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Too much meditation? Or not enough..?

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Sofa, Oct 17, 2018.

  1. Sofa

    Sofa Well known member

    So I've decided to meditate three hours per day - nonstop. While the System is working, I am thinking mental aikido is not possible without some intense meditation. On the weekends I've decided to meditate 8 hours. 9am to 5pm. After a brief break, resume at 7pm and go into even deeper meditation (borderline vegetative state) until I snap out of it.
    Question. Is this too much meditation? Or not enough. I welcome the input!!
    By the way, I will be outdoors on top of a hill if that matters..?
  2. Pemberley

    Pemberley Peer Supporter

    Personally, I think meditating this much falls into the “trying too hard to heal” area. (Somewhere I think there’s a post by Alan Gordon about how he tried to do something like this when he was in pain.) I added meditation into my life last spring. I read a really good book on it called “Bliss More” by Light Watkins that I found at my library:


    This is not a book about healing pain. It’s simply just a practical way to meditate that can easily fit into your day. It’s really for beginners. Some of the main points from the book are:

    - Meditate for 10-20 minutes, once or twice a day (in the morning on afternoon, but not before going to bed).

    - Sit comfortably with your back supported, like how you would relax when watching TV or reading. (He actually says that the pictures on his blog of being on a mountain or whatever are only for show – it makes a pretty blog, but it’s not necessary to becoming an expert meditator.)

    - The benefits from meditation are more about how you feel during the rest of your day when you’re not meditating. It will make you more mindful during your day-to-day activities.

    - Having a busy mind in meditation is a sign of progress. (He explains all the different phases your brain goes through while meditating.)

    - Use the sound “ah-hum” while meditating. Don’t beat yourself up if you trail away from it. Just return to ah-hum.

    I’m still in pain, so take this with a grain of salt. But I look forward to my meditation time.

    Hope this helps!
    Sofa likes this.
  3. EileenS

    EileenS Well known member

    Hi Sofa,
    If your goal is to attain enlightenment through meditation, then this is not the website and forum to ask the question, "Is this too much meditation?".
    If you are meditating to get rid of the pain, then the answer is Definitely, it is too much. Meditating can be a way to calm the nervous system when you do it for short time periods, but what you are talking about is escaping from life and not facing what you need to face to get over your pain if your pain is TMS.
    Sofa, JanAtheCPA, Lizzy and 1 other person like this.
  4. Mazoli_IC

    Mazoli_IC Newcomer

    I was diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis (IC) which is also known as Painful Bladder Syndrome. I have to deal with pain on a daily basis. Finding distractions is one way to help deal with chronic pain. Focusing on things that make you happy is another way to help. I have children so I can escape for a little while when interacting with them. Again, it is okay to have a bad day where you feel frustrated. You are human. Allow times to be tired of your situation, but limit that to a short period of time (a day or so). Exercise, like walking, can help in many ways. Do not isolate yourself. There are many mornings when I wake up that I think I cannot possibly make it thru the day but once I get started my outlook is better. Also, having a support system helps tremendously. I recently started a blog to share my story which helps me tremendously. https://treatinginterstitialcystitis.wordpress.com/ (TREATING INTERSTITIAL CYSTITIS) Feel free to take a look at my blog. Sharing your story can help you mentally. I think that meditation is one of the best ways to deal with physical, mental and emotional stresses of life. https://treatinginterstitialcystitis.wordpress.com/ (TREATING INTERSTITIAL CYSTITIS)
    Sofa likes this.
  5. Dorado

    Dorado Beloved Grand Eagle

    This sounds obsessive, which is one of the traits that gets us all here.

    I'm going to be honest: my recommendation would be to talk about what you've gone through in life and how you handle emotions and situations with a therapist. It really sounds like you're running away from your problems, or at least feeling like it's impossible for you to manage them. You need someone to help you resolve these thoughts because they aren't true, and they aren't healthy. And they're only going to continue to hurt you. It's evident that you're trying to shield yourself from pain and failure.

    At the end of the day, the advice you're seeking isn't going to help you.

    There is no reason for you to want to put yourself in a "borderline vegetative state," and my fear is that you hanging around these forums is going to generate some responses that encourage this type of thinking out of pure naivety from people who don't realize how deep this is going, rather than exploring how you can move on from whatever hurt you and brought you here.

    Truly, sincerely, I recommend discussing these thoughts with trusted family and friends, and finding a therapist who is trustworthy and has great credentials. This isn't something people online can fix. Of course some extra support is always available here. However, this ultimately needs to be addressed and then resolved with people much closer to you. I don't think this forum - or any other online platform - can be relied on for that kind of help.

