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Phil

Transcendental Meditation

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Phil

Firstly a warning: this may not be for everyone in withdrawal.

I know that in the last discussion of meditation some didn't find it helpful during withdrawal, so I'm just posting this for information purposes for anyone it may be of interest to or finds it useful.

 

I saw an article in the paper today about TM, transcendental meditation. It talked about how it has been successfully used in treatment for bipolar disorder (a patient said they felt 90% happier while practising it, compared to simply being functional on medication), PTSD, and depression.

 

I googled and found a similar article here:

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/8601795/How-meditation-could-help-your-health.html

 

It mentions how it can reduce the risk of stroke and depression, and that people who meditate have larger hippocampi (which is involved with depression and memory).

 

None of this surprises me, but it's good to have it validated with research. When I have practised my own form of mindfulness, I have noticed better ability to function despite my withdrawal symptoms, and just more quality of life and better memory. Also I find it easier to notice but not get too wrapped up in my traumatic thoughts and feelings. (though it's by no means easy).

 

I dont fully understand TM or what terminology is behind it, but I dont think it matters as once you "get" mindfulness or meditation you dont need the labels.

It's diffcult to learn though, as it involves embracing painful feelings.

 

PS - I wasnt sure whether to put this in the articles section or not.

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Altostrata

Some people experience meditation as a spiritual or religious experience. Transcendental Meditation leans in that direction.

 

(FWIW, I never experienced it as a spiritual experience, and neither has my therapist, who's sat zazen for 30 years.)

 

It is a valid way to "find meaning," and if this is what it's done for you, please post about it here.

 

....I dont fully understand TM or what terminology is behind it, but I dont think it matters as once you "get" mindfulness or meditation you dont need the labels.

It's diffcult to learn though, as it involves embracing painful feelings.....

 

I agree completely. And very happy that you've found so much good in the technique.

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Phil

Thanks Alto :)

 

I'm quite amazed at how it's been helping me recently to be honest. I can see why some might describe it as a spiritual experience.

 

So far it has helped me reduce some anxiety, and some of my PTSD surrounding my withdrawal experience.

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Altostrata

Can you explain how it's helped you to be honest? That's very interesting.

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Phil

I feel like it gives me more control over whether I get stuck in my usual ruminations and obsessive worries, which usually leave me feeling depressed or anxious. Since withdrawal I developed what I see as a kind of PTSD (although not "true" PTSD), where I couldn't even imagine my life before WD as it was too painful, as I felt I'd lost a lot. After practising the mindfulness recently I've noticed my memories coming back, and don't feel as "resistant" to them or as stuck. I feel a bit more "whole".

I went out into town last week with my friend and actually felt like the person I was before WD, which for me was kinda incredible. (although I had many diffculties too).

I hope that makes some kind of sense :) Maybe its because I have an anxious personality that it's helped so much.

 

From research, I've read that it can reduce stress hormones, which can only be a good thing in withdrawal right?

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Altostrata

Reducing stress hormones is essential in withdrawal!

 

Very happy you had a good day.

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Punarbhava

I feel like it gives me more control over whether I get stuck in my usual ruminations and obsessive worries, which usually leave me feeling depressed or anxious. Since withdrawal I developed what I see as a kind of PTSD (although not "true" PTSD), where I couldn't even imagine my life before WD as it was too painful, as I felt I'd lost a lot. After practising the mindfulness recently I've noticed my memories coming back, and don't feel as "resistant" to them or as stuck. I feel a bit more "whole".

I went out into town last week with my friend and actually felt like the person I was before WD, which for me was kinda incredible. (although I had many diffculties too).

I hope that makes some kind of sense :) Maybe its because I have an anxious personality that it's helped so much.

 

From research, I've read that it can reduce stress hormones, which can only be a good thing in withdrawal right?

 

This is so wonderful to read Phil! I'm very impressed with, not only your desire to engage in new things, but also your determination to assist and empower yourself.

 

I'm so happy to hear that you've been able to reconnect with the "real you". This is exciting and there will be more to come Phil!!!

 

Meditation and mindfulness is very powerful and I agree with Alto's statement re: reducing stress hormones. Getting out of the stress and connecting with ourselves is key to happiness and peace, as you are discovering.

 

 

I LOVE when people discover their own power! Again, I've very happy for you Phil!

 

 

Many More "Whole" Moments to You!

 

 

Punar

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Phil

Aww thanks guys :)

 

This is so wonderful to read Phil! I'm very impressed with, not only your desire to engage in new things, but also your determination to assist and empower yourself.

 

I'm so happy to hear that you've been able to reconnect with the "real you". This is exciting and there will be more to come Phil!!!

 

Meditation and mindfulness is very powerful and I agree with Alto's statement re: reducing stress hormones. Getting out of the stress and connecting with ourselves is key to happiness and peace, as you are discovering.

 

 

I LOVE when people discover their own power! Again, I've very happy for you Phil!

 

 

Many More "Whole" Moments to You!

 

 

Punar

 

Thanks! Yeah I really am determined to better myself...it's not always a good thing as sometimes I just can't let it go. But I do feel, at the very least, I have better tools now to help me through whatever is to come.

 

One of the hardest things to accept is the emotional numbness I experience on and off during withdrawal. Having to accept that "nothingness" or "emptiness" and not panic and try to fill it up with thinking, or activity to distract from it.

Does that make sense? Have you experienced anything similar? (hope u dont mind me asking..I should probably ask in the main forum, but I have to be careful right now as I get triggered easily).

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Altostrata

....But I do feel, at the very least, I have better tools now to help me through whatever is to come.

 

One of the hardest things to accept is the emotional numbness I experience on and off during withdrawal. Having to accept that "nothingness" or "emptiness" and not panic and try to fill it up with thinking, or activity to distract from it.

Does that make sense? Have you experienced anything similar? (hope u dont mind me asking..I should probably ask in the main forum, but I have to be careful right now as I get triggered easily).

 

That is absolutely key -- we learn through all of this trauma, and come out of this stronger and better people.

 

Phil, I think most people who experience the emotional anesthesia find it very distressing, perhaps the most frightening of all the frightening symptoms. It is clearly a very abnormal state and it must contain a neuro-component of hopelessness.

 

I have heard from several sources that emotions are the last to come back as you recover from withdrawal. In the meantime, your technique of "changing the channel" is right on: Notice the distress and do something constructive or soothing to distract yourself from it.

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Phil

Thankyou for your advice, Alto :)

 

It's quite confusing making sense of all this, huh. I think there may be money to be made one day if we all group together and write a selfhelp book on withdrawal. (only half-joking)

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