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The Suspicious Mind Part IV,The Conspiratorial Mindset

The Suspicious Mind Part IV

The Conspiratorial Mindset

by

Dr. Lee Outlaw

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In the development of the Suspicious Mind there is probably nothing which can trigger its permanency within the identity and character of a person faster than the fascination with conspiracies.

It is one thing to become personally paranoid about something or someone over a period of time but it is entirely another matter when we allow ourselves to be dragged into the dangerous world of conspiracy, otherwise known as group paranoia.

There is an old saying among those within professional mental healthcare, “Like begets like”; which is why many of us as psychologist favor group therapy for some of our patients. Patients of particular phobias, syndromes, disorders, etc.  are usually similar and actually learn from each other and recover faster when brought together to discuss their situations.

Unfortunately, when it comes to suspicion, the same holds true; those who tend toward suspicion are often drawn towards others of the same mind resulting in many of these people becoming entangled in wild conspiracies, ideologies and even cults.

As previously stated, the mind can become a dangerous thing. If a mind is predisposed towards suspicion and then becomes involved in the wild group paranoia of conspiracy, the imagination runs wild like a fire out of control. This usually leads to near obsessive tendencies including OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) or OCS (Obsessive Compulsive Syndrome); OCS being the lesser of the two and only a temporary condition. OCD and OCS are mild compared to what happens to many; some individuals become so caught up and entangled in a single conspiracy that it leads to successive theories and groups.

Some conspiracy theorist get so involved in their conspiracy that many stop working, eating, sleeping and become fixated on nothing else, often leading to various forms of Schizophrenia requiring powerful anti-psychotic medications or even hospitalization.

The sad reality to the conspiratorial mindset is that by the time a person becomes involved in a conspiracy, it is difficult to convince them otherwise; the result is a permanent suspicious mind which leads, to marriage and relationship difficulties, poor job performance and even financial ruin.

It should be noted that curiosity is healthy and the occasional curiosity of a conspiracy should not be confused with becoming obsessed; law enforcement and even history remind us that real conspiracies do and have existed.

When it comes to conspiracy theories, it’s best to apply the same principle as a “get rich” plan, “If it seems too good to be true, it probably isn’t”. With a conspiracy theory, “If it seems too fantastic to possibly be true, it’s probably not (true)”. conspiracy

If you become simply curious or interested in a conspiracy, don’t dwell on the subject. Put it down and walk away for a while, it will be there later and when you return to it, you might see the conspiracy in a whole new light; what you initially thought was a conspiracy might no longer exist.

Remember that suspicion is not all bad. Suspicion aids research of diseases, aids law enforcement in fighting crime and even plays an important role in parenting; if you suspect your child is having a problem (behavioral, academic or social) you need to address the subject.

A Suspicious Mind however, if left to its own desires can become the very nuclear explosion of all human characteristics destroying everyone and everything in its wake.

Be careful not to let suspicion overtake your mind and destroy your life.

 

 

 

© 2016 Dr. Lee Outlaw

 

 

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The Suspicious Mind Pt. III, The Doubt & Secrecy Determiner

The Suspicious Mind Pt. III,

The Doubt and Secrecy Determiner

by

Dr. Lee Outlaw

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If paranoia is the poisonous pretense to the Suspicious Mind, certainly doubt and secrecy play a significant role in both its development and function.

Doubt and secrecy are unique partners in this process, due to their ability to suggest and maintain the proverbial “status quo”. In other words, you might not believe or trust someone but if you simply act in secret, go along or simply keep your lack of belief or trust to yourself, no one will be the wiser.

Unfortunately it is this harboring of doubt and secrecy (holding it in or keeping it inside) which ultimately leads to paranoia and the subsequent suspicious mind. The longer doubt and secrecy linger in the far recesses of the mind, the deeper the paranoia often becomes and the greater the resulting suspicious mind.productmockup

Almost everyone becomes skeptical or doubtful that a person is telling the truth or if a certain thing is real at some point in their life. A few examples might be a fantastic story   which sounds utterly ridiculous and our mind tells us, it couldn’t be true such as, “I caught a fish as big as a whale” or the person we all know that was extremely over weight and then suddenly we see them in a chance meeting and they look perfectly fit; it’s simply difficult to believe so our mind says, “There is just no way”.

Added to this is usually the “secrecy factor”; not that the person, event or thing deliberately hid from you but due to our lack of knowledge about it, our mind says, “Why would they keep this secret”?

The doubt and secrecy determiner will definitely affect the degree of a person’s paranoia. The greater the doubt and the longer that secrecy is involved, the more determined the mind will become convinced that either someone or something is out there, to harm or destroy them.

