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T O P I C    R E V I E W
brightondebs Posted - 07/11/2008 : 04:47:28
Hi all,
first of all, forgive me for opening a topic which has pretty much been covered before but I find reading others' discussions are just not the same as being addressed directly. I also find wading through this vast forum exhausting and confusing...

Anyway, I'm currently following the treatment program of FFF by Nancy Selfridge and I'm miserable and confused :( The program has taken over my life. According to Nancy I have to do two hours of meditation, journalling and tasks a day, I have to keep an anger journal that I update all day long and I have to constantly think about the emotional issues causing my pain.

Of course, nearly 4 weeks in, I'm HATING it. I feel I have no life outside working on my problems. I have to do mediation or journaling in the morning before work and in the evening when I get home. I utterly resent that so much of my spare time goes on this. I feel I have no time for friends, or relaxing. If I'm reading, I'm reading Sarno, or Fred Amir, or Louise Hay, or print outs of success stories, etc. so that's not relaxing. If I'm watching TV I feel guilty I'm not doing journalling or meditation and I've begun to dread every session knowing how emotional it will be. Because I feel so exhausted by all this emotional work and I'm sleeping badly I'm having to go to bed earlier and earlier robbing me of even more time to myself.

With fibro, just adding one extra thing to your life can be enough to tip you over the edge into feeling overwhelmed and because this book has added two hours of something extra to my life EVERY DAY I feel completely out of control and unhappy. I feel like I never get a break.

I'm super stressed, my symptoms are the worst they have ever been (after six months of vast improvement I'm back to how I was a year ago at my worst), I'm exhausted, I have NEW symptoms including allergic conjunctivitis in both eyes for the last two weeks, my sleep is terrible, I feel constantly rushed, pressured and guilty.

I KNOW a large part of the reason for my escalating symptoms is because I'm forcing myself to address my many issues (I took a weekend off after the second week and miraculously improved) but I also know that being constantly reminded of traumas in my life, constantly crying, constantly reading books on TMS, constantly forcing myself to focus on my emotions is making me miserable and robbing me of any quality of life.

FFF states you have to focus exclusively on the treatment plan in an intense way in order to push fibro out of your life as it is constantly focusing on the physical pain that is what is causing the TMS/fibro to stick around (working as a distraction from your emotional pain). But replacing one obsession with another is surely not right? What am I missing?

Please help. I want to get better, I've been chronically ill for over two years now. People keep saying if you are committed you'll win but being committed is making me so miserable :( I don't want to give up but I don't want to me miserable and in pain either! I want my life back!

Debs
20   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
winnieboo Posted - 08/18/2008 : 11:30:32
Hope you feel better!

Louise Hay is great, too. I went back to her books after the Tolle ones and they are similar. Tolle drove the points home a little more for me. Tolle is also live on the Oprah website now discussing his "New Awakening" book, and he has audiobooks. Sometimes it's nice to just relax and listen. Take care...
brightondebs Posted - 08/18/2008 : 08:45:09
A good friend gave me the Power of Now a year ago....It has sat on my bookshelf, sometimes reaching the side of the bed, I've even read the first couple of pages but that's it. I know I should read it. I know I'm doing a classic self-defeating behaviour here. I'm going to try and break out of this depression which leaves me wanting to do nothing other than watch TV and try and read it this month. I'm reading Louise Hay (You Can Heal Your Life) right now also. That is really helping. It's something I read a long, long time ago and it helped me then so I thought I'd go back to it. It's really clear to me I need to find self-acceptance and happiness before I can be pain free. And yes, I will be seeking therapy. I finally got around to changing doctors last week so that was step 1!

BTW I reached rock bottom last night and just felt like I couldn't go on. I was so stressed and I didn't want to go to work today. So guess what? I woke up with a throat infection and couldn't go to work today :) I'm at home, in bed, and it feels great.
armchairlinguist Posted - 08/12/2008 : 12:45:21
Oh yeah, I love Pema Chodron. Totally recommend her. Jon Kabat-Zinn too, Full Catastrophe Living.

