Posts Tagged ‘PTSD’

Being our own Detective



My healing contained a plethora of detective work.

Triggers can manifest in the most harmless places but the core of our issues are much deeper under the surface.

It takes detective skills to pick up the mind and body subtleties.

We must notice what causes our fears to improve.

We must sense if our healing effort is working. Are we improving?

We must discover our nervous system, our body sensations, and our fears intimately, organically, not cognitively.

We search our inner world, the place where healing takes place and happiness originates.

We become aware of our body sensations, our reactions to thought and emotion, noticing where they are stored inside our body.

Listen intently, sense intimately even the smallest of body sensations. Calm yourself and feel!

Discover the internal you and let the external stimulii lose power for a while.

Can you tolerate being curious when Worry, stress or fear arrives?



Caring for someone with PTSD can sometimes lead to secondary trauma.


Photo by Grace Ciszkowski

National Institute for the Clinical Application of Behavioral Medicine

Caring for someone with PTSD can sometimes lead to secondary trauma.

And researchers at the University of Utah wondered just how bad that secondary trauma could be.

While completing her graduate studies, Catherine Caska Wallace, PhD and her research team studied two groups of male veterans, along with their female partners. In 32 couples, the veterans suffered from PTSD, and in the control group of 33 couples, PTSD wasn’t a factor.

The veterans in both groups had been deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan at least once in the past decade.

After the researchers interviewed the couples to measure PTSD, depression, marital satisfaction, and areas of disagreement, they asked the couples to undergo a brief experiment.

Researchers asked each couple to have a conversation about a current issue on which they strongly disagreed.

Before and after the conversation, researchers took physiological measurements from both partners, including blood pressure and heart rate.

Some of their findings probably weren’t surprising. Both veterans and partners in the PTSD group reported significantly higher emotional stress, measured through disaffection and disharmony. They also reported problems with frequent and intense emotional conflict.

But when they looked at the physiological measurements, researchers found something particularly interesting.

While the couples in the PTSD group showed elevated blood pressure during the conversation relative to controls, the partners of the veterans in particular showed the highest blood pressure – even compared to the veterans themselves.

It’s important to note that this study didn’t use random assignment when selecting its sample, so there’s a limit to how much we can generalize its results.

Although preliminary, this research suggests that PTSD can have far reaching and significant physiological impact even among people who don’t suffer from it.

Of course, the blood pressure finding stood alone in this study. I’d like to see more research that examines other physiological and mental factors with the partners of post-traumatic stress sufferers.

If PTSD really carries significant health risks for the partners of veterans, more attention should be paid to them in future research.”



When things flare up, focus and awareness are key



We must limit the depth we fall when PTSD, anxiety or depression grabs us.

Sometimes we need to play defense, using focus and awareness.

I refuse to make any decisions when PTSD flares. My thoughts can be irrational, highly emotional and extremely negative.

A good amount of my time is spent letting go of the negative thoughts.

Awareness helps us steer attention away from thought and to the present moment.

Another helpful activity is exercise, strenuous if you are capable.

Keep yourself busy and focused for a day or two until things settle down.

Know that the crisis will pass and things will return to what your normal has been.

If we can let go of our thoughts, we limit the depth of depression, anxiety and PTSD.

Healing is cultivated better when we keep our minds calm and focused.



Lonely: is lonely a judgment?



Lonely can be a judgment. I have friends that seem to have it made, big house, nice car, money, career, etc.

They still feel lonely, emotionally unfulfilled, Lacking.

In many situations, not all, we compare our lives with others.

We may want the status and security of an executive career, that big house, country club membership or athletic skills to dominate our group.

Loneliness is a judgment in this situation. If we judge our world by what we lack, suffering will always be our partner.

Loneliness will become real.

All we have is this mundane moment. Think about that!

Nothing we can achieve or attain in the future will bring lasting happiness.

We can be happy right now, just as we are.

Happiness is a peaceful, internal way of being, living in the moment.

Equanimity is what the Buddhist label it.

