More Thoughts On Clarity of Thought

I realized I could talk about two other things that influence whether a person has clarity of thought.

First, recent research suggests exercise improves cognition for individuals living with schizophrenia.

In 2011 when I was 46, I started to do strength training at the gym after a year of not exercising and having exercised on and off before that. It’s 2015 so I’ve been training for life for four years now.

The difference is night and day. This is going to sound controversial yet the term I use to describe what happened is that I developed “emotional spine.” I’ve gotten mentally fit as well as physically strong.

And I was exercising four years before this recent study was published this week.

If you want to gain control, I recommend lifting weights.

Second, veering into the noisy chaotic symptomatic red zone to the right of the dial on the VU meter happens rarely or not at all when you take your medication every day as prescribed.

At a NAMI convention in June at an Ask the Doctors panel years ago:

One of the psychiatrists told the audience that “partial compliance” or skipping doses is often the real reason the medication doesn’t work. You’re taking a chance if you skip doses.

I have missed only one dose in the last 23 years and it was on the day I had a medical exam. Exiting the exam room, I was so woozy that I was grateful my father was driving me home. I had brought a Luna bar and a bottled water to have as a snack so that I could take the pill in the waiting area after I got out. This didn’t happen. It was the only time in 23 years that I hadn’t taken the pill.

The wind-up: if you take your medication consistently or engage in whatever treatment you’re in that works for you, and do this every day, you’ll have a clearer mind and a better mood too.

I’m going to write a news article at HealthCentral in May about ways to develop a medication routine that is effective.

Most people diagnosed with schizophrenia require maintenance medication. I went on a drug holiday, and it failed within three months. I don’t recommend going on a drug holiday. If you go on it once and it fails I don’t recommend trying a drug holiday again.

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Author: Chris Bruni

Christina Bruni is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir Left of the Dial. She owns a resume writing and career help business. She contributed a chapter "Recovery is Within Reach" to Benessere Psicologico: Contemporary Thought on Italian American Mental Health. As well as an author and activist, Bruni is an artist and a fitness buff.

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