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Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Mermaid, Feb 1, 2014.

  1. Mermaid

    Mermaid Well known member

    Hi Everyone

    On the weekends my symptoms are usually slightly more intense, particularly morning anxiety.

    I think this is conditioning from when I was much worse and very fearful. I would beat myself up about all the things I couldn't do and about ruining my husband's weekend too.

    I do anything I want to now, but still I get this heightening of pain and anxiety. I do all my usual stuff, positive self talk, journaling, meditation etc., to no effect. Do you think I should just let it be and it will fade on it's own, or has anyone had a similar experience and found a way to stop it.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  2. Eric "Herbie" Watson

    Eric "Herbie" Watson Beloved Grand Eagle

    Your doing great Mermaid and in time your anxieties will fade -- right. But why wait. When you wake up tomorrow or even today -- think for a moment and see if you are seeing a picture of yourself in your minds eye. When you locate that picture make it vibrant and full of energy. You will feel it first then an image will come up. often with you in the image and tired. If you change this to seeing yourself awake and vibrant, full of zest by making the colors in your image vibrant and then seeing yourself happy and peaceful then it should help you loose those weekend blues rather quick.

    I plan to have some videos on YouTube soon that will show you even more steps but do you get the picture?
    Msunn, Lily Rose and Mermaid like this.
  3. Mermaid

    Mermaid Well known member

    That's sounds like a great idea I'll give it a try. I normally do positive affirmations and breathing exercise before I open my eyes, but I can still feel the anxiety start to bubble up, it used to be really bad, I'd feel sick and my heart would thump, now it just annoys me. I didn't think of using visualization (dummy !)

    Thanks once again for your kindness and wisdom. I can't wait to see your videos :joyful:
    Msunn and Eric "Herbie" Watson like this.
  4. balto

    balto Beloved Grand Eagle

    I think topic about conditioning is very important for long time tms/anxiety sufferers. Many of us get well using what we learned from Dr Sarno and other experts, but we usually get stuck at the 80, 90% mark. In my opinion, we got well but not completely well are usually due to conditioning. This topic I think is so important, it confused many and often lead us backward back into our illness. Someone need to write a book on this.

    Conditioning responds are very broad and it effect our life greatly. I like to share what I have learn from many wise people about overcoming conditioning because I think we will not completely cure until we successfully conquered our negative conditioning respond. (yes, there are many positive conditioning respond, athletics using it all the time).

    I hope you don't mind reading a long post, because this will be one. There are many type of conditioning:

    - Conditioning respond we learned from revolution. Like fear of loud noise. Fear of the dark, fear of snakes, spiders...

    - Conditioning responds we got due to association. When some neutral thing happen at the same time we were experience our symptoms, that neutral thing will trigger our symptoms when we experience it again.

    - Conditioning responds due to anticipation. We all have jobs that we don't like, family responsibilities that we hated, relationships that we want to avoid... When we know we are heading into those situation, stress is created in our mind and very often trigger our tms/anxiety symptoms.

    After a long time have passed, the conditioning respond became automatic. The wiring in our brain is in place and will respond automaticly to that situation without any input from our thinking. It is just like when our hand touch a red hot pot, the hand will put back instantly without thinking. We don't stand there holding the pot and think: is this more than 100 degree yet? is this going to burn and hurt my hand? Because conditioning is instantly and automaticly, we got confused and usually we blame something is wrong with our body instead of recornise that the symptoms is trigger by the conditioning respond.

    I used to be a 4,5 cups a day coffee drinker. After I have anxiety, one sip would be enought to trigger a full blown panic attack. I went to work in the same job for years without any problem, when I was having anxiety, I felt more stress, and see more negative things about my job, my co-workers, my boss and it often trigger strong symptoms. One time, I have an attack while going thru a tunnel, after that, attack always come when I go thru the tunnel again. And for a long time, I have to spend an extra 20 minutes drive to work using a different route to avoid the tunnel.

