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Derek S. Emotions and pain

Discussion in 'Ask a TMS Therapist' started by Guest, Mar 21, 2015.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

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    Question
    Hi, I am just wanting some advice about something that happens quite often to me. I have constant pain all over one side of my body that swaps sides. When someone says something that upsets me or makes me feel uncomfortable, instantly I get a sharp increase in pain which can end up as a migraine very quickly. I have made a start on trying to actually feel the emotions in my body when pain increases and not suppress it. However when I'm with people and they have said or done something that upsets me and causes me pain (which is something I fear) how do I deal with it at that exact time. How do I feel the emotion without lashing out or breaking down into tears (which I don't want to do) Do I leave? Go somewhere I can be alone? Or is that just running away? Normally I automatically suppress these feelings and instantly I have a severe increase in pain. How do I go about stopping this automatic response?
     
  2. Derek Sapico MFT

    Derek Sapico MFT TMS Therapist

    Answer
    What a great question.

    First of all, I want to clarify that it is not the emotions that are causing your pain. Rather, it is your body's response to the emotions in the form of tension and anxiety. You mentioned that people upset you which leads to pain and this is something which you fear. The fear is the primary reinforcer of the pain so interrupting this pattern of reinforcement should be your primary goal.

    Yout primitive brain is interpreting danger when you experience certain emotions like anger and/or sadness. When you experience this, first create safety for yourself by breathing and sending a message to your brain that you are safe and not in danger.

    Once you have this bit down, then you can absolutely practice feeling your emotions, ideally in your body. Regulate your anxiety and then focus on how anger/sadness feels in your body. What's the sensation? Can you just focus on how it feels and allow yourself to feel it?

    If you need to remove yourself from a situation to practice one or both of these exercises, do so by all means. After all, what is more important than feeling safe and caring for yourself?

    This takes a lot of practice so don't get discouraged when it doesn't work. Just remind yourself that you're learning how to care for yourself in a new way and that this takes time and patience.

    Best of luck!


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    The general advice and information provided in this format is for informational purposes only and cannot serve as a way to screen for, identify, or diagnose depression, anxiety, or other psychological conditions. If you feel you may be suffering from any of these conditions please contact a licensed mental health practitioner for an in-person consultation.

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    clairem and Walt Oleksy like this.
  3. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Great advice from Derek.

    Fear is our worst enemy in TMS healing.
    Keeping positive is the best way to fight fear.

    If everything else fails, just LAUGH your fears away.

    Start with a smile, then let that grow into full-blown laughter.

    Sometimes I tell fear that it's all a pile of s--t. Then I laugh and feel a lot better.
     

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