This something from several years ago I just read on a different board that someone posted. The explanation at least of how we got to where are with symptoms was spot on for me. Very good thoughts... " What is listed below is what I believe is the basic cause of most illness, this however does not mean an illness cannot kill or cripple you. I therefore state you must be fully medically evaluated for serious conditions and treated for them by a physician before embarking on this treatment. This treatment is supposed to be supplementary to medical care. Outcomes using what is listed is at the users own risk, no one else is responsible. You must understand that any outcome is possible. There is a lot of repetition listed below with the same thing said in different ways which may possibly help you understand it better. The main reason for the development of illness/symptoms is an excited inner nervous state (feeling on edge), usually related to something that you have made too important or have worried about on repeated occasions in the past. The excited inner state becomes very frequent prior to someone becoming ill. It becomes almost natural to the person that they are usually unaware of it. Another way to look at it is a mental strain and a lack of mental control. What this means is that your nervous system is activated very easily to things going on around you. (Ie the need to hurry and do such and such, annoyance by tasks or some of the people around you). Tasks that you have made very important to yourself or have rushed in result in a strong habitual urge/drive to perform them this way in the future. These strong urges/drives contribute to the inner tension and stimulate your nervous system. Also since it also feels uncomfortable to be mentally excited/strained, you want to either rush/escape (push your body faster than possible) through this feeling and situation or you/your body wants to brace/push in some way in reaction to the excitement. This also contributes to inner tension. Two traits that typically contribute to this having this process happen frequently or intensely is perfectionism and kindness to the point that you are always looking after others needs over your own. Many people whom try to be perfect, have high drives, or want to please others do this because it is an over compensation from possible hidden feelings of not being good enough. This is usually stems from childhood. Since affected persons have very strong drives, they always want to exceed their body's capability. They are pushing/forcing their body parts to try to work beyond their capability, especially when their mind is excited. The pushing/bracing leads to a physical strain on top of the inner tension. If you rush, you have an urge to go faster than you can and you want to make your body perform tasks faster than the time it takes for it to perform them. This is considered a strain since the energy put into this does not help the body part work faster or stronger, it just makes it dysfunctional. If you brace, you’re putting a pressure or strain on a body part which also makes it temporarily dysfunctional. The dysfunctional body part produces symptoms. Usually symptoms occur in areas that are used a lot when the person is mentally strained (i.e. a leg in someone training for a marathon), an area that a person is afraid of for some reason (i.e.. a parent with bad back pain, so you are afraid of being the same way), or a previously injured or a malformed area. Even real physical injuries/wounds will become more painful/symptomatic when the person's nerves are more strained/excited. The above listed process is associated with holding ones breath and bracing with the thought that I/my body will relax after whatever the situation is over. The process over time becomes a habit and your mind becomes used to react this way automatically when placed in similar situations. This is the process of conditioning. This process leads to the person becoming more impatient (wanting to do everything fast) and usually easily irritated (not wanting to be bothered) which in itself leads to the excited nervous state which starts the process over again. Illness generated by this process also feeds the cycle of the excited state by sensitizing your nerves further. This is done by fear and making the person rush more so the person can finish tasks faster to rest since they are symptomatic or in pain. If you pay enough attention, you will see you are conditioned to have symptoms/pain many, many times in your day. Things like I said previously that you've done with a lot of intensity. Things like going to work, traveling, eating dinner etc. You should try to go into these strained, conditioned situations with the understanding of why your mind is reacting this way at this particular time and act the opposite to what you did before. You must try to not push (to try to go faster) or brace with your body in anyway. You want to actually see if you can maintain your body in a relaxed state as best as you can and watch if you are continuously breathing. You can even do tasks that are physically demanding in this manner. No fighting or trying to force the body part to work correctly. Understand that a start of a symptom is a good cue for you to relax your mind and the body part effected as best as you can, which you may need to do this through your whole day. When a body part is in pain or producing symptoms you will see that there is a tendency to react to it by pushing/bracing this area more. Try to prevent this from happening. The urge/drive to go fast and escape conditioned sensitized situations is the most common reason for symptoms in my mind. You are usually worried that you don't make it in time or