Cancer Truth Note: #82
The fear of potential pain can evoke a stronger emotional reaction than actual pain; Resulting in avoidance of activities or movement you think might lead to pain.
Whether chronic pain resulting from cancer treatment, surgery or some other injury the fear of pain may be holding you back. Last week I talked about the brain body connection and the long memory our brain may have when it comes to pain.
I never want someone to do movement that causes pain. I have noticed in the studio lately a pattern of mislabeling the fear of potential pain as actual pain. Rather than abandon the movement, I have started asking for a description of the pain. The response is often something like “It hurts.” Fair. DESCRIBE the hurt. What sensation words describe what you felt when you did the movement? Not pain, hurt, discomfort, or weird, use actual pain words. Words like sharp, shooting, dull, or achy. Often when we dig to this descriptive level the answer is something like… “well it isn’t any of those. It feels like something MIGHT go wrong and I don’t want that to happen.”
This avoidance can lead to further weakening of the area. Which then has the potential to become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
If you are not sure what is causing the pain, consult a doctor. This is important. If you have an issue that needs to be addressed there may not be a way for you to get stronger on your own without medical intervention. If you know there is no medical reason, you need to find someone who can keep you honest and push your edges in a way that makes you feel safe.
Have you experienced this? What worked for you? Need help? Let’s talk.
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