Many people experience this and that's why I've written so extensively on the topic. I'll paraphrase a few points in some of the posts I made, but if you want to read them in detail, then you can check them out:
There are some key points in these posts that I'll showcase here, as I've said before, and these are the main points that need to be addressed as much as possible to people who are having outlandish fears or people who have been sucked into the Solipsism philosophy and can't seem to get out. I know what it feels like dealing with both the former and the latter; I can tell, first-hand, that these will go away and they're not going to plague you forever, as long as you work to get rid of them. I'll start with the first main point:
Solipsism is Rubbish.
It goes along with the title of my blog post - it's good to know that the entire philosophy is absolutely silly. The concept of 'you are the creator of your own mind' has way too many flaws to even be considered as reality.
If my mind is the creator of all things in this world - the world is my canvas and I, the painter - then why am I not sitting in a multi-million dollar mansion with stacks of money surrounding me? Why would any artist paint a world where they are in constant pain or why would any artist want to include these horrible thoughts into their own heads? Do you not think that the artist of their own world would like to dictate better principles to their own body and, even if they didn't want extreme riches, they certainly would want to have a cleared mind - a mind without Solipsism and derealization.
Let's take a step back, though, and look at the world for what it really is - with a bit of simplicity, to keep is short:
- Seven billion people inhabiting this world.
- 248,752 cities in this entire world.
- 196 independent countries.
- More than a quadrillion different forms of life, not including viruses and bacteria.
This world is an intricate database of, quite literally, infinite amounts of knowledge - with all of this being said, there is really no possible way that your small consciousness, or being as a whole, could produce such information - your mind would explode
Your brain is a very powerful organ, but it's not powerful to create this whole engaging world - billions of people, trillions of galaxies, and all these different intricate buildings and locations. There's no conceivable way that you could generate all of that and, even if you could, then why are you not all-powerful? One that has created this world could twist and turn it in every which way that you please, yet you're still suffering from this fear and philosophy. If you created this world, surely you would make it so your life was perfect, right? I could go on about the many flaws in Solipsism, but that's the biggest one. Instead of ruminating over the idea of Solipsism, disprove it - and you most certainly can - just find the flaws within the philosophy and realize how silly and outlandish it truly is. You didn't make this world up in your head, believe me.
Imagination does not indicate reality.
The sooner we show that our imagination cannot control what happens in reality, the sooner we can get rid of those terrible thoughts that litter our heads. I could dream up the worst horror in my entire life, right inside of my head, but will it have any affect on my existence? Will that monster in my head come out and make those fears come to life? The answer is: absolutely not. What you dream up is not what will happen; just because you can imagine evidence for it happening, doesn't mean it'll happen either.
The point of this quote is that just because you dream something up, doesn't mean that it's going to happen. I could make up the idea that I'm the all-powerful deity controlling this land and all the world's suffering is my fault. In my head, well, it seems to be a viable idea. I can't disprove it, so I might as well snowball the idea, right? You start to throw evidence at it - evidence that you imagine, no less - and start to build the idea up until you're afraid of how "true" it is in your head. However, regardless of how you may feel when you think it in your brain and how true it may feel inside of your head, that does not mean that it's true in reality.
You're just not noticing this because you're enveloped in fear and confusion. The fear is keeping you obsessed on the thought and you're continuing to build on the idea because you're searching for this answer to your big philosophical question. Here's the answer: your imagination does not control reality and just because you get a scary thought in your head does not mean that it's true. Always remember that and push this thought out of your head - don't obsess and dwell on it, it'll just make the thought more frightening.
How to Deal with an Existential Crisis.
So, what can you do to cope? Well, you can do a bunch of things and, for the sake of remaining concise, I'll list them through bullet points below. The main coping mechanism is understanding that Existentialism and the meaning life just simply cannot be explained by any thought process that goes through your head - you cannot validate the dread as something that is okay and that's something that you need to accept if you wish to continue on with your life. Think of it this way, would you rather be completely depressed over a series of serious thoughts leading up to the questioning of your own existence or would you rather spend your time living your life happily and waiting to find out what happens later on. I'd choose the latter - now, onto coping;
- Find something that's constructive. Seriously, hobbies are the best method for coping, even with a number of things besides Existentialism. Try that college course you were thinking about taking, try that cool new thing you saw online or even just frequent the local coffee shop and listen to some shit bands. Finding something that is constructive to you, finding a hobby, is something that is incredibly important with anytype of coping - distractions make us forget that we have pain and, sooner or later, that pain will dissipate.
- Consume copious amounts of music. Music releases euphoria and through euphoria, we experience a plethora of different, amazing things - especially the sense that we have no pain. Get out your record player and put Nirvana's In Utero on and prepare yourself for the best experience you've ever felt.
- Anchor yourself. Whether you're a devout follower of a certain spiritual ideal or you're just taking life step-by-step as someone who doesn't really know what happens after death, you should try to anchor yourself to a certain set of ideals. An example of this would be the Bible, usually religious people follow the Scripture and allow themselves to follow in the "footsteps of Jesus" - if you're not towards any religion, like myself, sometimes anchoring can be hard, but that's why you make your own set of ideals. What do you think the best thing about life is? What do you think everyone should do? In my personal experience, I follow the idea of love being the most that you can get out of life and striving for that ultimate sense of love is my goal - love is my anchor. So, try to find yours.
- Be loud. I cannot stress this enough to you - be as loud as you can and allow these emotions to come out of you. You're feeling pissed off? Release it. You feel like you need to just get away and be isolated for awhile? How about taking your truck down a long, country dirt trail blasting death metal because shit is fucked up and bullshit sometimes. Releasing emotions is a great way to get rid of stress - if I had a penny for every-time I felt better after balling my eyes out in the corner of a dark room, I'd have about $145.
- Accept the things you cannot change - you cannot change life and the universe doesn't bend around you like you're the center of attention. Accept the fact that you cannot change how the world is structured and how the universe operates, just focus on giving your own meaning to all of that - through anchoring yourself. Follow your ideals and stick to them - as long as they're not completely crazy (like worshiping ducks or something), and try to give advice to someone else in your situation, even if you're still going through a hard time. What works for you? What helps you calm down and relax? What feels good after you've had a breakdown? Things like this should be discussed with people who share the common vision of Existentialism with you. Respect the existence of other's too - they're in the same boat as you, so treat them like that.
- Finally; don't hurt, cut or maim yourself over situations like this. Those are solutions to a temporary problem and are very harmful to you and your peers that are around you - remain chill and go through the rest of the steps above, you'll be out of it in no time. Just.. try not to think so hard. Just relax and take life as it is - a fun adventure, filled with a shit ton of cool-ass people and awesome activities.
I hope this helped. I know it may sound convoluted (it's early in the morning here), so if you have any questions, I'd be happy to answer any and all. I've suffered from these thoughts before so I know how scary and terrifying they may feel. I hope what I wrote to you can at least give you a little comfort. Hang in there, though. These thoughts are just obsessions, they'll go away.