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Journaling - anger at myself

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Pinkyandthebrain, Sep 25, 2021.

  1. Pinkyandthebrain

    Pinkyandthebrain New Member

    Hi all!!

    i am getting into journaling and can see how it will help i can feel the rage and sadness pouring out if me. I have cone to realise that i also have rage and shame frustrations directed towards myself. I am sure these feelings are doing much tms damage. However will writing down the anger at myself release it or will it only serve to make it worse? Give it more power!?

  2. Cactusflower

    Cactusflower Beloved Grand Eagle

    Give it a try. The idea is that you accept the anger, your feelings and feel them. This is supposed to remove the power they hold over you by repressing them, and using your defenses to not fully lean into them.
    That said, I do have troubles with journaling. I had been thinking about this before I logged on today. I was looking at Schubiners' book again. The 28 day program he presents not only has you journal, but has you speak out loud your issues and how you feel about them. As it is outlined in the book, there is a dialog between two people - but of course alone you'd be talking to yourself. I'm really not comfortable with that at all. I mean I live with other people who will hear, and it's weird to fake a dialog between two people - it seems totally fake to me and it doesn't get me to feel anything because it feels so phony to me (kudos if it works for you!). I prefer the writing but honestly, rarely does anything ever come up that I can be really ANGRY about. I just can't much get honestly angry about stuff that happened in the past. A few things, but not a lot. Being able to be angry about current stressors helps me more (and even then, I have to be really pushed to get angry about stuff). Much of my frustration and anger is directed towards myself but I realize a lot of that is defense mechanism. Reading Schubiner's book (this part I really like) he outlines defenses as: feeling dizzy, brain fog, not being able to focus, feeling weak, tired, or even tightening your body when you start thinking about the emotional stuff (I do it all when I journal, my mind starts racing towards other things) - He also says that not wanting to hurt others by directing your emotions towards them is a defense. So that's something to think about. Start your journaling page and see if your anger stays towards yourself or you start thinking about where or who you are REALLY angry at. I've been really frustrated with myself, but this past week I got REALLY REALLY angry at someone who has been pushing me to face my physical movement fears. I FELT that fear turn to anger, and I felt the frustration at myself and my fear turn to anger towards that other person and then back at myself for allowing the anger to make me fear. This was real, not an exercise or journal entry. I had three days of low pain afterwards, and yes, I did indeed challenge myself SEVERAL days physically to do things I have not been doing. I think that's a good example of how feeling and letting it out takes away the power that TMS has over us. Feeling these feelings is one of the key components to healing. What you need to feel (past stressors, current stressors, or personality traits that contribute to TMS) and how you go about actually FEELING those feelings is personal. It's something I struggle with (so I'll post that in another thread). Give it a try!
    zclesa likes this.
  3. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    I suggest that anger at ourselves, and anger toward others are clearly two different activities, and should be handled differently.

    Anger at ourselves is a form of self-rejection, a form of superego activity, a form of Inner Critic activity. We learn as children, with normal, healthy development that we must do, think, and feel within boundaries which are acceptable by our caretakers. We internalize their rejection of a myriad of impulses and inner experiences in order to "preempt" the painful and life threatening rejection of our caretakers. We do to ourselves --guide, censor, admonish, reject-- what we imagine they will do to us, on a feeling level.

    This inner rejection is one of the ways that Inner Tension is caused in us. There is a war inside, which Dr. Sarno described as a conflict between the id and superego -between the "animal child" and the "inner parent."

    Expressive writing and talking to experience and allow anger or other emotions can relieve this Inner Tension. We stop censoring ourselves. We allow feelings we think "aren't OK." We challenge the dominance of the superego for a short period, practicing freedom. This can be life-changing beyond the important factor in TMS work. This allows us to challenge the Goodist and Perfectionist personalities most TMSrs have.

    So anger at ourselves needs to be met with a strong defense, not acting it out on ourselves. It can be very valuable to express anger at ourselves very mindfully to feel the power of this, to feel the hate or rage against ourselves. But the main practice here, in my opinion is to disengage this self-attack, you turn the anger back at the attacker.

    One way is to see your inner child as being a victim, and you being the "mother bear" and defending, and this may go back to naming caregiving figures in childhood. The practice is to take the anger, the exact energetic anger which you feel directed at you by the superego, and express it outward, whether that is toward someone you feel criticized by, the superego, or parent figures. "I love being full of myself, so F-ck Off" might be a way you could respond to an attack that you were "to much."

    In short when we're angry at ourselves, this calls for action to disrupt this anger.

    Superego activity is a strong defense mechanism against all strong feelings.

    It will also activate when you assert yourself with others.

    The best book on this in my opinion is Soul Without Shame by Bryon Brown. Shows you how to deal.
    zclesa, backhand and Heavenly like this.

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