1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
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Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Day-Cee, Dec 4, 2014.

  1. Day-Cee

    Day-Cee Peer Supporter


    I'm sure that you actually think by reading the title of my post that I want to talk about fear of doing physical activity or fear of the pain itself... Actually no, I've been introduce to TMS about 2 months ago and to be honest, I do see an improvement... I use to think about the pain all the time, now I can spend hours sitting on my office chair without even feeling and thinking about the pain, which is really great.

    However I'm still struggling with the stand up position, I can't be standing at the same place without having pain/discomfort within 2 minutes. I know it is conditioning... When I first started having pain, it was only when I was standing up for a long period of time... My physio was telling me that it was probably the fact that I was sitting for long hours that created that pain and that eventually, if I did not make my daily exercise, I would start having pain while sitting.. sure enough, a couple of week after, pain while sitting started, despite the fact that I was doing my daily exercises...

    Anyway, my post is more about the fear of emotions... I have that problem and I'm wondering if anybody here have or had this fear... I do have a couple of items on my list that I'm really scared to address... They have been so hard to get over that I'm scared to get into them again. It's nothing major, just that it was really painfull at the time.

    This program is probably the hardest program I've ever done... I use to stretch half an hour in the morning and an hour at night... Now, I stopped doing this and I have difficulty to journalist daily for 20-30 minutes. I do read passages of TMS book every day, but I'm procrastinating with the journalism... And I know that it's because I don't like addressing my feelings... I think I've always been like that.

    Anybody had that same problem? What did you do to overcome this fear? Only courage?

    Thanks again...

  2. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Dom,

    I definitely had a fear of journaling about some of my most painful emotions and life experiences in the beginning. I followed Schubiner's program in Unlearn Your Pain, and he has you make a lot of lists of things (e.g. difficult childhood experiences, current stressors, etc.). So when I started journaling about things, I picked the easiest things on my lists to start with. This allowed me to gradually get used to feeling the emotions and to get over my fear. I can now write about anything. It is still painful, but I'm not afraid of it. And I am pretty much completely pain free now.

    So that is my suggestion for you---start with the least difficult thing and gradually work your way to the really hard stuff.

    BTW, I read somewhere recently that when one actually allows oneself to feel an emotion, that the feeling usually lasts about 1.5 minutes and then dissipates. (There are some exceptions to this, like the grief from losing a loved one.) And we know that the pain and other symptoms from repressing emotions can last decades. So it definitely is not as bad as our unconscious brain thinks it's going to be.

    Best wishes...
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2014
  3. lolaskip

    lolaskip New Member

    Hi Dom,

    Perhaps you are not as afraid of the emotion as your judgement of yourself for feeling it. Crying makes me feel embarrassed and a bit ashamed. I grew up in a home where we "sucked it up," "pushed through," and issues like depression were "weak." I realize this is the same self-talk I now use towards myself when I have strong emotions.

    Have you tried mindful meditation? Try giving yourself a chunk of time where you will not "judge" what comes up but simply observe it. Good luck!
    Ellen likes this.
  4. Colly

    Colly Beloved Grand Eagle

    I totally agree with Ellen. Those painful emotions will always simmer below the surface unless you get them out. You may or may not be aware they're there, but your body will always respond if you have stuck emotions.

    Bringing up painful emotions is not always as scary as it sounds. One useful technique I sometimes use is one described by Dr Emmett Miller' in his book 'Deep Healing'. He calls it "Rewriting your own script". He describes it by saying: "As you look at this scene from the past, view it as you would watch an actor on a screen. Allow yourself to feel relaxed. Now rewind that scene, but this time imagine how it would look to see yourself responding to the situation with behaviour that is more acceptable to you. Relive this scene now… responding in the way you want to respond… and enjoy feeling in charge of the situation. Let this scene complete itself now… and as you leave it , let yourself feel really good about the way you handled it."

    I used this technique to forgive myself and my Dad over scenes from the past. I also used the same approach whilst imagining myself holding the hand of myself as a child - the adult Colly and the child Colly. It was very effective and helped me clear a lifetime of resentment and opened my heart to compassion for him.
  5. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Colly, I like your suggestions about rewriting your own script.
    I'm glad they helped you to reach a new understanding with your father.
    And holding your hand as a child.

    If I only knew then what I know know now, about TMS, I would have been closer to my father before he died too young.
    At least we reached a real good level of mutual love before that.
  6. tigerlilly

    tigerlilly Well known member

    Hi Dom -

    I, too, procrastinated with journaling. Why? Same reasons as you. But really? Because of FEAR. Which is the exact bottom line reason I was in so much bedridden pain in the first place. I started a journal and I made a list of all the possible "triggers." And then I started writing..........about the easiest ones first. I didn't want to go to those more intense, heavy places. I started making excuses not to journal. Why? Again, FEAR. Lose the fear and you will lose the pain. And bedridden I continued to be.

    You ask what helped me to overcome this fear. For me? Desperation. I was so desperate to get out of bed. I was at rock bottom and knew that everything I wanted was on the other side of fear. So I pulled out my computer and started addressing the hot button topics. One at a time. And for the first time, I didn't just acknowledge the reasons I felt the way that I did. I allowed myself to FEEL. To experience the emotion, and not just look at it from an outsider/analytic/logical view. Nobody was going to read that journal. I could say and release whatever came up. WHATEVER. CAME. UP. Just get it out. Let it flow.
    And ya know what? It wasn't so bad. The feelings pouring out of me was so cathartic - to release that "steam vent" and let it flow. So therapeutic. Once you go there, I think you will see that it is not as scary of a place as you have built it up in your mind to be. Sit down and write when you will have no distractions - nobody to come into the room and distract you.

    You can do this. Wishing you wellness in your journey!

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