Fighting with the Subconscious Mind

by Peter
(Myrtle Beach, SC)

I have arguments with myself. I find I will wake up at 3 am and find a topic I am fearful of as clear as day in my mind. I know my subconscious mind is pondering this all night. So a part of my is up all night causing undue anxiety and stress. This is causing me to wake-up and stay awake for the rest of the morning.

I fight with this subconscious mind my inner child to resolve this and end the conflict. I want to take control and stop the self sabotage at work that I do not want to do, but still do. this is a huge struggle with me and end up hating myself.

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Mar 11, 2010
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About something very profound Don said
by: Kathleen D. Cone

First let me quote what Don wrote in one of his replies about fighting the subconscious mind I found very enlightening.

"All parts of self have a positive intention for what they do. Even when what they do is upsetting or hurtful to you, that's not the intent".

I am dealing with Panic Disorder and learning how to relax and breath and doing what I can (with the help of medication) so I'm doing pretty good, for now.

The real test comes as I begin to come off the medication and use cognitive retraining to let the primal part of my brain know when and when not to set off the alarm...

That said, I really think what Don said has great meaning, profound meaning because even in the case of someone like me whose locus corelus is triggering at the wrong time it's trying to warn me that I am in serious danger... trying to 'help' me. And, what has led me to this site and to take steps to deal with repressed memories that from what I understand were even more horrifing than the feeling one gets when they are experiencing a panic attack.

What I am trying to say is that, panic attacks are the brains way of saying, "I am helping you because you are in serious danger".

Although my childhood was horrifying as I'm sure many of your can relate, it was during a time when my parents were unable to get help the same way I am able to today. They lived in a time when Hitler was killing anyone who had a mental disorder and those seeking help were often institutionalized because psychological medicine wasn't advanced enough to really understand nor know how to treat many of the problem we all face today and as a result, I truly believe my mother died young because there was no way for her to resolve whatever emotional or mental problems she had... no way out... no "Internet of the Mind" to go to, while he body was setting off alarms that played out in a sort of constant hypochondria that really drove me to the edge at times....

All that said, I am so glad that at my age (55) I've been spared panic attacks all my life till now, and after a whole lot of tests to look to see if something else was actually wrong with me I found that my brain is in amazingly good health, and I have the opportunity she never had.. to change the future of who I am, to parent my inner child, to resolve my personal conflicts and to live a long and wonderful life.

So again, I think it's important to repeat what Don so profoundly said and keep in mind that we are fortunate to be able to now know the difference:

" All parts of self have a positive intention for what they do. Even when what they do is upsetting or hurtful to you, that's not the intent".

I honestly realize, this is the absolute truth!

Kathleen D. Cone

Mar 01, 2010
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Awakening Dream
by: Kathleen D. Cone

Awakening Dream

On the hills and the valley's of our lives,
I've often wondered if the flat planes
of the desert would be, just around the corner.

Among the waves of the trials of our lives,
I've often wondered,
would our waters be overtake with strife,
and be just around the corner?

But your love so instense,
held the view of the mountains and the rivers,
flowing slowly in my minds eye.

You are everything that meets the need
that I once had,and have now left behind.

You are the reason I dream, this waking dream.
The missing link, in the chain of peace.

You are my reason for being,
simply, I dream of you.

Mar 01, 2010
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Waking Deams.. adn/or Dreams that wake you up!
by: Kathleen D. Cone

I'm new so I don't have alot to offer in this area, but I wanted to say thank you to everyone responding because I've just started waking up and remembering parts of my dreams that are disconcerting.

It could be a sign of getting better .. that the subconscious is coming closer to the conscious and the things I remember when I wake tell me some of the things I fear... so I can work on those things during the waking hours...

Knowing for example: The fear of abandonment is one of my challenges... I had one of those kind of waking dreams, just a day or so ago.

I found myself in a strange place that I knew was somehow my home but it was a place that was odd and I'd never been there before, but out of no where people, all the same colors, in abstract patterns of turquise,red, black and white began taking over all these large rooms where I lived. At first, I didn't understand who they were, or why they were coming into my space, but then I thought, that Dan (my husband) and Glen (my son) were no longer in my life and I was alone. These no-face people were the people replacing me, because I could not pay what I was supposed to pay, to take care of myself.....