--
What were you expecting?
winnieboo Posted - 08/12/2008 : 11:10:56
To brightondebs,
Don't journal if you don't like it! Chuck any books that aren't helping! I was in bad shape for a year (drs called my problems fibro, too). Worked with a therapist which was helpful, but my a-ha was two months ago on vacation, when I picked up a book I heard about on one of the forums, "The Power of Now" by Eckhart Toole.
Like you, I hated all the self-help books, and I couldn't journal (re-reading all my mountains of negativity was very distressing!) but this book is simple and it spoke to me...

I came out of all the physical pain. Look out though, you are right, underneath the pain you might find depression, which was the case with me, and I was tempted to go on anti-depressants but resisted. I was determined! I sat with the negative feelings (not fun!) but it's all slowly lifting and I'm starting to feel like myself again! I went running this morning! You can do it. Yes, stay committed and know that you are strong and remember who you are and that you can be balanced and happy, as you were before. You'll get back to it, one day at a time. The Tolle book's premise is that if you focus on the moment, on today, the past and future will not matter. Please pick up the book. His books led me to a buddist monk's teachings that are also fabulous for centering yourself--her name is Pema Chodron. Good luck and we are rooting for you!
armchairlinguist Posted - 08/09/2008 : 10:45:35
quote:
Is there NOTHING I won't beat myself up about?


Doesn't sound like it. Gosh, you are giving yourself the mother of all hard times. You are struggling in a really hard situation (and 40 pounds hardly sounds like anything!) and you are expecting yourself to overcome TMS and fear and telling yourself you've "failed", coping with your kitty friend being ill, and...who knows what else.

Wow, I'd be going nuts in that situation, completely nuts. So if you aren't, and you are having lots of pain instead, you can see that your emotions are repressed and they are going into pain.

Give yourself a break. You are coping with a lot, and it doesn't seem to you like it (because you are so hard on yourself, as we all are) but you are doing great. You are still here. You haven't failed, because you are still reaching out. You are just having a setback. You can find the ah-ha moment again in time, because somewhere your brain remembers the feeling.

I know you have done lots of work with the FFF book, but have you ever just written down a long list of your pressures? Things that are going wrong now, bad things that happened in the past, things you beat yourself up about. Write that list and just look at it, and maybe you will experience the revelation I did "Look at all this stuff! No wonder I am in pain!" Just seeing that there is a reason why we hurt. We have not been allowed to learn how to hurt emotionally, so we hurt physically instead.

Because you are feeling a failure, it may help to think about the long view. In the long view, you have already learned how to solve your problem. The Aha moment means that TMS is what you're dealing with. Therefore you know that in the long run, you have nothing wrong with you physically, and eventually you can progress toward beating it. You don't have to do it tomorrow or next week, but in the long run you can look forward to many years of pain-free life. Try to take that calming way of looking at it. It may keep you from the calendar syndrome and pressuring yourself so much.

--
What were you expecting?
HilaryN Posted - 08/08/2008 : 15:24:13
Debs,

Can you go to the doctor and ask for counselling? (Sorry - can't remember if you've already done that.)

Hilary N
brightondebs Posted - 08/08/2008 : 14:41:57
I'm back.

I tried, and failed, to live life without fear. Now I'm in more pain than I have been in a long time, afraid, and somewhat depressed. What do I do now? I feel like I'm back at square one. I've totally lost that feeling of freedom and happiness. My "a-ha" moment is a distant memory and I feel exhausted by my new levels of pain :(

I also feel guilty for abandoning this thread....sigh. Is there NOTHING I won't beat myself up about?

Help.

I have also realised I don't deal with stress well at all. I am really struggling financially at the moment. After my bills are paid I have 40 each week for everything else. Sounds like a lot until you try and live on it. My cat has been really sick with a long term chronic illness and I've had to take her to the vet six times in two months. I've had to skip food to pay for her. Life is definitely not fluffy bunnies right now. How does anyone deal with this level of stress?
swmr1 Posted - 07/18/2008 : 07:12:07
brightondebs--

You are probably not reading this (which could be a good break for you) but I thought I'd post one more thing. The health scare I had last year was a bilateral pulmonary embolism caused by a new birth control pill my OB put me on. I had few symptoms until the night I was hospitalized. But, somehow, my body let me know something was seriously wrong and I got to the ER in time and all is well now.

