Educational Program Day 24

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A majority of people can use the TMS/PPD approach to eliminate or lessen their main chronic issue, whether it's pain or some other issue such as gastrointestinal problems. However, people can also have difficulty in eliminating new symptoms that arise during their treatment. Once we realize that our chronic back, neck, or knee pain is a result of repressed emotions, our unconscious mind may create symptoms that may be more vague and not as common. These new conditions, while most likely TMS/PPD, may make it difficult for some people to accept the diagnosis. If, as you go through this program, you experience new conditions (perhaps acid reflux, dry eye, vision problems, etc) do not be discouraged. If you recognize what your unconscious is trying to do you will be able to combat these new conditions just as effectively as your other symptom(s).

Educational Activity: There are several personality traits that are found in TMSers, but the most common denominator in these traits is the overarching belief that we have to be perfect. There are a few ideas on the changes a person needs to make to overcome this disorder. In a recent interview Dr. John Sarno said, " Patients often ask me, “Do you want me to start being nasty?” and I say, “No.” I simply want them to understand that the drive to be perfect angers the unconscious. Once the person recognizes that this is what is happening, they no longer automatically react to pressure with anger and rage. They no longer need the distraction of physical pain." This quote is part of a longer interview, in which Dr. Sarno discusses a variety of aspects relating to TMS/PPD. The article is called The Tension Myoneural Syndrome Hypothesis Explained: A Q&A With John Sarno, MD, written by Dave Holzman. It can be accessed by following this link (free registration at Pain Medicine News is required to read the article). An alternative article not requiring registration is on the blog site of journalist Dianne Moore, who in 2009 and 2010 wrote a number of very good articles about Dr. Sarno, TMS and MBS - this one is about the "caretaker personality".

Journaling Activity: Understanding the possible stresses that might result in the creation of new symptoms is imperative to prevent future flare-ups of pain. For today's journal activity "spider write" about any current anxieties or any possible future stresses/issues that might be troublesome to your health. Remember that when you spider write all you need to do is write down the first word or phrase that you associate with the previous word or phrase. Keeping your hand moving will allow you to express more of your thoughts and feelings. (Revisit the topic Cluster/Spider Writing on the page How do I journal?).

Question To Ponder
Have you noticed any positive changes in your life while going through this program? If so what role did your TMS/PPD treatment play in it. If not, what areas of your life do you need to make changes?

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