I’m quitting the business of pain relief, and this video is my “coming out” celebration for the next phase of my life.
I may or may not continue producing content here on Mobility Mastery. I haven’t decided yet, but perhaps you can help me figure that out by watching this video and letting me know if you’re on board with my new orientation to pain and freedom.
Here’s what’s been on my mind lately: have we in the pain relief world unwittingly participated in the widespread numbing of humanity? Have I, with my private practice and online presence?
I’ve been semi-closeted for years around my real mission in life, believing it’s not sexy enough for me to make a living. I’ve been a coward, but I forgive myself – because I didn’t have all the puzzle pieces to feel at home in this new paradigm. Plus, my own trauma patterns around speaking my truth and wanting to belong still needed to change.
2020 shook me awake, and I finally have all the puzzle pieces and the courage to come out of the closet FULLY.
Those of you who actually read my emails won’t be surprised by anything I’m about to share.
The truth is, promising pain relief – that sells really well.
I built a very successful private practice in Boulder, Colorado based on the promise of offering people “pain relief.” I charged $300/hr the last time I worked with a private client.
Since 2015 I’ve been offering the same promise of pain relief online here at Mobility Mastery.
And while I’ve almost always gotten great – even miraculous – results for my clients, and many people get results from my information online, this paradigm of “pain relief” feels like a dangerous one and I won’t participate anymore.
Because here’s what I know: the absence of pain doesn’t equal pleasure or freedom or joy.
The absence of pain = NUMB.
To anesthetize means “to induce the loss of consciousness” or “deprive someone from a feeling of AWARENESS.”
In our quest NOT to feel certain emotions and sensations (whether naturally, or via medical interventions like cortisone injections or even something as seemingly benign as acetaminophen or tylenol) have we dimmed our consciousness and deprived ourselves of the awareness of our own being?
Did you know that researchers at Ohio State University have proven that acetaminophen – the primary ingredient in Tylenol and 600 other “medicines” – has been shown to reduce negative AND positive emotions?
In a recent study by the same researchers who wrote the paper I just mentioned, it was concluded that acetaminophen also reduces RISK ASSESSMENT.
Well no shit – honestly, I’m glad this information is trickling out but do we really need a scientific study to prove this?
Science has already established that there are no such thing as pain receptors in the human body – there are nociceptors, which are nerve endings responsible for detecting potential damage to our tissues or possible danger to our survival, and they send messages to the brain which then has to determine if the threat is credible or not. Then there’s neuroception, which is our ability to sense if a situation or person we’re encountering is safe, dangerous or life threatening.
The sensation of pain is nothing more than the perception, by either nociception or neuroception, that we MIGHT be in danger. Our job, as the owner of the body, is to figure out if the threat is real or imagined.
This is why trauma is linked to physical pain – if we believe we’re in danger emotionally, the body doesn’t know the difference between that and possible tissue damage or threats to our existence.
We get the experience of pain either way, and our job is to figure out what kind of danger we believe we’re in. Either way, it’s worth noting that if pain is present, then at the nervous system level we believe we’re in danger. Isn’t that worth paying attention to?
Instead, we decide we don’t like this thing we call pain. We don’t like feeling headaches or jaw tension, gut pain or knee pain…so we pop a pill.
And apparently, you might be more prone to bungee jumping gleefully if you take Tylenol.
But in all seriousness, we need to talk about this. Because apparently 25% of Americans take acetaminophen containing drugs each WEEK – and it’s one of the MILDEST painkillers on the market! We’re not even talking about opioids and the addiction crisis we’re facing globally, or crazy dangerous sedatives like benzos.
Painkillers, by design, interrupt the communication of potential danger at the central nervous system level, so that we don’t FEEL that signal.
Of COURSE we wouldn’t have access to normal risk assessment when our primary threat detection system has been cut off or diminished. We need a study to tell us this…really?
But here’s what we’re NOT talking about that I’m committed to making clear in everything I do from now on:
When we pursue the absence of pain as a goal (whether with tylenol, cortisone injections or fascia release), we pursue lack: lack of physical pain, lack of emotional distress or trauma, lack of injury, lack of feelings we don’t like. In doing so, we inadvertently pursue less and less awareness of ourselves and our world.
We pursue senselessness.
And what about people like me who offer “pain relief” naturally? Well let’s really think about this for a second.
What IS pain?
We might think about pain as sensations or emotions that are uncomfortable or unpleasant.
Feelings like anxiety, depression, anger, headaches, low back pain, trauma, gut inflammation or stomach pain…it’s a massive list right? We also tend to make physical pain mean that we’re damaged or defective…but are we really?
