Paying attention to attention

One of the more humbling aspects of my ongoing treatment for Major Depressive Disorder (I mean, even the name itself is a total drag) involves coming to terms with its various manifestations that interfere with my day-to-day life. The way in which it affects my concentration is especially upsetting to me. I’ve always prided myself on my ability to single-mindedly focus on a task. Whether it was reading, writing, or some other exercise, I could narrow my focus, eliminate distractions, and get it done. This bout of depression has taken that away from me, at least for now. Staying on task and maintaining my attention span feels impossible at times.

Recent studies have emphasized the historical lack of attention (sorry…) given to cognitive impairments, especially concentration, in patients with MDD. They note that, in the past, clinical studies have shown that the medication I recently restarted, Wellbutrin (i.e., bupropion), can help MDD patients with their cognitive function, including concentration. Because there is a ramp up period with psychiatric medication, the dose I am taking is lower than that proven effective in the research. Still, I am hopeful.

I find the challenge of maintaining my concentration to be among the most frustrating aspects of MDD. It leaves me feeling painfully unproductive. Productivity, measured by my utilization and revenue generation, has been the primary metric by which I have evaluated my worth as a human being for years. It is hard, but necessary, to unlearn it.

1 Comment

  1. A computer has better utilization and revenue production than any human being. So why are we competing with them? A computer can do nothing unless a human being tells it what to do. And since when do utilization and revenue production define a person? Does anyone choose a friend, a spouse, or a teacher based on those metrics? If anyone does, I don’t want to know them.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s