We usually do what it takes to avoid pain. Emotionally, Physically, Psychologically. We all do it. What if we try to embrace the pain.
What would happen? I tried it out last night at yoga. In Savasana, the posture which gives you an opportunity for rest or it can be the place your mind can run wild. It’s the last place you want to be in pain.
But I couldn’t help but notice that in my pain this thought came to me – embrace it. Be in it. Instead of trying to ignore it or move my leg around until it was in some sort of unpainful position, I embraced it. I focused on it, and it stopped feeling so much like pain. I thought loving thoughts towards it and a warmth came over the area.
In a hot yoga class, there is a lot of pain. All types. It is about learning to work through it. Feel the pain and be in it. There isn’t a choice to avoid it. Once you are there, you are in it. The heat, the sweat, the pain of the postures. You have to stay in it the postures longer than you wanted to. But you are in that moment. The moment of pain being over is a sweet feeling and sometimes that sweet release is what happiness is all about.
Just think for a moment. Are you trying to avoid the pain? Distracting, ignoring, numbing? Pain can be good – here is just a few ways:
- Pain can teach you where you are weak. It can make you stronger and smarter by just paying attention to it and trying to rehabilitate the area.
- Pain can teach you a lesson. If you have had an injury because of something dumb (when have I haven’t had a dumbness related injury?) You will learn what not to do. Live and learn. Isn’t that all about experiencing pain in some way?
- Pain or mourning can be a lovely reminder of how precious life is. How delicate and fragile.
- Fear of pain or avoidance of pain is sometimes causing us more emotional strife than just going through the pain.
- Notice how when you are sick you just remember how wonderful it was to not be sick and how you definitely didn’t appreciate the not sick times enough? Pain makes you appreciate the peace, the painlessness.
- Pain brings you into the moment. If you focus on the pain and experiencing it you are there, in the moment of pain or pleasure – whichever you are in, you are experiencing life.
Embrace the pain. Trust me, it isn’t so bad once you realize how much work it is to avoid it.