Posts Tagged ‘Mind’

My mind has patterns, some good, some harmful!

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My mind has patterns, some good, some harmful!

From the earliest memory, my mind and nervous system would lock on to my dad’s behavior, that’s where imminent danger lived for me.

My nervous system was always alert, ready to go to Defcon five in seconds.

This was reinforced every day I lived in that house.

To this day, my mind will lock onto imminent danger, (perceived imminent danger) my mood races to extremes, reacting subconsciously to its perceptions.

My mind, my stored implicit memory, thinks I could be gravely hurt by the current stimulus.

It’s called PTSD and our mind and nervous system are wired differently, hard-wired in extreme survival mode.

My childhood was 17 plus years of daily criticism, physical and emotional abuse.

My brain subconsciously scans the horizon, spotting danger, navigating around people.

My attachments have always been shallow, I always depended on myself, made my own decisions.

My PTSD brain is rigid, anxious, and aggressive, that is a male trait I believe.

I do not understand how people can trust, risk betrayal, or worse.

It is beyond avoidance for me, I do not trust or have a desire to trust.

There is nothing in my memory bank that reinforces attaching to strangers or anyone else.

Emotional safety is the foremost consideration before I leave this house for anything.

I hate it.

I could take anyone afraid of heights up to the top of the Empire State Building.

All the focus and breathing and thinking will not shut that fear down.

You will not be able to calmly analyze anything, think about a dinner engagement, or have a happy-go-lucky experience.

You will be tense, muscles, tendons, nervous system scared to death. You are frozen, parts of the cognitive thinking are offline, rational thought is impossible.

Think you could do some algebra or thread a needle?

Is happiness a choice right now?

How long will a mind be upset from a near-death experience? Hours, days, weeks?

That’s what an intense trigger felt like for me.

That’s PTSD.

Rudid96 asks about self and feelings

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Self: Each of us has a true self, he/she is the same every day, perfect and permanent. We create this other-self, for identity, a guy called Marty. Marty is my “Ego”.

Know this: No Ego ever feels equal to another Ego. Is this the reason our Ego is the ultimate judging machine? Walk into a room with ten people around a table, our Ego has automatically ranked us compared to everyone else. The Ego feels superior to some and inferior to others, here in lies the issue with navigating “Ego’s”.

Resentment, jealousy, anger, and other negative emotions are attached to trauma thoughts.

Realize that emotions are transparent, ephemeral, and fleeting, they arrive, stay a while then change to another emotion.

Rudid96, we place way too much importance on emotions, on thoughts, and judgments.

The Ego is a creation of the left hemisphere, a cognitive judgment of our place on this planet. This judgment takes into account how others treat us, how our first caregivers raised us, and how we value ourselves, all wrapped together in a package we call “Ego”.

The true self does not get involved in fleeting impermanent emotions, he/she observes life in the present moment free of thought.

Remember the right hemisphere of our brain has no words, thoughts, there are no judgments, no right or wrong, no good or bad on this side.

As Rick Hanson has explained in “Buddhas Brain”, you can not find an emotional center of the brain without thoughts being attached. Thoughts attach to emotions, trauma thoughts attach to violent emotions.

Marty, a left-brain invention, is flawed, I know he is in control when strong emotions arise. I have told people that they have pissed my Ego off, luckily I paid no attention.

My true self is not engaged in this worthless endeavor. My true self is not pissed, not engaged in Ptsd thoughts, not thinking in fact. No strong emotions are present, calm, and easiness takes over.

When strong emotions are present, our Ego is in control or dominating by atrocious thoughts.

My true self does not have Ptsd, the other guy, the guy who judges and thinks has PTSD. If no thought exists on the right side of my brain, no PTSD exists either.

Know we have created this Ego, and we can alter him/her with work.

Thoughts?

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Control: another side most do not see

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/281543713750855/

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Someone in the Kundalini meditation group commented, that my childhood abuse and betrayal in college, was out of my control.

He thought that was key to absolving me and thus breakthrough healing.

I guess that’s what it looks like from afar.

Actually, having no control over being abused in childhood then betrayed in college, brought doubt, worry, and fear.

I was not even there when my girlfriend had sex with 15 guys, but I damn sure was publicly humiliated.

I controlled the risk of ever being betrayed in a relationship again, I never trusted my future mates. My first venture into love would be my last, I did not even realize you could be destroyed by a mate’s actions.

I guess, abused kids are addicted to control, trying to limit risk and avoid betrayal at all costs.

We sabotage our own lives, make decisions based upon fear, I am guilty. Betrayal thoughts brought intense bodily reactions, strong emotions of anger and hate.

Control has damaged my life, I can not figure out if too little or too much was the cause?

I am always on guard for the unknown betrayal or attack. Feeling safe has never existed for me, I was in danger around my dad, everyday.

Normal people think they have a certain amount of control in their lives, that delusion lives a lifetime for them.

We have no control.

Remember that tsunami in Japan, where a small village on the coast was wiped out, two in the morning, residents asleep in bed, thinking they were in control, safe.

