Pain and suffering are NOT synonymous! If you’re in pain (physical, mental, emotional), it doesn’t automatically mean you’re doomed to suffer.
What is the difference?
Pain is simply information. If we’re talking about physical pain in the body, it is the sensory information our body is using to get our attention and ask for help. That’s it! Even using the word “pain” is a distraction from the truth, because most of us assume pain is bad. It’s not! We should all celebrate that our bodies talk to us via pain in order to stop us from doing things that could seriously injure or kill us.
Suffering, on the other hand, is the meaning we attach to the sensory information we’re receiving from our body.
The best possible way to separate these two is to fully accept and celebrate that pain is your body talking to you, and then foster an attitude of curiosity about it. What is your body trying to tell you, and ask of you?
Most of the time when we experience pain we go into panic mode and react emotionally with frustration or irritation towards our body (the very thing that is trying to helps us!)
What if we replaced those reactions with genuine curiosity? What might we discover?