1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
    Dismiss Notice

Day 3 Doubts

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by wintermute, Jul 17, 2013.

  1. wintermute

    wintermute New Member

    Pessimism crept in today. I finally did some programming again, which was great, but then my pain increased a lot and I was disappointed. Of course I shouldn't expect a miracle cure, and there will be steps forward and backward, but I was still a bit disappointed.

    I also have to be honest and admit I'm still having doubts about TMS. While I'm convinced the mind can have a profound impact on the body, I always thought it to be a more direct connection. Stress or anxiety leading to increased adrenaline and cortisol production, bad posture, cramped muscles, shallow breathing, that sort of thing. But when I read some descriptions about TMS as if it's some kind of conscious entity with an agenda of its own, using all kinds of higher level scheming and planning to trick you into not being in touch with certain emotions... I find that somewhat hard to believe. Of course I'm not really knowledgable about it yet so I will wait till my books arrive in order to develop a better understanding of it before I make any real judgements. But as of right now, I think this is the issue that's giving me doubts.

    Time to focus on the positive. My symptoms did not increase after making dinner yesterday. Since my "RSI" started I've had like 5 instances where the pain greatly increased after making dinner. Chopping vegetables, stirring stuff in a pan, that sort of thing seemed to wreak havoc on my upper back and arms. After the fifth time I was too scared to make dinner again, because I felt my recovery was set back for weeks afterwards. Yesterday I decided it's probably a conditioned response and I went ahead and made dinner. The pain did not increase, at all! That was great.

    Let's see what tomorrow brings...
  2. Emily

    Emily Peer Supporter

    Because TMS asks you to look at your pain through such a different lens, doubts are a normal step in the process. You have been told one thing about your pain for your entire life, it often takes time for the shift in understanding to happen. Even when you understand the TMS diagnosis, it can take longer for you to truly accept and embrace it. This is why it is so wonderful that you have already created an evidence sheet (I saw your subforum post yesterday :)) . Along with increasing your understanding of TMS through reading and the educational exercises from the Structured Educational Program, keep reviewing your evidence sheet as soon as doubt creeps in.

    This shows that you are already putting to use your great understanding of conditioned responses with TMS. Keep up the amazing work!!

    One article that may be helpful as you move forward is Alan Gordon's article A Word About Outcome Independence
    Currently, you seem to be very focused on when the pain is present and when it is gone. This makes sense... the pain is what you are focused on because you want it to disappear! However, what this article discusses is the importance of not caring about our level of pain but, instead, refocusing our goal on how little we care about the pain. Thought it might be a helpful read!
  3. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hey you,

    Fret ye not.
    Many people, including myself, harbour doubts about this whole thing, especially 'the djinn of pain'. As much as I love mystery, this is a different kettle of fish. Back in the day I did my degree in psychology. They knew zip about the brain compared to today. God bless Sarno, he forged ahead regardless and with all due respect, he was writing around that time, in a different discipline to his own.
    Not so long ago I posted this on tmshelp:

    "...a deeper understanding of how the mind-shapes-the-brain-shapes-the-mind. The joys of advancement in neuroscience means there are, now and increasingly, powerful explanations for what Sarno called the black box. He acknowledged, at the time of writing, that it was "difficult to explain at the fundamental level", but recent years are seeing the demystification of what happens between "unconscious emotional states requiring physical symtoms", the "black box", and "hypothalamus activation".

    All in quotes are Sarno's words. The man just knew. He had faith and he did his best to describe what he saw.

    So you see, your preference for brain science is on the money but I may make a poet of you yet.
  4. wintermute

    wintermute New Member

    Thanks for the encouragement!

    The article about outcome independence makes so much sense. I am indeed still very focused on the pain. When it decreases I immediately get optimistic, when it increases I immediately get pessimistic. Not good. I think this focus stems from the fact that financial problems are on the horizon, causing this sense of urgency, as if I need to get rid of the pain fast so I can work again and generate an income before I can't pay the bills anymore. But you can't force recovery this way obviously.

Share This Page