    I'm saying this because you deserve the opportunity to get to the bottom of what brought you here. You aren't hopeless - nobody is. You just need the right resource, and I think talking this out with a trained professional would be incredibly beneficial to you.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018
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  6. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    @Sofa - EileenS and Caulfield have offered you excellent advice when they indicate that you need to deal with your emotional issues instead of trying to find some kind of quick fix that simply distracts you from your issues.

    I will go so far as to say that this may not be the place for you. This is the TMS Wiki forum. We focus on recovering from chronic pain and other conditions by following the theories of Dr. John Sarno, MD. The wiki was established in his honor. So if you are not following his work, you're definitely in the wrong place.

    The advice you will continue to get here will be similar to what you have received so far. We don't offer or support quick fixes or one-size-fits-all systems. People regularly show up here hoping for a quick fix that will allow them to ignore their repressed emotions, but they either change their expectations, or they soon move on. Those of us who stick around believe in biting the bullet and doing the difficult emotional work.
    AnonymousNick, EileenS and Lizzy like this.
  7. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    My suggestion would be to consider practicing 'mindfulness' meditation as you go about your daily tasks (i.e. paying focused attention to the things you do - for example, noticing the pattern on the dinner plates as you put them away in the kitchen cupboard and feeling the softness of you clothes on you skin as you put them on etc.,) rather doing what you're planning to do. I say this as I am concerned for you because - although admittedly mainly anecdotal - there are a number of reports (and some actual research) that indicate that intensive meditation (such as that practised on 'retreats') can have a profoundly adverse effect mentally in the short and long-term in some people...

    So, what about trying this instead? http://biohackyourself.com/how-i-hacked-a-mind-body-tms-with-meditation/ (How I Hacked a Mind-Body TMS with Meditation) - It's much gentler and I think in keeping with the spirit and mind/body methods approved of on these forums. The author of the article (in the link I've given) tells of how he recovered from 'RSI' (which was actually TMS) by means of a loving form of meditation that he developed for himself (a meditation that he describes as involving 'complete unconditional compassion, empathy, and love' for himself and his hands) - the meditation techniques he employed he says were 'inspired' by Sarno, even though Sarno (apparently) never advocated meditation - although I stand to be corrected on the latter should I be wrong about that. (I'm going to try this myself, although I have to say that I am seeing some results with what I'm currently doing, which includes doing yoga nidra - a form of meditation that I'm finding I can stick to and will I know be something that I will do for the rest of my life.)

    I know that there have been some people who recover from TMS almost instantly by reading Dr Sarno's books, but the more TMS success stories I read, the more I gather success usually involves the brain changing through time and neuroplasticity, achieved by slow and consistent attention to one's attitudes, emotions, feelings, thoughts etc.
    Sofa, EileenS and Tennis Tom like this.
  8. Dorado

    Dorado Beloved Grand Eagle

    My concern is that this is a situation that goes far beyond someone benefitting from knowledge on mindful meditation, and their interpretation of this type of advice is very different from how we intend it to sound. It’s all leading back to a very worrisome approach that may be harming the individual.

    Truly, I think the best advice we can give here is to talk with loved ones and a supportive therapist. Sofa, you’re clearly in deep pain, and I don’t think you should be trying to solve your problems alone, or running away from them because you don’t think you can face them. All the meditation in the world won’t help you finally move on from what brought you to this place you’re currently in - the root needs to be addressed. When people send you links on neuroplasticity or meditation, the intention isn’t to have you build some sort of system or put yourself in a vegetative state, and that disconnect is why I think people may be doing you more harm than good. You’re in a place that requires more thought with people you love and a therapist.
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2018
    Time2be, suky, Lizzy and 4 others like this.
  9. Sofa

    Sofa Well known member

    Thank you all. I'm in pain, but I know others are suffering more. I've been this way for 5 years and spent lots of money and had lots of tests done.....only to come back as healthy. But that's good I guess. What brought me here. I'm trying new things and please don't discourage me or insinuate I'm not right for this forum. Bloodmoon knows the truth. I'm a good person at heart and just thinking out of the box. Granted, it hasn't worked yet and more conventional approaches are probably called for but I'm growing desperate, lol. Also had a big BIG professional set back today. So don't judge me right niw please.

