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Neuroplasticity and Thought Reframing

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Huckleberry, Jan 22, 2018.

  1. Huckleberry

    Huckleberry Well known member

    Ok, may be a weird question but just intrigued if anybody has actually committed to reframing their thoughts and attempted to move from a negative and closed mindset to a more open and positive one. If so has anybody experienced immediate and startling results? I’m not necessarily talking about in relation to pain levels but also just in your everyday experiences?
  2. Dorado

    Dorado Beloved Grand Eagle

    Yes, neuroplasticity and thought reframing have greatly helped me. I had chronic anxiety and depression, but mine were more habitual than related to chemical imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, life-changing situations, etc. (I understand that some individuals who experience anxiety and depression for some of these reasons don't always do well with thought reframing, and require other interventions). I grew up in a very panic-ridden environment and never knew how to handle life. The neuroplasticity approach certainly aided in calming my overactive sympathetic nervous system and adrenal glands in a very big way, and within a few weeks. I'm not perfect just yet, but I see the symptoms convalescing daily; I'm about 75% to 85% healed, depending on the day.

    In addition, I have had wonderful success with biofeedback (I had a few sessions with a pain psychologist and then began practicing the breathing exercises on my own) and meditation.
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2018
    Lizzy likes this.
  3. Huckleberry

    Huckleberry Well known member

    Thanks for the reply.

    Had the weirdest day today and am still trying to fathom if it’s coincidental or if indeed some neural witchcraft is at work. It sounds nuts so I’ll post it up when I’ve got my head round it. :)
    Lynn S and Lizzy like this.
  4. Lynn S

    Lynn S Peer Supporter

    Yes I've had amazing results from the moment I made the first effort.
  5. Lynn S

    Lynn S Peer Supporter

    I hope weirdest is a good thing. What ever the reason keep it coming!
  6. mm718

    mm718 Peer Supporter

    I have a similar history growing up and then later had a medical issue that I believe caused central sensitization. Can you describe specifically how you calmed your nervous system?

    What type of breathing exercises and is this biofeedback you did with an app? I am thinking of trying Heart Math. Thanks very much for any info. I feel I am at a crossroads with my healing and need to figure out the neuromodulation component. Any help appreciated!
  7. mm718

    mm718 Peer Supporter

    Can you describe what you did?
  8. Lynn S

    Lynn S Peer Supporter

    Yes I can briefly describe. This mind body connection is very real. It's always working for us. Once we accept it, get in tuned with the vibration to feel it, and look for the evidence we'll see it. Everything is always working for our good. Everything else is just an illusion. My illusions came from my beliefs, the beliefs of family and or society, inherited, fear, etc. I can apply these principle to my TMS which I'm just discovering I have. I'm working on being kind to myself so will refrain from vocalizing the my judgement to myself. See just writing that statement probably dumped some shit into my system. Anyway, this is a good example. I'm frustrated and exhausted with my physical limitations and don't have the energy I want through out the day. I listed three outcomes I want to see for myself. It's to have patience, acceptance, and compassion for myself. So every morning and night I'll spend maybe five minutes affirming I will become more of what I want to see. In addition, take a moment to visualize and feel it happening. Through out the day I will look for the evidence of it happening for me.

    I have a wellness center that focuses on the brain (go figure) I 'm fortunate to have access to technology that helps my brain reorganize itself. The program I use since discovering I have TMS focuses on the conscious part of my brain since I read somewhere that that's the part we have to work on to retrain ourselves. I really don't know anything much. I'm sticking to the basics of dedicating one hour a day to the structural program. I've been around for a little over a month and on day 10. That's real progress for this over achiever. :)

    This technology I speak of is brain entrainment through light and sound. We have something for pain I no longer use.

    Our thoughts are real and powerful. They don't change overnight. We can acknowledge the old and replace them with new. I see it happening for you.
    andy64tms likes this.
  9. Dorado

    Dorado Beloved Grand Eagle

    I don't really have a special technique; I had engaged in a few formal biofeedback sessions, but ultimately ended up disliking the pain doctor who performed them, as he tried to tell me that my symptoms were real, not a result of stress (TMS). The neurologist who referred me to him was absolutely furious. :)

    It put a major roadblock in my progress, so I dropped biofeedback entirely for a little while because there weren't many other licensed professionals with availability for me. However, I later began practicing on my own, and experienced fantastic results very quickly. I simply close my eyes and slowly breathe in and out. I have a variety of techniques: I meditate, focus on different parts of my body without fear, or reflect on positive affirmations, my goals in life, happy memories, what happened during that particular day, etc. I make sure to relax my body and all of its muscles, and work toward staying emotionally neutral when looking back on a hard day.

    This has made a huge difference in my life. My neurologist was pleased with my progress and said going back to the formal biofeedback sessions isn't really necessary at this point. Had I respected the pain doctor more, I would've gone back, as I truly do believe in what we were doing.

    While I haven't used one, apps have helped a lot of people, so I say go for it! It must be noted that believing my overactive sympathetic nervous system (TMS) diagnosis was a critical component of my overall success. The sympathetic nervous system is highly responsive to our thoughts and emotions, so make sure to be kind to yourself, and don't feel the need to be perfect when practicing biofeedback. Perfectionism and obsession won't get anyone anywhere! Just focus on replenishing your soul.
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2018
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  10. lauraseago

    lauraseago Peer Supporter

    I have seen significant improvement in my quality of life from reframing everyday experiences. I definitely see the value in practices like biofeedback, EMDR, and other treatment options. If people can afford to try these out, they should. However, much smaller changes can make a lasting impact as well if you create lasting habits out of them.

    For the past several years, I have physically written down things to be grateful for every single day. There is a lot of research around how this can improve your mindset, reduce physical pain symptoms, etc. The premise is quite simple: when you force yourself to make a list of things you are grateful for, your brain unconsciously begins to notice these things throughout the day. You're actively training your brain to look for the good, because you don't want to have to sit there brainstorming things to be grateful for when it comes time to make your daily list.

    I've dabbled in applying this to my diet and exercise as well, since there is a growing body of research about how your mindset actually impacts how many calories you burn or retain (I did a whole interview with a Stanford researcher about this if that's something you're curious about).

    Those are small examples, but like everyone else mentioned, these little changes can have a huge impact on your nervous system and how it responds to stress.

    Best of luck!
    mm718 likes this.
  11. mm718

    mm718 Peer Supporter


    This is where it all starts, soothing and being kind to ourselves. This and calming practices lays the groundwork for those new neural pathways. Thanks for sharing some of your experience. I will be following your posts with interest as you get further along in your journey.
    Lynn S likes this.
  12. mm718

    mm718 Peer Supporter

    Thanks so much, Caulfield. It helps to hear from others who have gone before us. I may give biofeedback try. I've been doing 4-7-8 breathing and I sometimes get great results from that. I've noticed lately that doing a body scan and systematically letting each group of muscles soften really makes a difference. Sometimes there's even a little bit of euphoria that comes with it.

    My challenge lately is I've been too anxious about getting well, putting too much pressure on myself and sometimes working toohard. This is very strong the (the drive to do this and anxiety about healing). Some of it I think is unconscious.

    Do you have a sense of how the affirmations actually help? A tough question, I know but just curious if you've thought about this. I suppose it sets an intention, aligns us with those goals and may affect our perception. I am sure there is a neuroplastic correlate too but I wonder if it comes from simply repeating/believing the affirmation or if it takes more than that (a change in behavior, etc).

    Thanks again!

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