CHRONIC PAIN and Migraine Disease

More than 100 million people suffer from chronic pain, which is pain that persists long after the acute phase.  41 million people suffer from migraine disease. While there are many theories about why pain might persist, the research is clear that there is a mind-body circular connection with pain.  Emotions and pain share many of the same neural pathways and neurotransmitters in the brain.  Sustained pain can trigger stress and depression, even anxiety and agitation.  Our thoughts and our cultural beliefs affect how we experience pain.  In conjunction with the many medications and traditional techniques to manage pain, research has demonstrated that complementary alternative strategies such as mindfulness can improve the cyclical mind-body experience of pain.

CREATING RESILIENCE teaches you research-based pain management skills that you can use to manage your own pain.  Using the techniques of breathing for relaxation, cognitive acceptance counseling (which defuses and reframes your thoughts about pain), mindfulness and meditation for stress reduction, self compassion training and gentle yoga, Margot Andersen will empower you to change your relationship with pain.  The goal is to accept the pain, rather than “fight and resist”.  We will work together to develop a plan of action for both your good days and bad days, determining which skills and tools to use for different levels of pain.  Learning to accept that chronic pain is only a part of who you are and does not define you, helps you become more resilient during challenging times.

Margot Andersen, MSW, RYT is both a Social Worker and specially certified yoga instructor.  She has experienced chronic lower back pain and severe migraine headaches throughout her life.  Margot’s nurturing, compassionate and, often humorous approach exudes positivity and inspiration.  While we all experience adversity in life, you need not suffer alone, and you can learn to thrive even in the face of suffering.

Links and Resources

Self Compassion: A Healthier Way of Relating to Yourself

What Suffering Does - The New York Times Article

The Mystery of Chronic Pain - TED TALK

Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Chronic Pain