3 Steps to Stop Pain
This week, I was forced into couch jail, due to back pain.
For someone who is always doing something, this is torture.
I had just arrived at the gym to take a Barre class earlier in the week, when a giant back spasm stopped me in my tracks.
KAPOW! “Holy Geepers Batman, I can’t stand up!”
That was the beginning and the end of that class.
I could barely walk and was bent over for days. I pretty much crawled around the house in agony. Unable to feed myself or my family, shower, lay down, sit up or stand, without pain.
WTH is this? I’m in great shape! I do yoga, barre, pilates, strength training, I walk a lot and I’m very active.
I will rearrange the living room furniture by myself, when I’m in the mood! Maybe I shouldn’t be doing that every month? Of course I should! According to my husband moving stuff around the house is my favorite past time and he’s totally right? It gets better every time I move a piece of furniture! 🙂
“You did too much, you need to slow down.”
Ever heard that before? Well my exercise routine and diet were definitely out of whack from all the traveling last month, no alone time and just packing your mother-in-law’s house, is a giant stress cocktail.
I may or may not have lost my mind at least once.
What is interesting is that my mother in law has the same injuries in her right shoulder and lower left back.
Is this sympathy pain?
I would say I am definitely empathic, but I had no idea I could take on someone else’s pain.
Boy, do you know what they are going through – when you experience it.
We had just spend a month together, 24/7. I mean we were in a car for a straight 6 days.
Good thing we like each other or someone might have died!
So, why did this happen? Well, no one knows and at this point it doesn’t matter.
Wasting your life thinking about “why” something happened doesn’t change the fact that it did.
What too much thinking does change, is how well you enjoy your present.
-It keeps you from truly enjoying the magic of right now.
-It makes you deaf when someone is trying to talk to you.
-It makes you blind to the beauty right in front of you.
-It makes you lose touch with reality, in this illusory, imagined space in your mind, where you are thinking about something that is no longer or may never be.
The past and the future do not exist, the only thing that is real is right now.
Have you ever driven somewhere and then can’t figure out how you got there, because you were so in your head, that you don’t even remember the drive?
When you are too focused on pain, it becomes your identity and you lose your presence.
I know when I am in pain, I can’t think about anything else.
It becomes a never-ending conversation between me, myself and I, ruling my thoughts, permeating my mind, day and night.
We torment ourselves trying to figure out why we have pain.
“Where did it come from? What is causing this pain? How do I get rid of it? I should see another doctor to get answers. I’m going to read up on this condition on the internet, I should tell a friend to get more advice, Maybe I can find other people who have it…”
Pain – is fed by negative energy.
According to spiritual teacher, Eckhart Tolle, the “pain body” is a parasitic energy entity that feeds on your negativity. It lies dormant in your body, until you trigger it, into an active state. When active, it has the ability to take over your brain, inflict or create more pain – by feeding on your misery. It takes over your rationale, until it’s had it’s fill, then goes back to a dormant state.
Well, how long does that take?
Thankfully, there are proven methods to shut down the pain body faster.
You have to take your attention away from the pain.
Regard the “pain body” as separate from you through conscious awareness of it and it will no longer exist.
Pain bodies hate self-awareness.
It won’t go away altogether but lying dormant is certainly more pleasant.
Be fully present when your pain body rears it’s ugly head. Know that you are separate from the negative self-talk.
You can even interview it with bland attention: “So what’s up? Bored today? You can’t survive here, you aren’t wanted in my body. I can’t even see you or feel you. (Yawn.)”
Never engage in a fight with the pain body. Become the “silent witness” to it. Starve it and you will come out of this experience, better than before. Pain will disappear on it’s on, if you do not react or feed it.
I believe suffering will end. Pain does not last forever, unless you cannot let go of it.
“I want to feel good,” was my mantra for the past week even if I had to say it with tears a few times.
I am not perfect, no one is. I had to consistently remind myself that if I feed the pain, it will thrive. I distracted myself with visits to a chiropractor and massage therapist a few times and enjoyed “couch jail” for a few days. I even caught up on a ton of computer work and some netflix. I kept saying thank you for the required time to rest and was grateful my family tried to pick up my slack. Though no one replaces “mom” totally.
Realizing that pain can be separate from you, is the beginning of waking up to the realization that you can control the “pain body.”
Pain cannot feed on joy.
Therefore it would seem that the fastest way to heal pain, is to live your best life, love what you do and make happiness your number one intention in life. Joy is the fastest detour around the pain body. I would much rather go around, than through, pain, wouldn’t you?
Joy and happiness always,