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Unrelenting neck pain while working a stressful job

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Michael D, Mar 13, 2017.

  1. Michael D

    Michael D New Member

    Hi everyone,

    I suffer from TMS neck pain. I am certain it is TMS because there are times when I am no pain whatsoever, and then my neck can feel like someone is tightening a vise around my spine. My pain seems to get bad in the early afternoon, from roughly 1-4pm everyday. My pain is strongly cyclical, but it is always accompanied by the same feeling: a mixture of strong anxiety, guilt, social awkwardness, and an obligation to help others.

    These symptoms, especially the neck pain, have come back hard since I started my job working as a physical therapy aide. Being on my feet all day, running around like a chicken with my head cut off, serving the demanding and impatient therapists, and hearing elderly people complaining about their pain is just too much for me. Today was extremely busy; we had 5 therapists working together, which means there were 5 patients coming in at a time every half hour. I had almost no break, and I had to gobble down a small lunch. Not to mention daylight savings time began today, so I felt so tired the whole day. I can never relax when I am working, and as a result, the pain never lets up.

    I don't want to live with this pain. I want to be able to work without being in pain. I am healthy and exercise regularly. I shouldn't be suffering from TMS pain anymore. I practice mindfulness meditation, but my mind wanders so much I just can't control it. If anyone has any coping tools I can use while at work, and also ways I can decompress when I return home, I would greatly appreciate it. Thanks!
     
  2. SebastianM

    SebastianM Peer Supporter

    Hi Michael,

    I am also quite new in this forum. If I have strong pain or my mind is wandering like yours, I begin to breath intensively. I focus on my breathing, in and out. The rest is not important neither my mind nor my pain, only the breathing is in my mind and focus. By using this technique I am able to connect my mind to my body.
    The aim is not to stop the pain. The aim is to be in the current moment. In general I am pracitcing this technique when I am on my way to university or elsewhere. I enjoy it and feel the strong power which spreads through my body when I begin to REALLY feel. It doesn't matter if your feelings are positive or negative. They are there and ALL feelings are okay and a part of you. Your body and your mind will be grateful to get this kind of attention.

    I would not believe my own words, if I did not recognize an improvement of my sense of self. The pain relief comes later. My pain is still there. But mostly it is not important how strong it is. I am conviced that it will go away in the future.

    I hope you can use this technique :). If you have further questions concerning this technique, just ask:).

    Greetings
    Sebastian
     
  3. Michael D

    Michael D New Member

    Thanks Sebastian, I will try to focus on my breathing as I am working. I think what also makes my pain worse is when I am not connected to my true self. I feel like I am not really me when I am in an uncomfortable situation. I always feel like I must perform and impress others around me to feel fulfilled, but I really feel lost. I end up getting neck pain, and then I only focus on the pain itself while ignoring my emotions.

    What also helps me is simply accepting the fact that the pain is there at the moment, and thinking about how my mind is reacting to the pain. As soon as I can distance myself from these thoughts so that they don't control me, I notice a quick reduction in the pain.

    Thanks again for the advice :)

    Michael
     
  4. SebastianM

    SebastianM Peer Supporter

    Hi Michael,

    I totally agree with you. On Monday I had such a situation that you explained. I felt into an old habit and lost the connection to my inner middle. I felt very bad afterwards. My stomach became sour and I was a bit angry about myself. Instead of diverting me from these feelings and thoughts, I focussed on myself and tried to understand the situation. It felt great and I felt much better :). A few months ago I only would have focussed the pain bangheada.

    At the moment I feel like I am reprogramming myself. Nearly every day I recognize situations in which I either think and act different or fall back to old habits. In case of falling back to old habits, I take a few minutes to reflect on these situations. What am I feeling during it? Why am I acting like this, what forces me to do it?

    Thank you for your thread. It's great to see that we are not alone with our habits and feelings :).

    Greetings
    Sebastian
     

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