    There are thousand of conditioning behavior among tmser's. People walk with a limp because they affraid to put weight on their bad legs. people sleep with 2 pillows or no pillow, with a hard mattress or very soft mattress. People refuse to eat certain type of food for fear it will harm them even though they've been eating it their whole life with no problem. Many people's symptoms would be triggered by loud music or sad music, by too hot or too cold weather, Sad movies, certain colors would triggers unpleasant feeling, Someone I know even experience symptoms when he sees bald headed men. :))

    the first step to overcome conditioning is to recognise it. In Mermaid's case here she conditioned her body to produce symptoms on the weekend. For me I need to find the "truth" and the truth is coffee don't produce panic attack, my mind, my anticipation does. My friend is a doctor and he has a stressful and depressing job dealing with sick and dying patients every day. He need to recognise that is his conditioning behavior.

    the second step is what one of my teacher called: "talk to our mind". We need to educate ourself that there is nothing danger with that thing, that situation, that event... it is just wrong thought, it is just our body's auto respond to a wrong conclusion.

    Negative conditioning is a type of fear. It exist to protect us from perceive dangers that aren't real. The third step is using exposure therapy with will power. Pavlov's dog stopped salivating when hearing the bell and get no food for a few times. Our symptoms will lessen and stop after we keep expose ourself to the situation that would normally created fear or created symptoms. That is why Dr Sarno encouraged us to keep exercise and run. People with fear of snake overcame their fear by keep visiting snake farm. I myself overcame my fear of food by forcing myself to eat anything I like even if I think it is bad for me. My doctor friend I mention above over came his going to work conditioning respond after he came up with a list of what is wonderful about his job: saving lives, comforting his patient, being appreciate his patients, bringing home a paycheck to provide for his family, having a purpose in life. He came to work with a big smile and a positive outlook.

    Another friend of my can only find peace at work. She hated to come home to care for her 3 kids, cleaning after them, listen to their arguing, cooking for her family... She list out all the positive aspect of being a wife and a mother. She look pass all those stressful thing and saw her kids' smile, she treasure the time their spend together watching tv or playing cowboy and Indians... She was cure a 100% after she was able to count her blessing.

    We need to recognise the conditioning respond for what it is, we need to keep expose ourself to it with a positive mind, and we need to count our blessings.

    I hope this help some of us here. I didn't come up with any of this, I learned it from many wise men and women in my life and it really save me. Goodluck to all.
  5. Mermaid

    Mermaid Well known member

    Balto, once again you have gotten right to the heart of the problem and exposed the truth. Your insights are invaluable. I'll certainly take your advice and I'm positive I'll be 100% healed.

    A clueless neurologist once told me I must never eat chocolate, because it would make my migraines worse. It had never caused them before, but after he told me it would, you can guess what happened. Anyway, I saw this for what it was and now I can eat it with no problem.

    Whilst I'm on the subject, the same doctor told me I would have a terrible time coming off the medication another doctor had put me on, and the new medication he was giving me would make me feel worse, before it would make me feel better. He actually said, "You are in for a rough ride, you will feel a lot worse before you start to get better". After that my symptoms spiralled out of control and I was very ill for over a year.

    I really do see where you're coming from with this and I'm going start work on resolving it right this minute !

    Bless you and thanks a million :happy:

    P.S. Get started on that book !
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  6. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    A few years ago I had a big hernia. My doctor said "It's either the largest hernia I've ever seen
    or you're pregnant."

    I wish I had been pregnant because I'd have become a rich man.

    Before I had the operation (for a double hernia) my older brother told me, "Afterward, you're going to be in more pain
    than anything you could imagine." Thanks, Bro. I needed that. It was painful, but did he need to scare me that way?
    It made me worry more than I would have.

    So maybe doctors ought not to scare patients by saying a medication may make them feel worse but eventually
    they will feel better. Maybe they should just say nothing or that "This may take a while, but you will feel better."

