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Day 34 cont'd

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by birder, May 14, 2021.

  1. birder

    birder Well known member

    I was supposed to be on Day 35 today, which is my "rest and regroup" day, but I didn't get through all the journaling yesterday. And so what? Nobody's perfect hahahahaha!
    The question is, what parts of the program do I think are frustrating and/or I don't accept. And maybe this is a more of a Sarno thing but it's definitely been on my mind lately, so here goes. One of the most difficult things for me is being asked to give up the physical treatments and accommodations that have grown up around my symptoms: the soft pillows and ice packs and hot towels and various unguents I rub all over my bod. I have such a crazy variety of symptoms that I've also developed a crazy variety of odd placebo treatments for them. Doing these rituals does not make my discomfort go away, but not doing them makes it worse, if that makes sense. Well of course it makes sense to you guys, you understand how TMS and the brain work!
    Of the approximately 20 habits I do to supposedly help myself feel more comfortable and functional, I've managed to give up... three. And they didn't go without a struggle. But they did go. So what I'm wondering is if holding on to these habits is keeping my brain focused on the physical. Don't answer that, I know the answer already. The difficulty is, after almost five years of having control wrested from me - separation and divorce, a little altercation with an SUV etc. - these routines give me a sense of sameness, structure - and safety. I feel discouraged and a little ashamed that I can be 100 percent on board with the TMS diagnosis and yet too fearful to let go of my safety behaviors. And there you go: my yucky truth of the day.
    JanAtheCPA and yb44 like this.
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Honest and awesome @birder. And possibly a turning point.

    This jumped right out at me.

    Think about this. I mean, really look at this.

    Now, ask yourself two questions:

    1. Is this useful?
    2. Is this being kind and compassionate to myself?

    I'm all for taking advantage of the self-healing power of the placebo effect. But it damn well better come from a place of love and self-care, with a positive and constructive expectation that you can heal yourself with a little help to visualize that outcome.

    Your rituals do not come from self love or compassion or a belief that you can heal yourself. They are old and tired and they come from a place of fear.

    So, the final question is: Now what? Let's discuss.

  3. Zuz

    Zuz Peer Supporter

    Perhaps you could, gradually, kindly, without rush, change these rituals? Like heating pad and meditate? and i don’t know but is it really necessary to let go everything physical if it makes you feel good? Perhaps it’s not necessary?
    Personally, I am more into be more kind to myself these days. I do spoil myself with hot showers and heat pads. Why not? It doesn’t cure my back tension ( refuse to call it the p word) but i makecsure to concentrate on the relaxing part of it, and breath.
    Maybe I missed and misunderstood something but I have a feeling it’s ok to do physical stuff as long as we don’t think it’s a ‘cure’ and see it more like a kind and nice thing we can give ourselves?
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  4. birder

    birder Well known member

    Well, that's plain speaking, Jan! But dead on. So now what?
    When I was a sensitive teenager, I was overweight. My sisters were dating, but I wasn't. I blamed it on my weight - if I was skinny, I'd have all the dates I wanted. So I lost weight. And surprise surprise, that wasn't the issue at all. It was fear. I regained the weight, and eventually learned to love and accept myself whatever my shape. And one day I asked a guy out. Later I married him.
    What was my point again? Oh, fear. I figure my fear has to be low before I make changes, but thinking about changes spikes the fear and often the sensations. Catch-22. I've found, though, that when the desire for change outweighs the fear, it works.
  5. birder

    birder Well known member

    Holy sh*t. I decided to try one thing. Right now. And I set a timer for 30 minutes. And I was absolutely overcome with fear, so I decided I couldn't do it. then I had an idea - I re-set the timer for five minutes and started working on Day 36. Sensations were all over the place. The timer went off, and I said to myself, "I think I can do 5 more." Five minutes later it went off again. I've done this six times now. I told myself that I was okay. And my fear started to go down. It helped that Day 36 has a blog on fear by the brilliant Howard Schubiner. I cried a little reading it. When my timer goes off again I'm going to stop. But I feel so proud of myself.
    Zuz likes this.
  6. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

  7. Zuz

    Zuz Peer Supporter

  8. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Excellent, really wonderful @birder ! And in concept, so simple, right?

    The hard part is convincing your brain to let you do something different. I struggle with that part myself.

    @Zuz has definitely got it, by the way :D

    Similarly, my thought is to gradually get rid of the old rituals, and replace them with ones that generate self-love and hope. Incorporating any form of meditation or mindfulness will make them even more powerful.

  9. Zuz

    Zuz Peer Supporter

    Thank you, it’s reassuring I am getting some of this, I am only in my second week of this live changing stuff !
    For me everything is about fear right now. I am getting better after a second back spams. The worse ever. It git worse after i had to drive after not completly recuperated from the first.
    So now I am afraid of driving...
    Tomorrow I had a car inspection scheduled and it was stressing me. I have very little bravery left, I know. So i changed my appointment to Friday. There. Stop the pressure.
    Now, without that pressure, I plan to try driving tomorrow. But at my pace, for pleasure, and see where i get. My back is still very stiff and I feel I need to do it at my pace.
    I thunk many are brave enough to just storm trough but i know that if i try the fear will just swallow me again. i think the way to progress is so very personnal.
    I read many who just did it cold turkey - and just did something. I feel like I have always pushed myself beyond my limits and my body decided no way, it’s enough. It’s like my lesson is the opposite to push trough. It is to be more kind to myself. It feels do new!

    good luck Birder I love reading your thoughts you are a great inspiration for me :)
    Balsa11 likes this.
  10. Balsa11

    Balsa11 Well known member

    Tell your body that spasms are temporary, breathe, and deal with the fear and rush to get better.
  11. Zuz

    Zuz Peer Supporter

    I did drive for 20 minutes now and was a bit stiff but ok :).
    Tomorrow I will be driving 40 minutes and train some puppies, a very big step. I am visualizing it going well.... puppies have healing energy which helps :).

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