Just think, we have the ability to shower ourselves with kindness.



11 Easy Ways to Practice Mindfulness in Your Daily Life By Melissa Eisler



“It can be difficult to stay mindful amid the to-dos of day-to-day life.




In fact, a study at Harvard found that people spend 46.9 percent of their waking hours thinking about something other than what they are doing.




This kind of mindlessness is the norm, as the mind tends to spend its time focused on the past, the future, and trying out should have’s and what if’s. The study also found that allowing the brain to run on auto-pilot like this can make people unhappy. “A wandering mind is an unhappy mind,” the researchers said.



What can you do to become more mindful in your daily life? You can start by incorporating easy ways to practice mindfulness during the routine activities you’re already doing every day, like brushing your teeth and walking the dog. Here are 11 ways to practice mindfulness in your everyday life … and don’t stop here, these are just ideas and thought-starters.


You can practice mindfulness anytime, anywhere, and with anyone by showing up and being fully engaged in the here and now. Mindfulness is the simple act of paying attention and noticing and being present in whatever you’re doing. When most people go about their daily lives, their minds wander from the actual activity they are participating in, to other thoughts or sensations. When you’re mindful, you are actively involved in the activity with all of your senses instead of allowing your mind to wander.


So try these out and watch your mundane daily to-dos turn into your mindfulness practice.

Continue reading

Decide today!

Since happiness only happens in the present moment, can you decide to be happy today.

We need to ask this question, What needs to happen for me to be happy right now?


We do not need to accomplish anything, attain any possessions, titles or status to be happy, now.


If we can not be happy now, chances are that next week, next year or next decade, happiness will not happen.


Is there a more important question for our lives?


Matthew Ricard says our purpose in life is to be happy.


Happiness contains giving and gratitude, not chasing pleasure or collecting possessions and power.

Updated: new response; The Rollercoaster ride of PTSD! My crazy Path!



My initial healing seemed miraculous and lasted for a number of years. It took tremendous effort with the resources at hand. Recently a prescribed blood pressure script sent my nervous system into a frenzy as it drained my body of energy. I thought my healing was permanent, another erroneous judgment.


This ignited my PTSD symptoms, triggers had power again as life narrowed. As I have found out, some unresolved trauma needed integration .    My amygdala had calmed as the fight or flight mechanism remained dormant. The thoughts and emotional side of ptsd were still alive.


This has been a perplexing experience. My old tools still calmed me but ptsd was alive and kicking again. I needed to adapt and find a few new tools. If you have not experienced serious PTSD, these words are hollow and mean nothing.


Using the internal Family system, meditation and inner peace work, I felt times of being centered, calm. I never experienced inner peace before. Felt like I was whole, healed for a couple of weeks.


Yesterday, I was triggered, nothing exceptional but my mind’s  reaction to it, has changed life again. My inner peace was replaced by the rumination of traumas, fear and terror. I fear what my mind will do after a trigger much more than the event itself.


A trigger transports me back to my abusive childhood. Could anyone understand what it was like to be raised by a narcissist who lived through their child. Violence and rage at me were common events. My childhood has haunted me at times.


I realize even more now, that this is an internal battle. The external trigger holds little power, it just trips the switch of the amygdala, connecting to my childhood. My unworthiness is internal and ancient for me.


Healing is a rollercoaster ride. This is discouraging to say the least, but I did, for the first time in my life, experience a little inner peace. A huge triumph, now what?



When we face this dilemma choices appear.


If we dissociate, get lost in analyzing the trigger, the cause, the fairness, the ramifications, we suffer. If we avoid or give, up ptsd grows.


Healing is not a straight graph line upward. We face setbacks, failure and loss as we crawl out of trauma’s grave.


Our work is to not give up, not get discouraged, not lose focus.



Complex PTSD from an abusive childhood has many tentacles. Our brains were not developed when trauma occurred and this has left stuck parts behind. Healing does not happen easily or fast with complex PTSD.


Realize the size of the battle we engage in. Setbacks are part of healing.



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