Making Peace With Your Pain, PT 2: A Path To Peace

Mindful walking. Completed and signed by Prabhakara. Singapore artist.

>As promised in my last entry on this topic, I offer here a Part II of sorts on the matter of making peace with your pain. It is worth spending a little time talking about this idea of “making peace with your pain”, whether it be physical or emotional, because -with a fair amount of effort – there’s a really good chance for success.

Admittedly, there are types and sorts of pain that require medical intervention… beyond these, however, I offer some advice based on my own experiences in these early stages of my Mindfulist training.

The two most important things to keep in mind are:

Know your body, Know your pain.

What this means, simply, is that some time needs to be spent researching the medical processes behind your source of pain so that, when the time comes to start working with your body to overcome its pain, you will be armed with the knowledge necessary to push yourself just inside your physical limits and be able to understand – and take action on – your body’s feedback.

The second (and perhaps even more important) thing to remember is that you must actively practice and perfect your mindfulness techniques;this is critical for being able to stay in the moment, actively communicate with your body, and focus on what it is telling you. It is only after you have come to understand what your body is telling you that you can take any practicable action to work with it to overcome the pain and start the healing process.

A brief example:

I had a horse fall several years ago that damaged several nerves in my leg, above the knee, and seriously damaged muscles, ligaments, and tendons which still cause me discomfort to this day. Although the bruising and overall pain subsided quickly enough, I was left with an inability to walk long distances without having to stop frequently because the leg would go numb and the muscles would fail.

It occurred to me, when I first began to study and embrace the ways of mindfulness living, that perhaps my old horse riding injury would be a good way to learn more about mindfulness and practice its teachings by using my leg as my initial object of focus.

Having researched, at length, the extent of the original injury … And having established that there were really no medical intervention options (including surgery), I decided to begin a walking regimen to test out just how much my leg could take if I pushed it beyond the short distances I had resigned myself to being forced to walk before having to rest.

My first time out? 200 steps. Now? … 3 months later? I’m at 5 miles in 2.5 hrs.

That’s right… 2.5 hrs. How? Find out in the next entry 🙂

[Image courtesy of pabha.com and Starship Earth: The Big Picture]

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