I kind of admit to wanting to roll my eyes at this blog title. Really? I can think of a million thousand people who are in sincere, genuine pain and would swear upside down and sideways that their life is actually quite wonderful (except for the pain of course).
So I will leave you with this by way of introduction. I have been tackling my physical ailments (IBS, leaky gut etc) as they relate to emotional well-being because my body would not heal otherwise. I have, and will on some level always battle, a very strong skeptical voice about my aches and pains being connected to my feelings. That’s calling being human. We want to separate the mind, body and soul. Modern medicine teaches us to do so in fact.
The trouble is when I tackled my ailments from this holistic “airy, fairy” way I started getting healthier and healthier. So after years of feeling unwell what was I going to do when approached with this relative easy way to feel vibrant? Say SOUNDS DUMB and keep on feeling miserable? I had to choose to see that there are layers to our pain. I cannot emphasize this enough – each body is different and each circumstance unique. This is not a one-size fits all scenario. But for me this concept proved valuable and healing.
Last year though I hit this very tough intersection. The “tools” I had relied on to help me feel healthy and balanced no longer seems to be working. My body “hurt” and my primary coping tools had been physical activity, like yoga. I had bottled up a LOT of emotions. I had stopped taking vacations because my paid time off was all used up from being “sick.” My tank was on EMPTY and instead of acknowledging that I kept on keeping on. I re-injured an achilles injury I had healed. It came back with a vengeance. I put myself in situations with people who were tough on me and didn’t make me a priority, and therefore created even more pissed off feelings I didn’t want to deal with.
It created this momentum of adding insult to injury. I stood face to face with THE VICTIM in me. I didn’t want to go that road, but it seemed like I was getting so much material in my life to support that story. And so that becomes the choice, how can you change your story and believe you are not your pain? How can you see through your pain and see that it’s not a part of you as it so intensely seems to be? And perhaps your pain simply wants you to feel something, to change something so that you can propel yourself forward?
I will leave you with a quote from Liz Gilbert’s Facebook page which inspires me on the daily: “I want to repeat that one line, because it has never stopped ringing in my head: SUFFERING WITHOUT CATHARSIS IS NOTHING BUT WASTED PAIN. Don’t ever let your pain be wasted. Make something of it. Use it for transformation. Harness its power and evolve.”
One last piece of advice from the inimitable Danielle LaPorte:
If you would like to explore this idea further, here are three things I recommend:
1.) E.F.T. Tapping for Pain: Nick Ortner has a book devoted specifically to this
2.) Gabrielle Bernstein recommend Healing Back Pain at my Kripalu program last weekend and this book has been HUGE for me so far and I’m only halfway through.
3.) A Classic: Your Body Speaks Your Mind.