The A-HA moment for me after this episode was when I realized that I am NOT IN CONTROL. After that episode, it took me awhile to not analyze any kind of pain I might be having and wonder if I should rush to the hospital. I think I had the idea that my constant inventory of my body would allow me to beat some kind of potentially serious disease. I have gradually come to the realization that I could get hit by a bus or have a heart attack and it wouldn't be my fault. I'm not in total control of my health. I'm not responsible to find every little problem and stop it before it becomes serious. I can only treat my body to the best of my ability and then I have to trust my body. I have to trust this machine to let me know when there's really something wrong.

Know what? The one time in my life I truly had a life-threatening condition, my body let me know. I think giving up the idea that you are both entirely in control of and responsible for your health is a big step. We only get once chance at this life, so better to trust your body and LIVE than to tell yourself you must constantly monitor your body for any signs of un-wellness and miss out on life.
la_kevin Posted - 07/18/2008 : 02:15:05
what if what if what if!

---------------------------
"Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans"- John Lennon
brightondebs Posted - 07/18/2008 : 01:46:13
You know swmr1 I thought I WAS doing everything I wanted despite the pain. But turns out I was still living a half life due to thinking about TMS constantly. This has robbed me of many things I used to do - writing (because my imagination is constantly hogged by thoughts of TMS), travel (because I no longer have time in my head to plan adventures), anything that requires me to be spontaneous, creative or excited about the future.

And I should have been able to see it from my last post but I am still blind to the extent of how TMS affects me. I've fallen into the fear again. Yes, I had an "a-ha" moment but three days later I'm obsessing again. Not on my pain, but on my "treatment plan". Now it's not "oh my god, my arms hurt, argh, it's worse than yesterday, what did I do different?...." etc. now it's "what if I hadn't given up on FFF - would I be better? Should I really just forget about the pain, is this wise? What if it's physical? What if I'm not really like the others on the forum, what if I'm different? Maybe they have TMS but I'm REALLY sick."

Hehe, good ego huh? :) Still, I'm guessing those are common thoughts. And here I am posting FAR too much on the forum and spending a good part of my day composing my forum posts in my head...So, my new plan is to just try and go a whole week of not thinking about TMS, thinking of treatments for TMS, thinking of past treatments and how they failed, thinking of needing counselling and what to do about that, thinking of new books I could read, thinking of this forum etc. etc. I figure I cannot possibly do any physical harm to myself in a week and if I delay "treatment" for a week that won't do anything either. I don't have to be afraid.

Then, after a week of silence in my head I'll see where I'm at.
swmr1 Posted - 07/17/2008 : 15:19:27
What if you just accepted the pain and quit fearing it so much? What if you quit trying to control your pain? What if you just decided that, physical or not, the pain is not going to keep you from doing what you'd like? Then, it's possible that you'd feel bad, but at least you'd be doing the things you like while feeling bad instead of living in fear of feeling bad and not enjoying anything.

That may be way too simplistic. But FEAR of pain is what kept me in a cycle of pain. Once I quit fearing so much, the pain gradually went away. I also had a major health scare last year (unrelated to my TMS) and have had to learn that I'm not in control of my health nearly as much as I'd like to think I am. There are some things you have to just do your best with and let the chips fall where they may. Thinking that I can monitor every symptom I have and control whether or not I get some horrid disease has only led me to trouble. That's not really LIVING.
hottm8oh Posted - 07/17/2008 : 15:17:03
quote:
Originally posted by brightondebs

It's nice to hear from everyone again after a while away - hi! It's amazing how isolating TMS can be.

What I learned today: I think about my pain ALL DAY. I couldn't believe it when I finally realised this. I really thought I was only focusing on it when I was journaling or on this forum but it turns out that from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep my internal dialogue is OBSESSED with my condition!

