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Dealing with "new" symptoms

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by SebastianM, Nov 17, 2018.

  1. SebastianM

    SebastianM Peer Supporter

    Hi everyone,

    first of all I would like to say "Thank you so much for your support, for this forum, for all you are doing for the people!" :). Without this forum, my life would be different today...

    I've heard about TMS at beginning of 2017 and joined this forum. These times pain dominated my life. I thought around 90% per day about pain.

    In 2017 I had huge success with TMS-work and psychotherapy. My shoulder pain and my reflux mostly disappeared. Sometimes the symptoms are coming back but I am ALWAYS completely convinced of TMS diagnosis. I KNOW that they will disappear and that I am a healthy, young and dynamic person. Outcome independance was a key tool for me to overcome these symptoms..

    But there are "new" symptoms.
    For example (just sometimes): knee pain when I am running. I trained for a fun run this year. First two months there was no pain/no symptoms. The knee pain appeared when the date of the fun run came nearer. Thoughts like "Oh shit, I have to be fit at this date." -> pain focus and fear thoughts.... By the way: the fun run was called of and after 1 or 2 weeks without any thought about knee pain I made a run and there was no pain... EVIDENCE!?

    At the moment I am ill with a flu infection since 2 weeks. The symptoms are changing every day: headache, feeling cold, fatigue, sore throat, dry mucous membranes (pain in ears, eyes, nose, throat) ... The way I think about the symptoms affects my perception. "Oh shit, on Monday I have to go to work again. What if the symptoms are not better?..."

    I completely understand the thinking patterns while having "new" pain: "What if my body is not functioning up to this date/event ...?"

    Last winter was terrible for me. I had these "flu-symptoms" too and they affected my thinking and my well-being many weeks/months. At beginning of October I remembered these time period and got fear: "I hope this winter will be different for me..."

    Now I come to my question:
    I am convinced of mind-body connection, convinced of the influence of fear, convinced of influence of stress, convinced of possibility to change neural pathways...
    Nevertheless I am always in struggle, when I have "new symptoms". I commonly ask myself: "Is it TMS or not?" I think, often it's a mixture. Having a flu infection is not untypical. But the healing process is not normal in my case.
    Do you have a helpful advice for me? I would be very grateful, if you could share your experience :).

    Best regards
    Kira likes this.
  2. Baseball65

    Baseball65 Beloved Grand Eagle

    "I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together" -the beatles(and tms sufferers)

    The thing with the Knee is CLassiC. I have experiences like that a Lot and Yes, it is evidence, but the Judge and jury is You!
    An outside guess would be; regardless of the 'fun' we tend to worry about how we are going to perform, want to compete well....even against ourselves.

    I had a LOT of those mini-tms episodes playing adult baseball... No one cared whether we won or lost. The outcome affected nothing... and yet I got so yanked up about my performance I would get Hip, Hamstring, Throwing arm pain . I played through all of them, and they were ALL TMS.

    I would get pissed when my coach didn't upload my stats to the league board. I would get pissed when I had to share playing time. I would throw temper tantrums and broke bats because I was on base via 'error' and the scorekeeper took away my 'hit'....in a has-been old man baseball league. Sarno mentions this in "Healing Back Pain"

    We hate to admit it because it isn't 'adult' but we are all secretly super competitive and hard on ourselves. I know that in my childish little heart of hearts I ALWAYS want to be the gracious winner. Second place is first loser! etc,etc

    ..and regarding 'Real' things like the Flu. It has been my observation over twenty years of doing this stuff that ALL illness is a metaphor for something. The first person to document and catalogue the actual symptoms was Louise Hay (RIP) In her book "You can heal Your Life" . I would have laughed my ass off at someone if they had showed me her book pre-Sarno, but having checked it over and over It is amazingly accurate.
    So every time I am sick (which has been less and less as time goes by) I contemplate why. We are spiritual beings having a physical experience. The whole damn thing is one big allegory, Because every time I have been really ill I have 'needed' it for some reason...relationship struggles, frustration with work, etc.

    You are totally 'getting it'
  3. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Yes, as Baseball says "you are totally getting it." Doubts may never go away, confusion will come and go. Meantime you're aware, you doing what you can, you are in long-term practice to unwind the "physical thinking." This is a brave journey which most will never undertake because it is not always easy.

    I suggest you be patient with yourself, and have compassion for when you "get caught." You might see your confusion and fear and use a phrase like this to yourself: "It is easy to believe this ----symptom--- is physical right now. I understand. You know you have better symptom relief when you inquire psychologically. I am right here with you." Then allow what wants to arise. No doubt you can improve this phrasing to attune to exactly what is going on with you in these moments of fear or self-pressure.
    SebastianM likes this.
  4. Pietro Carloni

    Pietro Carloni Peer Supporter

    dear SebastianM,
    I'm in your same situation, since I started with this kind of approach my sciatic nerve right and left, I almost vanished into thin air (or rather have become the signal that there is something in life makes me anxious); the problem is that for nine months now there has been an escalation of symptoms spread throughout the body.
    Symptoms that come to the surface for no apparent reason, but which every time make me reflect on the fact that this fight may have no end. Believe me, not a day passes when there is no disturbance, old (like reflux or headache) or new (like problems in the upper back, arms, neck, teeth).
    And I, every day, I become increasingly tired and, for every symptom I always use at least a couple of days to be able to find the right approach.
    And, just like you, I find myself thinking if the symptom will vanish for an important future date, and in this I despair because, after all, I understand that I'm afraid that the cycle will never end.

