Man Up | Ep. 190 • June 01, 2017
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or over a decade, David Tian, Ph.D., has coached tens of thousands of people from over 87 countries to achieve happiness and success in their dating and love lives.
Once a nerdy, skinny professor of philosophical psychology who couldn’t hold a conversation to save his life, David is now director of Aura Transformation Corp., and a world renowned dating and life coach using therapeutic methods. Dr. Tian has been featured in international media, including AXN, Cosmopolitan, Psychology Today, as well as co-hosting a radio show on national radio and a weekly dating advice column in a national newspaper in Singapore. Formerly a professor at the National University of Singapore, Dr. Tian is actively researching, speaking, and publishing in the areas of philosophy and psychology.
The show, “Man Up: Masculinity for the Intelligent Man,” is David’s way of helping as many people as possible enjoy empowering and fulfilling lives, while contributing to the global understanding of masculinity in modern times. In the show, he takes your questions posed in The Man Up private Facebook group and answers based on his experience Coaching tens of thousands of students around the world for over a decade.
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David Tian: Boom! Stop. I’m David Tian, PhD. And in this video, I answer the question: What to do when she’s depressed? Welcome to Man Up Episode 190.
Masculinity for the Intelligent Man. I’m David Tian, PhD., and this is Man Up!
Hey. I’m David Tian, PhD., and for over the past 10 years, I have been helping hundreds of thousands of people in over 87 countries attain success, happiness, and fulfillment in life and love; and welcome to Man Up Episode 190.
The sun is really setting. I’m going to do this quick before it gets too dark. I got a question here from Wayne from the private Facebook group. By the way, I’m in Bali at a beautiful beach resort here. It’s a really nice swim-up bar there, so let’s get to it. A question from Wayne:
“I won’t list all the specifics but after drinking too much, my wife of 13 years said some things that made me think she has very low self-esteem and I don’t know how to help her. They are 35 years old. I won’t list all the specifics but she said that she felt like her close friends and family were judging her and she was intimidated by how pretty or successful other people are. She said she was disappointed in herself and her life and that she doesn’t deserve me or our wonderful children. I can’t say if she’s falling into full-blown depression over this, but it explains why she has been very distant and rarely in a good mood. I want to help, but I’ve only ever reassured her any time she said something to put herself down, and it obviously hasn’t helped. What can I say or do to help her appreciate herself for her own existence?”
Okay, that’s a quickie question. The quickie answer is therapy, meditation, Tony Robbins. Tony Robbins is a fun one to do, but basically the point is, some kind of way to change her physical state and get her out of the physical environment, to trigger new things. This could be done by traveling to a new place for a meditation retreat or something like that.
But here’s the most important thing. You’re not going to get her to go to therapy until you’ve had the big talk, where right now, you’re just trying to reassure her, so probably you have conversations that go like this:
“I’m really disappointed in myself! I suck!” And you’re like, “No baby, you don’t suck at all. You’re the best!” Right? So, all you’re doing is actually re-enforcing her self-talk because it’ll just force her to dig further into proving that she sucks.
But the thing to do is not to agree with the fact that she sucks. That would be interesting. That would be a state breaker. But what you should do is have that conversation, because here is where it’s coming from.
It could be a purely chemical effect, but probably, 97% of the time, it’s definitely something from her childhood that is causing this, and that you don’t know.
It could be she doesn’t even know. She may not be aware of it unconsciously because it’s so buried in her unconscious, especially very traumatic events from very young. And she’s going to need therapy to dig that out, and that’s going to take weeks, depending on how good the therapist is and depending on how open she is to that work.
So, she’s got the shield up, then it’ll take a lot longer – or if the therapist sucks. That’s how it’s going to be. There’s something in her childhood, in her past, in her youth that you don’t know about, that’s leading to this depression, and a series of decision she’d made about what that event means that has caused her to take this thought pattern, this series of thought patterns that has led to this depression.
You could medicate it, but that’s only temporary, and then her body is going to get used to that, and you’re going to have to keep upping the levels, so it’s not a long-term solution. It can help in the short-term, but I wouldn’t actually start those.
See if she can do the therapy first. Take her to the therapy. Go with her to the office if necessary. You obviously have a great heart, Wayne, and you’re going to do that.
