Posts Tagged ‘MEDITATION’

Obsessed: a sports analogy



From “Obsessed: The Compulsions and Creations of Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz by Steve Volk

“The catcher (your brain), gives signals to the pitcher (your consciousness).

Just as the pitcher can shake off a signal and ask the catcher for another option, our conscious mind can shake off impulses from the brain.

Some of these impulses, like quick motor reflexes, get processed and acted upon automatically.

When I see a car drifting over into my lane, I register no choice to honk the horn and move to the shoulder of the highway; I begin the actions involved before I even have full, conscious awareness of the danger.

But when I receive an impulse to eat a peach, I can shake that off—I’d rather have an apple—like the pitcher telling his catcher “no” and receiving another suggestion.

“The fact is, we behave automatically all the time,” says Schwartz.

We behave without thinking.

The brain is constantly sending us messages and thoughts and possible actions, and we can’t control what thoughts our brain is going to bring up into our awareness.

But once a thought has risen to conscious awareness, then we can step up and choose where we will focus our attention.

And the behavior we focus on is the behavior we’ll perform.”

Fear of Failure



Fear of failing kept me alive during my childhood, helped me to survive my dad.

It felt like a symptom of abuse (Ptsd), like hypervigilance or dissociation.

I always knew physical and emotional punishment would be the consequence of any failure as a kid.

My father was brutal with his criticism, I needed to be twice as good as everyone else, not just win.

He did not select me because of my superior talent, it was his narcissistic desire for stardom through his first child.

This mindset has never left me subconsciously, I find it brings worry, and doubt to this day.

Can you find habits from childhood that shape your life today?

Fear of failure is jet fuel for the inner critic.

My father made my self-worth dependant on my performance, I could lose everything each day with a failure.

I could be worthless in his eyes by how I performed on a competitive field.

Fear of failure allowed a mediocre athlete like me to play professional baseball.

Oh, it is great for performance, outstanding accomplishments are celebrated.

Well-being is replaced with hollow trophies, self worth is all based on tomorrows performance.

At 70, I still fear failure at anything.

It is another invisible prison, like PTSD.



Am I too damaged to heal?



Am I too damaged to heal?

There is no figure on the percentage of seriously abused kids healing.

I wonder how many adults with a one off crisis or trauma later in life heal?

What kind of odds do people like us have in healing our childhood abuse?

I would like to know my odds or chances on this journey.

Am I fighting a losing battle?

I have devoted my life full time to healing for over a decade, intense therapy, books, meditation, and practice.

If anything I have devoted too much attention trying to heal.

So for me, I was either handling my trauma trying to heal or suffering from the symptoms.

Now, I do not know which way to turn, quit messing with my trauma trying to heal or continue full force.

My mental stability and quality of life has deteriorated.

Depression seeps into my life, all that emotional hope I carried for over a decade is fading fast.



I struggle with Forgiveness



How do we forgive, I have prayed for peace, healing, and forgiveness, inserted compassion, and opened my heart?

I have accepted, surrendered, forgave silently, verbally out loud, and written it down.

Cognitively I know forgiving benefits me, frees me but the damaged feelings persist, the scenario keeps playing as I battle to extinguish it.

Forgiveness is different than integrating triggers, unplugging the fight or flight mechanism, or handling other symptoms like hypervigilance, avoidance, or agoraphobia.

Where is the crack in this armor of trauma, forgiveness does not happen with my words, actions, or intention so far?

Forgiveness has resisted all my tools, all my skills so far, and all my effort.

How do I get that memory to stop playing, stop haunting, stop ruining my life?



Jousting with Forgiveness


Healing is unpacking old habits, then repeatedly and persistently inserting new healthy habits.

Like staying present instead of dissociating or letting go of thought instead of ruminating or following body sensations instead of the emotion.

Not forgiving is a huge impediment to my healing.

I replace it first with my mantra, “Forgivness is for me”.

Slowly as I delve deeper into finding ways to forgive, resistance is stiff at times, but other times the path is open.

One big change, I have decided to forgive, I will find a way.

My inner critic has received the message and recognizes I am dead serious.

Know thy enemy.



The Tug of War: Ego vs Inner Critic

My vicious inner critic has close ties to my male Ego, constantly reminding me of past wrongs and failures.

My inner critic loves using blame to fuel his dominance in my conscious life.

What better way of dominating our mind than bringing highly emotional, judgmental thoughts.

Trauma explodes when we grasp this rope.

PTSD is fueled in this scenario.

I have spent countless hours blaming and punishing Abusers in my visual recreations.

A total waste of time and energy, somehow we have to forgive and surrender or be owned by our abuse (abuser).

This is a tug of war, grab the rope with only one arm and the whole body is attached.

