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Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Viridian, Jul 30, 2019.

  1. Viridian

    Viridian Peer Supporter

    This video is incredible, I've read excerpts of 'Hope and Help For Your Nerves' by it translates better hearing her speak.

    I only hope I have the self-empathy to put her methods into practice properly - it's funny as we often have the vigilance to notice every aspect of our pain and anxiety, but having the skill to apply self care without that being a further thing thing to be hyper-vigilant about is a huge road block for me.
    plum and BinLA like this.
  2. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    If you think about it, you’re actually well-practised at creating anxiety and the like, and much less versed in the self-care, self-soothing skills needed to heal TMS and live a kinder life.

    These are just patterns we have learned that worked at some point in our lives. Now we need to let these habits go and replace them with gentler means. This is why I advocate pleasure, not necessarily sybaritic ones although that can do no harm, but ways of soothing that are easy/easier for you to embrace because you like how they make you feel.

    And yes, isn’t listening to her an experience all on its own.
    Viridian likes this.
  3. Viridian

    Viridian Peer Supporter

    Yes, I suppose we've all overplayed a strength, such as vigilance, to the point where it has become a weakness. Letting go of those habits is the challenge.
    plum likes this.
  4. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Viridian likes this.
  5. Viridian

    Viridian Peer Supporter

    So I’m deep into the Claire Weekes stuff now and have a question if anyone would be so kind to help me.

    So the concept of the 1st and 2nd thoughts - the first being the initial flash of panic (the ‘What if?’ kinda idea) and the second being the panic you add onto that. Weekes says it’s the 2nd thought, the reactionary panic you add on that is keeping you in the loop of stress illness - that you should accept the 1st thought and stop adding the reactionary panic to recover.

    Putting this into action is proving difficult for me. My mind is trying to sabotage my attempts to not heap on the additional panic after the 1st thought comes, as it knows that’s what I shouldn’t be doing. It’s basically bombarding me with additional worrisome thoughts after I just stop and accept whatever comes my way. If I stop these thoughts isn’t that thought stopping and a bad habit!?

    I don’t know how I’ve made something seemingly simple into a big old mess.

    Does anyone have any practical advice? I’m walking around like a lunatic trying to put this into practice unable to focus on anything!
    BinLA likes this.
  6. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Don't beat yourself up, @Viridian! This is where a certain number of people get stuck. Particularly those who tend to overthink this work. Which of course is just another trick your brain is using to keep you stuck.

    Look, your fearful brain is absolutely committed to making sure that you don't die, by keeping you in fear. It IS that simple, but overcoming this is the hardest part for some people. The survival instinct is very strong in all living creatures, after all. The problem for us occurs when that instinct, specifically the TMS mechanism, has gone haywire. The good news is that it is possible to bring it back under control.

    I won't lie - this is easier for some than for others, and it's clear you are one of the others. But knowing this will help you, so that you don't get sidetracked by quick fixes.

    You have GOT to find the strength to fight back and convince the primitive fearful part of your brain that not only are you safe, but that doing this work IS essential for your ultimate survival. Fighting back is not easy, I know. It takes a lot of mindfulness and will power to not give in. But it's what you absolutely must do.

    I highly recommend the audio program, "Meditations To Change Your Brain". It combines education with some meditations, and it really helped me to understand how and why our brains are wired this way, and how we can change them. The educator is neurologist Richard Mendius MD. The meditator is Rick Hanson, already recommended for you by @plum. I purchased the download from Soundstrue.org, but my public library also carries it.
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2019
    plum and Viridian like this.
  7. Viridian

    Viridian Peer Supporter

    Thank you, I really appreciate your words.

    I’m certainly committed to this battle and won’t give in, though it’s a concern that seems to be making my mental state worse!

    Where I’m struggling is the differentiation between letting thoughts be there/feeling fear and as you say, ‘fighting back’.

    HOW should I fight back?

    I’m stuck between two schools of thought -

    1. The Weekes way of essentially letting stuff slide, not interfering with fear - letting yourself feel it and not resisting.


    2. Telling myself ‘it’s only TMS, disproving symptoms, I am healthy/safe/soothe etc’.

    Aren’t the two incompatible? Aren’t I engaging in an argument with myself by employing the second and going against what Weekes teaches - to feel the fear?
  8. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    The whole point of this work is to Identify, Acknowledge, Accept, and Let Go. I don't care what you're talking about - deep dark negative emotions, shallow emotions, petty annoyances, or fear. It's really all of those, because every single one of us has all of those things going on in our lives, to varying degrees, at different times. If you're seeking that One Thing that you need to dig out and "fix" , you are way off base. As many of keep saying, this work is not linear, it can not be scheduled and anticipated, and the path for each person is going to be completely different from everyone else.

    I have no idea what you're trying to accomplish with your 1 vs 2 differentiation. What Claire Weekes is trying to teach you is 100% on board with the program - it's just a slightly different way of getting to the result you want.

    You are overthinking this, as usual! Which means you are allowing your primitive brain to distract you with bullshit, as usual. Which is why you are stuck, and why you will remain stuck until you find the willpower to not give in to the bullshit.

    This is tough love, Viridian. The concept really is quite simple. The hard part is figuring out how and when you just roll over and give in to the distractions and the fears, and then finding the strength of will to finally have an honest conversation with your fearful brain, and tell it that you are not buying in to the fears.

    I suspect that self-honesty is an issue for you. You are allowing your brain to censor what you need to examine. If you are not journaling as the SEP teaches, you need to get on board with that, and start doing it with 200% honesty.
    Viridian, plum and Sita like this.
  9. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    These aren’t two schools of thought, these are techniques that can be used separately or together. They work best together. I think you’ve been over-thinking of all this, which is very understandable.

    Read this short thread and especially my answer:

    https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/threads/self-soothe-or-lean-into-the-feeling.21361/ (Self soothe or lean into the feeling?)

    Plum x
    BinLA, JanAtheCPA and Viridian like this.
  10. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    I love you.
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  11. Viridian

    Viridian Peer Supporter

    I know where I’ve been going wrong now, thank you both so much.
    BinLA likes this.
  12. BinLA

    BinLA Peer Supporter

    Wow this thread got really good!

    Thanks to all for taking the time.
  13. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

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