the thing your anticipating does come at a time to your liking. This is also the hardest thing to see since it is ever present and therefore must be recognized by following symptom patterns. The urge/push to exceed your body's capability or to get somewhere can many times be equivalent to pain. Because you have had this urge so long, usually the meaning of it is lost and its effect is the only thing felt. Try to bring back the meaning to the urge to be able to relax it better. The second most common reason for symptoms is anger, irritation and annoyance, to the point that you can't stand it (exceeding your body's capability). Try to make the link with your symptoms. This is easier than seeing the link with rushing but still difficult in the beginning. Common other scenarios for causing symptoms are focusing, concentrating, rigidity, intensity, worrying, making things too, too important such as the process of going to work, trying to make a certain time (which could be for no logical important reason or like feeling you've been in a location too long). As you can see, the most common cause of symptoms are not some hidden, big thing but one's learned intense habits in mundane, normal living. You have to learn to accept your symptoms fully for a period of time until your practice improves you. Worrying about symptoms or waiting for them to go away will only sensitize your nerves more. You should not avoid sensitized/conditioned situations, but decondition when the opportunity arises. In other words continue to go to work, sit at the computer, drive, go out to dinner, meet with friends etc. When you go into these strained conditioned situations, if you don't do anything or react to your symptoms and if you try your best not to escape but accept, you many times will get an intense anxiety feeling. The anxiety feeling is good and you have to just continue to sit in it until it fades away. On the other hand, if you try to escape, or focus and/or do something about to the symptoms, the symptoms will persist instead of the anxiety and you will have made no progress. Fidgeting is a reaction similar to trying to escape. It means the person is mental strained and cannot tolerate sitting still in it. Stop fidgeting and sit in your discomfort until it dissipates. Your mind is kind of like a computer that has too many screens up at one time and it freezes. The mind kind of does a similar thing when over stimulated or demanded. It is not good to ignore/forget about the things in your life that bother you and move on. Many people mistakenly think this is the best way to relax about an issue. This is a big mistake and is called repression. You need to see your strained state to the issues and relax it in any way possible. You have to keep the cause of the strain in your mind until your mind becomes comfortable with the issue. This usually takes a lot of practice. Almost everyone does the dysfunctional behavior that is mentioned here to some degree, but the more one does it, the sicker in general that person is. It also seems that this process is strengthened with time and age especially if someone is living with chronic symptoms. Childhood is the main environmental factor determining what degree a person is affected. Because the person is so used to their uncomfortable nervous state and to the way they brace to it or try to push their body beyond its limit, it becomes very hard to see and very easy to focus on the bodily symptoms produced. Remember, if your mental state wasn't excited, you wouldn't have symptoms. The problem is because of the habit/conditioned process, it becomes hard to see this excited state. This is similar to becoming unaware of the driving process once you've been driving for a while. Sometimes you must work backwards by taking your symptoms as the cue that your mental state is excited. Eventually you will be able to make the link. With symptoms, you must be a sort of detective and determine what it is your anticipating or wanting to get over with or to understand what it is you are conditioned to. You may see it in retrospect when the symptoms improve or you may see a pattern. Even when you find out, many times it does not logically make sense why you would be strained/conditioned about a particular situation. Also when you find out, you most likely will not be able to reverse it at that time, but with future practice you will, knowing what you know. An example of the above could be that you always get symptoms right before dinner that goes away after you eat and you always see this pattern, so you know that somehow your mind has been conditioned to make this too important of an event Along with the above example because it may be too important to eat dinner, you maybe in a way eating too fast and trying to get the task over with. It becomes just a strained habit with no clear logical reason. Common stress related symptoms that should be recognized as such are various pains, excessive fear, obsession, runny nose without infection, chronic cough, insomnia, itchiness, gas, burping, heartburn, abdominal cramping, diarrhea, constipation, blurry vision, headaches, tingling, numbness, anxiety, insomnia, feeling abnormally cold especially in the extremities, feeling abnormally hot, and fatigue. Once again all symptoms must be fully evaluated by one's physician to make sure all serious conditions are ruled out and treated first. The unconscious part of your mind remembers better than you do. Sometimes you will get a symptom about something that you have no conscious memory of at the time. (Ie a dinner meeting you weren't too crazy about but you forgot that you were attending but you still develop a headache earlier the same day). One important, common situation