Posts Tagged ‘AWARENESS’

Rudid96 asks am I afraid of my triggers?

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I am not afraid, I have chased my triggers down, brought my meditation practice physically into the center of that mechanism.

I sat in public places while my fight or flight fired, then used my focused breath to dissipate the cortisol and adrenaline.

My fight or flight calmed and stopped firing because of any trauma trigger.

I do avoid though, pick and choose where I go, not out of fear but more discomfort or lack of reward.

I do not fear my triggers but that did not restore my trust.

Ptsd has altered the way I exist, how few I trust.

Ptsd has changed and matured for me, gone is the high anxiety fear, replaced by the thoughts and depression.

I can navigate life, choose where and when I participate.

My fear is more from the unknown about to happen, I do not trust life.

If you were born into narcissistic control and violence, it is hard to think things will turn out alright anytime in your life.

Looking back the loss of trust has done the most damage.

The risk of betrayal is what I fear, Rudid96.

I have never felt safe around people, my existence is shallow.

It has shaped my personality and narrowed my life.
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Updated: THE PAIN PARADOX from “Trauma Sensitive Mindfulness”.

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There is one more idea in Buddhism and MBSR that shapes our orientation to mindfulness: the notion that our avoidance of suffering can exacerbate it.

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Mindfulness experts John Briere and Catherine Scott referred to this as the pain paradox—the observation that our natural tendency to escape, deny, or withdraw from pain only intensifies and prolongs the distress.

What we resist, the saying goes, persists.

This paradox was key to Kabat-Zinn’s introduction of MBSR to the medical community. (https://mbsrtraining.com/jon-kabat-zinn/)

When he originally approached doctors with the idea of having patients meditate, Kabat-Zinn was advocating for a fundamentally different approach to suffering—one that lay at the heart of the Buddhist tradition he’d trained in.


“From the perspective of mindfulness,” he wrote, “
nothing needs fixing.


Nothing needs to be forced to stop, or change, or go away.”

Perhaps not surprisingly, this idea raised eyebrows.

Western medicine was built largely on helping alleviate people’s pain, offering interventions such as medication or surgery.

Mindfulness ran completely counter to this paradigm. How could paying closer attention to one’s pain alleviate it?


Yet doctors were also open to the idea.
Each of them had patients they couldn’t cure and who were resistant to conventional treatment approaches. Doctors and their patients had little to lose.

The first MBSR studies thus began with those who were suffering from chronic pain.

Kabat-Zinn wanted to see whether they could mobilize their own internal responses to the suffering they were experiencing. “We invited them, paradoxically,” he said, “to put the welcome mat out for whatever sensations they were experiencing, just to see if they could attend to them moment by moment and ‘befriend’ the actuality of their experience, even briefly.”

The results were successful. Patients found that their relationship to pain shifted positively when they practiced mindfulness.

At times, their pain even disappeared. Patients also reported discovering that the vexing sensations that lived inside them were transient and shifting.

Rather than being constant throughout their day, the pain was shifting over time—a huge realization for those who felt perpetually burdened by their bodies.


Mindfulness was helping people relate to their pain differently.


For some, it was even opening a door to a freedom they had forgotten or had previously not known.
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Use the creative side of the brain to heal

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The cognitive side of the brain wants to handle complex things, accelerate to hyper speed, even multi-task at times.

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Ptsd and depression power up using thoughts, thinking, ruminating, and anxiety.

Meditation/Mindfulness slows the mind down, focuses on the breath, allows the body to go at warp speed as the mind empties of thought.

Thought drives the cognitive side, always running, always creating more and more thoughts.

Solving the world’s most complex problem, like Einstein inventing E= mc2 does not necessarily lead to a happy life.

Thoughts and happiness can be estranged concepts.

I am happiest when thought has ceased and simple clarity reigns, the sight of a flower, the special fragrance brings a smile.

Our thoughts and memories are the problems for PTSD sufferers.

Ptsd memories trap us in our past, thoughts are the vehicle of remembrance, triggers are the physiological consequence.

I am happiest while existing in this present moment, free of thought, worry, doubt and fear.

Thinking can change this instantly.

It’s a razor’s edge when our Ptsd is active.

