Going NUMB is wrong & "War is just like everyday life, it's just everything is amplified"
Anyway, "War is just like everyday life, it's just everything is amplified" - That was a quote of Jocko Willink from his podcast episode 4. Then he went on to talk about the situation of WW1 soldiers.
Imagine you are a soldier on the front line observation post, your objective is to report back to the team if the enemy begins to attack. Anyway, you are fiddling your fingers and then BANG - "Enemy artillery", which is followed by multiple other BANGs. Then it goes on for hours. You tries to call your boss but the explosions destroy the wire comm. Hours, maybe even days passed yet still not hearing any counter-battery from your rear, still not seeing your teammates coming to help you, still not hearing anything back from your commander, YET still being constantly bombarded and hope that none of the shell will hit your position
"Had I been deserted by my own team?", you wonder, "Am I completely on my own now?". After awhile, you stop wondering, it instead becomes a feeling as like "Well what's the point thinking, I'm gonna die anyway"
That feeling right there is the feeling of helplessness. That is when you give up on your life and just waiting for the inevitable Death. This is when soldiers completely went numb (Look at shell shock and combat stress reaction on wikipedia). To make it worse, no one believed PTSD was a thing back in the days:
"Dr Rudolf Brickenstein stated that:
... he believed that there were no important problems due to stress breakdown since it was prevented by the high quality of leadership. But, he added, that if a soldier did break down and could not continue fighting, it was a leadership problem, not one for medical personnel or psychiatrists. Breakdown (he said) usually took the form of unwillingness to fight or cowardice."
Now applies this to our lives. How many of you think going numb is a good idea? (because:
- it helps you cope with the stresses and you think that's okay
- Someone else cheers you up with questions like "Did it help?" and you answered "Yes" and moved on)
War correspondent Philip Gibbs wrote:
Does that sound familiar to you? Do you think you are truly OK by going numbs and enjoy little things?
Something was wrong. They put on civilian clothes again and looked to their mothers and wives very much like the young men who had gone to business in the peaceful days before August 1914. But they had not come back the same men. Something had altered in them. They were subject to sudden moods, and queer tempers, fits of profound depression alternating with a restless desire for pleasure. Many were easily moved to passion where they lost control of themselves, many were bitter in their speech, violent in opinion, frightening.
Solution: So back to the scenario, that soldier in the observation post cheer up when he knows help is on the way, because he knows he has made it to the end of the tunnel of suffering. And this is what I think we think instead just going numb. Because after all, unlike those WW1 soldiers, in this 21st century, you are NOT alone, I am NOT alone, none of us here are alone. Even if you think mental health service, it's just "real help" is YET coming, and it may take hours, days, weeks, months, years... just like what those soldiers went through in WW1, but it will definitely come eventually. So everyone, DO NOT GIVE UP. Because even if help hasn't arrived, you still haven't lost yet. You only lose when life beats you stop breathing. DO NOT GIVE UP.