What does this waking dream tell me? It tells me that I need to be sure to find a way to take care of myself independantly, so I don't have to fear I will be left unable to care for myself.

This is something that I can actually work on in real life, it's something I can do something about!

I have a poem I wrote years ago called: Awakening Dream... that I will post next. I don't know if it really relates to the subject so much as it is very positive and could encourage a person's heart to think in an upward way...

Kathy

Feb 28, 2010
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I can identify with this
by: Lyn

I have struggled with similar problems of waking during the night or early morning with ruminating anxieties since I was a young child. As I slowly recover, this is becoming less of a problem, though I feel it is something that for me will be ongoing management of these deeply ingrained symptoms. Therapy is essential for me and I am also seeking EMDR therapy too, I find authentic support forums such as this one very helpful too.

I have recently discovered I fit all the criteria for Complex PTSD. It is common in childhood survivors of trauma, usually a series of repeated traumas over a long period of time, i.e. abuse by a parent/sibling. The inner critic is very strong in those with Ctpsd and both internal and external triggers (outer critics) cause the sufferer to emotionally flashback to all the feelings of being a helpless child. There are four common coping strategies developed by a cptsd sufferer - fight, flight, freeze and fawn (the 4 F's). I am a freeze-fawn type, my main coping strategies are dissociating (freezing) or fawning to try and keep those around me happy.

Here is a link to a very good article called 'shrinking the inner critic'. There are other very useful articles on the home page there and I would recommend reading 'The Four F's' too. The articles were written by a therapist who suffered Cptsd but has recovered from it, he is now a specialist in treating clients with Cptsd. It is becoming recognize as an attachment disorder.

http://www.pete-walker.com/shrinkingInnerCritic.htm

Have you checked out the Iceberg Model on this site? I found that very helpful too in understanding how the traumas in my early life affected me.

Feb 27, 2010
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Good ideas...
by: Don Carter

Hi Peter... All of the 'ideas' presented are good ones. Now, since we all have our differences, the 'IDEAL' is to find which ones work for you!

One thing is for certain (in my experience) -- All parts of self have a positive intention for what they do. Even when what they do is upsetting or hurtful to you, that's not the intent. Here's something to try:

1. Get quite and relaxed, then tell the part in question that you have faith its trying to do something good for you (even though it is not really helping much)...let it know you appreciate that it's trying to help.

2. Then ask the part that wakes you up with worry..."What is your positive intention for waking me up this way?" Then just listen with your intuition.

3. When you find out what it's trying to do, then consider other ways that the part may be able to actually achieve something closer to what it wants for you...again let your instinct and creative intuition be your guide.

I know...this is "talking to yourself" and it feels weird at first, but it is really communicating with unconscious "parts" of your neural circuitry. Heck, even though we may not admit it...all of us talk to ourselves anyway.

It is a way of getting to know yourself and increasing something we all want -- self-awareness.

Take care!
Don

Feb 27, 2010
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what worked for me
by: xmkx

I had this problem for a long time as well. Overcoming this problem takes (in general) realizing that worrying has its time and place and that you CAN control it. It also helps to resolve issues with your inner child as they tend to get a lot quieter once they are content.

I hear journaling helps some, but unfortunately it made things worse for me. I would end up staying up all night journaling and worrying and analyzing. What did help me was to tell myself that I did not have to worry about that right now and reminding myself that I would do better at resolving the issue if I had a good night's sleep instead. The next morning that issue can take precedence again and I can worry all I want but at least I'll be doing it on a full night's worth of sleep. I would then make it my #1 priority to do anything I could to ensure my chances at falling in to a peaceful slumber. That may be anything from taking a warm bath to reading a pleasant and thoughtful book. At first this was really hard but now it comes to me like second nature. When it's time for bed my mind automatically starts preparing to shut down all the concerns of the day and just rest.

Feb 27, 2010
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Alternatives
by: Evan

You don't say what you are doing in detail but it is not working.

What works for me is getting up and paying attention to what is going on (I use journalling).

You talk about fighting your subconscious mind/inner child. An alternative is to listen, embrace, love it.

Hope this helps provoke some thinking for you.

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