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Was Dr. Bates aware if conditions such as social anxiety could influence eyesight?
#1
I ask this due to the fact that I've identified social anxiety and a lack of self-esteem as primary triggers for my tense eye muscles and possibly my poor eyesight. Every time I would speak to an unfamiliar person, I feel the muscles around my eyes get really tense. Sometimes, my eyes would get tense by just going into a grocery store, or saying a mere 'Hello" to a stranger. I'm betting that if I improve this anxiety, my eyesight will get even better as well. I actually remember that this anxiety started when I was around 8 years old. It all started with some unpleasant experience; which may have been related to being bullied or feeling left out. It was also around this time that my posture began slump over quite a bit as well. I remember my mother remarking that I had really bad posture, and that I should stand up straight. Afterwards, I started to not look at mirrors every time I went inside of a bathroom as I was scared of seeing myself. I also stopped shifting as well, and tended to block out peripheral vision since it scared me. As a result, my eyes got tense and I had to get glasses around this age. Then, I started not to look at people while talking to them. I would prefer to look down or away from the person; but mostly looking down as it gave me a sense of comfort. Accompanied by this lack of eye contact, I began to develop a lot of tension in my neck, shoulders, arms, and face. I remember one disturbing memory when I was in a barber shop that came to me while writing this. I stepped into the barber shop, and I was immediately overwhelmed. I felt that there were too many people there. I took a seat. I couldn't bare to look at all the people, so I looked down at the ground while leaning over. I was so nervous and anxious. Tension and pain started to build up in my body, but I didn't care. As long as I didn't see those people, I was fine. In essence, I was ignoring my own pain while trying to avoid having any contact with the people in the barber shop. After about 30 minutes of waiting, it was my turn to get a haircut. The barber cut about a fourth of my hair off, and handed me a mirror to get a sense of whether he was doing a good job or not. I remember that as I looked into the mirror, I was grabbing chunks of details at a time while looking at my face. I tried to see my whole face in a vague sense; I was afraid of looking at my face due to the fact that I saw myself as repulsive and quite unattractive. I nodded my head, and told the barber that he was doing a fine job. The more I reflect on the past, the more I recall these events of looking down, avoiding people, and refusing to look at myself in mirrors. This all started at an early age for me, and continued to get worse and worse. But I've decided that I must put a stop to this. Has anyone else had any experiences like these before? Has anyone identified any triggers for the worsening of their vision? I now understand why myopia could be regarded as "Imagination Blindness" ; my imagination or distorted self-image of myself is sabotaging my vision and causing me to have unnecessary tension in the body.
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#2
Oh yes, this is my story too, and with me it started a lot younger. I'm convinced I "needed" glasses at age 5 when I went to kindergarten and was overwhelmed at having to interact with the other kids. Congratulations on this awareness about yourself! Dr. Bates does write about patients who were "extremely nervous", though it's not a primary focus of his. He mentions a young child who couldn't read the eye chart when his mother was standing over him telling him to make sure he got it right. Then he could read it fine when his mother moved away.

OK, find what makes you happy and calm, and do a lot of it! Spending time in Nature? Listening to music? Being with 1 close friend instead of 5 at a time? You can do this, and you'll come to see that sensitivity as a gift, as I have. And you're so lucky you've got the internet and all the information that's available now. Take your time and pay attention to how you feel -- it's usually your best guidance as to what you should be doing next.
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#3
Yes, I have found myself in the same situation as you; in all of my school ID pictures there is a noticeable difference in my facial expressions from when I was a young child to the 8th grade and on. I had always been a victim of being socially unacceptable, in the 8th grade it would stress me out so much to see people fit in as a single race and to see myself as unattractive or set aside by natural selection. During this age I would try impressing girls but I was always rejected. I'm still moderately insecure about myself, and I was and still am very unphotogenic. I still find it hard to be accepted by society and I try fighting my poor cosmetic traits by trying to always look as best as I can.

During the beginning of my freshman year, I was finally given... well sold actually... my first pair of glasses ;I Was very bummed out that I already looked bad enough and that glasses would just finish it all off. I was stressed out for months ;it was terrible to see the perfect eyesight that I grew up with just slowly fade after it had accompanied me for my entire childhood. To this day I'm still desperate to recover it or at least stop the progression of my myopia. It also didn't make it any better to see that my classmates got to keep their normal eyesight.