So, the best thing you do is find a really great mental health specialist and get her there. If you can do a jump start, like a Tony Robbins event, it’s just a great jump start for people like this. Unleash the Power Within, this is entry-level event. You’re jumping around, you’re walking on fire. It’s going to really break her state, and he’s really amazing with depressed people.
Here’s the thing. At the first day, he’s going to ask for people who are suicidal and then they put up their hands. He’s going to choose one or two of them to work with them right there live, but you can follow up with the team because I think the team on-site is looking to help people who are suicidal.
And she might just be depressed; she’s not suicidal. Just tell the staff she’s suicidal, alright? Just to get her that help, get her that help whatever it takes. Now, it’s in her past. You haven’t had that talk. You’ve just been reassuring her. That’s not what you need. You need to feel with her. You need to empathize with her. You need to sit there and cry with her.
You may think that’s counterintuitive because as a man, you always want to fix things. You want to get in the car and fix the engine and shit, but this is not like it. She’s not a car. You got to feel with her. You got to go to the dark places that she’s starting to go, that she’s trying to go when she’s crying. Go with her instead of trying to fix it.
When it feels uncomfortable for you, that’s good; now you’re starting to feel what she feels. You need to empathize. Go there with her. It’s going to be painful. It’s going to hurt. You need to sit there and feel with her and let her feel that out, let her process those emotions.
That’s what women mean when they say ‘you understand me’. See her. Appreciate her. Don’t try to fix her yet. Don’t try to fix her at all. Just feel with her, and then have that conversation. Basically, what was happening with you in your childhood, what are you sad about? And she’s going to say, “I don’t know.”
You go first. You talk about your childhood. Get her to open up, but you’re not a mental health professional, just understand that. You don’t have the tools or the training to go there, so give it a to a mental health professional, someone who has had a lot of experience and get her to commit.
Because the thing is, you’re not going to see results for the first month or two. So, she’s got to keep coming every week and opening up. So, those three things, and try to get her to learn some meditation because meditation has been proven to help with depression. So, go with her and you learn meditation as well.
Therapy, meditation, some life-changing event, an immersive event where you’re breaking your state, you’re doing brand-new things. You’re in a new environment, a new city or something like that, or you go out into the forest, the beach; you do something different. That’ll start to trigger new associations for her. It’s really important that she doesn’t get stuck in a rut.
You want to get her out of that physical place and all of these events and environment that she’s used to. Alright, that’s much longer than I expected. I was just going to say turn it on and be like, “Go to therapy”, but a lot of people have hang up over getting help. This is going to change in about 10 to 15 years. Remember 10, 20 years ago, it was weird if you worked out every day.
Like, the first Wolverine with Hugh Jackman, if you go and Google the images for that where he first played Wolverine, he was actually pretty thin. Like, to our standards now. And then you look at the more recent ones, not Logan but the ones before that, and he’s fucking jacked to the extreme, right? That’s how much we’ve changed in society around our views of fitness and health, our standards there.
Right now, our mental health is almost nil; no one gives a fuck about it and then they’re all wondering why they’re unhappy and stuff. So maybe in 20 years, it’ll be like it is with fitness and we’ll have cross-fit for the mind and the emotions all over the place. But I’m looking forward to that when that happens, and I’m trying to push that along, but I’m just one guy.
I’m going to help you out, Wayne. She needs therapy. She needs help. She needs support. She needs counseling. She needs new events that will trigger new associations for her like a Tony Robbins event. She needs meditation and starting a meditation practice.
That’ll make a huge difference, by the way, meditation. And then she needs therapeutic support. So however you can help her with any of those three things, it’s going to go a long way to fixing this. Don’t go to a psychiatrist yet if they’re just going to medicate.
Alright, so there’s my three points for this. Everyone needs therapy. I talked about that two episodes ago. Keep doing it, man. Find a good therapist. I get no money from that, by the way.
That advice gives me no money, alright? I’m a coach. I’m not a counsellor. I’m not a therapist but I work in tandem with them. This is just straight-up truth. So, take it or leave it, but you know, man the fuck up.
So that’s Man Up Episode 190. I’m David Tian, signing out, but you must join the private Facebook group.
All the good stuff is happening inside the group. A lot of free courses as well about relationships, about self-esteem, about how to socialize with people. Get inside the group.
Get your free courses. I’ll see you inside the group. Until then, Man Up!