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Anyone else experiencing a post-election effect?

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by James59, Jan 28, 2017.

  1. James59

    James59 Well known member

    I don't want to start a political discussion, but I can't discuss this problem without mentioning the U.S. election.

    About two weeks before the election my symptoms - longstanding muscle tension, rigidity, and pain in all areas of my body - began getting noticeably worse. Then the day before the election the symptoms eased up, with a sense that "It's almost over."

    But afterwards, the tension began getting worse and worse, and simple tasks are getting harder to perform. On top of that, I spent most of December and much of January dealing with shingles, too. (I've read that stress can bring that on.) And for the last week, starting around inauguration day, my sleep patterns have changed so that I'm sleeping with fewer interruptions, but waking up feeling absolutely horrible. It's gotten so bad I'm afraid to go to sleep.

    Clearly, since each step of worsening symptoms coincided with various election milestones, this is a psychological situation. Either that or it's an amazing series of coincidences! So far nothing I've tried to relieve the stress has solved it, though tapping has provided some marginal short-term relief.

    Is anyone else experiencing "post-election effects," and if so how are you dealing with it?
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 28, 2017
  2. dharn999

    dharn999 Well known member

    Uncertainty can be difficult, but I truly believe that the things that lead to our pain are the things we are not actively stressed about. I also believe that even if the pain is increased by current stressors and fears our awareness should be enough to end our pain. Focusing on stress of stability is very hard, all I can suggest is to remember that fear, stress, and anger are the cause of the pain. It will pass, just stay in there
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  3. Michael D

    Michael D New Member

    This week has been tough for me too. My neck pain has been flaring up, after a week of relatively little pain. I am trying not to focus on that man, and instead I am learning to live in the present moment and not expect and worry about every single contingency. I have been getting into mindful meditation and I have had pretty good but inconsistent results.
    James59 and JanAtheCPA like this.
  4. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    This is a legitimate question to ask, but I decided to change the title (and edit the OP) to say "post-election" effect. Unfortunately, I've already had to moderate and then delete a thread on this same topic that started out very reasonably but was hijacked with offensive, unnecessary, and unhelpful comments.

    I will be moderating this thread. If the subject matter is not to your liking, I respectfully request that you move on to a different thread without posting here.

    Please share your TMS symptoms and/or solutions as generically as possible, and stick to TMS advice that is constructive, compassionate, and that you believe in your heart will actually be helpful.

    Let's see if we can do this, people.

    TG957, mike2014 and Ellen like this.
  5. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    My answer is yes, I have been experiencing the effect. It took a while for me to recognize it - and as with all things TMS, knowledge is the first step.

    I Know how my brain creates symptoms;
    I Believe my body is healthy;
    I have Faith that I can heal myself

  6. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    We live in interesting times and it serves us well to respond in interesting ways. Change is frightening, especially change that bodes ill but we still have a choice in how we face it and deal with it. These experiences provide remarkable opportunities for developing our resilience, compassion, empathy and kindness. It does well to treat things lightly and to pull back for a larger, broader perspective; as religion can be sublimely expanded into deeper and more profound personal experiences of the divine, the mystical and the spiritual, so too can the political be teased into more potent philosophical and psychological aspects that we can embrace. Indeed this resonates with our greatest challenge of all as a human being: to become who we truly are and in doing so calling all of our shadow qualities into the fold. While TMS theory generally rests on broad Freudian principles, I have found that plunging with abandon into the dark waters of Jungian psychology necessary for the deep work particularly when times insist on deep inner knowing.

    If depth psychology is really not your thing, I would encourage you to explore the words of Rick Hanson. He is a neuropsychologist and Buddhist with whom you would find a strong political empathy. His teachings are sane, generous, simple and remarkably effective. Here's a link to his website:

    http://www.rickhanson.net/ (Dr. Rick Hanson: The Neuroscience of Lasting Happiness)

    Please do take a look. I am a subscriber to his weekly newsletter (Just One Thing) and he has addressed many issues you may have circled in recent weeks.

    edit: a couple of links to germane newsletters;

    http://www.rickhanson.net/love-someone/ (Love Someone - Dr. Rick Hanson)

    http://www.rickhanson.net/take-heart/ (Take Heart - Dr. Rick Hanson)

    And the link to all past Just One Thing:

    http://www.rickhanson.net/category/just-one-thing/ (Just One Thing Archives - Dr. Rick Hanson)

    On a final practical level I would also suggest that you take a step back from it all. I have done this from necessity (a beloved family member has been in hospital with the usual crucible of stress, tension, concern and worry this generates) and I decided that the News was too much and that it harvested emotions that ran contra to the nurturing qualities (of self and other) that I so need. I consider this a boundary issue, ever important for tms'ers, and to this end I have unsubscribed from various YouTube channels and such. I feel better and know that I can be a force for good when I don't feed on such mental poisons. We must all recognise and negiotiate where these lines are for ourselves. (Rick Hanson speaks about this in terms of letting in, letting be and letting go.)

