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how to push aside the pain?

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Hopeful83, Sep 3, 2015.

  1. Hopeful83

    Hopeful83 New Member

    I've been working on TMS for chronic migraines for a few weeks now but I still struggle with the idea of not being afraid of the pain.
    It really hurts when I get a migraine and I can't just push it aside. When I feel one coming on, I try to self talk, fight my inner bully or talk compassionately to myself as well as practicing the body scan depending on the time.
    I feel like working on the TMS is helping me avoid the migraine in the first place but once I do get one, I just can't ignore it.
  2. Hopeful83

    Hopeful83 New Member

    PS I had 2 weeks where I only got 1 migraine but this week I got 3 :(
    I need a little encouragement...
  3. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi, Hopeful. In Chicago we're in long heatwave of 90 and very humid and high pollution
    so my head is foggy. I practice deep breathing and meditation and it helps.

    Since your migraines are not that frequent, that is the best encouragement that you are healing from TMS.
    Don't hesitate to take an OTC pain killer for headaches like Tylenol. But keep believing in TMS.
    Hopeful83 likes this.
  4. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Hopeful: I posted a description of a scary headache incident I had last summer, and how I got through it in less than 30 minutes. Mind you, I've been doing this work for quite a while, and it still wasn't easy, but compared to how I used to deal with headaches, this was a 180-degree turnaround. The truth is that anyone can do it if they are willing to change their mind and change their experience. If this is not something you can yet accomplish, perhaps it will give you hope.

    The key is that I had to figure out what emotions my brain was trying to repress at that time: http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/posts/32979/

    PS - I found Dr. Sarno when I was told by a PT at a clinic for dizziness & balance that I was probably a migraineur. I was looking up migraine diets on a forum, and someone on that forum recommended The Divided Mind. For which he was severely abused by the other forum members, but I got the book the next day and it changed my life. You will change yours, too.
    Hopeful83 likes this.
  5. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    I agree with Walt, this sounds like good news - your brain will fight back to keep stuff repressed, that's why symptoms will come back worse. Keep doing the SEP, it works.

    I forgot that I wrote the following on that post from last year - I think I like it even more now!

    Knowledge - Belief - Faith
    I have Knowledge about how my brain creates symptoms for reasons that are emotional rather than physical
    I Believe that there is nothing wrong with my body
    I have Faith in my own strength and ability to change my brain and heal myself
    Hopeful83 likes this.
  6. riv44

    riv44 Well known member

    Spasming right now. This too shall pass. I am still recovering.
    Hopeful83 likes this.
  7. Hopeful83

    Hopeful83 New Member

    Hi jan!
    Thanks so much for the post,..
    Maybe you can help me apply your wisdom to fit my situation?
    I never am worried that there is something wrong with me (like an aneurism) just that I get migraines and they are very painful for about 24 hours. The negative feelings I have I think are fear of the pain and how long it will last and that I know it puts me in bed with an ice pack until I can sleep it off. Unless I take a prescription immitrex which knocks it out within 2 hours.
    It's the times that I can't take an immitrex or don't want to (because i don't want to take more than two a week or because I'm trying to fight it with the tms approach) or the build up before the immitrex that I just can't seem to get rid of the migraine once it comes on. And once the real string pain comes no breathing, mindfulness or self talk seem to help.
    And thanks to the others who replied! It's all helpful:)!!
  8. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hopeful, I think you are still allowing your brain to be in charge by letting it create all of this negative self-talk. You have a choice about this. To get better, you need to want to change this conversation to something completely different, and then make that change.

    I saw one of your other posts and found it revealing that you had to ask whether typing or writing was better when journaling. Talk about being a perfectionist! I mean, goodness knows I am totally guilty myself, but I guess even I have my limits, LOL! When I was doing the SEP, I gave myself permission to try journaling one way that made sense at the start, and eventually I switched to something else which felt better. I figured that journaling is journaling and it was more important to do it honestly and consistently than to worry if I was doing it the "best" way. In other words, I trusted myself enough to make that decision on my own, and to figure it out as I proceeded.

    The reason I bring this up is that I have this sense that you are possibly still hanging on to the hope that someone or something other than yourself will create your recovery, because you don't yet trust yourself to accomplish this on your own. You did mention the inner bully, and fighting it. How about nurturing the scared little child and giving her a chance to succeed?

    Also, worrying about things like the best way to journal is just another distraction. It's not doing the real work! Says me, who is really good about putting off journaling even when I desperately need it ;)

    Interesting response. Feels like an automatic defensive response, in fact. I'm guessing that your defense mechanism against things that make you uncomfortable is quite strong, and that's not a good thing. You need to be able to look at negative thoughts when they occur. Not all of them are deep and dark, but it's all part of the same pattern built up over a lifetime.