for a strained state is not being comfortable with doing nothing. A body area that has been affected for some time is usually very reactive. This comes along with the fear you have built up over time to this body part or symptom. Sometimes just touching the area or doing something very mild with the use of this body part will cause it to react out of fear with bracing. You want to make this area less reactive to your environment as much as possible. You must remember that if your overall strained mental state is relaxed, this process is much easier. Closing your eyes allows you to see how strained your mind is sometimes. If your strained mentally, you'll feel like you’re too excited to keep your eyes closed. Also you will not see total black. A practice that can help is to continue to keep your eyes closed and even cover your eyes with your palms while trying to relax your nerves (This is called palming). Fearing the symptoms and becoming obsessed with them definitely feeds the process. There is a tendency for each type of symptom to result in obsession. Unless you try to do nothing directly about the symptoms and prevent becoming obsessed, you will not likely get rid of them. Try to be as normal as possible with the affected body part, but if you need to, rest it, and continue to work on the mental strain. Once you have strained (mentally first then physically), the symptoms do linger for a while, even if the initial stimulus is gone. Your goal is to try to prevent the strain first. A shifting of symptoms from one area to another is a good sign that your not letting a particular symptom control you. Symptoms however will continue to shift until the underlying mental state relaxes and conditioning is broken. You don't need to change the stress in your life, just the way you react to it and think about it. You also need to be aware of it. Only if the stress is extreme and it is changeable should you go about changing it. It is better to be still and not stimulate your nervous system more when you have significant symptoms. Affirmations (repeating phrases that are of what you want to happen) are very helpful, even more so when your first starting out. They somehow take your mind temporarily out of its conditioned train of thought into one that is associated with soothing. They are tools that help you accomplish your goal of mental and physical relaxation. They are not required and not sufficient by themselves. Examples are I'm calm, relaxed, patient and confident; I forgive and let go easy; It’s easy (once you realize what your rushing/worried about) ; I'm comfortable where I am right now. Visualizations are along the same lines as affirmations. One way to use them that works well is to visualize yourself with crystal clarity in the situation that you are strained about in the setting of understanding why you’re strained. One example is picturing yourself doing a task your trying to just get over with. It gives the task reality in your mind as opposed to before when you were trying to wipe it out of existence. Picture as if you are actually there in your mind. You can even do this when you are actually in the situation. It is difficult to strain/brace/rush and continuously breathe at the same time. When your nervous system is excited and your experiencing symptoms, especially stubborn ones, continously breathe through them. It feels uncomfortable to do this, but in the long run can help break a symptom pattern. Try to catch yourself from going down a negative line of thinking and saying negative things as usually your mind will automatically strain with this. Multiple conditioned strained situations occurring simultaneously are additive and more likely to cause more intense or multiple symptoms. Relaxation techniques are also additive and more likely to produce results. (Ie palming, breathing, and using affirmations at the same time) Try to slowly and gradually build yourself back up to normal physical activity without straining your nerves more. None of this should be a challenge or a forcing and it should not be a reaction to the symptom (like bending more to make the back used to bending). If you are close to being cured, situations that you have not reconditioned yourself to yet will produce symptoms as if you have made no progress. (Ie you haven't been to the beach in a long time which caused you intense symptoms before and despite virtually having no symptoms prior to going this time, you get symptoms when you return.) The process of healing is very gradual with a fading of symptoms over time. There is no fight or battle that is won. You will wake up each morning and practice the above and you will hopefully see a little more and be able to strive to prevent habits that strain your nerves a bit better. Likely by the end of your day your still in the same situation with your illness. Over time, the removal of the strained behavior will calm your nervous system down enough that the symptoms fade away slowly. As you can see there is nothing done or added to heal yourself. You are just removing the offending behavior. You must be consistently trying to "discover" how to improve yourself on your own. What I have listed hopefully will keep you on the right track, but it is your practice and understanding that will ultimately make you better. Watching a video of yourself may help you to see strained habits that you may have and help you to change them. What most people fail with is not taking this on as a long term project that will take years and very slow gradual improvements with time. The improvement is usually very uneven and symptoms can be extremely stubborn. One will continue to improve as they continue to practice and get better at what is listed."