One of the growing paranoia’s of our day leading to almost near hysteria is that of health care and medical treatment. So much has been reported in the media concerning health and fitness that the minds of people are overwhelmed with skepticism as to what is truth and what is exaggeration; especially with regard to allergies. It seems that almost everyone today has some form of allergy from dust mites to peanuts and even the very air we breathe.

The paranoia over allergies is so wide spread, it is almost impossible to find someone without an allergy and many of these are food related. It would be fine if all the reported allergies people claim to have were diagnosed by competent physicians, but that is not the case.

Such an example is found in a conversation I had some time back with a fellow church member discussing various allergies of his five children. Thinking this a bit strange that all five children would be allergic to all the same things, I enquired as to what the allergies were and how long it had been since their doctor had diagnosed the allergies. He emphasized almost immediately that their doctor had not diagnosed any of the children with allergies; in fact, it was his wife (which he praised for doing so) that had actually made the determining factor that all of the children were allergic to peanuts, citrus acid, dairy of all kinds and most meat. As this father began to describe some of the problems his children were having, it was quite evident that it was the mother and not the children who had the problem, which was obviously a mental health issue for the mom and not a physical issue at all for the children. As this man went on to describe two of his children as slow learners and another as dyslexic, it became apparent that at least three of his children were probably not getting enough protein in their diet subsequently suppressing their learning abilities.

It turns out the mother had rarely seen a genuine doctor and was actually skeptical of all doctors, doubting their abilities, and kept secret that she was treating her children for allergies based on the internet and what she’d heard from other mothers, without adequate knowledge or being qualified; yet openly she told everyone about her children’s (non-existent) allergies. Because of her doubt and secrecy, she developed a near hysterical and probable delusional paranoia giving birth to a full blown suspicious mind. Unfortunately her Suspicious Mind resulted more in her children’s harm than good, keeping them from proper nutrition and the potential of actually deterring their growth and learning abilities.

As that old saying goes, “The mind is a terrible thing to waste” but when the mind becomes packed with skepticism (doubt), secrecy, poisonous paranoia and ultimately giving way to suspicion, it can also become extremely dangerous.

As a good friend of mine so often says (facetiously), “Don’t let reality mess with your thinking”; in other words, people don’t immediately want to believe or accept what they intuitively know is real, because they’ve developed thoughts so strong, their mind just can’t accept what is beyond their ability to believe or reason. When it comes to preventing suspicion from totally occupying your mind and controlling who and what you are, it becomes essential to, “Let reality mess with your thinking” because your suspicion can simply be wrong and a wrong suspicion can harm or even kill you.

In Part four of The Suspicious Mind, we look at ways to both cope with and ultimately eliminate the most dangerous aspect of the Suspicious Mind, “The Conspiratorial Mindset”

© 2016 Dr. Lee Outlaw

 

 

 

 

 

The suspicious mind Part II

The suspicious mind Part II

Paranoia – The poisonous partner

by
Dr. Lee Outlaw

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The pretense to suspicion in most people is certainly filled with a variety of feelings; everything from fear to delusions of grandeur and even a sense of false security.

Nothing however, is more conditioning and even poisonous to the mind in producing temporary or permanent suspicion than paranoia; the sense or feeling that someone or something is out to get you, cause you harm or even destroy you. Rather real or imagined, this person or thing can ultimately achieve the same result; impregnate your mind with suspicion.

Once the mind is filled with suspicion, it is often difficult to remove.

Paranoia comes in all shapes and sizes and has a tendency to rare its ugly head in almost everyone at some point in their life. It’s because of this near epidemic reach of paranoia and its destructive power that so many therapist and counselors try to eliminate any chance of paranoia being the root cause of their patient’s problem from the very start, giving support to the old adage that, “It’s not what you know but what you don’t know that can harm you”.

In other words it’s the fear of the unknown; the feeling that something or someone is out to get you but you just don’t know who or what it is and in most cases “how” the harm will come.

The obvious effect is the onset of emotional or mental instability which can ultimately lead to Paranoid Personality Disorder, delusional paranoia or even more serious mental illnesses.

Unfortunately, paranoia most often makes its appearance when our minds are most vulnerable such as times of stress, emotional instability, non-clinical depression (a.k.a. “the blues”) and relationship difficulties or changes, such as a break up, separation, divorce or the loss of a family member or close friend.

Most of us have heard someone say (or maybe thought our self), “Everything is falling on me, and everyone just picks on me or dumps on me.”  “Why doesn’t it stop?”

Does this sound familiar?