    Wherever we rest on the political spectrum it does well to always honour the inherent complications that are so very human. We may be liberal about sexuality, conservative on crime, for the troops but against the war...musing on it all can drive you mad. Irrespective of our beliefs and values it behooves us all to hold them safe by anchoring our psyche to the good, the gentle, the kind. (Both sides have failed dismally on this.) The people on this forum are blessed with knowledge and insight that enable us to untangle thorny issues. Be kind to yourself and let the world be. It helps no one and nothing to get into a state. This is a lesson I have faced day in and day out recently. If you let it, the rich world of TMS healing will take you far beyond simply resolving health issues, it will be the making of you.

    I like this quote:

    “The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane.”
    Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

    Insanity derives from having a mind as wild as a snake in a sack. Let your heart reign supreme.

    May you find peace. May you find healing. May you be loved.

    God Bless.

    Plum x
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2017
    mike2014, JanAtheCPA and Ellen like this.
  7. Huckleberry

    Huckleberry Well known member

    Before becoming angst ridden and having your strings pulled by the big picture take a period of redifining what News actually is and means to you. Let the News be how your family are feeling and how your close friends and immediate neighbours are doing. Look for areas in which you DO have agency and don't get subverted by what the media chiefs and barons want you to become anxious about. Don't let ignorance become bliss but rather narrow down what you see as your sphere of influence much like our predesecors did before the age of global media and 24 hour rolling News coverage.
    JanAtheCPA and Ellen like this.
  8. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Tough week for me, too, with a relapse in pain symptoms. I believe that leaders can bring up past parental issues in us, and that is certainly what is playing out for me. I had an unstable father with a mental illness (bi-polar disorder), and so viewing a leader in which I perceive (not saying this is fact) similar characteristics, has triggered some old emotional pain and stress. But the awareness that this is what is going on is allowing me to stay on top of it, rather than letting it carry me away into a long, major relapse. So I suggest thinking psychologically, and look at the underlying why of how current events are impacting your TMS.
    TG957, MindBodyPT and JanAtheCPA like this.
  9. Plz568

    Plz568 Peer Supporter

    I have really experienced negativity - strong negativity in the post election. I agree that boundaries have worked for me. I have blocked all people that I know support the new administration, only because they cannot talk about anything other than that. I have canceled cable and only read the news when I want to. My tension has increased but by doing these things - incorporating boundaries - my tension has lessened. I also am meditating daily - guided mediations and focused meditations - acknowledging and releasing my psychological and physical pain and feeling kindness and love for myself. Daily meditation brings me to manageable levels of tension. One day I hope that I will be able to unblock my family and friends, but not until I am able to respond to them in kindness or at least be neutral. I am not able to do this right now and it is okay. Do the things that bring you peace - journaling, creative outlets, exercising, reading - getting into a project, deep breathing - all good things !! Much love to you - we will endure this chaotic time - think of all those amazing people in the past decades that just kept believing.....
    JanAtheCPA and Ellen like this.
  10. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Amen, sister.

    This could be my new tag line... thank you, Plz!

    Great responses, everyone - THANK YOU!

    Love and peace,

  11. Plz568

    Plz568 Peer Supporter

    Love and peace to you! You all have given me so much hope and awareness - a steady dose of understanding and acceptance - thank you as well!!
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  12. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    plum likes this.
  13. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, James59. You've gotten some excellent replies but I would like to add mine. Yes, I am experiencing post-election stress and anxiety. We are not to discuss politics on this web site, but I believe anxiety caused by the post-election results are causing a lot of TMS pain. I treat post-election anxiety and fear as more symptoms of TMS and treat them as I would back or other pain. I relax with deep breathing, meditation, and living in the present moment, not thinking or worrying about tomorrow. I've stopped watching TV news and online newspapers. They just want to keep us fearful and anxious. It sells pharmaceuticals that can kill us.

    Here is a recent post for inspiration:

    "I often get pain in my stomach as a TMS symptom. Last night I felt it coming on after I laid down to sleep. I asked myself what emotions I was feeling, then took several breaths directed at the spot that hurt, and it was gone in minutes! I slept peacefully all night and woke up without any pain. – wife and mother of two young children."
    James59 and JanAtheCPA like this.
  14. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Moderator's note:

    Sadly, I am going to remove the last four posts, even though they were polite and respectful. I'm going to make the goal here a bit more clear: this thread is for people who are suffering from post-election distress to describe their TMS symptoms so that they know they are not alone - and to share with each other what they are doing about it.

    We will not read about or discuss politics in any way, shape, or form, no matter how gently and sincerely it is offered.

