message Id:  1865
Moods are definitely a huge factor in my performance in all kinds of activities. When I'm in a bad mood I find it much harder to concentrate on what I'm doing and in general my energy levels will be down as well. I have found exercise a really good way to clear out my head and get rid of any kind of bad moods.
Name:  Irum Shehreen Ali
Username:  iali@brynmawr.edu
Subject:  Moods
Date:  2002-04-17 11:47:04
Message Id:  1867
For me, moods can be a substantial barrier to getting work done. I usually pride myself on being a strong willed person who can tell herself to "just get on with it" and do whatever is necessary despite my bad moods. However, as I have progressed at college, its become more and more difficult to have the control over how I am feeling than I am used to. I can think back to freshman year when getting things done was not a matter of how I felt, but rather that they had to get done. Now, I find it much more difficult to put aside how I am feeling in order to get something done. Maybe the reason is that I have a lot more to think about as a senior, or that life just got more complicated along the way. I also think stress has a lot to do with it.... I find that its harder to snap out of a bad mood (which there may be no particular reason for) when I am stressed. I try to often take some time by myself, or take a short nap to improve my mood.