So many in so much pain. Physical pain. Emotional pain. Spiritual pain. We have been relentlessly trained to consider the experience of pain as the enemy, seeking to eliminate it and banish it from our lives. We use drugs to numb ourselves to its presence. We accept violent and invasive procedures to the body to cut it out of our lives. Perhaps what we need most is to change our perspective, making it possible for us to pause…. listen… and hear the message our pain is seeking to deliver. Once received, the need for its presence is no longer required.
The following closing thoughts can be found at the end of:
Episode 6 of ‘Reclaiming Your Self: Women Unedited and Engaged!’ on the topic of ‘Pain: Invitations to a Better Life?’
How else might you engage the experience of your own pain? How might your pain be your invitation to living a fuller, richer and more meaningful life?
Here are some thoughts for you to take with you as you move into the coming days:
- Start by being willing to consider how what you once held as ‘pain’ is, in truth, an expression of intelligence, seeking to awaken you to a more authentic and life-giving way to live. Ask yourself: “What is the message that my ‘pain’ is seeking to convey?”
- Begin to notice the thoughts that flow through your mind as you become aware of your pain, noticing the ebb and flow of intensity; and paying attention to what is going on – inside you and around you – as your pain increases and decreases in intensity.
- Make the time to keep a journal of your pain and seek to capture the story that you have created around that pain. Often times, we don’t notice what’s going on inside of us until we become willing to allow it to flow outside of us, that we might change our perspective. Re-reading your journal entries can offer up new insight and discovery.
- And finally, pay attention to your breathing. Allow your attention to drop into your body… resting gently at the base of your spine… and allow breath to move through the entire body – from the top of your head to the tips of your toes. Belly soft.. shoulders down… breathing in deep, slow rhythmic waves… creating the inner space that will allow your ‘pain’ to move and be in flow. As the information that your pain carries is metabolized into the larger system, notice what’s different… and how else you might live your life.
One last thought: In a culture where pain is an accepted reason to disengage, our voice – and our wellbeing – often fades into the deep silence of living without boundaries. What would happen to your pain if you were able to say ‘yes’ to what you want… and ‘no’ to what you don’t?