Paranoid MovieA perfect example as to the destruction  paranoia can have in  developing a suspicious  mind is the novel Paranoia by Joseph Finder from which the movie of the same name was made; starring  Liam HemsworthGary OldmanAmber Heard and Harrison Ford the emotion of “paranoia” is seen from nearly every level.

Although it bombed at the box office, “Paranoia” the movie is actually very good. It brings to light all the aspects of the entanglement of paranoia, secrecy, doubt and the conspiratorial mind as they weave their way deep into the unconscious of not just one but most of the characters, almost to the point of no return. It is only after one of the characters actually utilizes his suspicious mind for good that he’s able to turn his life around.

Just like in the movie, sometimes as the burden of no answers coupled with the slightest thought that someone besides you is causing your problems and suddenly paranoia takes root. If such thoughts are not eliminated, they dig deeper into the unconscious implanting a wave of successive suspicions until a once stable mind is totally and completely suspicious.

Everything becomes doubtful and no one can be trusted. Eventually things become extremely serious and even dangerous as reality and fantasy begin to merge and the ability to reason and rationalize become void, leaving the mind to wander aimlessly without purpose or direction.

The end result is the birth of a suspicious mind.

Although the movie “Paranoia” tends to demonstrate a positive effect from a suspicious mind, for most of the characters (as is the case in real life) the outcome was negative. Read the book or watch the DVD to learn more.

In Part III of “The Suspicious Mind”, we will discuss how doubt and secrecy play an intricate part in producing paranoia and ultimately developing a mindset totally controlled by suspicion.

© 2015 The Outlaw Observer and Opinion

 

 

 

The suspicious mind Part I

by

Dr. Lee Outlaw

The Suspicious Mind

Suspicion

Are you suspicious?

Chances are if you’re like most people, you have your own unique set of suspicions.

It might be about a politician, a friend, an actor or even a family member but in reality suspicions abound.

Strictly speaking, suspicion is defined as a feeling that someone is possibly guilty of a crime or of doing something wrong, a feeling that something bad is likely or true or a feeling of doubt without proof or on slight evidence.

In essence, suspicion is distrust; a distrust that breaks down relationships, families, beliefs and all too often emotional, mental and spiritual stability.

Suspicions are seldom founded, often dis-proven and in many cases become the cause of serious crimes and physical harm or even death.

Suspicion is a close cousin to greed and jealousy of which an argument can be made as to which emotion or action leads to the other. In other words Suspicion often leads to jealousy or greed and similarly greed and jealousy many times results in a suspicious mind.

One of the greatest examples of suspicion and all its fundamental intricacies is the Alfred Hitchcock 1941 romantic psychological thriller Suspicion  directed by Alfred Hitchcock, starring Cary Grant and Joan Fontaine.220px-Suspicion_film_poster

In the film, a shy spinster runs off with a playboy (Cary Grant), who turns out to be penniless, a gambler, and an overall dishonest man in the extreme. The character played by Joan Fontaine comes to suspect that he is also a murderer, and that he is attempting to kill her; as such, the perfect example of the “suspicious mind”.

In today’s social media and instant information age, a suspicious mind would seem to be far from the norm but unfortunately it is seemingly more apparent than ever.

Over the next four weeks I will discuss the relationship between suspicion, paranoia, doubt and secrecy and how to cope with every aspect of the conspiratorial mindset.

I will discuss the inter-relationships of each as well their unique differences.

It is important to remember that not all suspicion is bad. Suspicion can be used for good as well as bad.

Suspicion has often stopped crime, war and even prevented illnesses and catastrophes and is a mainstay in almost every sport. What a sports team suspects the other team will do offensively can often win the game.

As Elvis Presley told us in his 1962 hit “Suspicion”:

Every time you kiss me, I’m still not certain that you love me
Every time you hold me, I’m still not certain that you care
Though you keep on saying you really, really, really love me
Do you speak the same words to someone else when I’m not there

Suspicion torments my heart
Suspicion keeps us apart
Suspicion why torture me?

Suspicion is the ultimate temptress that if allowed, will send most people to a nervous breakdown, daily prescription medication and lifelong therapy.

In Part II I will discuss suspicion, paranoia, doubt and secrecy and the general conspiratorial mindset; their differences and their relationships.

© 2015 The Outlaw Observer and Opinion

The suspicious mind – by Dr. Lee Outlaw

The Suspicious Mind

The Suspicious Mind

A four part Counseling series

Beginning November  1st

on

How to cope with suspicion, paranoia, doubt and secrecy.

Learning to deal with every aspect of the conspiratorial mindset.