    In a nutshell I learned that anger and fear are my weak link in the whole process, I realized that if I let fear and anger enter my daily life (and I add sadness too) after I expect some symptoms to arise from one moment to another (the morning is the moment when all this happens).

    I will continue to look at this post that interests me a lot, because you have found the words to say what for some time I feel as a main problem in my path of inner growth.

    Good luck
    SebastianM likes this.
  5. SebastianM

    SebastianM Peer Supporter

    Thank you so much for your replies :). It is wonderful to share my experiences and to hear your stories, advices and so on...

    You are completely right :). One of the most powerful tools is to point out that we always have an impact on every situation. The symptom is the one thing, we have the choice how we deal with it and interpret it.

    I love this way of thinking because it is just the truth! Thank you for reminding me of that.

    Being patient is actually a very important point. It is necessary to practice outcome independance. Not like fighting AGAINST symptoms, more like accepting them as a part of life, unindependant if they stay or go. They just are at the moment and they do not affect me or damage me.

    Thank you, I really like to share my progress and to hear your progress :).

    In last 6 weeks I was very busy and I often recognized two meaningful thoughts which knocked on my door. My mind "solved" these thoughts by telling me things like "that's normal, don't pay attention too much"... By means of that, my mind blocked the emotions behind these thoughts and pressure raised. I felt this pressure because I more and more became restless/nervous. Repression mechanism was at work.... In the last 2 days I became aware of my behaviour pattern. I recognized that I have blocked two very big emotions which are related to my current situation in life. Unfortunately this happened a short time before going to bed yesterday. Moreover, today was my first day at work after being ill for two weeks. I "wanted" to sleep early, good and long enough. What was the result? The pressure raised more and more and I slept around 2 or 3 hours this night. Horrible. While lying in bed I was restless. My mind threw thousands of thoughts through my head, after these mind throwing, several pain symptoms arised. Funny, or not? ;-)

    The day at work was ok, but there was 1 terrible hour. I had panic, fear, my whole life seemed to end. I only thought about my headache which started short before lunch. I wanted to "make it away". I drank a good coffee and decided to take an aspirin to forget the pain only for a few hours. After the pain attack has ended, I was becoming more confident and my thoughts became clearer and I could calm down. I learned much about the last 6 weeks and unmasked a few patterns and doctrines.

    Now I am proud to be on the track again. The next days will be hard. It will not be easy and many fear will arise. But I think the most difficult part is done: I convinced myself, not to go to doctor again and to stay at home for a further week. Being with my lovely colleagues and being part of social life with headache is much better than being alone at home and fighting against pain or hoping that pain will go away. I know that my symptoms will leave one day, not sure when but they will.

    Thank you for reading my long post ;-).

    Best wishes and lovely hugs
    Lizzy likes this.
  6. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    This is wonderful work, wonderful inquiry. This "always discovering" is an important part of the TMS journey and an important part of our fully-lived life! These discoveries end up making us more loving with others in a true way, not being a Goodist. We learn compassion for the human condition. I am happy for you, if I can be so bold as to express it this way.
    SebastianM likes this.
  7. Pietro Carloni

    Pietro Carloni Peer Supporter

    Dear Sebastian
    What you write are my own perplexities, especially when I decide to change course, to leave the comfort zone and dive into the world with all the courage possible and with the desire to get out of the stalemate in which I crashed.

    At this point I would ask those who have more experience if it is really possible to consciously understand what our unconscious mechanisms are.
    From what I read in depth, it seems to me that there is an impassable limit that does not allow us to access with conscious cognitive tools what our unconscious is hiding from us. To arrive at a deep dialogue with ourselves there are indirect techniques (such as those indicated in the SEP for example) that are perhaps more functional to the purpose.

    What I would also like to try to reflect is that ultimately to get out of the spiral of symptoms we must think less and live more the present moment and this logic seems to contradict the introspective approach that leads us to a too-suffocating dialogue with ourselves (as in Freudian psychoanalytic therapy, to cite an example).

    I say this because I have found that if I try to understand myself too insistently I end up creating new anxieties, while it would be ideal to try as much as possible to relax and enjoy as much as possible the pleasures that life offers us.

    A warm hug
  8. SebastianM

    SebastianM Peer Supporter

    Andy, thank you so much for your kind words :).....

    Did you try meditation? I am meditating every morning 5-10 minutes and if I have the need or desire do repeat it, I meditate again during the day or before going to bed.

    The unconscious mechanisms are so so strong. I am 100% with you...
    At the moment I am back at work and back in my allday life. BUT... after my 14 days at home I am recognizing how many impressions I am getting at work and so on. These impressions create feelings and thoughts. Depending on the feelings and thoughts there may arise pressure or fear. For example... I feel cold all day (because it's winter) and have the desire to stay in bed :-D... Instead of fully accepting the fact, that it's winter and I am "allowed" to feel cold, I am angry that I am so sensitive, that I do not have same motivation and energy like in summer, bla bla... I am recognizing this little conflict very clear but am not able to "change" it immediatly. I think the most important point is to just recognize and feel these unconscious thoughts and feelings and to look at them. Afterwards you can ask yourself why am I thinking/feelin that way? In my case, "why is it so bad, that I would like to have a warm bed?"... Easier written than done...
    My text is a bit long... hope you understand what I want to say ;-)...

    To sum up: meditation and being convinced that everything you REALLY need is inside of you, are very important tools for me. Everyone can tell you what you need, but in reality only your body and soul know what your real desires are.

    There's a nice quote: "Soul is desperate and says to body: Body, I am not able to contact him/her. Please help me, can you try?" -> body creates physical symptoms... that's so true :) Thank you body!

    Have a great day!
    Kind regards

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