How to Turn Pain Into Pleasure

Written by Ayelet Shimron

One day I was speaking with a client of mine who was having problems in her relationship. Her boyfriend had broken up with her, and about a month later she realized he unfriended her from Facebook. She called me in a bit of a panic asking me all sorts of questions like, “What does this mean? Is this a sign that he's officially over me and that there's absolutely no chance of ever getting back together?” I began to notice a pattern in the way people react to heartache and pain. As human beings we have an inherent desire to seek pleasure in every single action we take. Life is an ongoing cycle of pleasure and comfort seeking activities. When something throws us off balance, we immediately react in ways which we think will restore that feeling of pleasure we all desire deep down. What we don't always realize is that the way we impulsively react to pain can lead to self-destructive tendencies.

Instead of channeling the painful energy the right way, we act in ways that can lead to more harm, and ultimately generate more pain. For example, my client happened to call me because she knew I would be able to offer her the guidance that she needed, but if it were any other circumstance, chances are she would've called her ex-boyfriend and exploded right there on the phone, ultimately creating more harm than good for herself.

Energy Is Energy... Channel it the Right Way

Next time you find yourself in a situation where your inner space (that part of you where energy rises as pain, anger or frustration) gets fired up, stop yourself from responding to it. Instead of taking any action, decide to be in a state of choicelessness. Listen to that feeling that senses the pain inside you. Go into it with awareness. Understand that energy is energy. Whatever you are feeling as pain, anger or frustration all stems from the same source. They are not separate emotions. So long as you respond with an impulsive action, the emotion will have control over you, rather than you controlling the emotion.

Visualization Exercise

Envision the anger as something outside of your being; as a monster who has latched itself onto you, and your goal is to listen patiently to this monster until it becomes your friend. The more you try fighting the monster, the angrier it will get and the less effective you will be at reaching a compromise. But the more you understand the needs of the monster, the more control you will have in any encounter you come across. Little by little, you will begin to see that these emotions are not YOU. You are not the anger you feel. Everything you feel becomes a choice.

Listen to the Signs of the Universe

Every time an emotion rises inside your inner space, it is the universe giving you a sign in some way, shape or form. Each sign you are given is meant to teach you a lesson. If, for example, your significant other does something that angers you, understand it is an opportunity to go inside yourself and ask yourself, “Why am I letting this bother me?” We come to find out basic truths about our own identity when we know how to better control our emotions and listen to the subtle signs the universe gives.

Every emotion is a lesson, and every time you can overcome the emotion, you get one step closer to remaining in a constant state of pleasure. Keep in mind that you are the master of your feelings. Nobody can upset you besides yourself. If you get angry, it is simply because you are allowing yourself to get angry. Nobody else should have control over your inner space. Your inner space is your temple. Keep it clean, pure and full of pleasure.

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