Do you fight the process that you are going through because it’s painful? I had a good example of this happen to me last week. I had a massage. It didn’t take but about three minutes for me to realize that this wasn’t going to be one of those “relax and go to sleep” massages. No, there was some tension that needed to be worked out.
Now, please understand my intentions: I wanted to be fixed. I wanted the results that I know come from relaxed muscles, and I wanted to feel better. But when Kat (my masseuse) started the process that it takes to get to that place, I found myself fighting it. I was in pain, and I didn’t want to go through further pain.
In that moment, I just wasn’t willing to endure the pain that it was going to take to ultimately get better. I wasn’t submitting to the pain or moving with it. I was trying to block it. Wow, what a simple illustration for how we often react when we are faced with adversity or an unwanted change. Here are a few thoughts that came to mind as I reflected on my experience.
Fight and Defend
Fighting the pain is our first instinct. Instead of going through the process, we spend our energy defending and protecting ourselves from it. We work hard to hide our pain and protect ourselves and others from seeing and experiencing it. Our focus turns to managing and controlling the pain.
Unveil It and Deal with It
Have you ever had deep knots, and the masseuse is too gentle? Surface massages do nothing for deep pain. Treating things only at the surface level only prolongs dealing with the real challenge. We know we want to get to real healing, but we don’t want the accompanying pain that goes with getting there.
Time Doesn’t Heal All Wounds
In fact, when we ignore the problem, things usually grow harder and more complicated over time. Kat mentioned that my tension had been there for a while, so it was going to take a while to work it out. The longer I go without dealing with my muscles, the longer it will take to get them back to a good place. The same is true with bad habits and negative thinking. The longer we accept it or ignore it the more we keep doing the very thing we want to stop doing!
Pride Can Prevent Progress
When you’re a make-it-happen person, it’s difficult to submit to something you can’t fix. We have to rely on something or someone else to help. You can power through pain, but that’s just living with it – not fixing it. So when help arrives (a masseuse for example), do you give in and allow their talents to work for you?
The good news is there is a good ending to my painful massage story! I finally allowed myself to “go with” the pressure Kat was delivering instead of fighting against it. She got her way, and I am better off for it. Funny thing, as I lay on that massage table self-talking myself into submitting, I knew I had a blog topic brewing! Ha!
(And a special shout out to Kat at Comfort Zone!)