It goes something like this:

"I'm awake, how do I feel? Argh, sore hands again (flexing fingers), and I slept badly, what does that mean? Maybe my anxiety is getting worse, maybe I didn't meditate enough. Should I start back on the FFF path? Will that make it worse? Maybe I'm worse now because I'm NOT doing it. I'm sure my shoulder was better yesterday. Will I always have this? I understand some of the things Kevin was saying, it makes sense. I feel less depressed today. Wow, I can't believe it's been two years. I feel so lonely. No-one understands what having TMS is like.............."

And I am deadly serious when I say this DOESN'T STOP for a second of the day unless I am completely engrossed by work (for a few minutes until the pain in my hands reminds me), am watching a very good tv show (until my body starts to ache from sitting still too long) or out with friends (the best distraction, but again only for moments).

I was so shocked. When did I get to this point? How did this happen? How could I not realise I was doing this????

I now realise this is why meditation is the only thing I have ever found make any real difference to my pain levels. It gives me 20 minutes in a day when I'm not actually thinking about my TMS.

So...what's the best way to stop? Distraction? More meditation? At the moment I feel like my head is driving me nuts...

On another point. I get you Kevin, you want me to accept that I have TMS. Ok, sounds like good advice. It's here, it's been here for two years, it aint going anywhere right now, how about I stop putting my life on hold while obsessing over finding a "cure". How about I stop saying "I'll be happy when..." and just be happy now. Yep, I can try and do that.

What I get hung up on is this. I have realised recently that I don't just have low self esteem, I genuinely hate myself. I don't want to feel that way. Also, events in my past have really screwed me up and screwed up my ability to have a close relationship with anybody. I don't want to feel that way either. So, my question is. If I say I don't like those things about myself, and say I want to change those things, does that mean I'm not accepting who I am in the NOW? Will seeking a "cure" for those things through counselling, journaling or affirmations etc feed my TMS?



You were me 4 months ago. I obsessed over my back pain. I always felt best right when I woke up in the morning before I could really get a mental handle on where I was and what was going on. Thinking about the pain, how bad it would be, whether or not it would ruin my day permeated my every thought. Even if I tried to do something else, thinking about the pain perpetuated it.

The most effective thing for me against TMS so far is to truly FORGET about the pain. It's one of the hardest things I've ever done, but it can be done in time. The more pain-free moments you have, the more you will truly forget about the pain. You will be able to do something without the pain being anywhere in your brain. Those are the moments when I feel the best. I've gotten to a point that when the pain does come, I can effectively remind myself that it may stick around but it will eventually subside. It may not subside when I want it to, but it will subside. It's like LAKevin said--no one promised you anything. No one promised me my pain would go away when I wanted it to. I had to let go of the desperate fight to control the pain. It's something that I still struggle with, but it's true.

I feel the "inner child" is important only for you to recognize how it made you who you are now. I see no value in reliving my traumatizing childhood, but I do see the value in recognizing how those events shaped my personality now as an adult. I am a perfectionist because my mother had borderline/narcissist personality disorder along with a raging anger problem, and any mistake I made, whether real or imagined on her part, was the worst offense on Earth. I spent my childhood and early 20's walking around on eggshells trying desperately not to be noticed. If you don't f*ck up, then you don't get noticed. I also had my first IBS attack when I was 20. I was a nervous wreck and a giant ball of anger, resentment and confusion at the time.

My childhood issues combined with the trauma of a bad break-up in my late 20's also left me with low self esteem and difficulty getting close to people. I can't change those traumas, but I can not dwell on them 24 hours a day and try to live in the NOW, and the people who hurt me haven't been a part of my NOW in years. Sometimes just recognizing what makes you who you are is more than half of the battle.