    The posts need to be personal. I respectfully suggest that good advice from people who are not themselves suffering, however well-intentioned, needs to be directed elsewhere.
    balto and Jacqui9 like this.
  15. phillyjoe

    phillyjoe Peer Supporter

    To all TMS healers, followers, my post was meant as a sarcastic way to bring LAUGHTER which we all know is an important element in our healing process. There was NO intent to harm or disrespect. I was one of the first members to this site and a true TMS believer. That being said, be careful those who have the power to delete comments such as mine. Not once in the past eight years did I personally post that my TMS symptoms were exasperated by the previous administration. Once you start deleting personal comments of a different political nature you border on a censorship factor. I would prefer no political chatter on this site but I understand those who are feeling emotional distress at this time. But to ban a post of an opposite nature that contained no profanity, no outright discrimination, hatred, or highly sensitive matter is alarming g to all who share a variety of thoughts and feelings on this board. Thank you to allow me to share this post. Peace and healing to you all.
    Tennis Tom and sam908 like this.
  16. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    This is an experiment. I tried to make the intent of just this one very special thread clear, and I later clarified who the participants should be, and I am learning as I go! Believe me, moderating constantly is very time-consuming, it's not often done, it's typically only necessary when a post is "reported" and it is not a job I take on lightly. I am allowing this thread to exist in spite of the fact that a similar one was hijacked/trolled, it was reported to the moderators by multiple people, and was deleted in its entirety at the request of the OP. I might end up closing this one down after all if we can't limit it to the people it's intended for. Perhaps it's already served its purpose. I can always add a poll to that effect at some point.

    That being said, maybe I misunderstood the joke. If those of you who have posts on this thread up to this point didn't see the joke, but want to see it, PM me, I'll copy it for you, and I will ask you if you think it should be reinstated. Or, if you remember it, let me know via PM the same. Or publicly if you prefer. Please, I'm not being paid for any of this, so I can't be inundated with requests from anyone other than those who have posted already, and I believe that is a fair request.

    In case anyone is wondering, all threads and posts are archived even if deleted, so Forest (and other moderators) are able to see everything ever posted.

    FYI, Forest has written these posting guidelines: http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/threads/forum-faqs-frequently-asked-questions.1618/#guidelines (Forum FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions))
  17. sam908

    sam908 Peer Supporter

    Somebody "reported" my post? On what grounds?
  18. James59

    James59 Well known member

    Well, I'm glad I'm not alone! Yesterday I could barely function, and I never got around to turning on my computer. Now I see a pile of responses. More than I can properly absorb in one sitting. Thank you to all who replied.

    I scanned the forum first to see if the subject had already been discussed, but I found only one reference to "politics." Nobody was addressing the elephant in the room. If felt the issue needed to be tackled directly. My original post was edited by the moderator, as she noted above, which obscures my original intent somewhat, but I guess we all know who we're talking about. If dancing around a specific name helps keep the peace, then so be it.

    "Current events" have hit me particularly hard. Like I've been hit by a baseball bat. A lot of people out there have already been hurt in some way by "current events" and I'm wondering if empathy somehow affects my symptoms. I've long believed in mankind's inherent oneness, and that whatever hurts one hurts all. Perhaps I'm involuntarily absorbing the pain of others who may be affected more directly than I actually am. Just a suspicion, I can't say if it's true or not. But Dr. Sarno did note that cases of TMS increased significantly after major upheavals like 9/11.
  19. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Nope, I was referring to a completely different thread that got out of control and is now gone. I was trying to compare/contrast. I'm sorry if I wasn't clear!

    The last time we had some controversy on the forum, Forest reminded people to read his guidelines, so I'll repeat that link: http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/threads/forum-faqs-frequently-asked-questions.1618/#guidelines (Forum FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions))

    And, for anyone who is just now reading all of this for the first time: please, if you don't share in the specific concerns of the OP, please don't post! If you do share in those concerns, please stick to symptoms and coping strategies, because we are not going to discuss politics - that's what Facebook is for.

    This is an experiment in what could be seen as a semi-private support group, and it might not succeed. If you read the guidelines, you'll see that moderators have the discretion to keep this forum the way Forest envisions it. He might not even approve of this when he checks in :oops:
  20. MWsunin12

    MWsunin12 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Yes, I've noticed a variety of quirky pain issues since the election as well.

    On a broader scale, meaning not about the election results, I think all things that are not in our direct control cause that unspoken rage that Dr. Sarno writes about.

    For example: people stuck in an airport because of a blizzard. It brings up that feeling of "unfairness" when you're just trying to get home and all flights are cancelled, then rage that you have to figure out how and when you will be able to leave. Put in perspective: 1115 years ago, people could only travel by horse and wagon…hopefully 20 miles a day…weather permitting. And, if there was a blizzard, they could die.

    Somehow, it has helped me have perspective and remember that we are an advanced society and that means that many more things are out of our control and we hear about those things all day long. I'm not sure this is good for us. It has helped me to be aware, but to narrow in my focus and take action on a few things using the skills I have. Otherwise, trying to take it all in can be crushing. Pick something to be proactive about, and then tell yourself "job well done."
    JanAtheCPA likes this.

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