Childhood abuse exists in my earliest memories, I controlled nothing, I was innocent, a kid, he even tried to steal my thoughts.

Billionaires can get cancer, have a mental illness, lose family and suffer just like us, no control, they just have more influence and protection.

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What is the Purpose of Life?

pixabay Comfreak

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What is the purpose of life?

First, abused kids purpose will be drastically different than a normal kids.

We are separated at birth, an abused kids life will have more early death, cancer, addiction, pain, suffering, and mental illness.

It’s like as kids we were on different planets, one supportive and one abusive, damaging.

I have never had a purpose of my own, my dad and mom told me who I was and what I would be, a pro baseball player.

That ended at 27, I have been wandering ever since.

I have friends who are happy to lucky, life is an adventure, and their purpose is evident for them.

They live a life I am not familiar with.

Purpose has a hard time living in a container of trauma, fear, and anxiety.

Purpose becomes trying to survive, trying to diminish pain, trying to be normal.

Living is painful, I suffer enough that life feels worthless.

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Obsessed: a sports analogy

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https://pixabay.com/users/cherylholt-209609/

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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.”
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The Journey for abused Kids

https://pixabay.com/users/sreza24595-9538179/

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In the beginning, healing was always slow, an amazing amount of time and effort are invested for a small return.

Healing was so subtle I did not notice for months, small improvements were underway.

A trauma event as an adult, brain fully developed, is much different than childhood trauma.

Childhood trauma has a depth, a plethora of unknowns, seemingly unending instances of more abuse.

This creates some big issues.

An adult endures abuse or a horrible accident and develops PTSD. He/She knows what a normal non-traumatized existence feels like.

He/She has a finite, one-off trauma to deal with. Healing is much quicker, much easier with good tools and effort.

His/Her brain is developed and handles trauma much differently than a kid with a brain incapable of handling life.

An abused kid has never experienced a normal life, never known life without emotional or physical abuse.

An abused kid’s brain is altered from that trauma, smaller hippocampus, larger amygdala, and compromised prefrontal cortex.

Our brains are injured and trauma is mixed up with brain development. As an adult, we fail to realize we need in-depth counseling or maybe in-house therapy.

We do not have a basis to understand our life is screwed up.

We have never experienced normal, how do we know what life is like for others.

My friends think I am just crazy, weak, and stuck. They have simple fixes, then question me for not being brave enough or skilled enough to live life as they do.

I wonder how they would have survived my childhood, my dad.

I did not seek help until I was about 60.

We are similar to narcissist, how can we see something wrong with us with nothing to compare it to. Life has always been like this for us, we have not experienced support or attachment or normalcy.

Childhood abuse is a well with no bottom, no end, no hope.

That is how it feels and looks to us at times.

None of this allows us to give up trying to heal.

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PTSD: Birth is the ultimate lottery

https://www.si.com/nba/2016/10/27/classic-photos-kareem-abdul-jabbar#gid=ci02554da9c0002580&pid=2015

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Looking back after 70 years on this planet, life is harsh even for kids who had great support and love from their caregivers.

Watching a podcast of NBA star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, he described his life as an oddity, sticking out being 6’8” at 12 years old. 7’2″ was his height as an adult, how do you blend in or hide, fit into a hotel bed, buy clothes, or fit in a car?

People always stare and treat you like an oddity. He says this kind of scrutiny drives you inside, into your own cocoon.

Life shrinks for people scrutinized as different or abused kids markedly different in behavior than normal kids.

Now, consider being seriously abused as a kid, criticized and beaten by a caregiver. Think we are not an abnormality, an oddity compared to normal kids.

We do not feel equal to others, we know we are flawed and compromised, dysfunctional and isolated.

I am not saying as an adult I believe any of this now, however it was my reality most of my life and dogma as a kid.

If birth is the ultimate lottery, we lost big time.

The impact of abusing a child, lasts a lifetime, I am an example of this. The ACE study documents the physical diseases and early death that childhood abuse causes.

I am not a victim but I have suffered trying to heal from childhood PTSD my entire life. That is a fact.

At 70, my brain is still trying to cope with a smaller hippocampus, larger amygdala and a compromised left prefrontal cortex, Childhood PTSD disrupts nearly everyday with unworthiness and failure.

I have friends who are happy go lucky, think everything will turn out alright. Their demeanor is relaxed and confident, life seems easy and happy for them.

To say I am envious and amazed is an understatement.

Are they from another planet, how can a brain feel safe and secure, being able to trust thoughts, and finally they trust others.

I have never had those feelings and never expect to feel that way, a little bit of wellbeing and peace of mind are my only goals now.

My life is navigating around my trauma minefield, searching for brief moments of joy while dodging trauma thoughts, anxiety and isolation.

Yes, I have felt haunted by childhood demons, this battle has never receded from my life.

Everyone has challenges, some much greater than others. Whoever makes those decisions is way above our pay grade.

