Schizophrenia.com

Purposelessness

Is it a hallmark of psychosis especially schizophrenia/schizoaffective? A tendency to get involved in non essential pursuits while neglecting essential tasks.

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That sure is a trait of mine. I can get down on myself because of the negative symptoms. Right now I am in a place where there isn’t much expected of me. In the past normal, everyday tasks would seem gigantic to me.

I don’t do very much at all.

40 days and 40 nights.

Im where I should or shouldn’t be, it depends on the perspective.

yes…
take care :alien:

Not necessarily. Some sz pts are quite manic and stimulus-seeking when un- (or under-) medicated. My supposition is that your brand of sza may be depressed… or that you are just a bit over-medicated with dopamine channel blockers.

I am actually dxed with paranoid personality disorder though sza mixed type was a former diagnosis.

Schizoaffective disorder mixed type

In this type, you have psychotic symptoms with both manic and depressive symptoms. However, The psychotic symptoms are independent and not necessarily related to the bipolar disorder symptoms.

http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/healthadvice/problemsdisorders/schizoaffectivedisorder.aspx

I was on mood stabilisers , albeit taking them erratically for 23 years until switched to a personality disorder diagnosis.
In 42 years the only time I have been on a stand alone AD was pre first admission at 18.
Although not seen as having a major mood problem with the change of dx my pdoc wouldn’t put me on a stand alone AD after a spell off meds due to " possible adverse effects" on my mood and instead put me on an atypical olanzapine (known to have mood stabilising and anti psychotic properties as does risperdal consta the current medication I am on) .

Noted symptoms include paranoid thinking/anxiety/depression , mood swings ( though I guess they see those as not severe enough to warrant a mood related diagnosis) and a vague " difficulties with perception" and “experiences psychotic symptoms”

I see myself as having experienced both positive and negative symptoms with the negative being more persistent and less amenable to medication.

Not in my experience, though some hinges on what you would call essential. During my first episode, there was somewhat of a shift in priorities, as I like to describe it, things got put in this ‘life or death’ perspective. That is to say that some issues became even more important to me than they used to be, while others dropped in my priorities list. Although I was primarily occupied with my voices and delusion, in the shared world, my studies became extremely important to me. It was like it was not negotiable to compromise them, even though it was of course very difficult to focus on this with a whole parallel world opening up to me. I managed to get some of the best grades I ever got back then.

I did isolate from friends though. Staying in touch with them I now see as quite an essential pursuit, as part of recovery when the chips are down, as part of life when things are going well. The purposelessness comes in only after my episodes. In my experience this and related issues like motivation act somewhat like a flywheel. As long as I keep things going, I’ll be fine in these departments. Whenever I take a step back from my routines, my flywheel doesn’t have as much momentum as that of healthy people. Such that it stops spinning rather quickly, diminishing the purpose and salience of projects I am committed to. And it takes personal effort (or help from others) to get it going again.

This is me.
Although at the time you couldn’t convince me that the task you call non-essential is really such.

Neglecting essential tasks can be described as one of those square puzzles you have one space free to move the rest of the squares in whatever sequence (up, down, left, right) it takes to complete the puzzle…I’m constantly having to do (this) before I can do (That), and then (That) had to be done before (This) …it gets to complex and I put it off until I have more time to do it right.

I’ve been in this boat… creating a brail code to that only made sense to me… and not dealing with day to day task.

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Did I mention I made a T-Shirt? :smile:

I guess I’ll have to set the lawnmower at max height again when I finally get around to cutting the rest of it.

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Perhaps we are just marking time while we heal. A lot of enthusiasm might make me feel jagged and raw.

Negative symptom sz does this of itself. Positive symptom sz encountering dopamine channel blockers does exactly the same thing. Dopamine (“Da”) is the fuel of motivation. (Too little of it and one gets movement disorders like Parkinson’s where ones feet are figuratively stuck to the floor. Too much of it and one gets over-stimulated and out of control.)

Sz & bipolar spectrum pts have too much Da flow through their insula > amygdala > hypothalamus ( > pituitary > adrenal ) channel. It’s what make us hyper-reactive to stimulations. So we take anti-Ps to block some of the Da receptors. But though they “work” (sort of, ranging from “fairly well” to “feh”), Da-blocking anti-Ps cannot help but decrease motivation.

Which is why those who get stabilized emotionally with anti-Ps often improve if they get into psychotherapy to deal with their irrational thinking so that they can then reduce their med dosages making greater motivation possible.

My purpose is to lay eggs. I believe ill do this someday. I want to lay eggs so bad

He’s baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaack! (And he’s =bad=.) :open_mouth: :open_mouth: :relaxed:

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Thanks. I am to my understanding on quite a low dose of an already somewhat activating medication (10mg aripiprazole). I have read some negative experience of others on the forum that went even lower on it (@everhopeful) but this may very well vary from patient to patient of course. I went down from 15 a couple of months ago, I might ask my doctor about options here.

Aside from that, my point of the flywheel was also that once I got a routine going, I experience a comfortable amount of motivation. My doctor and I think some other factors play a role in establishing and maintaining routines. Currently, my main project is to write my MSc thesis. I have witnessed many peers struggling with maintaining that particular routine, running into delays accordingly. So in this situation, it may not only be schizophrenic factors that are in play. I think what plays a role here is that very little external factors are present in this activity that move one to keep going. Other people can play a role in this. Working or studying in a group environment where all kinds of expectations and rewards are at play seem to me to add to the equation when it comes to maintaining routines. So I try to establish such factors by utilizing others. Just small things like studying together and regular meetups with my supervisor. The idea is that these factors help to maintain the routine which in turn increases motivation and purpose.

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High five. Or ten. Or… 15 15 15 !!! ( :unamused: )

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