Fibromyalgia Redefined

Women and Fibromyalgia - Barbara Keddy, author, researcherI have just within the past year ‘come out’ as a highly anxious person, rather than one who has the fuzzy label of  fibromyalgia.

So writes Barbara Keddy in her most recent blogpost.  In my experience working with clients with fibromyalgia, Keddy is writing a common, but little-acknowledged, theme;

I have begun to think of fibromyalgia as an extreme case of prolonged anxiety that began in early life, perhaps in utero, or even as an inherited gene. In addition to this epiphany of mine, the concept of a ‘highly sensitive person’ (HSP)  has changed for me to mean the ‘highly anxious person’. Having just read both Smith’s (Monkey Mind)and Stossel’s  (My Age of Anxiety) memoirs (and Stossels’ science and historical account of anxiety) I have become convinced that fibromyalgia is another word for heightened anxiety. Since I am not a therapist, I can only speculate about the definition/cause of fibromyalgia, but to this date my proposed theory is that anxiety, hypersensitivity and fibromyalgia are identical triplets. I have just within the past year ‘come out’ (as Stossel has)  as a highly anxious person, rather than one who has the fuzzy label of  fibromyalgia.

Since I don’t have fibromyalgia myself, it’s powerful to hear from  someone who does, and who has made this same observation. This connection is complicated by the judgment of too many doctors that fibromyalgia is “not real, it’s all in your head.”  Yes – fibromyalgia is real.  And yes, it comes from the stored experiences of our life that lead us to live with a fight/flight/freeze stress response stuck in the on position. 

Barbara Keddy is in process of reviewing my FIBROMYALGIA RELIEF, and I’m very exctied to be in conversation with her.

  1. She has identified the common factor of anxeity, stress, and fight/flight for many people who have fibromyalgia
  2. She has recognized the importance of neuroplasticity – that the brain can change – in her words: The ability of the brain to change is one of the exciting findings of the last several decades! The hope of cognitive behavioral therapy through Mindfulness Meditation and self compassion, while learning to live in the moment, without judgement is, in my view, the way out of the despair we often face.”

FIBROMYALGIA RELIEF is going to introduce Barbara to a new and different development in neuroplasticity – Memory Reconsolidation.  As I explain in my book, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and other “Counteractive Therapies” are about building neuronal and synaptic workarounds to our stored traumas.  Memory Reconsolidation – an important difference – is about remeoving the charged emotions of our stored traumas.  When we replace those stored peptides with new peptides that correspond to calm – we de-stress both mind and body.  Amazing improvements in physical and emotional health become commonplace.Barbara Keddy’s article – highly recommended.