Like you, I am still working on all of this. I am not cured--is anyone ever really cured? In fact, I had a pain flare-up today that my body is still clinging to right now because I got frustrated trying to buy Dark Knight Imax tickets online. (They're movie tickets, but I got bent out of shape at the fricken computer over it. What am I supposed to do with that?) But I would say I'm overall 70% better. Just think of what your life would be like if you were 70% better. The success and the good days are highly motivating.
brightondebs Posted - 07/17/2008 : 14:33:16
Yes I did definitely have an "a-ha" moment but sadly I didn't wake up miraculously cured the next day :) I may smile, but I was kinda hoping...The thing is, I've had a brilliant two days. I've been bubbly, fun to be around, happy as anything, glad to be alive, slept well etc. I even had dinner with my ex last night and he texted me afterward to say he had a great time and that I seemed really "together" :) It's like rediscovering this person I used to be two, three years ago that I didn't even realise had gone. I had no idea how much TMS had changed me.

So all this is great, I now distract myself whenever I hear the internal dialogue start up and spend far more time outside my head, aware of the world around me, instead of always looking inwards, completely unaware of my surroundings (my nickname at school was space cadet so I know this is a well-established personality trait). The only problem is, the pain levels are still the same. I feel cheated! I can't shake the belief this could be physical. Self-defeating thought pattern I know. My main problem is, unlike a lot of people, I don't actually have ANY pain free moments. I have good days and bad days and moments I'm completely distracted from my pain and unaware of it but I don't see that as evidence it's not physical. Meditation, hypnosis, shock, adrenaline, euphoria - all these things can temporarily eliminate "real" pain. It doesn't prove it's not physical.

I'm such a damn sceptic! Someone convince me, please!

Ok, so I just wrote all that, and it does look like I'm still seeking a "cure" but I know now, after the last two days, that I don't have to get "better" to be happy, and that feels sooooo good.
Villen Posted - 07/16/2008 : 01:28:23
I just have to say; many of the posts that replies to this topic are GREAT and describes SO VERY WELL what TMS is all about. I am speechless. Thank you everybody!! I have learnt so much about TMS and about my self the last week than I have in my whole life. Thanks again.

Villen
moose1 Posted - 07/15/2008 : 20:26:59
quote:
Originally posted by la_kevin

We think that if we think about it, it equates to ACTION. Thoughts are not action. Thoughts are garbage. TMS likes garbage.



and TMS loves the self-hating garbage especially. one thing a good therapist will help you learn is not only the source of your self-hate, but the process by which you end up kicking yourself in the teeth every day all day as a result...and how to stop it.

there is a way out of this thing. getting the perspective of someone who knows the mind/body connection will help show you the way.
la_kevin Posted - 07/15/2008 : 19:21:26
Debs,

Your post sounds like you already had an "aha" moment right there.

Armchair described it perfectly. You are seeing what TMS does and is.

I was watching Eckhart Tolle speak about the intention of being a 'better person', and how it rarely works if it is something you actively try to change. True change comes about just by being aware of what is wrong in your thought process.

I find this is true. Just by being aware that TMS is on your mind all day, your mind now knows and this awareness will change it by itself, IMO.

TMS is on the mind of many people with the chronic form. So is it the constant thinking of TMS which gives it th fuel to keep going, or is it the constant pain that makes you think about it all day?

Chicken or the egg. I think it's both. But the one which you have control over to stop the cycle, is your part(the thought process).

We think about TMS all day because we want to control it. We think that if we think about it, it equates to ACTION. Thoughts are not action. Thoughts are garbage. TMS likes garbage.

I would seriously advise you to seek therapy for your TMS. You are a severe TMS sufferer like I was. Along with the 'self hatred' issues and low self esteem, you should talk to someone who is trained in what this all means.

At this point, I'm convinced you fit the severe TMS model.

Read your OWN posts over and over. Does this sound like someone who would have a smooth running Autonomic Nervous System? Does your bodily pain match your thought process? Yes it does.

Could a calm Nervous System exist in someone like yourself, as you are in life right now? I highly doubt it.

If I berated you all day, like you do yourself, how would your chemistry and subconscious react to me if I screamed obscenities at you all day and told you 24/7 how worthless you are?

Because that is what is going on in your own brain.

Trust me, I know 'self hatred'. I mastered the game to the point where I also hated everyone else on the planet and every morning I woke up I LITERALLY stuck my middle finger to the sky and said "Go **** yourself God", and I meant it.I was suicidal and borderline homicidal in my worst TMS days. WHat I really hated was my EGO, I now know that.