In conclusion, yes I do believe certain conditions involving your social life can affect the way you use your eyes and your eye muscles thus affecting your eyesight.
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#4
(07-21-2015, 11:24 AM)Luis210 Wrote: Yes, I have found myself in the same situation as you; in all of my school ID pictures there is a noticeable difference in my facial expressions from when I was a young child to the 8th grade and on. I had always been a victim of being socially unacceptable, in the 8th grade it would stress me out so much to see people fit in as a single race and to see myself as unattractive or set aside by natural selection. During this age I would try impressing girls but I was always rejected. I'm still moderately insecure about myself, and I was and still am very unphotogenic. I still find it hard to be accepted by society and I try fighting my poor cosmetic traits by trying to always look as best as I can.

During the beginning of my freshman year, I was finally given... well sold actually... my first pair of glasses ;I Was very bummed out that I already looked bad enough and that glasses would just finish it all off. I was stressed out for months ;it was terrible to see the perfect eyesight that I grew up with just slowly fade after it had accompanied me for my entire childhood. To this day I'm still desperate to recover it or at least stop the progression of my myopia. It also didn't make it any better to see that my classmates got to keep their normal eyesight.

In conclusion, yes I do believe certain conditions involving your social life can affect the way you use your eyes and your eye muscles thus affecting your eyesight.

My situation got so bad to the point that I couldn't even watch T.V if there was a commercial involving attractive girls or women, or better yet, if the show involved any of those people. I feel really ashamed for being attracted to girls, and I don't know why given that i'm heterosexual. Unlike yourself, I couldn't muster the gall to impress or even talk to girls at all. In fact, I tend to steer clear of them, and if they are around, I try to vacate the area very quickly. Many thanks for the response. It really did help. By the way, why do you view yourself as socially unacceptable? I view myself as such due to the fact the I look foreign, and quiet in social situations.

(07-21-2015, 07:31 AM)Nancy Wrote: Oh yes, this is my story too, and with me it started a lot younger. I'm convinced I "needed" glasses at age 5 when I went to kindergarten and was overwhelmed at having to interact with the other kids. Congratulations on this awareness about yourself! Dr. Bates does write about patients who were "extremely nervous", though it's not a primary focus of his. He mentions a young child who couldn't read the eye chart when his mother was standing over him telling him to make sure he got it right. Then he could read it fine when his mother moved away.

OK, find what makes you happy and calm, and do a lot of it! Spending time in Nature? Listening to music? Being with 1 close friend instead of 5 at a time? You can do this, and you'll come to see that sensitivity as a gift, as I have. And you're so lucky you've got the internet and all the information that's available now. Take your time and pay attention to how you feel -- it's usually your best guidance as to what you should be doing next.

Well, reading books, and playing mobile games make me somewhat calmer and happier, yet when other people are around, it's as if they spoil my awesome experience. But when they go away, I return back to normal. I ask myself why I don't feel uncomfortable around other people. The answer I got was that I feel threatened by other people due to the fact that I had a bad experience with people, and the bad experience is buried as a subconscious memory; a memory that is reactive and has no filtration mechanism; it generalizes all strangers as potentially harmful individuals. Or maybe it's because I don't want to be emotionally vulnerable, and therefore I shut off all emotional and social bonding opportunities. Honestly, there could be a myriad of reasons why I don't feel comfortable around people. My dad for example, is the opposite of me; he's very sociable and talkative while I'm silent and inexpressive. But at home, I feel normal most of the time. How do you resolve this subconscious memory? Do you have to use hypnosis or go to a psychologist?
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#5
1 Once Leo Angart has asked people attending his training: "What do you think you'd be in life if you hadn't problem with your vision?" And the immediate response was a big sigh from virtually everyone.

I think the question should be totally different: What do you think your eyesight would be if you didn't start doing wrong things in your life regards to your activities, attitudes, customs, plans, relations with people etc?

Very often we blame our eyes for our problems but it seems to me that our eyes are actually victims of everything we have done wrong in our life path.