    That's a request, not an order because I know you all are trying to help. (Thanks)
    BloodMoon likes this.
  10. Dorado

    Dorado Beloved Grand Eagle

    It's not really about who's in the most pain - it's about how someone is dealing with their pain. There are plenty of people who went through way more traumatic events than I ever did, yet I ended up here and they didn't.

    We would never try to discourage anyone from taking on initiatives that genuinely improve their overall well-being. That's what we're all about. :) But going into a vegetative state, and creating a system to aid in the avoidance of one's problems, isn't going to improve anyone's life. And that's the disconnect. We're certainly happy to help with techniques to relax your body and get back to living life per Sarno, Ozanich, etc., but this isn't a place where we're creating an experimental system that puts us in vegetative states and denies our problems. There are many members on this board who are confused about what Sarno, Ozanich, and all the others meant, and this isn't something I would want you or them to misinterpret.

    I'm glad your tests all came out OK. That said, when I'm referring to what brought someone here, I'm referring to the emotional factors behind the symptoms. You once said that you wanted to create a system because some people can't face their pain or move past it, but learning how to better create a sense of overall balance in life, manage emotions, and move forward from the past is important and an integral part of what we do. This takes work. The brain can't be fooled, or else you risk your emotions and the past coming out some other way; nobody would recommend this to you, and I'm concerned that you may not have someone helping you where you are because you deserve support. I really do wish you all the best. Again, you are certainly not hopeless. Nobody is.
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2018
  11. Sofa

    Sofa Well known member

    Thanks Dorado. I will heed this advice. I do have a few trusted people that think I can talk to.
    And don't get me wrong; I do understand the basic concept of TMS work. I know there probably aren't short cuts, but even still I am looking for anything that may help. Extremely tender testicles for five years will do that. It will have you trying something, anything, to get relief. We all struggle with something, and I'm just trying my best. Again I do appreciate the support and have a nice weekend everyone
    Lizzy likes this.
  12. Time2be

    Time2be Well known member

    I can only underline what Dorado said. The pain you experience is making you impatient, desperate and you are grasping everything that seems to help you. However, these ideas of a system, vegetative state and meditation until you drop from exhaustion are doing the opposite. You get even more stressed. We all had to learn that the only way is to calm down AND to have a life. Have you read Steve Ozanich's book "The great pain deception"? It was really helpful for me because he describes all the detours and little excuses we make not to get better.
    Sofa and Lizzy like this.
  13. Time2be

    Time2be Well known member

    You said you had a big professional set back, sorry for that. This is something difficult to digest, I know. I learned from set backs that my job is not everything, that I am more than my job. And believe me this is extremly difficult for me. Being single, basically loving my job (I could also say it is my hobby) and then having a situation where you experience that you are not recognized by some colleagues or even 'punished' by your boss, this was very, very difficult for me. I was in big pain after this incident at my job. However, this is what life is about, to tackle these things. They happen to all of us. So, for me it is about getting better at not reacting to life's challenges with pain but more intelligent, for example with changes in my life.
    Sofa and Lizzy like this.
  14. Dorado

    Dorado Beloved Grand Eagle

    I agree - dealing with emotions is part of life, and not something that anyone can run away from. Sofa, when I recommend seeing a therapist and speaking to loved ones, there's nothing to be ashamed of in that. When I first came on these forums, I was posting about not knowing how to live life anymore (I am certainly not saying you are suicidal at all). A few members messaged me directly to try to help, and even invited one of the moderators to the conversation, before realizing that I needed additional support in my life. A forum wasn't going to get me out of that place in my life. My pain was far too deep, and I wasn't able to see any possible alternative solutions for what I was going through (I'd like to note again that plenty of people have had much more traumatic things happen, but I still hit rock bottom much deeper than some of them).

    If you're having thoughts of needing to put yourself in a vegetative state, performing any other experiments on yourself, or creating a system because facing life is painful or intimidating, that really does need to be addressed with a therapist as well as trusted family and friends. It's avoidance, the same way an alcoholic or an addict pops pills to avoid emotions. I've been there - just in different ways.

    For what it's worth, I'm so grateful I stayed alive and worked through my issues, because life isn't just about being happy - we're also meant to struggle and grow from that. A person without any struggling is a person who is no longer living (literally). I'm much more empathetic, a deeper critical thinker, and extremely motivated because of what I meant through. It hurt to face, but I'm glad I did. Truly, my life is the best it's ever been. I'm not even on any medications anymore, and I've become a pro at balancing and managing my emotions (but remember that nobody is perfect and we all have our bad days!). This is after a top hospital said I had major depressive disorder, obsessive compulsive tendencies, and anxiety disorder. Some people assume those issues are permanent for everyone and can only be managed with medication for the rest of one's life, but they weren't permanent for me (mental health should never be a one-size-fits-all thing for this reason). The insight I've gained from my struggles in life has turned out to be very positive. But I had to do the work. And it was worth it.