The EGO can be dangerous. I feel that it is responsible for most wars and crime in the world. TMS is just a symptom of the Ego run rampant in the negative. I believe TMS sufferers are ALL guilty of this. Even the 'people pleaser' types.

But I digress. Try and find a therapist who is versed in Mind/ Body syndromes. Writing your concerns on a forum can only do so much.

Good Luck.

---------------------------
"Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans"- John Lennon
armchairlinguist Posted - 07/15/2008 : 09:58:50
quote:
What I learned today: I think about my pain ALL DAY. I couldn't believe it when I finally realised this. I really thought I was only focusing on it when I was journaling or on this forum but it turns out that from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep my internal dialogue is OBSESSED with my condition!


Debs -- I think this will be your AHA moment, the one you look back to and say, that was when I really got it. It reminds me of something that Rachel Podolsky wrote (http://podolsky.everybody.org/rsi/) -- that she really sat down and thought about what her life would be like without the pain and she realized it would be empty, because there was very little else in her life but pain, thoughts about pain, etc. (She then wrote that since then she has filled her life with other things.)

This is totally, exactly what TMS is. The constant thoughts of pain, and the emotions about pain, distract you from your real thoughts, real emotions, and real life. You haven't realized you were doing it because TMS strives not to allow you to notice how it has taken over your life.

When you find yourself thinking about the pain, you think psychological. This is the absolute basic dynamic of TMS. Instead of continuing to think about the pain, do one of several things: think about your emotions, think about TMS statements like "I know that I am just thinking about/feeling this pain for emotional reasons", "My body is healthy, and I will overcome TMS in time" -- or do not think about TMS or pain at all and think about something else, like the activity you are doing right at that moment or what you are planning to have for lunch or whatever works.

As far as the emotional issues behind TMS, there is no quick cure for them, but there are ways to process and move beyond them if that is what you would like to do -- but keep in mind that that is not always necessary for your physical recovery. Your recovery from TMS can occur before emotional recovery, and does in many cases.

The best thing you can do for yourself right now, though, is to accept that right now this is how you are, this is how you feel, this is the pain you have because of experiences in your past and how those experiences have affected your present life. That is the goal of primary TMS recovery -- acceptance that you have these strong and difficult emotions, that you had trauma in your past and that it left you with a reservoir of painful emotions.

This is you. Love/have compassion/gentleness toward yourself for being you and for all the struggling and muddling and difficulty you have survived through. That old paradox is true, that acceptance of yourself as you are is essential for change. How can you go anywhere else if you don't really grasp where you are now? Trust that you will know when it's time to work through your issues. It may be now or six months from now or a year from now, but you will know the right time.

--
What were you expecting?
brightondebs Posted - 07/15/2008 : 09:29:04
It's nice to hear from everyone again after a while away - hi! It's amazing how isolating TMS can be.

What I learned today: I think about my pain ALL DAY. I couldn't believe it when I finally realised this. I really thought I was only focusing on it when I was journaling or on this forum but it turns out that from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep my internal dialogue is OBSESSED with my condition!

It goes something like this:

"I'm awake, how do I feel? Argh, sore hands again (flexing fingers), and I slept badly, what does that mean? Maybe my anxiety is getting worse, maybe I didn't meditate enough. Should I start back on the FFF path? Will that make it worse? Maybe I'm worse now because I'm NOT doing it. I'm sure my shoulder was better yesterday. Will I always have this? I understand some of the things Kevin was saying, it makes sense. I feel less depressed today. Wow, I can't believe it's been two years. I feel so lonely. No-one understands what having TMS is like.............."

And I am deadly serious when I say this DOESN'T STOP for a second of the day unless I am completely engrossed by work (for a few minutes until the pain in my hands reminds me), am watching a very good tv show (until my body starts to ache from sitting still too long) or out with friends (the best distraction, but again only for moments).

I was so shocked. When did I get to this point? How did this happen? How could I not realise I was doing this????