    Or better yet, maybe not prescribe anything and let the patient work on their TMS repressed emotions that
    are the cause of their pain.

    And yes, tell them to keep positive and count their blessings.
  7. Eric "Herbie" Watson

    Eric "Herbie" Watson Beloved Grand Eagle

    Wow, balto that is a great post. I will save it to my desk top. So much good advice there.
    Thank You for your contribution. I always look forward to your post -- the best. Thanks balto.

    PSS- Guys I want you to know that this post is in my Tms emergency folder for anxiety and it will apply to pain too.
    Balto has been Awesome for some time now.
    Msunn likes this.
  8. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Yes, Herbie. Balto's posting on conditioning really is great.

    Like your posts.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  9. myg

    myg New Member

    I don't think that I ever understood conditioning quite as well as this! I like the three step process for overcoming fear, too.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  10. Mala

    Mala Well known member

    Balto. Great post on conditioning. I have a question
    I understand how you can reprogram yrself in most situations especially if you know that something is going to trigger a response like the tunnel & coffee, mattress etc

    But how about weather? In most cases we don't even know till it has actually affected us ?

    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  11. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Fabulous post, Balto. I have many conditioned things still going on. (Like the pillow thing…I've thrown one pillow overboard successfully but now have another one that needs to go. And then there's the fear of (cue to ominous music), sleeping "the wrong way.

    I won't even get started on the wintry weather and my fear of slipping on the ice. Or driving. Yes, it's important to be careful….but when I can feel every muscle tensing and I'm cussing like a sailor…uh, probably a bit overboard in the fear department.

    Thanks once again, Balto.
    Msunn and Eric "Herbie" Watson like this.
  12. balto

    balto Beloved Grand Eagle

    At first it will be difficult Mala, our tms sick mind will always try to find a physical or biological cause for all of our illnesses, It is a very ingrained habit that we need to break in order to free ourselves. We need to change our way of thinking.
    In the past, every time I have a symptoms, I would ran to the doctors and have check up and tests hoping the doctors can find out what kind of virus I have or what defect my body have, I never thought that my mind, my thought could be the cause of my illness. I don't know it until Sarno and Weekes and other great mind body teacher told me.
    Now a day, every time I don't feel well, unless it is something emergency, the first thing I would ask myself is: "what is on my mind? what am I worry about? What is my body conditioned to to cause this symptom? ... Is it the weather? Is it the coming weekend's meeting with the in-law? is it the traffic going to work? is it the crying noise of my kid? is it the sound of the airplane flying above (remember how we feel after 9/11 event)? is it this and that... I try to be more mindful of my surrounding, I try to be an impartial observer, I would ask question like: "in what situations that my body most likely to produce symptoms?"

    If you can completely get rid of your fear of your symptoms, if there is not significant stress in your life at the moment, if your not worry about anything at the moment... then if you still have symptoms, it is usually due to conditioning respond your body have to "something" in your surrounding.

    Pay attention and you're be amaze at how many you're conditioned to. A friend of mine would get very bad hay fever symptoms just by looking at a dusty car, his mind think it is pollen dust and produce the corresponding symptoms. Years ago when I worked as a pizza delivery man, a customer opened the door, when he saw me he screamed, slammed the door, and ran back inside. I found out later that my Asian face reminded him of the horror he had endured in the Vietnam war. (I think ptsd is an extreme case of negative conditioning)

    We have to re-educate our mind to get over the conditioning respond. We have to expose ourselves to the situations and slowly learn that the situations are not dangerous. Exposure and have an intelligent talk with your mind. The gloomy winter weather is beautiful. If it can cause tms symptoms then Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Sweden wouldn't be in the top ten of the most happy nation in the world. (http://edition.cnn.com/2013/09/09/business/earth-institute-world-happiness-rankings/) and the Eskimo would all die from back pain.

