We hear of people, including myself, addicted to pain in order to grow. Right? No pain no gain – how many times have we said that! Test after test after test. It’s exhausting, especially in relationships.
When you are in your third decade of a relationship like I am, you start to wonder is it worth the pain? My hubby and I were talking about this last night. Our marriage has been one of the most volatile, challenging and expansive experiences of our lives.
What I am about to share hasn’t been shared before, is deeply personal and makes me feel very vulnerable. The reason I share it is not to talk about me and my relationships, but to help you understand that whatever I talk about I have learnt, not just with textbooks, but through living the pain and power.
It is only through learning from my ‘mistakes’ that I can help others. See, there are two types of mentors and coaches – those who have read about it and those who have lived it. I mean, I know I would want business advice from a coach who is a few steps ahead of me, who has the successful business that I strive for, not the one who knows all the strategies, but not the feeling of what it takes to deliver the results.
So why is it so important to have been through it? Well, because – as a coach/mentor/expert – when you then support someone you know and feel their pain, passion and power. That collective energy that you feel from that mentor is the magic that takes you to the next level.
Think about it: how many strategies, books and courses have you bought and never implemented? Right! You can study these things all day long but, the truth is, it’s the magnetism of someone who has been there, got the t-shirt and that can often serve as the strongest guide for you to follow.
A great mentor will know all the pitfalls, all the times when you feel like giving up, and what will get you through… Step 22 of a book won’t give you that.
So here we go… The conversation that happened between my hubby and I just last week.
I had a really dark day. I call them my ‘shadow days’ when I just couldn’t shift my mood. Yes, it happens to the best of us. How I manage them has evolved over the years and they don’t last months now, in fact they don’t extend beyond a day now. So in the evening, we sat having a deep and meaningful conversation – we both sigh when this happens… you know the type of conversation!
When he said how exhausting the process is and he shared that he had asked himself several times, ‘is it worth it?’
Well, my first reaction was feeling like I had been hit with a sledgehammer!
And then it happened… I agreed with him.
See, this is what happens when you are brave enough to speak your truth, standing in power and not focusing on pain.
I am sure many of you are thinking ‘well, if the expert can’t get it right then there is no hope for us, right?’ But, here is the thing, I believe I am sent these tests to go through so I grow through them to be able to teach them. However, it was this recent conversation that made me ask myself the question ‘What if I was calling the pain to me all the time?’
What if I was so focused on the next challenge in order for me to grow that I had become addicted to pain?
That I was actually saying the universe ‘bring it on’ and calling it in.
Looking for it. Expecting it? What if I had all these years decided that pain was the number one ingredient for me to be successful?
Can you relate to that? How often have we been told ‘no pain no gain?’ or ‘you have to work hard to succeed in life?’.
I was certainly used to ‘pain’ while I was growing up as part of a refugee minority group, I was raised to think all the odds were stacked against me. A Woman, Indian, refugee family and the truth is, yes, if you want to change your outcomes then you do have to take action. And, of course, you do have to have focus and drive – but who said it had to be painful and hard?
See, the problem in our relationships is that we often get addicted to waiting for the next fight. Waiting for them to fail or mess up. We get used to the presence of pain and so the thought of its absence can be scarier than the actual pain.
What if you didn’t expect to react to her tone in the way you do? What if the meaning we put on that look (I know you know the one) actually did not have to mean pain?
What if that look was an opportunity for you to stand in your power?
To be her hero.
What if over all these years the very signals we had associated with pain were actually the universe’s way of giving you an opportunity to rise in your masculine power?
Let me demonstrate – last week when I gave him that look – he took that to mean ‘here we go again’ and disappeared. She clearly needs space. Now that look – for me – was a cry for help, I am fighting with my inner demons. Please rescue me. Don’t leave me.
How often are we missing the opportunity to stand in our power? What if we took a moment to:
- Stop focusing on pain and not expecting it?
- Asking instead of assuming?
- Choosing power over pain?
When we shift from growth and power, rather than pain.
When we decide that this situation is my chance to be powerful rather than sit in the pain, OMG, does life start to change? And here is why…
You start to focus on what is going right, not wrong. You start to feel more freedom and peace than you could believe was possible, all because you shifted your focus from pain to power. Best of all, the universe starts to give you more power than pain so you collapse time and speed up your success in nano time. All while you work ‘hard’ in power not pain.
What are you choosing today? Power or pain?