I now realise this is why meditation is the only thing I have ever found make any real difference to my pain levels. It gives me 20 minutes in a day when I'm not actually thinking about my TMS.

So...what's the best way to stop? Distraction? More meditation? At the moment I feel like my head is driving me nuts...

On another point. I get you Kevin, you want me to accept that I have TMS. Ok, sounds like good advice. It's here, it's been here for two years, it aint going anywhere right now, how about I stop putting my life on hold while obsessing over finding a "cure". How about I stop saying "I'll be happy when..." and just be happy now. Yep, I can try and do that.

What I get hung up on is this. I have realised recently that I don't just have low self esteem, I genuinely hate myself. I don't want to feel that way. Also, events in my past have really screwed me up and screwed up my ability to have a close relationship with anybody. I don't want to feel that way either. So, my question is. If I say I don't like those things about myself, and say I want to change those things, does that mean I'm not accepting who I am in the NOW? Will seeking a "cure" for those things through counselling, journaling or affirmations etc feed my TMS?
campbell28 Posted - 07/14/2008 : 11:23:30
Sorry to hear you have been having a bad time again debs:

"But as an update today....yesterday I did no FFF work at all, this morning I am relaxed, full of energy, skipping around the house singing, slept better and am now planning a day trip to a town that takes 2 hours on the bus...."

I feel great, but in the back of the mind is the feeling that the TMS has "won".....So, letting go, living in the now, like I am today, is that not possibly WHY I've got TMS/fibro? Because when I do this I'm just papering over the cracks? Can I truly get better without dealing with my past?"

Like Armchair said: no, that means TMS has lost! That letting go, doing things in a carefree, pain-free way, enjoying the simple things in life: isn't that what you see as the end goal of all your TMS work anyway? What is the end result that you want from all your digging into the past and focusing on the emotional? To be free of it, to be free of past pain; to be free of TMS?

well then, just by having that good day, you have proved that you CAN be free: that you already have it in yourself. You can step back from the top bit of your brain that goes round and round and round on a hamster wheel obssessing about pain and its causes and getting nowhere.

From your earlier posts I remember you were doing a lot of stuff despite still sounding like you were in a pretty anxious head-state. I know you said you were going to start a new job as well. That is a lot to cope with when you are feeling fragile, and you are giving yourself even more to cope with by spending such a lot of time digging into emotional trauma.

You described your good day as a 'holiday': maybe what you really need is more of that. Give your poor old brain a rest. You've moved country, moved jobs, while trying to deal with what is basically a breakdown. Do you have to do all your digging now, in such an intensive, stressful way?

It sounds like you are just piling more pressure on yourself, hwich will be setting the TMS off. The easiest way to take some of that pressure off; the pressure that is sending your brain off on its TMS hamster-wheel, is just to stop. Stop making yourself dig into things for hours every day. Its summer, and god knows how long its going to last, this being Britain. go for a walk and enjoy it.

i know this is easier said than done. but if you can, take la_kevins advice and just let go....




armchairlinguist Posted - 07/13/2008 : 20:18:19
It isn't your belief that's important. It's your commitment to behaving as though TMS can be conquered using psychological methods and using those methods. For some people, they seem to need to believe in it, at least mostly, before this can happen. For others (including me) it was more like an experiment, even if they see how the theory applies to them and want to believe in it. Like, hey, what happens if I just ignore it? What happens if I tell myself it's not structural? What happens if I laugh at it?

Experiment and do what works for you.

I would however like to speak up in defense of the "inner child" stuff. It is misinterpretation to say that the goal of this is to relive your issues constantly. Inner child work is the same as other emotional work -- the purpose is to recognize, experience, process, and move on. It just uses a particular metaphor to do that, which some people find very helpful.

I am a strong advocate of not replacing physical obsession with psychological obsession. Revisit emotional experiences as necessary for you personally, but no kind of obsession serves recovery. Getting back to your life, and ceasing to let your symptoms have any distractive power for you emotionally, does.

Debs, the simple, but not easy, answer to "how do I do it" is: you must just do it. Stop thinking so hard about it and just do it. :)

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