Scientifically, as I mentioned earlier, pain is the nervous system perception that we MIGHT be in danger. Do we really want to be RELIEVED of that experience? What if we really ARE in danger? Do we want to skip that memo and kick that can down the road? A lot of people do, and they tend to end up in my office…but not before going through rounds of tissue killing cortisone injections, failed surgeries and years of PT that never worked.
Ok, so we have our definition of pain. Something we don’t want to be feeling.
When I looked up the definition of RELIEF, this is what I found:
alleviation, ease, or deliverance through the removal of pain, distress,
money, food, or other help given to those in poverty or need.
something affording a pleasing change.
release from a post of duty, as by the arrival of a substitute or replacement.
the person or persons acting as replacement.
So basically, if you are someone who promises people “pain relief” – as I claimed to be for nearly twelve years OMG – you’re implying that the person in pain is experiencing something they need deliverance from and YOU are the THING that offers deliverance from the responsibility of tending to it themselves.
By using these words – pain relief – we’ve created a paradigm where our clients and patients are, even if unconsciously, the physically or psychologically impoverished, the physically or psychologically needy and oppressed…while WE nominate ourselves as those who will deliver them from the burden of FEELING something they don’t want to be feeling.
And let me be clear – I believe we can achieve numbness by any means, because the end results depends on the GOAL we set when we being. Whether we’re using painkillers or fascia release, either can be used as a weapon against the body to anesthetize, numb and render ourselves senseless.
I’m here to help you feel MORE. Not less.
My mission in life is to help you honor and use ALL of your senses – and there are for sure more than 5? – so you can engage with being human fully, and interpret what your body, psyche and environment are trying to tell you about how to live well.
Because pain turned into PERCEPTION leads to wisdom that no one can ever take from you, and these superpowers can be built upon and grow.
That’s the real process I’ve always aimed to guide people through. But in calling my first business “Boulder Pain Relief” and talking so damned much about pain relief…I unwittingly perpetuated the paradigm I never resonated with in the first place.
I’ve always called myself a pain advocate – because pain is a communication from our body that might indicate tissue damage but might also indicate unhealed trauma.
Our bodies are so much wiser than we are.
Here’s what I’m all about: open communication lines between me and my body; transparency and accountability to every emotion and sensation I feel so I can SENSE my body and my world with uncanny perception, and live well as a result.
My mission is to help you do the same – if that sounds like a goal you want to set for yourself.
When we do this, pain dissipates into the background of our existence and in its wake we’re left with a myriad of diverse sensations, emotions and FELT EXPERIENCES…all of which tell us something useful about ourselves, our bodies or our world.
Since we’re exploring definitions, the definition of “to sense” is:
any of the faculties, as sight, hearing, smell, taste, or touch, by which
humans and animals perceive stimuli originating from outside or inside
to perceive (something) by the senses; to become aware of.
to grasp the meaning of; to understand.
If you’ve been with me a while, you might know that I’ve always said that pain only goes away (at least naturally) when we MAKE SENSE of it.
I didn’t realize quite how POETIC that mantra of mine was all these years.
Freedom happens when we are in alignment – body, soul and spirit.
When we honor what we SENSE and seek to hone those sensing skills, we get to understand more, know more, grasp the meaning of…our own body and psyche, other people’s bodies and psyches and our world.
In celebration of my coming out, you’re invited to a conversation about human freedom, where we will discuss and engage with body-based practices for the pursuit of “the freedom to…”
The freedom to run, hike, move and play in ways that make us come ALIVE; the freedom to breathe easily, to feel at home in our bodies and know what they need to thrive; the freedom to pursue our passions and unlock our potential; the freedom to live without the fear of pain and develop the skills to help our bodies perform well; the freedom to truly know ourselves and fully experience this life, instead of living most of it on autopilot or worse…living in LACK.
Pain relief is for people who want lives of lack. That isn’t me, and I hope it isn’t you.
The FREEDOM TO is a conversation that puts the power and potency back into our bodies, our minds and our spirits, instead of draining that power and potency by opposing ourselves to pain and enriching those who seek to profit from our ignorance of what we are capable of as human beings.
And for anyone I unconsciously impacted in a negative way in my previous role of “pain reliever” – I ask for your forgiveness. I forgive myself. I know better now, so I’m doing better and I’m DONE with that old paradigm.
So you should probably know that I’m committed to this new paradigm from now on. You won’t hear me talking about or promising pain relief, on any platform from now on. If this means you unsubscribe, that’s ok. There are a lot of people online teaching pain relief, and I hope you get the help you’re seeking. And if you resonate with what I’m saying and you plan to stick around – would you be willing to do me a favor and comment below to let me know? I’m not sure if I’m going to continue on this channel or start a new one. Hearing from you would help me know what to do, because if enough of you actually resonate with this new message and want to stick with me moving forward…then I might keep working from this platform.
Thank you for watching.
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