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Coping better is my Goal

Pixabay 愚木混株CDD20

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I do not think there is a cure for childhood abuse (C-PTSD), do not think there is a space where we say, I am healed.

It is possible to learn coping skills, navigate life, and find some wellbeing.

Childhood trauma is hard wired while the brain developed, so it is never going to disappear.

There is a huge difference between actively coping with PTSD and being a victim.

Knowing I will never heal is not an opportunity to give up, the journey is the same, the results maybe different than total healing, that’s all.

I am not healed but my life has both wellbeing and suffering.

Coping is using my trauma skills to minimize PTSD’s impact when activated.

When PTSD is dormant, I Strengthen my mindfulness skills, always preparing for the next battle.

It is a precarious existence, often an internal war being waged inside the mind.

Remember our hippocampus is smaller while our amygdala is larger, combined with the left Prefrontal cortex being compromised.

Trauma will explode from time to time as we navigate life.

Our goal is to live and risk in the midst of PTSD terror and enjoy our trauma free Periods fully.

Our challenges come when intrusive thoughts bombard us at a rapid pace, then our fight or flight mechanism fires, how we handle this perceived threat determines life.

Be prepared, develop as many coping skills as possible and practice daily.

There are no guarantees with childhood trauma, life will suck at times, unworthiness and fear will prevail at times.

We do have a choice, resist or give up, deciding not to have PTSD is not an option I am aware of.

We have to be determined, courageous and have the ability to take action in the face of fear and anxiety.

I have learned not to resent my place on this earth, that is a victims stance.

Life Axiom: Sedentary is closer to death, action closer to life.

Healing takes daily action, suffering arrives without effort.

Lessons I have learned

https://www.pinterest.com/search/pins/?rs=typed&q=ptsd%20healing

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After a long energetic effort with therapy and practice to heal, my life was still a damn mess.

In my old wisdom, if that is a real thing, learning to function in the midst of PTSD is the new gold on my healing path.

Listen, my childhood abuse, wiring of my brain in survival mode, is never going away.

My ability to function, discount the noise and take action is a part of my happiness in life, the oasis in this PTSD desert.

It is not about winning, it is how we fight, how much energy we exert, how much adversity can we respond to.

How resilient can we be along this path, how many times can we get back up.

This is not the road of an easy life, many succumb without much resistance.

My purpose is to live as freely as possible despite PTSD and inspire you to never give up.

We rarely take big risks.

We face adversity and the collapse of our boundaries.

Adversity is not a punishment, some think opportunity lies within adversity.

Adversity is ever present in our lives, attitude and effort are the tools needed to resist and continue living.

Effort has always been easy for me, attitude is difficult when unworthiness and depression try to consume me.

Another lesson I use is the knowledge that PTSD is cyclical, it explodes with cortisol and adrenaline, fills us with anxiety and fear, then recedes in time back to our normal.

Know the pattern of trauma firing up, staying a while then returning back to normal.

Some Wisdom: I have survived my worst flare ups already, with PTSD active and powered up, so my fear level has dropped.

PTSD can do nothing new to me that I have not already endured or survived.

So PTSD has thrown its biggest punches and I am still standing, so are you, maybe you have not realized the accomplishment yet.

Realize that therapy even once a week is only 4 hours a month, our time alone accounts for 720 hours. 720 hours versus 4 hours.

Where do you think healing will happen?

Mine happened on my own time, sometimes directed by my therapists input, most of the time while meditating using my tools.

Next, Find a mentor.

Books were my first mentor, books on neuroscience, PTSD therapies, war, meditation and holistic cures.

PTSD discussion boards were next, a negative place filled with victims acting out, taught me what not to do.

Lessons are hidden everywhere.

Now, I follow blogs that inspire me as part of my daily routine.

Please share one of your tools that has made a difference.

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My take on childhood abuse’s impact on the mind and body

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Childhood abuse results in a smaller hippocampus, larger amygdala and the quarterback (left prefrontal cortex) of our mind confused and ineffective.

Our minds wired around abuse, in survival mode, so the organs responsible for regulation and safety developed differently.

So memory, emotional regulation, safety and common sense have been compromised.

If we understand these shortcomings, we can grade our thoughts on this trauma curve.

Discount everything we feel and think around our PTSD. I do not believe my PTSD thoughts.

They are inaccurate, damaging and a distant memory.

That question of why we just can not let go, is answered in the damage to these three brain organs.

If we look at the Kaiser Adverse Childhood study, cancer, disease, addiction and early death come with childhood abuse, also.

It’s just not the mind, it is the body that suffers.

So let me rejoice at my advanced age to have survived and never given up.

Few will understand how we feel, now we know our brains have physical deficiencies.

This is not to use as an excuse but wisdom to live life as fully as possible in the face of our challenges.

There will be low times of hopelessness and depression, that’s why we never give up, never give in.

I have waited out serious bouts of PTSD with triggers firing, anxiety filling my body, and fear consuming me.

These spells will break, subside and life goes back to our normal.

I still hope, but hope only has a chance with daily work and courage to risk.

We journey together on this path not on competition.

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