    I'll leave the thread now, but remember that your well-being is the most important thing, and it's worth every bit of effort. I would recommend immersing yourself in the stories of people who have succeeded with physical and emotional setbacks, and working on developing a true belief that you are no different from them - there is absolutely no reason why you can't succeed, too.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 31, 2019
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  15. Sofa

    Sofa Well known member

    Thanks so much everyone. I will let you know how things progress. All of your kind words and sound advice means more to me than you know.
    Yes, the professional setback.....I was downsized after working there for 12 years. This is the first time that's happened to me and caught me by surprise. Big blow to my confidence, and dealing with pain. And have a family to support. So the next few months should be interesting. So yeah....I can't be worrying about vegetative states and endless meditation. I need to get back to basics. And I'll read some of the recommendations people have given me. Thanks for letting me vent.
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2018
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  16. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Sofa.
    I'm so sorry to hear about your job.
    After I was forced out of my career - that I'd been in for over 14 years - I really wasn't good enough to myself...(I wasn't downsized, but I had to resign from my job because the atmosphere created by my colleagues and boss was becoming increasingly toxic - lots of cut-throat office politics and backstabbing and so on)...So, I just wanted to say - do be tender and kind to yourself as you seek other work. (And perhaps consider reading the Dale Carnegie book that I mentioned before...It's old fashioned in its style and in some of its attitudes as it was originally written in 1948, but I think it's nevertheless very helpful and up lifting...I wish I'd read it earlier in my life, particularly when I resigned my position - which I did without a job to go to, knowing that I would have to retrain for something else.)
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  17. Sofa

    Sofa Well known member

    Hi Bloodmoon. Yes, we had also developed a very toxic, cut throat atmosphere as well. I think that's what happens when waves of people are being shown the door each Friday. Cost cutting and outsourcing.
    That took courage for you to resign without a forward looking plan. Did you end up somewhere with a better atmosphere?
    I am hoping that deep down, work dissatisfaction was a contributor to my TMS, and this is actually a good thing. But I'm a bit worried. I'll look into your book recommendation.
    Thanks for your kind advice as always. I am typically very hard on myself.
    One thing I've come to learn so far on this forum, is that throughout my life I've been using methods by which to distract myself from root emotions. The reward centers of my brain are all out of whack through over indulgence in multiple vices. Furthermore, I've constructed a nearly impenetrable wall for my unconscious brain. What is my brain shielding me from though? I can't think of anything.
    But at least I now know that building a system is not the answer. I probably need to get back to basics and convince myself that TMS is real for the pain aspect.
    I was looking at your earlier post and am glad yoga nidra is working for you. I had no idea what that was until just now after Wikipedia search. Can you achieve a lucid dream this way? Lately, every time I realize I'm dreaming I immediately wake up. They say to look at your watch if you recognize you are dreaming but want to be certain. If it displays pure gibberish rather than the correct time, that's an indicator. Trouble is...I get excited and wake up. Only once or twice was I able to do fun things (flying like a bird, etc). It's a lot if fun if can reach that state!
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2018
  18. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    I don't know where you are in the world @Sofa, but on the amazon uk website the Dale Carnegie book is only £1.81 on kindle, so if it doesn't gel with you personally it'd not be a lot of money down the plug hole https://www.amazon.co.uk/Worrying-S...+stop+worrying+and+start+living+dale+carnegie.

    My boss and colleagues weren't under any threat of redundancy - they were just nasty pieces of work (looking back I now believe that many of them were high up on the sociopathic spectrum). I retrained and ended up working for a charity for a while, which did have a much better atmosphere. If I had my time over again though, I think I'd do something where I could be my own boss in a field where I could be more creative.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2018
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  19. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Beloved Grand Eagle

    I've just seen what you've added to your last posting @Sofa. I'll try to respond to that later...Am off to the dentist to have a crown done :(
  20. Sofa

    Sofa Well known member

    Okay good luck.
    I'm in the USA. In a big city but not along either coast. To our West we have corn growing. Same with all other directions! :)
    Corporate sociopaths, eh. I think there's some truth to that. As to why.....is it a chicken or the egg thing? If so, which? I'd say some of each due to the path to the top.

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