Thinking is a small part of our mind’s capability.

The creative right hemisphere is expansive, thought is feeble compared to this almost infinite space.

The cognitive side of the brain is a beach ball, the right creative hemisphere is the pacific ocean.

Remember trauma is stored in the amygdala on the right side of the brain.

We can not access the right hemisphere consciously, herein lies the rub.

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Our PTSD fear is invisible to others

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Others see our fear (triggers) like this, they see no danger while our fight or flight mechanism explodes.


Ptsd fear: When a past event elicits fear, a deep, deep fear, a special memory is stored in a special place, beyond our cognitive reach.

We will have to learn skills enabling us to stay focused, calm and aware when the fight or flight erupts to access these memories

When fully activated by a current visual, a certain smell, maybe a confined space, or the backfiring of a car can fire our adrenal stress response, better known as the fight or flight mechanism.

It’s that sudden, paralyzing jolt in the solar plexus, we humans experience this as fear.

The fight or flight mechanism: Physiological Effects; Tunnel vision, hearing loss, fine motor skills disappear, time is distorted along with blood pressure, heart rate, and pulse spike, finally the stimulants cortisol and adrenaline are secreted.

Thinking can be many things from, unable to think at all, confusion and numbness, frozen unable to move or think, the proverbial deer in the headlights scenario.

I won this battle with Ptsd, the calming of my fight or flight mechanism. The emotional and cognitive healing still eludes me.

With daily practice and application, slowly I started becoming more familiar less afraid of the mechanism.

Over time I could sit in the middle of my triggers exploding.

This is only half the war, integrating the cognitive and emotional part are much easier with the fight or flight acting normal.

Use your strengths, adapt things to maximize healing.
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Daily Practice has no Substitute

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“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks 1 time, but I fear the man who has practiced 1 kick 10,000 times.”

My two cents: Healing follows Bruce Lee’s mantra, we take a simple skill, breathing..

Repetition strengthens focus and skill levels, so practicing the breath 10,000 times makes it bulletproof.

When triggers fire, the best defense is a skill that has no connection to thought, no weakness under high anxiety.

The breath has this potential.

Whether 10,000 or 100,000 focused breaths, practice is all that separates us from mastery.

What holds you back?

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The Pauses are the doors

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Meditation in words: A slow focused inhale, followed by a pause under pressure, next the slow exhale releases the pressure, ending with a calm pause.

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Repeat 1,000 times. Now let’s dive into the minutia of the breath.

The pauses are similar to suspended animation, nothing is moving, silence is the deepest.

The first pause mixes with the energy we use to suspend the breath, holding back the pressure in the lungs.

The second pause happens with us at complete rest.

You can hear the inhales and exhales, however soft. Practice.

The lungs fill, expand, then empty, this all has movement and sound, the pauses are silent, nothing is moving.

Perfect time to feel the tiniest body sensations, time to observe gently and release.

Each breath brings two pauses, two chances to deepen our focus.

I love this focus on the breath and body when trauma stops responding to my efforts to heal.

When I sit (meditate), I am focused on the next 30 minutes, PTSD drops away.

I can own 30-minute intervals, that’s power in my battle.

We need power over PTSD, even if it is temporary.
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Awareness, then adapt,

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When my childhood trauma exploded a decade ago, I was already disabled physically from a highway triple rollover.

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The one thing I had an abundance of was free time.

Trying to heal replaced my career, every day I would invest in reading, meditating, exercising, and applying the learned skills (A minimum of eight hours a day).

My daughter tells me it was way too much, I have identified with my trauma. It is hard for me to deny her allegations.

The books I read have all been about trauma, neuroscience, war, and the spiritual side.

Not a one for pleasure.

I lead a mindfulness group and write this blog.

My life revolves around my Complex Ptsd and depression.

My decade of effort has not separated me from my suffering but connected me to it more.

Now, what direction is the correct pivot?

I am back to my meditation practice, focusing on my breath, calming my being, and opening my heart.
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Going back to basics

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Over the last couple of months, the online Kundalini group has been processing grief.

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Handling grief every day has riled my PTSD, I know this reaction means grief needs more work.

I have taken a break, reverting back to my well-established meditation practice.

