Feelings of Danger in Me Increases Chronic Pain

Pain increases with thoughts of anxiety and fear.

Decrease your pain by reducing anxiety or fear.

I know. Easier said than done. Find a technique that works for you like meditation/mindfulness, SIMs & DIMs process, yoga, breath work, body scans, humor, friendships and hobbies.

You will need to pay attention to your thoughts daily so that when something big comes up, you understand how to reduce the fear/anxiety you feel. You know how you do not expect bulging muscles to show up after one workout session? It would be nice, but the reality is your body does not work that way.

Managing your thoughts brings great rewards.

Get in the habit of listening to what you think and what you say about your body and your pain.

“What comes out of your mouth determines your reality.” A Complaint Free World

Choose to be your own creator.

Choose now to be the creator of how you feel about your pain, body and health. One of the best tools I have found when working with my thoughts is David Butler and Lorimer Moseley’s Safety In Me (SIMs) and Danger in Me (DIMs) process adapted from The Explain Pain Handbook.

“We will experience pain when our credible evidence of danger related to our body is greater than our credible evidence of safety related to our body.” (Mosely and Butler)

This technique quickly teaches you how to pay attention to all the things that make you feel fear, anxiety or danger in you and move these to feelings of safety in you. The great thing is this is easy to learn.

I had been using the technique for awhile when I was notified that my neurologist quit and I was assigned a new one within the clinic. My initial reaction was, “Oh no. Crap! I had no say in this!”

I talk out loud to myself, so I was able to hear the panic in my voice and my thoughts. Because I had the experience of working with moving DIMs to SIMs before this event, I was able to change quickly change my thoughts. My whole goal was to feel safe with a new neurologist and not raise my anxiety.

DIMs and SIMs Process

How could I stop being frightened in this situation and feel good about this change or at least OK?

Danger In Me (DIMs)Change StartingSafety In Me (SIMs)
Oh crap!!! My
neurologist quit!!!!!
No change.
A new neuro was
assigned to me!!!!
No change.
I’ll look him up on the
A smidge of change
towards a SIM.
He had solid
I didn’t choose him! I began to see the
possibility of this
might be OK.
He’s younger than my old neuro. Maybe he will have more
current information
on Trigeminal
I didn’t choose him!I saw this was a
control issue & my
anxiety calmed down.
Release control Gail.
My old neuro was
obviously ready to
leave and I had no
control of that.
I was now looking
forward to my
The timing is perfect
because I have some
questions for him
about new
research I saw.

Practice with something small to begin with. Stick with it and you will be surprised how you automatically think about moving your thoughts to Safety In Me!


Gail Sinclair, Master Hypnotherapist, Certified Nutritional Consultant, & Karuna® Reiki Master Teacher, works diligently to teach others how to Thrive with Chronic Pain™. She lives with persistent pain and refuses to let it be in charge of her life (and accepts that some days it is).

You can reach her at thrive@gailsinclair.com or at www.gailsinclair.com.

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