Tag Archives: Pain

Pleasure with Pain

If you break motivation down into it’s simplest form, we are motivated to either seek pleasure or avoid pain.  Now I know many of you are rejecting that, saying that you are much more complex than that but stick with me for a minute.  Pleasure can include everything from a taste of a delicious juicy hamburger with tempura fried bacon on it (yes, tempura fried bacon exists, I’ve had it and I’m obsessed) to love.  Pleasure includes security and peace.  Pleasure can also include spirituality.  Pain on the other hand isn’t just limited to physical pain.  It can include fear, embarrassment, social rejection, insecurity, hungry, loneliness, etc.  The list can go on quite a while.

Unfortunately, the world isn’t so simple as that.  How do you stack up pleasure that will happen six months from now vs. pain happening today, for example dieting and exercising for six months so that you can look good for the upcoming high school reunion?  How do trade off one pain vs. another, for example my back hurts right now and I know 30 minutes of stretching will help…..but I don’t really like the stretching either?  How do you exchange one pleasure for one pain, for example spending on a big celebration when money is tight?

It is ok to allow our subconsciousness to handle these decisions of which pleasure to seek and which pain to avoid as long as we are ok with the outcomes.  Really, your subconscious is making hundreds of decisions a day and you don’t want to get stuck in trying to analyze each and everyone.  When you are not happy with your situation, whether it be financial, relationship, health, etc., stop and consider which decisions are leading you in the wrong direction and why you are making that decision.  It might be helpful to try to frame those decisions in a trade off between pleasures and pain.  You might have to ask yourself “why” a few times because most people are slow to admit what is really going on in their decision making.  Once you understand the tradeoffs, then work to enhance different pleasures, minimize different pains and (frequently) work to pull future pleasure into the moment.

Examples help.  I was telling the truth, my back is killing me right now.  It is a chronic issue that comes back a few times a year.  This one is as bad as it has gotten in probably the last five years.  Nothing to do but stretches.  My wife has a yoga video that does wonders for my back…….but I really don’t enjoy it.  So I have a literal pain, my back.  Seems like I should be able to jump up and fire up that video.  Why aren’t I?  Well, I know from experience the yoga tape won’t make my back feel better right away.  So the pain avoidance isn’t really an immediate pay off.  I find yoga to be pretty boring.  I know my yoga loving friends tell me I’m not doing it right if I’m not loving it but I don’t love it.  There is a certain level of mental pain that comes along with doing yoga for me.

So how do I motivate myself to go do those stretches, well in this case I brought in another pain, social embarrassment.  By writing and posting this, I sort of have to go do the yoga.  If I don’t, I’ll be a bit embarrassed that I let my laziness and procrastination let me sit here in pain.  Alright.  I’m going to go do some downward dogs.

Comment if you need some help affecting change.  Please share.  Imagine the pleasure you’ll get if this helps someone you know.

Do they really have to meet you halfway?

When a loved one is hurt, lost or just anxious, do you really need them to meet you half way?  Right now, while they are in pain, do they really need to move to meet you at all?  Love them unconditionally.  Go to where they need you to be and love them.  Just be available.  Don’t put preconditions, obligations or expectations on your love.  Simply accept them, not only who they are when they are at their best but accept them for who they are when they are at their worst.  There is no score to keep in love.

 

 

Anger is what fear and pain look like in public

I was flipping through radio stations this morning and Glenn Beck was on PBS.  That was an interesting enough of a pairing that stayed and listened.  The interview made a comment that was powerful enough that I wanted to share it with you.  “Anger is what fear and pain look like in public.”  It felt like she was quoting someone else but I couldn’t find who may have said it first.  Please share if anyone knows who may have said it first.

When someone is angry, when someone is resisting, when someone is offensive is it that they are afraid?  It is because they are in pain?  Could the situation be putting them in a place where all they know to do is to be angry and defensive?  If you are able to understand the source of their pain and fear, you may be able to work around it.  I’m not saying that you should try to be their councilor but work to find a way around their pain and fear.

Are you acting out of pain or fear and hurting those around you?  Are you treating those around you with the love and respect they deserve?