No talking, chants, or hand positions, just me, eyes closed, totally focused on the breath, sounds, and opening my heart.

Simple, me alone with my mind, like old times.

The quiet has calmed my intrusive thoughts momentarily, I fully resist thinking anything is permanent.

As they say, back to basics when things fall apart.

If you follow this blog, PTSD and depression are kind of a rollercoaster ride.

One where we can have long, calm, slow, straightaways, flanked by the high crests and terrifying fast descents always lurking in the distance.

Go farther down the wormhole and there are giant loops of intolerable confusion and anxiety.

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I have a momentary pause, a peaceful calm that only visits for short periods, lately.

As always, when the pain and suffering seem unbearable, that is when we never give in, never give up.

Some days my job is to endure ptsd and depression until it lifts a little.

We will always have issues, hopefully, we will take action appropriately.
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For abused kids: Why are we on this Planet?

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I have questions that will never be answered, so many of us out there.

Why am I on this planet? Am I paying for a bad past life? Abused kids do not understand why we were born into violence and abuse?

Old age seems as unwelcoming as birth for this abused kid.

As my body deteriorates, my mind slows, becomes forgetful and weaker, my chronic pain increases.

My emotional and physical pain are out of control.

Childhood trauma has an encore for me, the most damaging experiences return with a vengeance.

I do not understand why I suffer, why my mind will not let go of its most painful event, why nothing helps.

Abuse has robbed my brain of wiring in a supportive and safe environment.

Life carries far less value for abused kids.

I do not feel good about life, what has happened to me, how I have been treated, how I have suffered because of others.

When we experience loss, our being is wounded, we sink, recoil, isolate and try to numb the pain.

We have difficulty enjoying life, trauma fills our being with danger and shame.

People have done things to me I will never forget, a mate shaming me publicly has left a permanent stain.

After a horrendous childhood, we are vulnerable to being used by people.

It happened to me in a way that brought suicidal thoughts, feelings of not wanting to be alive.

Who understands?

Why am I on this planet?

My hopelessness embarrasses me but I share anyway.

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Emotional Regulation: Yikes!!!!!!

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Excerpt: From Bessel A. van der Kolk, MD

“The Body Keeps the Score”

“When trauma emanates from within the family, children experience a crisis of loyalty and organize their behavior to survive within their families. Being prevented from articulating what they observe and experience, traumatized children will organize their behavior around keeping the secret, deal with their helplessness with compliance or defiance, and acclimate in any way they can to entrapment in abusive or neglectful situations.

Being left to their own devices leaves chronically traumatized children with deficits in emotional self-regulation. This results in problems with self-definition as reflected by a lack of a continuous sense of self, poorly modulated affect and impulse control, including aggression against self and others, and uncertainty about the reliability and predictability of others, expressed as distrust, suspiciousness, and problems with intimacy, resulting in social isolation.

Chronically traumatized children tend to suffer from distinct alterations in states of consciousness, including amnesia, hypermnesia, dissociation, depersonalization and derealization, flashbacks and nightmares of specific events, school problems, difficulties in attention regulation, disorientation in time and space, and sensorimotor developmental disorders. The children often are literally are “out of touch” with their feelings, and often have no language to describe internal states.

When a child lacks a sense of predictability, he or she may experience difficulty developing of object constancy and inner representations of their own inner world or their surroundings. As a result, they lack a good sense of cause and effect and of their own contributions to what happens to them.

Without internal maps to guide them, they act, instead of plan, and show their wishes in their behaviors, rather than discussing what they want. Unable to appreciate clearly who they or others are, they have problems enlisting other people as allies on their behalf. Other people are sources of terror or pleasure but are rarely fellow human beings with their own sets of needs and desires.

These children also have difficulty appreciating novelty. Without a map to compare and contrast, anything new is potentially threatening. What is familiar tends to be experienced as safer, even if it is a predictable source of terror.

Traumatized children rarely discuss their fears and traumas spontaneously. They also have little insight into the relationship between what they do, what they feel, and what has happened to them. They tend to communicate the nature of their traumatic past by repeating it in the form of interpersonal en- actments, both in their play and in their fantasy lives.

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