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Excellent book for TMS - Emotional Alchemy

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by hecate105, Jul 4, 2016.

  1. hecate105

    hecate105 Beloved Grand Eagle

    I'm just in the middle of reading Emotional Alchemy by Tara Bennett-Goleman - subtitled How the Mind Can Heal the Heart. It is brilliant!

    I wholeheartedly recommend it to TMSers out there.
    She has a very clear way of writing and uses neuro-science, cognitive therapy and Buddhist doctrine to explain how to 'catch' our self-defeating patterns of thought. She explains how we can use mindfulness to examine and/or observe these patterns of thought and ways in which we can change/alter or merely ignore them. There are continuous case studies throughout showing exactly how, step by step we can free ourselves from the modes of thinking that have generally been set up from early childhood and have such an impact on the adult we have become.
    I have found the exercises at the end of each chapter very helpful in identifying exactly when i spiral into a thought pattern and how to deal with it when i do. After years of work on my TMS i am pretty much 98% healed - but i recognise that if i let my thought processes stay the same - the result will ultimatly be the same - more TMS. So i am still working, albeit slower and more occasionally, to free myself from the limitations of the 'TMS' mindset.
    I think this is an important step. I have read of so many who 'beat' TMS - yet months or years later are beset with similar problems. By continuing to work on the character traits that feed TMS and the emotional and mental thought patterns that support it - i believe it will be possible to arrive at a point beyond the reach of TMS! That is my goal anyway! Perhaps another decade and i'll be all good....!
    Bhamgirl, Sienna, Peggy and 5 others like this.
  2. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Looking up that book now. Thanks.
  3. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    I think you've hit the nail no the head, Jo! And it's probably why so many of us who actually have had a lot of success still hover between 80-90% recovery depending on our stress level. Not only is it hard to conquer a lifetime of harmful patterns, but the mechanism of TMS is built into our brains by evolution. It's a primitive mechanism, so we can learn to overcome it most of the time, but it doesn't take much for it to take hold again.

    It's interesting to compare and contrast TMS with another primitive mechanism that often goes together with TMS: fight-or-flight. Now, we wouldn't want to permanently disable fight-or-flight, because it's essential to our survival if we ever faced an actual life or death situation. On the other hand, our brains engage it far too often in a modern world where we are rarely in physical danger, so learning to control it when it isn't needed is a constructive and healthy goal - but we would never make it our goal to eliminate the reaction altogether.

    TMS, on the other hand, seems to have little to no usefulness anymore. I suspect it was always a flawed mechanism, at best. Designed to keep us on our toes instead of wallowing in emotions when we might be eaten by a sabre-tooth tiger is all very well, but seriously not useful to the average person today. Harmful, in fact, as the pressures of an overpopulated and resource-stretched world become worse.
    nowtimecoach likes this.
  4. hecate105

    hecate105 Beloved Grand Eagle

    I agree Jan, the fight or flight is a primeval structure but we seem to set it off willy nilly. I find that adrenaline to me is a total 'fear' chemical - so flying, bridges, heights all flood me with it and i get terrified. Whereas my husband (maybe males process it differently on a primary level) thrives on it - so even if he feels nervous about jumping off a cliff with a little parachute attached - he still does it - and whoops with joy....
    The book above says about the amygdala v the hippocampus - interesting...
  5. Cap'n Spanky

    Cap'n Spanky Well known member

    Added to my Amazon wishlist.
  6. Ines

    Ines Well known member

    I just read the reviews on Amazon and a bit about the book and ordered it. They do have used copies so it was only $4. Thanks for the suggestion. I need some help with emotions I know are there but don't know what to do with.
  7. hecate105

    hecate105 Beloved Grand Eagle

    Yes, i did all the exercises in the SEP and another prog in a TMS book, that sorted out the big stuff and got to a much better place. But I still found myself reacting badly to things and wondering why i couldn't seem to deal with it. After reading Candace Pert's Molecules of Emotion - reading this book really makes sense, it brings the science behind our bodies reactions and behaviour together with techniques like mindfulness (that has really worked for me in the past) so that I can actually catch myself 'in' the process of reacting and gives me other options. Still hard work - but no pain no gain! (such a TMS ironic joke...!)

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