2 The other vision improvement teacher and practicioner, Meir Scheider said: "Your nearsightedness is the result of mental stress and is the result of the fact that your brain conceives of the world is a place that is fuzzy. It's interesting that most kids become nearsighted at the third grade and it's interesting that at the third grade most kids get the conclusion that life isn't gonna change for them, things are gonna look the way they always looked. It's also interesting that those who didn't get glasses at the third grade normally would get glasses at college when the future is not clear and lot of studies is ahead of them. Most people who are farsighted are in the forties and fifties when most divorces are happening in this country, and when people ask themselves the question: 'Could I live the life any differently?' There's no question in my mind after decades of my experience with working with people that your eyesight is truly a part of your mental state and exactly where you are, and that helping your eyesight is not simply an issue of getting rid of your glasses, but helping your eyesight is an issue of dealing with your whole total being with your mental and physical state wherever you are."

3 I can't shear mentioning Dr Bates who explicitelly put that the foundation of errors of refraction lies in wrong habits of thought, and that abnormal mental functioning causes abnormal eye functioning.

Avoiding people is not normal as we are social beings.
Being shy is not normal as we have the same value as the others.
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#6
(07-21-2015, 01:24 PM)Aureus Wrote: 1 Once Leo Angart has asked people attending his training: "What do you think you'd be in life if you hadn't problem with your vision?" And the immediate response was a big sigh from virtually everyone.

I think the question should be totally different: What do you think your eyesight would be if you didn't start doing wrong things in your life regards to your activities, attitudes, customs, plans, relations with people etc?

Very often we blame our eyes for our problems but it seems to me that our eyes are actually victims of everything we have done wrong in our life path.

2 The other vision improvement teacher and practicioner, Meir Scheider said: "Your nearsightedness is the result of mental stress and is the result of the fact that your brain conceives of the world is a place that is fuzzy. It's interesting that most kids become nearsighted at the third grade and it's interesting that at the third grade most kids get the conclusion that life isn't gonna change for them, things are gonna look the way they always looked. It's also interesting that those who didn't get glasses at the third grade normally would get glasses at college when the future is not clear and lot of studies is ahead of them. Most people who are farsighted are in the forties and fifties when most divorces are happening in this country, and when people ask themselves the question: 'Could I live the life any differently?' There's no question in my mind after decades of my experience with working with people that your eyesight is truly a part of your mental state and exactly where you are, and that helping your eyesight is not simply an issue of getting rid of your glasses, but helping your eyesight is an issue of dealing with your whole total being with your mental and physical state wherever you are."

3 I can't shear mentioning Dr Bates who explicitelly put that the foundation of errors of refraction lies in wrong habits of thought, and that abnormal mental functioning causes abnormal eye functioning.

Avoiding people is not normal as we are social beings.
Being shy is not normal as we have the same value as the others.

Many thanks for the response. Before I contemplated on why my vision was bad, I knew that being anxious did have something to do with my poor vision, but not to the extent that I have now discovered. This stuff does appear to be holistic. For example, due to the fact that I was bullied or just felt that I didn't fit in, I spent less time outdoors and more time indoors playing computer games or watching T.V. In my case, my vision would be really bad at the end of the day due to excessive time playing computer games. Maybe I really did want to go outdoors and play, but I was too afraid. I noticed that my thoughts or outlooks on life are really different from most other people's, or how you say, abnormal. You mentioned Dr. Bates's claim that abnormal mental functioning causes abnormal eye functioning. In my case, this rings true. I asked my parents about any anxious experiences they had. They said that they were mildly anxious at times, but got over it. I asked my mother if she was afraid of maintaining eye contact with people. She said no. I also asked her if she got anxious when she went to the grocery store. She said no. I told her that my answers to these questions were "yes". She then stated that there's nothing to be afraid of; maintaining eye contact and going to the grocery store is normal. My dad doesn't have any problems with these things either. But in my case, I have fear when it comes to these things. And the sad part is that my mom is a foreigner; she hardly speaks or understands English, and yet she doesn't get as nervous in public as I do, and had no problem maintaining eye contact with strangers. While there's me over here, the american-born citizen who is slightly nervous about going to the grocery store or maintaining eye contact with strangers. Just to clarify, both of my parents have better unaided visual acuity than I do; at least good enough to drive without having a restricted license. I think their vision is somewhere around 20/40 or so, but my mom has hyperopia or farsightedness. Ever since I'd been contemplating about these things, my eyesight is getting a little better. Yes, your comment helped quite a bit. Some new insights have occurred due to this. Many thanks for the help here.
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