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@ripley I have been using Alan Gordon's book, The Way Out, as part of my pain management plan for quite a while. I especially found the section on "observing" my pain helpful (I don't have it in hand right now to give you the page.) It was possibly the fourth or fifth book/strategy I tried.

Let me explain - I have a rotator cuff issue that is mystifying me, my PT & my chiropractor & resisting every effort at dealing with it. One morning last summer, I woke up with a HIGH pain level in my neck/shoulder/upper back, different from the usual. I stepped into a hot shower, made an effort to relax the painful area, and stood there, waiting to see what would happen. Slowly, the tense muscle released, the pain subsided, and the numbness along my arm eased. It was my first of several experiences over last summer where I could acknowledge a specific pain, then using relaxation and stretching tools, relieve it.

Yesterday, after a day of physical labor preparing a kitchen backsplash for installation, challenging my arthritic elbow, hands and wrists, and tugging on my still-resistant rotator cuff, I was prepared for a night of pain, numbness and discomfort. Instead, I warmed the area, then did progressive relaxation and stretching exercises before sleep. I woke up at 7 am realizing I had not had pain and tingling throughout the night.

Today, after a morning of household chores and 2 weeks of laundry, I relaxed by painting with friends (art) for 2 hours. Then I spent 2 more hours of completing the backsplash - tonight I will repeat the heat-relax-stretch and hope for another night of restful sleep.

So what can I say?
"The Way Out" is definitely a tool to address chronic pain. Both my local Pain Rehabilitation Clinic and my "magical" PT recommend it.
It is not a cure, but offers different ways to view and manage pain.

My chronic pain will always be with me. How I handle it is up to me, and does and will change over time. My husband, my daughter and I all live with chronic pain. Each of us has found different treatments and strategies.

I hope you will find a strategy that works for you.

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Replies to "@ripley I have been using Alan Gordon's book, The Way Out, as part of my pain..."

Does the book explain the relaxation and stretching exercises that help? Thanks.