Archive for the ‘My Favorites’ Category

The Need to Please: Mindfulness Skills to gain freedom from People Pleasing and Approval Seeking: Micki Fine

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“Another childhood dynamic contributes to feelings of unworthiness. As children, because our parents are bigger than we are and know more than we do, we believe that they’re all-powerful and wise. This belief is important in helping us feel safe, and because we rely on our caregivers for survival, it isn’t easily shaken. Therefore, we believe our caregivers even when they say or do things that are abusive, unloving, or unaccepting and then assume that we are innately flawed.

 

 

Then, to avoid being hurt again, we disconnect from our emotions and bodies, where we actually feel the sensations of love: warmth, expansiveness, ease, or tingling, to name a few.

 

 

 

This numbing becomes the norm.

 


In addition, because our original experience of love is receiving it from others, we believe that love originates outside of ourselves, and we look for proof of it from others (Welwood 2006).

 

 

 

This further disconnects us from our own nature of love.

 


Accordingly, we compulsively strive to earn love and are fearful of the possible consequence of not receiving it: abandonment.”

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I did not think my PTSD would return.

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I did not think my PTSD would return.

 

I also, did not think I could heal, could feel inner peace, could be worthy, but I did.

 

 

Then a prescribed blood pressure med, or more accurately its side effect, ignited my nervous system and old triggers.

 

 

I did not think my mind would dissociate so easily without constant awareness.

 

My judgments of healing and mindfulness dreamed of a euphoric life, of few negative thoughts, fewer unworthy images and an easy, happy existence.

 

In reality, my life has changed dramatically but the adversity and daily challenges test my centeredness and calm.

 

It truly is a journey, a journey with daily choices.

 

I could be sad, could be depressed at times. My meditation practice gives me a choice, be present, neutral and calm or suffer.

 

 

I still have worry and doubt at times. Worry creeps in stealthily, unbeknownst to me at first, then I catch  negative emotions arriving.

 

I feel loss at times, then know it is a judgment, air unless I give it power.

 

Gratitude, humility and giving are the tools I use to counter my “Ego’s” need for control.

 

 

I did not think it would be so challenging, so hard, so harsh after so much work.

 

My abusive childhood, my violent, critical upbringing, has left deep ruts in my subconscious.

 

 

At least now, my “Ego” sits in the back seat of my car.

 

It is not perfect but no one said it would be.

 

I am grateful I have tools to make good choices.
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Updated: My path was different, reading and following books replaced failed therapies!

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My blog has always been very positive. Lately some have questioned how I have made this journey seem easy. This is a post to share the challenges I faced.

 

 

I was read poetry in therapy sessions when I was triggered and my nervous system extremely upset. I would sit shaking from trauma while my therapist read Louis Hayes.

 

 

This was not even a good distraction skill.   During my journey, one intuitive would ignite my trauma, having me visualize my little Marty’s, 5,7,9,12 year olds sitting around a big table with my father, my abuser.

 

 

I always departed far more terrified than when I arrived.    When we start our healing path we are naive,  clueless.   The time wasted searching for a way out,  cost me five years of my life.

 

 

This did damage because no integration was happening. I was paying for someone to supervise me dissociating into my trauma, triggering intense fear without the skill to integrate. Wish I had those wasted ducketts back.

 

 

 

My complex PTSD deepened, intensified as my daily suffering grew.   I was lost and being sabotaged by the  professionals.

 

 

 

This ended with a severe case of agoraphobia, locked in a dark garage, more terrified than any other time in my life.   My professional help took me to a place where my mind was frozen, my body would shake for hours as an unknown fear, worse than death haunted me.

 

 

 

Haunted me!!!!!

 

 

 

My reprieve was my abuser demanded perfection on a baseball field and that taught me skills of persistence, a never give up attitude, and courage.   I was isolated my whole childhood by a controlling narcissist.

 

 

Narcissist isolate you for total control.   Healing, going it alone with books did not feel strange for me.   My father abuse created the skills I needed to heal.   Ironic, no?

 

 

I believe my healing would have taken maybe six months not five years with what I know now.   The benefit was the experience I gained along the way.    This blog was created to fill in the voids I faced.

 

 

I turned to books, books on therapy, books on neuroscience, books on war-time PTSD, books on survivor personalities and books on meditation.

 

 

I read, practiced and applied with an aggressive type intensity.    This was not drastic for me.   I was pro athlete, comfortable with all out effort over six month periods.

 

 

I resorted back to my strengths and proceeded to attack PTSD like a competitive athlete would.   Somehow I knew intuitively healing was an internal battle.

 

 

Healing like this has given me a command, an insight into this process.

 

I dug out of a deep hole following my intuitive guide, a very organic journey.
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What questions do you take into a new Therapist?

 

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Do your clients improve, heal in a timely manner? Please share!

 

 

Do you demand your clients do homework, take action everyday to heal?

