Much of my career in law enforcement was spent doing investigative work. I would search for the truth of what happened, and most of the time, the facts would easily reveal themselves. It was the times when there was no smoking gun, no body, or the evidence was inconclusive and subjective that made finding the truth more difficult. One of the ways I tried to mitigate confusion was to challenge everything. Even what I thought was correct I would scrutinized to avoid my own biases by always insisting I search for what was true. Even when others told me to trust what they told me, I was insistent to not trust, but to verify and confirm. This gave me the highest conviction rates amongst my peers, but it also meant I did not pursue a conviction where I did not feel I met the minimum requirements for filing. Consequently, I felt confident in my work and the evidence to support was the proof in the pudding.
When it comes to working with couples, families, and individuals I also look for the evidence to collaborate or dispute the intent or actions presented to me. I challenge irrational thoughts, but I also empathize with the emotions behind the actions. I look into all aspects of a person's life, not just what is obvious. When someone says they are anxious or depressed, I question the definition of these emotions as these are words very often misunderstood and often mislabeled. I seek for more accurate, authentic, and vulnerable emotions which may be buried deep below the surface. Feelings such as shame, guilt, regret, anger, embarrassment, vulnerability, and fear can all be mistakenly labeled as anxious. Feelings such as grief, loss, loneliness, sad, disappointed, failure, less than, can also be mistakenly labeled as depression. Additionally, when someone is struggling with their emotions it is not always a psychological issue that is the root cause.
I heard a medical doctor once says, "Food is mood." This body of our is a finely tuned machine that requires proper care and maintenance. Sadly, we have not been inclined to look under the hood when we start to rattle, shimmy, and shake. Sometimes we will tolerate the impending breakdown and deny that anything is wrong until we sputter, stall, and stop running altogether.
I was referred to this podcast, "Mental Health Q&A" with Dr. Chris Palmer M.D. presented by Ken Berry M.D. where they talk about Dr. Palmer's new book "Brain Health" and attempt to answer the question, "What exactly causes mental illness?" The short answer, just about anything. The long answer, well that's what we are attempting to find out.
When we know the underlying cause of the things that pull us out of balance, we can repair what is broken, mend what is damaged, and run with confidence into tomorrow and all our future tomorrows.
"Oh, let Him weigh me with accurate scales,
And let God know my integrity."
Job 31:6 (Amplified)