This Tuesday (May 6th) the call-in discussion group will be discussing “Eric's Journey - 4” and “Walt's Journey - 4 ” in God Does Not Want You to Be in Painby forum members Eric "Herbie" Watson and Walt Oleksy. The recorded discussion will start at 9:00pm Eastern Time. Phone lines will open about half an hour early for folks to talk beforehand, off the recording. Connection details are as follows (for more detailed instructions, visit www.tmswiki.org/ppd/connect ): • If you're connecting by phone, dial 1 201-479-4595 and when prompted enter the pin code 18311499 followed by the pound symbol. • If you're connecting via your computer (Fuze Meeting), go to http://fuze.me/18311499 and follow the instructions from there. For more information about the discussion group, and to listen to all past recorded discussions, visit www.tmswiki.org/ppd/Call-In_Peer_Discussion_Group. God Does Not Want You to be in Pain: Proven Techniques and Faith Can Heal You (2014) Eric’s Journey – Chapter 4: Imaging, Focusing, NLP Swishing, Reconsolidation, pp. 92-108. Walt’s Journey – Chapter 4: Journaling – 2: “The Girls I Left Behind”, pp. 109-117. 1.) Eric’s Journey – Chapter 4: Imaging, Focusing, NLP Swishing, Reconsolidation, pp. 92-108. According to Eric, “the mind will create what we imagine” p. 92. Even though he had read the Great Teachers of the mind, he didn’t know before how to work those laws correctly. But by mixing “thought and belief with desire, action, and faith,” Eric has, as he says, “stumbled across the secret” and learned to do just that. In this chapter Eric describes a host of specific mind-body therapy techniques, including Imaging, Re-Framing, Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NPL) and Swishing, along with various Belief Systems. There is even a convenient set of links to how-to YouTube videos on Swishing, Triggers and Phobia Relief that the reader can use as demonstrations while reading Eric’s detailed descriptions of how to perform these advanced body-mind healing techniques. Re-Framing One of the most interesting of the body-mind healing procedures healing procedures that Eric describes here in Re-Framing which involves 7 steps whenever “distress appears” or “you have a bad thought” are as follows: 1.) Close your eyes and imagine the bad thought or picture for just a second. The picture will probably be in color. 2.) Then in your imagination watch the picture change to black and white like on a TV screen or wall. Hold this image for a few seconds. 3.) Now look at a small yellow dot in the middle of the black and white picture. Take only about three second to do this. 4.) Now instantly expand the color dot so that all you see is a bright colorful yellow color on the picture screen or wall. 5.) Now see a white dot in the middle of that yellow wall or screen, and instantly imagine this white dot to implode to a huge wall of nothing but a glossy white color. Hold this image for a few seconds. 6.) Now open your eyes and look at something white for three seconds. 7.) Now tell me what was bothering you. People who have done this re-framing technique have told Eric afterwards that what was bothering them has evaporated. I certainly notice this a couple of sessions ago where Eric had me perform this sequence on the image of a director of field service who had criticized me in public many years ago, an image that kept recurring in my mind whenever I was under stress or angry. You might like to try this yourself. Imaging Imagining is based on the assumption, Eric states, that if you imagine yourself to be sick, then you will become sick. People who have undergone trauma in childhood, such as beating or abuse, picture themselves in their minds eye as being “bad and ugly”. Therefore, to correct this, we need to imagine ourselves “as beautiful” at the same time we stop being so hard on ourselves. You only have to relax and imagine that part of your body in pain, like your knee, for example, being totally perfect or with healing fluids like lymph and white blood cells and oxygen “going to all parts of your body”. Focusing and Imaging Focusing and imaging can be used in conjunction, Eric believes, as a kind of “calming mixture”. As he says here, “focusing is when you relax and then instead of not thinking of the pain, you actually do think about it but without judgment an without fear”. You can even send love to the area that hurts, Eric says, while knowing that it’s actually okay. Change your mind and lose your pain One major assumption behind the mind-body healing techniques Eric describes here is that “your thoughts create your emotions, and negative emotions can create pain”. But it is possible, Eric believes, to discharge these negative emotions and thereby lose the pain. One example he gives is when Walt received a notice that his mortgage payment was being increased beyond his means to repay it. Naturally, he became so concerned he began to catastrophize and imagine that he and his beloved dog Annie would soon be out on the street. Instead of “going bonkers” Walt instead changed his emotions by putting it out of his mind and watching a new episode of “Sherlock” (Holmes) on PBS that evening. When he went to bed he also changed his thoughts and focused on mental images of him living in his house until he was 110. The next day Walt called the mortgage-holder only to learn that there had been a mistake and the bill he received was only a mistake. Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and Swishing “Swishing” is a Neuro-Linguistic Programming technique used to help people develop better behaviors, such as quitting smoking, changing eating habits, and feeling better about future events in their lives they may be anxious about such as a public speaking date. Eric says you can use the NLP swish pattern to replace any negative thought with something more positive. Swishing involves submodalities that are finer distinctions of “our internal pictures, feelings, and sounds” coming to us in the form of thoughts. If these thoughts about people and things are positive, fine, but if they’re not you might consider using NPL swishing to alter them. The key to this process, Eric says, involves memory reconsolidation based on anchors, reprogramming, looping, stacking, and conditioning. Some other “Power Therapies” that Eric describes in this chapter are Reprogrammed Dreams, Awareness, Mindfulness, State, Releasing, Advanced Re-Reframing, Re-programming and Re-conditioning. There is also a long section devoted to changing negative Belief Systems that you grew up with. 2.) Walt’s Journey – Chapter 4: Journaling -2: “The Girls I Left Behind”, pp. 109-117. This chapter is still about the power of TMS journaling; however, now Walt focuses on a lighter subject and, as he asks, “How much lighter could I get than to tell you about my love life over 82 years”? Walt does admit, without being too explicit, that he once did “know my way around the boudoir” but limits himself to the more romantic and emotionally significant episodes of his biography. There was his first love, Nancy, the pretty girl with brown hair that he loved in his 2nd grade class and later the girl in his journalism class at Michigan State University who he was disappointed to learn was engaged to a soldier serving in the Korean conflict (read War). Then, he recounts a catalog “the beautiful movie actresses who couldn’t restrain themselves from kissing me” like Joan Caulfied and Rhonda Fleming when he was television editor at the Tribune. However, Walt always returns to the theme that he at that time he “had a career in journalism to think about” and had his “mind set on becoming a reporter”. Always the regrets about the big one that got away! One wonders whether Mr Oleksy is indeed protesting too much? In any event that kiss from Rhonda Fleming at Jacque’s French Restaurant that he said was “every bit as good as the long one Burt Lancaster gave to Devborah Kerr on the beach in ‘From Here to Eternity’” certainly seems to have left a lasting impression. But he notes that at that stage in his life when he was just “a cub reporter” Walt was “more in love with being in love . . . than being married.” Laugh It Off Walt emphasizes that “laughter has many important health benefits” including enhancing autoimmunity by “releasing endorphins and natural painkillers into the body”. Such health benefits he adds can last “up to 45 minutes” and can include lowering blood pressure and speeding up healing after a heart attack. In addition, laughter restores “playfulness in your life” characteristic of childhood while reducing “anxiety and stress” and “fostering a positive attitude and feeling or happiness”. Walt’s own experience seems to confirm this. Instead of being a husband and father, Walt says he was a useful friend to a lot people and a godfather to six children and a father-substitute for neighbor boys who came to his house for “milk and cookies”. He said that the Laurel and Hardy movies he watched with the kids confirmed his suggestion that “a good funny movie of television show can be great to relieve pain or stress or anxiety”. He cites the example of Norman Cousins (1915-1990), the political journalist, author, professor, and world peace advocate who testified that he cured himself from heart disease and arthritis by developing “a positive attitude, faith, and hope” at least in part from watching Marx Brothers comedies. He notes likewise that Bob Hope, Jack Benny and George Burns all lived to be a 100 and were in good health most of their lives due to their positive life outlooks. For those worried about the ravages of time, Walt mentions that laughing also “reduces facial wrinkles to leave you looking and feeling younger”. Laughter Yoga Walt even advocates joining one of those 400+ laughter clubs across the US alone where members practice ‘Laughter Yoga’ that is becoming a popular kind of workout or exercise with different routines. These can involve the heart chakra and are good for the heart, diaphragm, inter-costal, respiratory, and facial muscles while releasing endorphins to create a “sense of well-being”. Walt gives an extended example of one of these routines here that the reader can practice themselves at their leisure. A Sex Break Of course, after all this suspenseful build up, Walt saves the best for the last. However, you’ll have to read Eric and Walt’s book yourself to find out about Walt’s aborted skinny dipping mission at a lake in Shades State Park in Indiana where he lost interest in marrying the lovely upscale Laura that he envisioned was like the upstairs-downstairs relationship between Zelda and his literary idol, F. Scott Fitzgerald. Walt’s general advice about a positive attitude, laughter yoga and sex is very similar to and harmonizes with what Steve Ozanich says in his TMS recovery autobiography The Great Pain Deception (2011) where Steve emphasizes in his concluding chapter, “Happiness first, and good health will certainly follow . . .” But it might be a good idea to not be too hard on yourself like a dedicated perfectionist and to begin with skinny dipping! But Walt does think that making peace with God and the Church and getting rid of anxiety, stress, anger, even rage and getting over guilt did go a long way toward “moderating my Type A perfectionist personality regarding my boss and my work” all of which was accomplished via journaling and the positive “affirmations” Eric advocates. When you finish this chapter of Eric and Herbie book on TMS healing, you certainly begin to understand what W.B. Yeats meant when he asked that not-so-rhetorical question, "Whether the mind dwells most on the woman won, or the woman lost"?