 

 

Are you invested in caring about your clients healing, wellbeing?

 

 

 

Therapists are taught to be neutral, not my definition of a healer!

 

 

Do you feel an urgency for me to heal as fast as possible?

 

 

This one is from an online therapist, “How do you practice self-care”?  (https://boundariesofthesoul.com/2018/02/01/the-one-question-you-really-need-to-ask-your-therapist/)

 

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Could you damage yourself using this broken mirror?  Someone thinks so!

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The most important question is asked before you go to the therapist, looking in the mirror.

 

 

Am I willing to take action, all out effort to heal?

 

 

If you answer yes to that, eventually you will find a therapist who fits.

 

 

Took me many therapies, many therapists before I stumbled on a mindfulness based ACT therapy.

 

 

If we want to heal, we never give up, never diminish our effort on this healing journey.

 

 

Healing is our responsibility, not that therapist.

 

 

That therapist will not heal you!

 

 

Pick a good one and they will help you heal!
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Monica’s Request about My Fear!!!!! ************ What it was Like for me at my worst? Fear that is?

My nervous system was full of cortisol, reacting to highly charged, panic and fear.  I tried to battle this fear, but it grew, until my resistance, finally collapsed.

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For six months I awoke in an aroused state from a nightmare, drenched with sweat in a frightened panic.  The sun meant another long, incredibly long day of this, second to second doom and gloom scenario, worse than death.  How could that be?  I did not have a way out from this point.

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I do not share this, however, my fathers brutality and constant criticism manifested itself with thinking people were staring in disapproving ways, toward me.  Somehow avoiding this criticism was saving my life.  Describing this fear with words, is impossible for me.  I shook for hours, worn out from the onslaught each day of fear, just beyond my vision.

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My nervous system was so upset, that my body would dump cortisol without thought.  I had fled to my dark garage alone, even there my mind and fear followed me.

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My hopes were to someday be able to function for some things without this misery.  I knew my fears were irrational, crazy and foolish, but my body obeyed that cortisol and reacted.

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That was a funny time, when I did not believe my triggers but did not have the tools to heal me then.
Hope that helps.  Wow, that brings back some fun times!

Updated:Focused and Fearless: Relinquishment; The path of release!!!!!

a bed of golden, red and maroon coloured autumn fallen leaves

a bed of golden, red and maroon coloured autumn fallen leaves

Pics from http://www.freeimages.co.uk/linktous.htm
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“Let go of every fixation.
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Ultimately this is a path of release.
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The mind may attempt to construct itself on any foundation:
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through attachment to blissful jhanic states;
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by becoming “the one who lets go”;
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by being “the meditator who understands change.”
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Observe and laugh at the antics of the mind.
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Coax it to release its hold, even its attachment to good things.
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Uproot any place you find yourself stuck in, whether it be with the pleasures of the tranquil mind of jhana or in the clarity of insight.
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Resist the urge to keep score of your insights.
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Assessing your meditation practice only fuels grasping.
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Willingness to let go is indispensable.
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Every stage of this path requires a complete relinquishment of both the struggles and the delights, pleasant experiences and painful ones.
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Even the states of samadhi that you diligently cultivate must, in the end, be relinquished.
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The simplicity of one breath

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Vermilion Lakes Sunrise
Photograph by Vitali Hantsevich, National Geographic Your Shot
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Until we can be totally focused on one breath, meditation will be a futile exercise of getting lost in thought after thought. In our society, the mind has been programmed to go fast, handle complex theory and glide on auto pilot.
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The mind resists going slow, being empty, focused on a single object.
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Master one breath, then practice with a series of three breaths. Simplicity and concentration need to be mastered first.
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This maybe a perfect warm up for a ten, twenty or thirty minute sit for the beginner or accomplished meditator.
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Words can not explain the importance of this concept. Mindfulness/Meditation is not an intellectual commodity, we have to sit, do and experience our mind in solitude.
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Trying to meditate for long periods of time initially, may bring frustration and endless thinking. How many individuals reach an empty stage in their meditation practice? Very few. In fact very few practice daily meditation for extended periods of time.
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Until we learn to be with one breath, slowly inhaling, pausing, exhaling and pausing again, will mindfulness blossom. Repetition is simple once a single breath is mastered.
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The genesis of emptiness happens when we master that elusive single breath! I can not overstate this concept, again, it must be experienced, not read or studied.
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The self (Ego) presents many opportunities for us to judge, think or even sabotage our experience.
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Master a set of three breaths then pause. Practice, practice, then expand to five breath sets. Build a solid foundation slowly, deliberately.
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We often try to move way to fast. The Ego (self) wants to dominate, compete and that brings thought, judgment and frustration.
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We want to be seasoned meditators before we are ready.
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Let all goals,thoughts and judgments go.
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Master one single breath.
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Practice, practice, practice.
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