    Fear is a feeling, as you stated, and feelings are not emotions, they are just a coverup - another distraction. So my question for you is: where are you at with the SEP? The goal of the SEP is really getting at the truly negative and disturbing emotions that your brain thinks are so dangerous that it has to cover them up with pain. Without doing the real work, you won't achieve the real relief. I can attest to that.

    All the best, and continue to be Hopeful - while you do the work!

  9. Hopeful83

    Hopeful83 New Member

    I appreciate your feedback--I guess I feel like I'm getting stuck at the emotions/feelings juncture. I have always thought of myself as a very real, open, honest and self aware person who is in touch with my emotions and able to express them. So I guess I'm having trouble figuring out what exactly I'm repressing.
    I'm at day 15 on the SEP and journaling is kind of fun for me to get all those thoughts out on paper--I wrote some angry letters to various people from my childhood and some entries about others who have been a source of stress in my current life and about personality traits--but I don't find I'm uncovering anything new...
  10. Hopeful83

    Hopeful83 New Member

    I'm on day 15 but have been working at it for about a month--some days I'm able to get to a full day but others are too busy. Either way, every day I try to do something connected to TMS like read an article, watch a video or someone's story even if I don't get to journal. And I do the body scan daily as well.
  11. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hm, well at Day 15 and only a month in, it may be you're just experiencing an "extinction burst" as Dr. Sarno calls. it. You've had some success, and then your symptoms came back worse - that's your brain fighting back.

    Also, I really do think you might want to relax a bit and not try to do this so perfectly. Forest just said in a conversation:
    Sometimes people can focus so much on the things that hurt them that they can amplify them. What I like about SteveO's approach and the approach of modern science is that it focuses on the positive or takes the focus away from the things that hurt us. I think that's why Claire Weekes helps so many people as well... she doesn't run from anxiety, but she doesn't focus on it either. She just floats right by and gets back to living

    Good luck!​
  12. Boston Redsox

    Boston Redsox Well Known Member

    This sounds like resistance to me ....when u feel the migraine or the pain or whatever his troubling you accept the fact that its happening at this moment and just lean into it or in other words walk towards it. This has a amazing power to calm it down.
    JanAtheCPA likes this.
  13. Markus

    Markus Guest

    I used to have horrible panic attacks. This was before I knew about mind body treatment. I decided to let the panic attack come to me instead of running out to meet it! So I let them wash over me and in no time at all,they stopped bothering me.
    Boston Redsox likes this.
  14. Boston Redsox

    Boston Redsox Well Known Member

    So true Mark so true ….I squash negative thoughts as soon as they come I make believe they are those bubbles of words like in the comic strips and I reach up and pop them with a pin.
  15. Markus

    Markus Guest

    Excellent idea!. This stuff has only as much hold over us as we let it.
  16. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Hopeful,
    I had migraines for over 50 years and at times I had them daily, so I know what you are going through. It took me about 9 months to get rid of them after learning about TMS. What worked for me was to use the self-talk ("Knock it off brain. There is no reason to have a headache. I am perfectly healthy and strong." etc) at the very early stages of a migraine coming on--when you have those initial twinges or warning signs. Eventually, this worked very well at keeping them away. But until that time, when the migraine did develop, acceptance is the response that worked well for me. I found this meditation called "Soften, Soothe, and Allow" (free at this site) to be helpful with this. But if I still had pain after that, I took Imitrex, and just kept working on the TMS strategies--another form of acceptance--OK, I still have migraines. That's OK. Now I am migraine free, except maybe one a year when I let myself get a little too stressed.

    Hang in there! These techniques work well on migraines, which are TMS.
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2015
  17. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Self-talk is a powerful tool in TMS healing. Dr. Sarno says in THE MINDBODY PRESCRIPTION: "It sounds silly, but it's very effective (to talk to your brain). The conscious mind addresses the unconscious, the more forcefully the better. Patients tell me they talk to or shout at themselves and their pain disappears. You tell your mind that you know what it is doing (causing TMS pain so you discover the emotional causes of it), and that the physical pain is harmless and is merely a distraction from the repressed rage inside you, and that you no longer intend to be diverted and intimidated the the pain. You might even tell your mind to increase the blood flow to the tissues involved in your pain.

    "Patients often ask, 'Won't it make things worse if I concentrate on all the troubles and problems in my life?' Paradoxically no, for it is the failure to realize their impact on the inner mind that leads to such conditions as TMS, heartburn, migraine headaches, anxiety and depression. By identifying and dealing with sources of pressure consciously (through self-talk or journaling), you reduce their potential negative effect in the unconscious."

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