1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this link: http://go.tmswiki.org/newprogram
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New Program Day 7: Pressure and Criticism

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Alan Gordon LCSW, Jul 18, 2017.

  1. HollDoll

    HollDoll Peer Supporter

    Omg literally IN LOVE with you Alan Gordon since coming across this pain program T Y for putting this together!!! For the past year I have been accepting of my acne as TMS (for about 8 months preceding I was not). I've been confused as to why it hasn't been healing "faster" because my back/hip/knee pain disappeared so soon after applying TMS concepts- and after going through your program I am finally able to see what I've been doing to prolong healing- pressure on myself to heal being HUGE because fear factor over symptom has continued to be big bad monster because of how much this particular symptom hits my ego... This program has been SO eye-opening and helpful and hilarious and enjoyable and EXCITING to go through, THANK YOU FOR MAKING THIS!!!!!
    Hayley and birder like this.
  2. LindenSwole

    LindenSwole Peer Supporter

    This is wild - even the story Alan gives is identical to something that happened to me last weekend.

    I only went through 3 days of this program at the recommendation of a therapist and by Friday evening my pain was completely gone. 100% pain free. Woke up saturday and was still pain free; all day sunday was pain free. This is the first time in a year and a half.

    Then, Sunday night, my wife's co-worker sent her a text with a screenshot of a picture of me with my recently changed new look (long hair, man bun, beard, etc) and said "I can't even with this look" and i got really mad. My pain came back as if it never left two days prior. Criticism sucks.

    But there is no greater proof in the world that it's psychological than being pain free, getting criticized and then the pain returns.
    chemgirl likes this.
  3. iwire

    iwire Peer Supporter

    [QUOTE="LindenSwole, post: 96509, member: 5986"my wife's co-worker sent her a text with a screenshot of a picture of me with my recently changed new look (long hair, man bun, beard, etc) and said "I can't even with this look" and i got really mad. My pain came back as if it never left two days prior. Criticism sucks.
    But there is no greater proof in the world that it's psychological than being pain free, getting criticized and then the pain returns.[/QUOTE]

    My first reaction was--"wow" --so Bold and unbelievably rude---what kind of person gives energy to something like that and then shares it with a coworker??
    My next reaction was--poor person who texted that-they must be really unhappy
    My final reaction was---HEY--so glad you see the opportunity to take the gift from it! perhaps in this case criticism will set you free?

    Wear your truth @ LindenSwole Love the proof you got! It encourages me too....
    schnurma and LindenSwole like this.
  4. Bodhigirl

    Bodhigirl Well known member

    "Fear, pressure, and criticism activate our danger signals, prevent our brains from feeling safe, and perpetuate a cycle of pain. It’s important to recognize these behaviors and the impact they can have, so that we’re able to change them."
    I am going through the program again, to reinforce and relearn some key lessons. Because I got my second migraine this week and my fifth in four weeks! Astounding. Got this one just after waking up well-rested and content with my plans for today.
    Then, I read this quote from Alan's lesson of today.
    I constantly reawaken to how harsh I am on myself. Even with a migraine, I did 45 minutes of intense yoga and breathing. I then went into our gym to do some 7 Minute High Intensity workouts. I got through one and my head was pounding. It's because I am stressing myself out, encouraging myself to power through something when what I need to do is lie down with the dogs in a patch of sun and read something beautiful... not the New York Times or Washington Post, not Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
    I have a wonderful support network. I don't use it all the time.
    I read up on trigger foods for migraines and out of the 12 Dirty Dozen foods, the top of the list are things I eat every single day. I know that in TMS recovery we don't go running after other solutions and yet I know that there could be a synergy going on here between tension, fear, pressure, self-criticism AND dairy products! One thing can tee me up and another thing can knock me sideways.
    So. I am willing to explore the food triggers, would love to hear from anyone else who has tried a combination of abstinence from so-called trigger foods and TMS recovery, glove in hand.
  5. Pemberley

    Pemberley Peer Supporter

  6. Bodhigirl

    Bodhigirl Well known member

    Thanks for this! I have done many elimination diets and detoxes over the years... and sugar has been out of my life for most of 30 years. Gluten too.
    It’s a process.
    Loved the story about your husband!
    No migraines for nearly two weeks. And no dairy. Did have eggs. No downside. I stopped eating eggs years ago but need extra protein sources - haven’t eaten meat since I was 16. Only fish and prefer not to.
    It’s a journey. Glad you contacted me re your post. Glad to have read it this morning.
  7. Pemberley

