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But... Our Personalities Never Change

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Ines, Feb 22, 2017.

  1. Ines

    Ines Well known member

    I think I hit my first relapse in this process.
    Some history -
    My work is seasonally busy at this time. Last year, had an anxiety/chronic migraine breakdown. Went on disability. Came back to work. Found TMS in May.

    I know work stress is a trigger so I had all the tools for stress management. I was pro active. I put meetings on, did research, made charts. I was promised I would have a jr. to help me and still I have nobody. All the work is on my shoulders and it's too much. To make things worse, this new hire next to me was supposed to be 25% for my team and a month later I found out my boss never told me because she was using her for her projects. So, I was promised that I would have support and once again I was lied to.

    All my symptoms are back. I can't sleep. All I think about is work. I'm having major anxiety and headaches every day. Migraines all weekend long.

    So, even though I did everything in my power and knew what my boundries were I feel like my perfectionist/goodist personality just takes on too much. I internalize all my stress because I don't want to upset people. I'm completely aware as I'm doing it. I smile and wave hello to my boss every day and inside I just want to punch her for lying to me. It's like an involuntary response.

    How, how, how do I go forward? I can't change my personality. There will always be life stress. Being aware of my goodism is not enough. How do we go forward then? What do I do?

    Please give me some advice good people of this forum.

    - Ines
  2. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    I've recently gone through a rough patch and it kicked off a shed-load of symptoms. I was stressed, exhausted, bordering on the resentment~guilt dance and then one day the fridge/freezer brokedown while I was out and I came home to what looked like Jeff Dahmer's playground (defrosted black berries make a really big mess and splatter everywhere). And the weird thing is having literally lost my cool I just started laughing. It was ridiculous because in that moment I realised how I'd been trying to make everything ok for everyone. My dad was in hospital, mum can't drive and is recovering from two mini strokes, there was the care of my partner, family visits, hospital appointments...it was crazy and I was at the hub. In private I lost my rag and ranted, I broke down sobbing and now here I was laughing like a fool at the latest challenge to sanity.

    I didn't consciously think this but something deep inside me went f*** it.

    I'd not been swimming as much as I like and need so I decided to go and really enjoy myself and be there until I felt better. And each time I went I ended up meeting someone new and spent a good hour or more chatting and putting the world to rights. I came home feeling fantastic.

    I think it does well to ease off trying to manage it all and instead embrace a stupid amount of pleasure. 'Tis the ole soothe to rage ratio and it works like a charm.

    Like you, I ain't going to change my personality. I enjoy caring even when it is demanding and tiring but I recognise the necessity of counterbalance. Once my symptoms start up I know I'm out of whack.

    There is of course the option of piping up and saying something to your boss. Sometimes you have to upset people and applecarts because sometimes they don't realise how much pressure you are under. Work stress is not worth killing yourself over. It really isn't. Stop taking on so much. Say no. I do appreciate how hard that is but you can do it and it is better to say something and initiate a change rather than let the internal dialogue/imaginary arguments snowball into something horrible.

    Ok, my boy awakes so I shall sign off.

    Take good care Ines,

    Plum x
    Ines likes this.
  3. EileenS

    EileenS Well known member

    Practice, practice, practice the techniques you've learned and don't give up. It's like learning anything new. I'm positively zen in many situations that used to cause stress and I now give advice to others on how to chill out. There are still trigger situations, but I now come through them much better and can see situations in a very different way. I have learned that sometimes I have to wait much longer than I want for a situation to change, but I have to trust it will eventually turn out best for all parties involved. This doesn't help you in the present situation, but hopefully it helps.
    Ines likes this.
  4. Steve Ozanich

    Steve Ozanich TMS Consultant

    There are several aspects of your personality that can be altered or mitigated. Neuroticism being one, with TMS knowledge, consciousnesses being another. As long as we fear rejection, niceness will be there to haunt our dreams. But the good news is that you have control over how you react. Stress comes from want. Stress is the difference between what you wanted vs. what you just got.

    So a good place to start is to want less, or demand less from yourself.

    Walker449 and Ines like this.
  5. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Ines,

    I love the replies so far. I'll add a comment.

    When I read this, I read that you have already put yourself in a terrible bind: "I know how I should be in order to not have TMS symptoms (change personality), and this is not possible." While there is truth to your assessment of where you are, there is an inherent pressurizing of yourself in this particular moment. That is one thing I want to observe. So Steve's reply gives some fresh air here: you are not stuck.

    Personalities are hard to change and so are bosses! My recommendation is to allow as much feeling about all this as possible: sense into your body, journal, talk to yourself with attuning statements like "you're really angry right now." This allowing and knowing yourself is important. I suspect that even though you have awareness of your patterns and emotions, there is subtle rejection of "where you are" in the moment. This may even be at the level of fear and rejection about where you find yourself because you believe that your feeling state contributes to TMS. It doesn't, except that the positive feelings are positively effecting TMS symptoms, as Plum suggests. The "negative" feelings don't hurt us, so much as resistance to them does. The resistance is where the sadness, anger, etc comes from, and it is experienced down deep.

    Also, by allowing your conscious experience as much as possible, truth and harmony in your personality begin to emerge naturally. Not as something to be fixed, but as a relaxation, because there is less inner conflict. This takes some time, and can be directed partly by changed behaviors. Keeping your boundaries and speaking your truth are important, and not easy for many of us. This takes courage and practice.

    Good luck. I think your inquiry will guide you in the right direction.

    Andy B
    Ines likes this.
  6. Ines

    Ines Well known member

    So much good advice. Thank you guys so much.
    I did confront my boss yesterday. I held nothing back. Then, went home with anxiety and a migraine all night.
    I read these responses before bed and woke up more positive.
    I never saw it from the stand point of being aware of my personality can put pressure on myself. Inner bully and pressuring and my biggest problems so that makes sense.
    This will take some time and practice. Thank you for the advice.
  7. Ines

    Ines Well known member

    Hi Guys,

    I thought a lot about this because I'm feeling better and am not in such a dark place. You all touched on points that were true so I wanted to share in case it can help someone.

    Plum - Yup! My cup runneth over. It started in October with my son's knee pain which we were told was growing pain. This has been going on for almost a year. He woke me up every night for a month and a half. We finally got a proper diagnosis after switching dr.s and it's osteoid osteoma. They are letting him take advil until his procedure but that was a rough thing to go through to watch him suffer in pain every night. So, I was already at my stress limit and never really recovered from that. I did tell my boss everything the next day. I would have never done that in the past. I mean everything.. how I was disappointed, how she's using and abusing me, I even threatened to quit. Now I have a helper. Go figure. But it felt good to get that off my chest.

    Andy B. & Steve O. - I was judging my reaction to the stress. Instead of just going with the flow. I was upset that I was upset since I thought I had prepared.

    Eileen S. - This was a good learning experience and now I'm glad it happened. Next time a storm comes I know it will pass and hopefully I have enough wisdom to just feel it and watch it pass.

    Thanks gang!
  8. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    To me, this is a huge insight, and can help all of us when we get caught...
    Ines likes this.
  9. Ines

    Ines Well known member

    Thank you : )
  10. EileenS

    EileenS Well known member

    Congratulations Ines. Well done. Sounds like you have lots to journal on, including congratulating yourself on your learning and speaking up to your boss. I hope your son is feeling better very soon.
    Ines likes this.
  11. Ines

    Ines Well known member

    Thank you.

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