1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
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Successes from the SEP please?

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by Fibromyaljane, Nov 25, 2017.

  1. Fibromyaljane

    Fibromyaljane Newcomer

    Do we have anyone on this forum who has recovered from their TMS pain as a result of taking the Structured Education Program? Please do let me know if so; it would be so encouraging.
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    Why not just do it? It's free, and you don't have to register or anything. You just go to each web page for each day and do the exercises or readings on your own.

    I'm sorry to have to tell you this, but there are no guarantees when doing this work. There is no one single direct way to recover from TMS. Around here we have been known to say that recovery is non-linear. Recovery is definitely different for everyone - just like the combination of symptoms it exhibits are different for everyone. And there are no guarantees, because recovery depends upon your ability to make a 180-degree mind shift. Some people never manage that.

    But the SEP can help, if you take it seriously and make a commitment. It was designed by Forest and other early volunteers on the forum. The SEP introduces you to multiple resources, different techniques and varied outlooks on TMS. You are bound to find things that resonate with YOU.

    There's a whole subforum devoted to the SEP. You will find plenty of discussions there of people responding to the writing exercises and the Question of the Day, having successes, having setbacks, having more successes - but they are all doing it. I imagine there are many more people doing it who never share their work on the forum, and that's fine, too. You can be as public or as private as you like. You can do all of your writing on real paper. You can do it at your own pace. You can quit if you want to.

    However, with regard to quitting, please know this: the SEP will challenge you, because your brain WILL fight back and try to convince you to quit. Sticking to it when you start experiencing the Symptom Imperative is the hard part. Those are the setbacks that many people experience and report on. Allowing your brain to be dishonest and to repress things that come up for you during the writing exercises is another reason for setbacks, if not outright failure.

    Lots of people, myself included, have done the SEP. There are similar programs, such as Dr. Schubiner's Unlearn Your Pain workbook (which is a marvelous resource, highly recommended by many people, but it's not free, and I found it to be kind of heavy going). I recommend the SEP all the time, which I wouldn't do if I didn't think it had value.

    I have not done Alan Gordon's Pain Recovery Program simply because it's so new, and I did the SEP six years ago. It's an incredibly generous donation by Alan, and I think that people are finding a lot of value in it. It's a very different type of program from the SEP, so you should look at both and decide which one to start with.
    Bodhigirl and BruceMC like this.
  3. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Bodhigirl likes this.
  4. Fibromyaljane

    Fibromyaljane Newcomer


    I am already doing the SEP - hence being on the forum. I am committed to it and working very hard at it. However, like most people it seems, I have doubts from time to time. I can't say that your response has in any way helped me to allay those doubts!

    I intend to do Alan Gordon't program afterwards.

    Thank you,
  5. Fibromyaljane

    Fibromyaljane Newcomer

  6. Fibromyaljane

    Fibromyaljane Newcomer

  7. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Yes, Fibromyaljane, I just read this. Great write up by a wonderful veteran and contributor here at the Forum. Glad you found this!
    Fibromyaljane likes this.
  8. MindBodyPT

    MindBodyPT Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi there! I actually did recover from my TMS pain from a combo of reading Sarno books and others and doing the SEP. I haven't posted my full success story (definitely need to do that!) but it worked really well for me. I had on and off chronic back pain with a bad flare up for about 6 months prior to discovering TMS. I also had some other things (pain from old neck injury and headaches) that went away as well. I consider myself "cured" of TMS although it of course pops up a bit from time to time. Hope that helps a little! Message me if you have more questions on the process. Remember that everyone is different, different approaches may work for different people.
    plum and Bodhigirl like this.
  9. Fibromyaljane

    Fibromyaljane Newcomer

    Hi MindBodyPT
    Thanks so much for telling me this. I am on Day 15 and have also just started my second Dr Sarno book. I guess I have got past the excited stage and on to the 'Can I do it' stage and it really helps to know that other people have managed without face to face help from a therapist.
    You really should post your full story! Jx
  10. Rainbowdash

    Rainbowdash Peer Supporter

    I read healing back pain 5 years ago, and read the divided mind more recently. I understood the philosophy, but struggled to apply it to find relief. I stumbled upon the SEP by chance and I gave it my 100%. It was miraculous. The journaling and question of the day are incredible. It helped me learn how to journal to release the trauma and face my emotions. I feel raw, like a freshly ploughed field. I also feel that the pain I suffered is justified because of the amount of emotions I have repressed. Now, I'm facing all my feelings, I feel very vulnerable, and sometimes I feel I'm naked for the whole world to see. The SEP program is incredibly hard. So incredibly difficult. There is a reason your brain created so much pain to distract you from the emotional wounds. The wounds are terrible and it felt extremely uncomfortable, unpleasant. But, I have cured one of my pains (foot bursitis, suffering for 1 year) by the time I finished the program (took me lot longer than 6 weeks to complete it).

    I have understood that my past determines my personality and my personality determines how i handle my current stress. Understanding and releasing the past has helped me understand where my personality traits come from.

    I have also been able to tell myself that whatever trauma I faced, it was in the past. It is over. It can't catch up with me in the present. I'm safe in the present and I don't need those defence mechanisms anymore.

    Everyday is a struggle against my brain trying to trick me, but I know the tricks now. I'm not terrified of everything anymore. It is still a long journey but I'm not backing out now. I felt a lot of resistance about writing about a few topics, but as I wrote them down and resolved them, I felt better and better.

    I'm one of those slow recovery people, and I can vouch for the program. Hope this helps.
    Ellen and plum like this.
  11. Fibromyaljane

    Fibromyaljane Newcomer

    Hi Rainbowdash
    Thank you for your lovely reply. I am so glad you've done so well.
    I think the problem I'm having is, I have only had one really big trauma - my Mum left my Dad , but it was when I was 21/22 and none of my symptoms starfted until years later. In fact I can't really identify what triggered any of my symptoms, apart from the IBS.
    So I have a lot of trouble journalling about past events. I have journalled about the personality traits I have that I think cause me a lot of tension, but I can't really say much more about them than I have. I have just read some posts saying that journalling isn't for everyone, which made me feel better, but then, for the reasons above, I keep thinking maybe I haven't got TMS at all. I would like to get some professional help in the New Year, but there aen't many practitioners in the UK!
    Anyway, thanks again and I hope you continue to improve.
  12. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hello Jane,

    Fellow Brit here, and someone whose recovery was/is not contingent on either journaling or the aid of a professional. I suspect you may gain more traction with Alan Gordon's new program because it doesn't rest on the repressed emotions paradigm (so no need for digging) and has less general focus on the past. It's simply more practical.

    Don't worry about jumping ship if the SEP doesn't jibe with you. Healing is very personal and becomes supercharged when we tailor it to our unique needs and personality.

    Plum x
  13. dede

    dede New Member

    Hi Jane I ha e doubts too. In day 8 of education and my pain rages. It is hard to believe this kind of pain is created in the minc
    i really liked what you wrote. Working so hard on the releasing of old feelings and trauma. It is very hard. I admire you for getting there.
    Rainbowdash likes this.
  14. Fibromyaljane

    Fibromyaljane Newcomer

    Hello Plum!
    Thank you for the advice. I am certainly keen to do Alan Gordon's program, but thinking I should get the SEP finished first. Day 20 today!
    Best wishes,

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