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Moodscope

As someone who has struggled with a serious mood disorder for much of my adult life, I found this guy's story fascinating. His name is Jon Cousins, and he developed Moodscope for his own use when, upon a tentative diagnosis of bipolar disorder, his psychiatrist required him to track his daily mood for three months in order to get to a more definite diagnosis.

This fifteen-minute video is worth watching just to see his cool chart, but it also puts forth one of the most interesting ideas I've ever come across in the realm of mental health

Jon Cousins - Moodscope from Kiel Gilleade on Vimeo.


(does anyone know why Vimeo isn't embedding here?)

Now that several thousand people are using the method he discovered by accident, the findings are startling: quantifying your mood daily and reporting it to a small group of friends seems to lift depression in a very reliable and consistent way. Two thirds of the 4000 or so users of Moodscope, he says, experience a 25% uplift in mood if they use the tool regularly.

Cousins seems to think that the effect is caused by the reporting itself--that first measuring your mood, then just telling someone what that measurement is, has an immediate positive effect.

My own mood disorder is at bay presently, but I'm finding that measuring and reporting in a couple of other areas (food, exercise, personal goals) is making those things better, so I believe Cousins is on to something, though I don't have a clue yet what the mechanism is.

Crossposted from Dreamwidth, where there are comment count unavailable comments. | Comment at Dreamwidth.

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