    Hope this help Mala, please save me some of those sweet Chinese new year treats. :)
  13. Mermaid

    Mermaid Well known member

    Balto, you have wisdom beyond measure. :joyful:
  14. Pingman

    Pingman Well known member

    Mermaid - Toward the end of my TMS the only time my anxiety would kick in was morning. It was partly to due with my conditioning of my mind to check my symptoms each morning. Kind of like child on Christmas morning....anticipating presents. I was anticipating to be cured...then I would feel pain and the fear would start.

    I finally stopped looking for it with the help of scripture and just relaxing with my mindfullness and poof.
  15. Mermaid

    Mermaid Well known member

    That's exactly what my subconscious is doing too. I think it's just an ingrained habit, I have very little pain now, but my reaction hasn't changed.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  16. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    I'm 83 and afraid of falling on the ice, but I walk with heavy shoes with rubber soles that help keep me steady.
    I drive in snow and ice as little as possible. I see all the car pile-ups in heavy snow and ice and am glad
    my car is in the garage. I don't have much reason to drive or even walk in snow or ice, but you may.
    Go as safely as you can and watch out for the other guy!
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  17. Mala

    Mala Well known member

    Dear Balto, what a great post. Thank you.

    The hustle & bustle of CNY is over & today is the last day of the long holiday period. I have saved your sweets for you so when are you coming over. ;)

    My husband & I will be going to Ho Chi Minh for 6 days at the end of this month. It's our first time to Vietnam. I'll be thinking about you :).

    Take care

    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  18. Pingman

    Pingman Well known member

    You had much much more severe pain then I ever had, with migraines with Aura. Look where you have come, so so far.

    Just like Balto and Eric have said.....once your pain is gone all that is left is the fear...aka anxiety. It is all that is left to keep you from healing 100%. When you can just accept it and move on with your morning it too will fade. Lord knows I couldn't see the light just a month ago but somehow I was able to with recognizing anxiety was simple irrantional thinking about future worries.

    I just don't care anymore when I check every morning and feel a little pain. I just say well it isn't as bad as it was when it was the worst so I am good and I live in the moment more so. I care less about the thoughts of having this stupid anxiety and pain.

    You are on the door step and because you had such severe pain for so long you just don't know how to live without your companion. Trust me, you can do it and on the other side strength from the experience will allow you to never go back.

    You can do it!!! God created you in his image just like everyone else. You have his spirit in you so anything is possible.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  19. Mermaid

    Mermaid Well known member

    Thanks Pingman. I really needed a boost this morning, it's pouring with rain and I've got a mountain of chores to do. To look on the bright side, at least I can do my chores now ! I suppose the longer you suffer TMS pain, in my case 9 years, the deeper the conditioning. The residual symptoms and minor morning anxiety don't really bother me, I'm just waiting for my subconscious to catch up. It will be kind of weird when everything is back in balance, it's so long since my mind and body have been peaceful. In my last really bad spell I was in so much unbearable pain I asked God to either take me home or show me the way out of this, I'm glad He chose to show me the way out !
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  20. Pingman

    Pingman Well known member

    I know what you mean about it being weird when you feel back to normal and I only had TMS for 3 months compared to 9 years for you.

    3 months was long enough though that I was unable to recall what a normal state of mind was. The hardest part for you is over yet it is just begun.

    Eliminating the pain opens you up to the frustration of trying to let the mental companion go as well. It is hard to fathom not thinking subconsciously about your buddy.

    You have been through the worst in terms of pain now. You had no idea what was happening with your migraines, no basis for how to heal. You felt hopeless which is the worst pain ever. Now your on the other side.

    Does that mean you will never have a headache again? probably not but you will never go back to the pain you knew..because you had TMS pain and you know how to win that battle.

    Part of your subconscious training will be to fully realize you will never ever suffer like you did. That's part of your mental conditioning for the last 9 years. You are right on the fence of a breakthrough....just make sure you realize TMS is not your life and that you slowly start spending more time regaining your life back.
    Mermaid likes this.

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