Compartmentalization does not work with trauma.

I have run from forgiving in the past, now I plant my flag and engage forgiveness.

Follow me or let me be your test dummy.

My male ego needs a revision, a spiritual awakening of sorts.

My inner critic can kiss my ass.

Sorry for that raw emotion.

Sarcasm is my vehicle of choice on this journey.


Healing is counterintuitive,



Healing is counterintuitive, fighting PTSD is not what you think.

Instead of battling trauma, we accept, surrender and hopefully forgive to wage our war.

Being humble then vulnerable is needed to improve or heal.

That’s not the gung-ho battle charge we see in the movies.

The war with trauma is internal, intuitive and irrational.

Forgiving frees me, forgiveness is for me.

I am praying for the strength to forgive.

Funny to ask, do I have the courage to forgive?

Never thought of it like that, it takes so much courage to forgive, far more than resist and hate.

I have faced so many demons, why is forgiveness the hardest?

Many others were cortisol filled with a perceived threat but forgiveness is a different foe.

Hard to attack forgiveness like intrusive thoughts.

We want to annihilate intrusive thoughts, shut down our fight or flight mechanism, calm our nervous system, mindfully follow our body sensation, but what the hell do we do with forgiveness.

I wanted to get rid of all of those things, but forgiving I avoided, it scared and enraged me.

Forgiving exposes us to what we fear about the abuse (abuser), frozen from the shame, we avoid forgiving out of survival, we think.

The battle with forgiveness has begun for me.



A Canary in a Cage,,,,,,,,,,,Awareness



This idea is from “Forgive what you can not forget”, we need an awareness as keen as a canary in a cage as we go down into the coal mine, to the depths of our abuse.

I take everything way to personally, never forget the damage inflicted by others and look to discredit or do damage back.

That canary would be in the emergency room headed for ICU without some awareness.

Looks like I steered a decade of in depth meditation around forgiveness. Five hours a day for five years and forgiveness was coated with Teflon.

If I were Superman this is my kyrtonite, my blind spot, my habit of blaming others, being extremely rigid and shallow.

Whew that’s a harsh assessment, truly expected from my inner critic. My inner critic is viscous.

He is an expert at criticism, a failure at approval, acceptance, wellbeing.

It’s a pessimistic attitude, when I take a step back. That brings a sadness to my soul.

Hard to be reasonable when I am outraged, projecting dads constant criticism to present life.

Man, blinds spots are so obvious to others.

With all my reading, therapy and meditation how did this giant stay hidden.

My therapists never pointed this out.

Or did I never hear them?

This is all good, discovery is awesome, maybe painful but it is the path.



PTSD: Love is a thing of depth.


From “Forgive What you can not forget”

“Love is a thing of depth.

When forced to stay on the surface, it flounders about like a fish out of water.

A fish can’t live on the surface, because it can’t breathe. It breathes oxygen but not from the surface air.

Fish pull water through their gills, which dissolve the oxygen from the water and dispense it into their bodies.

If they don’t get below the surface, they will be starved of what gives them life.

Love is a bit like that.

Love needs depth to live.

Love needs honesty to grow.

Love needs trust to survive.

My two cents: What do abused kids know about love?

Love was no part of my childhood experience, violence, abuse and turmoil filled my youth.

Now I see my father never forgave, never felt remorse, I did not understand how a narcissist thought or behaved.

I have no idea what love is or how to forgive.

Awareness of our flaws always starts the process of change.



How to use our Meditation to heal



“Pray for yourself to find peace and healing, pray for them to do the same, pray for forgiveness to release yourself and forgiveness to release them. Pray for an opening in your ego to allow the heart to temper it all with love and grace.”

My two cents: How do I go about accomplishing these goals?

First by setting intention before meditation.

I was taught to ask for information, knowledge not solutions in my intention.

Asking for different ways, different ideas, outside the box that will help me succeed, has helped me in the past.

It uses the law of attraction and the basic building block of neuroscience, where we place our attention grows, where we withhold withers and dies.

There must be many ways to find peace and healing.

It’s like climbing a ladder, each rung we ascend expands our horizon, our visual reality.

How many ways are there to open our hearts that I have never entertained.

The big issue for me is forgiveness. Praying for the ability to forgive is a unique approach.

Trying to just forgive has not worked for me yet.

The hurt and shame feel alive, present, oh PTSD is so irrational.

That’s why the phrase “Pray for an opening in your ego to allow the heart to temper it all with love and grace” gives me hope.

Cognitively or rationally forgiveness feels impossible, opening the heart seems the only path.

What has worked in your attempts at forgiving the abuser or abusers?

Next post we will craft an affirmation around our goals.



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