What Does His Smile And Optimism Gone Mean?
Updated February 04, 2020
Medically Reviewed By: Lauren Guilbeault
Memes on the Internet can be a funny joke, or they can tell a lot about the human spirit. One meme that can explain a lot about the human condition is the meme "His Smile and Optimism: Gone." This meme came from a Japanese television show, where the host looked like he had lost all hope. In reality, he was intensely playing a video game.
In 2012, the image from the show was posted with the caption, and since then, it has been used in many different images, usually showing characters who have become apathetic or despondent.
Let's talk about these emotions discussed above.
When one is apathetic, they don't feel any emotion towards something. They may feel no interest in their activities, and if something bad is happening to someone, they may feel no concern about it. Someone who is apathetic just doesn't seem to have much interest in the world around them.
Apathy can happen to anyone, and it can be either short-term or chronic. At some point or another, everyone has had a point where they feel like their life has no purpose or meaning. Finding meaning in one's life is hard, especially if you're at an age where you feel overwhelmed with life or feel like you've done everything. Someone who is apathetic may also move sluggishly and not be sensitive to the plights of others.
Apathy can happen for many reasons, and one of those reasons is the fact that the person feels like they don't have enough skill needed to face life. On the other hand, some people may feel like life has no challenge at all.
Sometimes, apathy can be due to a situation, or a passing phase. When it's situational, it may be because you had a disappointment, you're stressed out, or another event has made you feel this way. Usually, this sensation passes. The purpose of apathy in this context is that it's a way for you to forget about what's been stressing you. Other times, however, it may be due to a mental disorder. Someone who has depression, schizophrenia, or dementia may experience apathy. This can be long-term, and it can affect one's life greatly. Someone who is experiencing chronic apathy should talk to a doctor or another mental health professional.
History Of Apathy
Apathy does have a bit of rich history to it. In the old times, the religious thought apathy occurred one wasn't connected enough to God. Sloth, one of the seven deadly sins, is apathy in its own way. According to them, a stronger connection to God was needed.
It wasn't until the end of World War I when apathy became studied again. Soldiers were experiencing shell shock, which was trauma they felt after the war. After the war ended, they developed a sense of apathy, feeling numb to the world around them and not caring for social interactions.
Apathy was further studied, and many had their own interpretations about it. John Dos Passos believed it was a response to stimuli that was too intense or complex. According to him, comprehension was the cure.
Some believed that apathy is a natural response to life, and that being emotional was the construct. According to Douglas Hofstadter, the ego was an illusion, and because of the ultimate fate of the universe, apathy is the best response to it all.
Being despondent is similar to being apathetic, but it involves being discouraged or giving up something. Someone who is despondent is a person who may have had ambitions at one point or the other, but life has gotten them down. Sometimes, this can be situational. Other times, it can be due to the fact that they have a mental disorder.
The Loss Of Motivation
What another thing would talk about is when one person loses all motivation. When it comes to motivation, it's a feeling that drives all our actions. There is a motivation to survive, for example, and most of us have that. What we may not have is a motivation to succeed in life and better ourselves.
Coming full circle, this may be due to apathy. For example, someone who has a dull job that works them like a dog may feel apathetic because of their life. This means they have no desire to search for something better, and they will be trapped in a vicious cycle.
Other times, it can be because of a mental disorder. Depression can definitely make one lost all motivation in life. If someone has depression, it can cause a slew of apathetic emotions.
It's good to be optimistic. The feeling of always looking on the positive side whenever life throws a wrench at you is a good philosophy to have. Being optimistic can allow people to find solutions to tough problems, and look on the bright side whenever possible. With that said, the loss of optimism can make you feel like everything is negative.
Now, don't get us wrong. Sometimes, it's okay to think negatively, especially if it's realistic. However, someone with no optimism at all brings other people down, and can easily give up because they believe there is nothing but bad fortune ahead. Often, being pessimistic is a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy. In other words, bad stuff happens because we think it does. For example, if you think everyone dislikes you, your attitude may become the exact reason why every person does dislike you.
Some people are born optimists or pessimists, but there usually is a chance to change your outlook on life. Sometimes, therapy can help you replace negative thoughts with more positive one. Other times, you can look at all the good experiences you've had and learn to be more optimistic.
Treating These Feelings
If you have depression, a loss of motivation, or another similar feeling, you may be wondering how to treat it. Here are some ways you can help yourself.
- Get healthy. Sometimes, a negative mood can be caused by an unhealthy diet and exercise. We aren't saying always to eat vegetables or be a star athlete, but implementing more nutrition and exercise in your diet can be the treatment you need. It won't magically fix your mood, but it's a good start, usually.
- Make a goal. Think about the smallest goals you want to accomplish, and figure out a way to succeed. Work your way up slowly, and once you accomplish the small goal, move onto bigger goals. This can slowly give you the motivation you need.
- Try cognitive behavioral therapy. CBT is a valuable tool used by many counselors, and it works by taking thoughts and behaviors that are negative or fuel your bad habits or thoughts and replacing them with more positive or motivational ones. If you are ready to change your life, CBT can work in many valuable ways. Give it a chance.
- Medications can help the symptoms of depression. Antidepressants can help people manage the symptoms of depression by treating the chemical imbalance in the brain that could be causing it. Alternatively, they are a mood stabilizer. It should be noted that these pills can treat the symptoms, but often are unable to treat the cause. If someone is depressed, they need to do more than just take pills. Often, the aforementioned CBT can help.
Say what you will about Internet memes, but they can sometimes get a conversation going. A simple meme about one's loss of optimism can make you discuss mental health and the loss of emotions. Depression, apathy, and many other mood disorders are serious. They are often not just a phase, but a struggle people have to deal with every single day. Luckily, they are often treatable. You can use medication, make lifestyle changes, and try other methods to add more motivation in your life. You can also
If you need help restoring your smile and optimism, one place you can visit is a counselor's office. Therapy can help you with the many problems life has at you, and it can help with situational or chronic apathy.
Here's how a treatment plan may go. Say you go to the counselor's office and talk about how you've lost interest in activities. A counselor may look at the many reasons why you're feeling this way and what could have caused it. Finding the trigger is important when it comes to figuring out the treatment plan. Once they find out the treatment plan, they can be able to fix you by having you follow the steps needed.
Often, healing from depression or other negative emotions is not easy. It can take a good while before you're feeling like your old self, and relapse is possible. The point is never to give up when it comes to healing from your apathy. Having motivation can get you going, and putting yourself on a routine is a great way to treat your depression.
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