Memory is not stored in full, in fact small snippets are only stored. We fill in the rest with our current negative slant of complex PTSD.
It is highly inaccurate and filled with the flight or fight drug cortisol to reinforce false power.
Memories have no power outside our heads. Others could care less about our past thoughts. Why do we think our memory or trigger thoughts have such power? Cortisol!
Can we discount and let memory fade without our participation. Absolutely. We can actually dwell in this present moment entirely without any influence from memory or thought.
Join me and Anneli, and Alex and Ali.
It all depends on each one of us and how we understand our thoughts. It is an individual decision. Results will have a large impact on the future.
It is really easy to get confused or sidetracked along the way. Disassociation, along with the surge of cortisol into our systems, adds to the confusion, which then usually triggers a protective mechanism. Although the danger may not be real, it sure can feel real. So real that it can often be accepted as truth.
With this paradigm going on, there is no room for other emotions. Happiness? Forget it. With PTSD chasing your tail, all the energy is focused on survival. Navigating this kind of life requires incredible strength.
Healing comes when your mind and body realize that thoughts are packaged tricks of our stored trauma. You can see they are delusions once you manage to stay present. I never saw anything bad happen because of my thoughts. The only thing happening was my belief in those thoughts. That fear pounding was just cortisol. It has nothing to do with my thoughts. It is a protection- mechanism for my body.
Healing exists right now, in this moment. If you can stay present and observe the cortisol-dump into our system, you will then be able to see thoughts are harmless. Powerless without the cortisol to fuel it.
You can flip the switch and turn off the cortisol supply.
From Management Science:
The tempo of deployment cycles in the Iraq War is higher than for any war since World War II, and military survey data suggest that post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is not uncommon among service members. To assure ample mental health resources to care for returning troops, it is important for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to forecast the timing and number of new PTSD cases over the coming years, which is complicated by the fact that many cases have delayed onset. We combine a dynamic mathematical model with deployment data
and PTSD data from the Iraq War, and we estimate that the PTSD rate
among Iraq War veterans will be approximately 35%, which is roughly
double the rate from the raw survey data. This doubling is due to the
time lag between the PTSD-generating event and the onset of symptoms
and to the fact that many surveyed troops will do subsequent
deployments. Consequently, the VA system, which is already
experiencing significant delays for PTSD treatment provision, needs to
urgently ramp up its mental health resource capacity.
Michael P. Atkinson, Adam Guetz, Lawrence M. Wein
Roots by Sam Walker
Sometimes the most important thing in a whole day is the rest we take between two deep breaths.
Imagine the connection between the left and right sides of our brain as a bridge. To be more specific, imagine this is the connection between the two frontal cortexes, which among other things, control our emotion regulation.
The devastating damage done to our mental stability from trauma/traumas is much like wear and tear to the bridge. The bridge is old and rickety and falling apart. It’s no longer functioning. Stress has made this happen. The two halves of the brain cannot communicate sometimes. The bridge needs to be rebuilt.
This bridge actually thickens in those who practice meditation. It physically grows and links with the part of the brain where words and dialogue do not exist. Humans are self-healing creatures, if they treat their wounds accordingly.
The right side of our brain has no right or wrong or judgments. It has no good or bad. We are perfect on this side of the brain. No PTSD on this side.
The left side is full. Packed to the brim with information and thought. It’s tired and it could really use the space available over on the other side. By practicing awareness, you are first clearing the debris and then rebuilding the bridge.
When you feel anger and fear and all the stuffed down emotion, you are clearing the old debris. It takes time and effort to build the new bridge. But once it’s built? You will have room to breathe.
It’s all about feeling. The goal is to feel. If you are feeling intensely right now, that is okay. It just is and our judging it as good or bad gives birth to PTSD. Be present be aware and sit daily and heal.
Our emotions swing to worried, triggered and frightened in seconds. It happens before we think about it.
The one place that is stable for us to seek safety is the present. Flashbacks cannot occur until a person feels a sense of safety and has moved beyond survival mode.
PTSD starts to fade when dissociation sees the light of the present moment.
When triggered, do all you can to come back to now. Practice this skill.
Find an object and pay attention to every detail. Focus closer and notice even more about it. Pay attention to the shape, texture, color, contrast, etc. Do you hear any sounds? What is the weather doing at this moment?
Use whatever works best for you to bring you back to the present moment. Keep practicing this skill when a trigger hits.
PTSD is under the umbrella of anxiety disorders. This article discusses how anxiety can become addictive.
Considering that anxiety makes your palms sweat, your heart race, your stomach turn somersaults, and your brain seize up like a car with a busted transmission, it’s no wonder people reach for the Xanax to vanquish it.
But in a surprise, researchers who study emotion regulation—how we cope, or fail to cope, with the daily swirl of feelings—are discovering that many anxious people are bound and determined (though not always consciously) to cultivate anxiety. The reason, studies suggest, is that for some people anxiety boosts cognitive performance, while for others it actually feels comforting.
Read the rest of the article here.