    Pemberley Peer Supporter

    You’re welcome! Awesome about the no migraines for 2 weeks! And very interesting about the dairy! So true about it being a process… It’s very hard and time-consuming to eliminate foods and really track how your body feels. When I first read about TMS a few years ago, I could easily spot TMS everywhere – while still reaching for things like gluten, dairy and sugar without a thought to how it was affecting my mood and energy.
  8. Pressure, long days, etc. definitely seem to aggravate my neck and back pain, Not too sure about criticism, but I'll comment the next time something like this rears its head. I'm just looking forward to the day that my TMS subsides and the tight muscles in my upper back release and then cause the pain in my neck to ease. It's all connected, as any stimulation in one area causes feelings in the other.
  9. kim marie

    kim marie Peer Supporter

  10. Kozas

    Kozas Well known member

    I suspect it's book The Great Pain Deception
  11. Francis.Antonius

    Francis.Antonius New Member

  12. Francis.Antonius

    Francis.Antonius New Member

    A great book that I read and would highly recommend is "Passing through Panic and Fear" by Dr. Caire Weiks... I'm just re-reading it as the goal for her and I think all of us as chronic pain folks is to as you put it Alan, be "authentically indifferent" towards all of it... the fear, pressure and internal critic especially!
    Tilli likes this.
  13. Tilli

    Tilli New Member

    I like to remember a quote
    “ your opinion of me is none of my business “ this helps me at times when I’m feeling attacked.
    Francis.Antonius likes this.
  14. Tilli

    Tilli New Member

    So I just connected my pain from today
    My left leg , foot and toes are in excruciating pain. I had a few projects that I needed to finish for some people this morning and I was struggling with the machines i was working with. I wanted to get them done in time for Christmas and I wanted them to like them and be happy with my work. So the pressure and fear of not finishing and not being good enough found a place to come out in my body. Dang it
    I stressed myself out for no reason and am paying for it in pain. I’ve got to stop this !!
  15. Erbear

    Erbear New Member

    I appreciate this post. I feel and have felt so similar in the past. When I see how I do this to myself, then I feel pressure to "not put myself through this" as well as self-critical. So the pattern has been so circular. I worried about the pain getting worse where I get incapacitated, at work with a client, or in a bathroom and maybe I couldn't stand up of get off the toilet (BTW this has never happened), or stuck on a plane, or getting luggage out of the overhead compartment. There were days it felt like every step would be my last step where I am standing up all right. When I was beginning to get better, I would have almost a complete day without any of this. It was miraculous. Then it would come back. Then I would be upset with myself that "I was the cause of this" or "I let this happen." "I didn't write enough in expressive writing" or "I am not doing the emotional work." This is so spot on. It is comforting to know other have suffered from this, because I felt like such a wimp, but had to pretend that I was fine on the outside. Pressure to be fine describes it for me.
    Tilli likes this.
  16. Erbear

    Erbear New Member

    I have the book. Traditionally, each 12 step program where they have literature are written as a group and edited as a group. So the authors remain anonymous. My book, is yellowish. There is a work book as well.
  17. Erbear

    Erbear New Member

    The "extinction burst" principle has been helpful. When I feel things get worse, I say to myself, "what has changed? Has there been a physical injury?" I say, "no." What has changed? I have been working this program and have had days with less pain than there has been in years. "This must be the ego and the neurocircuits wanting to not go away without a fight and they want a last-ditch effort. It is truly like disciplining a child or an animal, where it appears you have made progress and there is some regression afterward. I have also heard it called the "lightning bolt" where there is growth goes upward and then it regresses a bit, and the grows upward and then regresses a bit. It is said that I am integrating and sorting out the two options, the old and the new. w I am not sure it applies here. But it seems to help me to know that it is all part of the process rather than I am not making progress. It is also teaching giving me an opportunity to not fear the pain and to realize it is only temporary and that good can come out of it.
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2019
    Felekis likes this.
  18. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    This popped up in one of my feeds so I thought I’d share it here, it’s Rick Hanson writing about pressure, the impact it has upon us, and how to dial it down. I’ve come to see how much pressure and criticism play a part in TMS and how it is often very subtle, habitual and therefore off the radar. It’s truly worth revisiting this brilliant program at the moment because I’m sure a good many of us are experiencing flare ups.

    https://www.rickhanson.net/lower-the-pressure/ (Lower the Pressure - Dr. Rick Hanson)
    Heavenly and Erbear like this.
  19. Erbear

    Erbear New Member

    Thanks so much for the information. I will read it today. Erik
  20. Erbear

    Erbear New Member

    Thanks, it was a good read.
    plum likes this.

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