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Alex B. How do I handle pressure?

Discussion in 'Ask a TMS Therapist' started by Raj s, Mar 10, 2015.

  1. Raj s

    Raj s Peer Supporter

    This question was submitted via our Ask a TMS Therapist program. To submit your question, click here.

    I started to read about TMS sometime back and I am now almost 80 -90 % pain free and I am getting back my life.. There were some episodes where it looked like I gave up but I fought through it and I had this hope and read lot about TMS and believe in it.. Now for past few weeks, I am trying to go to the next level in my career. I am looking to go away from my comfort zone in my career and looking for new opportunities and new environment so that there is growth in my career. But what i am afraid or fear about is I might work in a environment where there might be lot of pressure.. How I am gonna handle this. Should I stay in the same level as I am today.. Should I move on and try different things.. If I am not gonna handle this pressure how I am gonna handle other pressures in my life.. Basically after knowing abt TMS I am afraid that if I get into any pressure situation I might get the pain again. Eventhough I know it is TMS how will I handle it.. I am thinking more about avoiding those situation.. But I cant be in the same level in my career. I am very much confused. Now I am getting this pain in my hand and upper back again.. I am thinking like since I have worked on my TMS in a place where there is not much of pressure now I can work on it again if it comes.. but what I go to a new company new people and new pressures how am I gonna handle all these things if my pain comes back...
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 16, 2015
  2. Alex Bloom LCSW

    Alex Bloom LCSW TMS Therapist

    Hi Raj, thanks for the question.

    Well you can stop worrying about what will happen when you start putting pressure on yourself because it's already happening. The fear of being in new situations and exposing yourself to new responsibilities is coming up here and now, so you can begin to address it now. Sometimes that anticipation of what's coming can create all kinds of pressure and that's what it sounds like is going on. You're so concerned that you won't be able to cope with these new situations that you're creating the very scenario that you're afraid of.

    Remember, the purpose behind the pain is to create fear and preoccupation. And that's exactly what's happening here! Unfortunately, by buying into that fear and obsessing over how it will play out, whether or not you will be able to cope, how bad the pain will be, etc., you are actually reinforcing the pain. Furthermore, the more you expect it to be there, the more likely it will be to arrive. Buying in to the fear and anxiety is like opening the front door and welcoming in the pain.

    The bad news is that it can be very hard not to buy in to those fears and anxiety. It feels so real! The pain is scary! Especially when you've already made a lot of progress. You feel like all your growth will evaporate.

    The good news is that it can most certainly be done, with practice. Try not to make it just another source of pressure by bullying yourself into it, saying things like "I'd better not buy into this fear or else", but rather try to just observe your mind's tendency to go to that anxious place, identify it for what it is and realize that you will be ok. Because you have had previous success with TMS, you have a big advantage by knowing that in fact, the pain can't really hurt you. Don't pressure yourself into feeling like you need to totally banish the fear right away. Play with it and be patient. Check out this piece on Outcome Independence written by Alan Gordon, I think you might find it helpful.

    Any advice or information provided here does not and is not intended to be and should not be taken to constitute specific professional or psychological advice given to any group or individual. This general advice is provided with the guidance that any person who believes that they may be suffering from any medical, psychological, or mindbody condition should seek professional advice from a qualified, registered/licensed physician and/or psychotherapist who has the opportunity to meet with the patient, take a history, possibly examine the patient, review medical and/or mental health records, and provide specific advice and/or treatment based on their experience diagnosing and treating that condition or range of conditions. No general advice provided here should be taken to replace or in any way contradict advice provided by a qualified, registered/licensed physician and/or psychotherapist who has the opportunity to meet with the patient, take a history, possibly examine the patient, review medical and/or mental health records, and provide specific advice and/or treatment based on their experience diagnosing and treating that condition or range of conditions.

    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.

    Questions may be edited for brevity and/or readability.

  3. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Raj s. You've gotten great advice from Alex Bloom.
    Your new fear stems from anxiety about your career.

    When I was a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, I used to go to work every day
    worrying that this would be the day I would not understand an assignment and would
    f--k up and look like a fool. It never happened, and I realize now that I spent a lot of time
    worrying about something that never happened.

    Don't worry about tomorrow in your career. You're going to do just fine.
    Maybe tell yourself that as a mantra.
  4. Raj s

    Raj s Peer Supporter

    Thanks Alex and Walt for writing.. I am sure I will be fine... :)
  5. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi again, Raj. Just laugh at pressure when it takes a hold of you and causes pain.
    I spent this morning trying to fix my computer from a virus, and a friend helped me for three hours
    and we found and deleted the problem. I hate computer problems so this was very stressful.
    I took "laugh breaks" during the two hours and after we solved the problem I had a real good laugh.

    Laughing often make me forget what stressed me out in the first place.
  6. Raj s

    Raj s Peer Supporter

    Thanks Walt. My pain was the one thing before which prevented me from doing anything or goin forward in my career. Now I know it is TMS I have to make some bold steps, fearless steps in my career.
  7. Steve Ozanich

    Steve Ozanich TMS Consultant

    You have it backwards Raj, from experience. The pain doesn't keep you from your career. You create the pain so that you can use it to avoid stepping into the career(s). The pain is a way for you to slow your life down, either because you don't like where you're heading, or because you can't make a decision as to which direction to take.

    Many people feel if the pain would just leave that they could get on with their life. But that's backwards. Cart before horse. The pain is helping you. It's telling you to go another direction, or preparing you for the direction you've chosen, by allowing you to think it through deeper before the criticisms come.

    When your heart is ready the pain will leave. Many contact me to say their pain increased dramatically when they started their dream job. But what they don't always see is that their parent's dream job was not their dream job. They had fallen into superego's trap, and broken their ego.

    The proper order is to step in and start doing, and forget about the pain, not to wait until your brain allows you to live your life. Confidence!

    Markus likes this.
  8. Raj s

    Raj s Peer Supporter

    Thanks Steve. Rightly said. I always used to think, let this pain stops and I will get on with life..
  9. shmps

    shmps Peer Supporter

    Steve, I was going through forums and saw your response above. I was having an understanding of what you wrote but after reading your response, I am so clear now.
    I was about to start a grad program when the pain started. I stopped my education right away because i thought let the pain subside. Its been a year now and I am not studying, my pain has reduced but now I am no longer interested in studying. Why? Because I don't want to study. I was told i should all my life so I started believing that i really wanna do this program. Pain slowed me down gave me time to think and now I know its what i thought i should but not what i really wanted to.
    So if pain is a guide, i usually think of pain as a guide, when in pain i start realizing I am on an emotional roller coaster. But if pain really is a guide, then why do i mostly have pain at work. I have been in this team for last 10 years. And guess what because of pain I had to take some time off from work and I realized then I really don't enjoy my work. Until before the pain I thought I dote my team and my work. So pain gave me time to think. Helped me slow down in my life. I have started taking things easy. I am not running 200 mph at work or in my personal life. I have learnt to drop some milestones and things from my to-do list in life. But i still have pain and mostly when I am doing things that i am bored and don't enjoy like my work. So should I quit job ? or Change job. Just like Raj even i fear new role new place will bring pressure and stress and pain may come back ??

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