A year ago this month I graduated from The Life Coach School in Dallas, Texas. It was a rigorous program that lasted a year. The certification has really changed my life! Today, I’m starting to share some of the things that I’ve learned in my classes.
Pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional. We have pain- all of us. It can be physical pain or emotional pain that we’re plagued with at times. Why do we have pain? Because we’re human- it’s a part of the normal human experience.
Suffering is optional. I’ll say that again for the folks in the back. SUFFERING IS OPTIONAL. Many people can’t believe it, but I believe it’s true. When we go through a trial or a loss, we feel the pain, and that’s ok. Suffering is when we make up stories in our head that prolong the pain and we’re typically really hard on ourselves. You can catch yourself entering suffering when you hear these thoughts in your head.
This is not fair!
It shouldn’t be this way!
It’s my fault!
I’ll never forgive myself!
Do you ever hear any of these thoughts in your head? You are no longer feeling CLEAN PAIN, you have started suffering. YOU get to choose the thoughts about a particular circumstance or the pain and how to respond to it.
If any of you know me well, you know that I have stomach issues. I never know when I’m going to have the worst pain of my life after I eat or when I’m eating. This is real, physical pain. In one particular flare-up, my husband heard me say “I can’t live this way.” He stopped me in my tracks and pointed out that I HAVE been living this way for years. I was producing suffering by feeling sorry for myself and thinking the thought, “I can’t live this way.” It’s piling more negative on top of the physical pain, which actually makes the pain worse.
Sadness and frustration are ok to feel about my stomach pain, so I can say “I’m bummed that this happens to me, but I always have better days ahead.” This helps to keep the pain, CLEAN. Stop and listen to the thoughts in your head, they will tell you so much! Just gaining an awareness of those thoughts is a great first step to stopping the suffering!
If I can help YOU feel better, let’s chat. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org