Compulsive Reaction to Memories in my Head

Topics related to physical, emotional and psychological forms of pain and suffering
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Compulsive Reaction to Memories in my Head

Post by _KarmaPolice_ » Sat Apr 15, 2017 8:01 pm


I have a very strong urge to think and talk about the past and 'with people in the past'. My mad behavior needs no external trigger. When I wake up in the morning, I am immediately trapped in my rumination, compulsive thinking and talking. Sometimes I am muttering to myself in the supermarket or on the street. I am German and I live in a foreign country where not many people speak German; but sometimes when I'm muttering in public, a stranger recognizes my German and then for example he asks 'Wie geht's?' ('How are you?'), and then I wake up and realize that I have been trapped in the past again, which is funny but also shocking.

The content of my compulsive memories are dialogues with other people. My mind projects itself into those situations in the past, relives the dialogues, and then I start to talk to those people in the past, discuss with them, as if I were in the past, as if those people were in front of me; it feels very real, but those situations happened ten years ago. I have tried to solve this problem with SSRI drugs, but they make me tired and I cannot work anymore. So I read the “The Power of Now”. So I learned conscious presence is the key, being the watcher of my thought patterns and emotions, making those thought patterns and mechanics of the mind conscious, being present as the witnessing consciousness.

Well, sometimes this works, but I always have those soundbites in my head, people from the past talking to me in my head, and then my voice automatically reacts and I answer to those people as if they were actually in front of me. I have to be very alert not to react automatically, not to answer, but to stay present. It is almost impossible to stay present enough all the time. I wish there was a trick to to cut the link between those compulsive memories (soundbites) and the habitual reaction (answering, talking) once and for all.

Maybe I should do it consciously...... Maybe I should go on a bus or on a train and then consciously behave like a really mad person, talk to myself, loud and clear... Maybe if I consciously embarrass myself in public, then my consciousness and subconsciousness will grasp the madness and insanity of this kind of self-talk once and for all... What do you think?

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Re: Compulsive Reaction to Memories in my Head

Post by eputkonen » Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:44 pm

Decide that NOW is more important than PAST. Put the focus on inhabiting the body and experiencing the present. A memory of the past comes up...just gently say to yourself "not now" and return to feeling and experiencing the body, your environment, etc. Go very deeply into experiencing the now. There seems to be only so much attention or energy available to split between the mind/thought (which can only be about future or past) and awareness/experience (which is only of now). So focus the attention on now...and pay no attention to thoughts about the past. They come up...fine...but immediately let them go and focus again on now. Get out of the head and into the body. Focus on the kinesthetic side...what do you actually feel and experience. The conscious mind can't get it all, but try to get as much as you you feel the chest move when you breath, the air passing the nostrils, do you feel how your weight is supported by the chair or the ground...inhabit the body. But also be aware of all that you can externally at the same time...what do you hear, what do you see, what do you smell, what do you taste (even when not eating or drinking), what do you feel? There will be no room left for thought.

~ Eric Putkonen
@EngagedNondual on Twitter

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Re: Compulsive Reaction to Memories in my Head

Post by Mystic » Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:53 pm

Hello _KarmaPolice_ :)

I also receive memories in my mind and some of these memories are things that I have forgotten about from long ago. It seems to be an opportunity to become aware and heal. Instead of reacting to the memories we can put some space of awareness between the thoughts and the inner being that observes those thoughts.

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