Today the Journal topic is perfectionism and what it means to me and how it has affected my life. I decided to do it as a cluster writing exercise as am a little bit sick of writing screeds! It was a good option because once I had that bubble diagram in front of me, I realised how much perfectionism underlies ALL my other TMS personality traits and behaviour. This was really quite an eye opener as I had not realised just how central perfectionism was. I doubt if it would have hit me in the same way if I had just written it out as text. Perfectionism underpins my deep feelings of unworthiness, self-loathing and guilt, my people pleasing tendencies, my constant self-criticism, and fear (extreme) of failure, and my habit of pushing myself to the physical and emotional limit to achieve standards that I've set for myself which probably no one could achieve. This causes me extreme anxiety and quite often, physical injury – which I now understand to be TMS pain. Every single one of these personality traits and behaviours causes anxiety. And of course, when we are anxious, we become physically tense and tighten our muscles, which must reduce the oxygen flow – and as I understand it, this is what Dr Sarno says causes the pain. So everything really is related, isn't it? I kind of knew that it was in an intellectual way, but drawing it all out on a sheet of paper as an interrelated diagram really brought it home in a new way. Dr Sarno says that information is the "antibiotic" for TMS, so hopefully this is another significant insight for me and another step forward in my journey.