When we numb pain, we numb joy

“The research shows that when we numb pain, we numb joy.” Now pain may be one word for it, another might be discomfort, fear…

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What I realized was that you need to be best friends with fear, whether you like it or not! I started working on a project shortly after that TEDx talk I gave, and I learned something that changed the way I think & feel about fear, and pain, and discomfort. I worked with a psychotherapist who said to me, “The research shows that when we numb pain, we numb joy.” When we numb pain, we numb joy. Now

I worked with a psychotherapist who said to me, “The research shows that when we numb pain, we numb joy.” When we numb pain, we numb joy.

Now pain is one word for it, another might be discomfort, fear. When we numb this bad stuff, we numb the good stuff. We end up feeling something average and in the middle.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to stay there. I want to go across that bridge, I want to get to the joy. I want to get to the happiness. I want to feel brave, and courageous. Because let me tell you, this stuff, is better, than zip lining, and shark diving, and sky diving. I felt like an emotional bad ass. This is where the good stuff is, but we have a numbing culture, we have epidemic proportions when it comes to prescription drugs. I don’t know, when did it become normal that we pop a pill, that we drink a glass of wine at the end of the day, when we inhale a pie? Just to avoid sitting with our feelings.

When did it become normal to numb discomfort and pain, and fear, and not be willing to sit in it? So I had to learn, I had to acknowledge. I had to acknowledge the important role that pain, and fear, and discomfort have in my journey to feeling full joy. I had to acknowledge the important role that they play, and see them as my best friends. Around that time, I was going through some pain, heartache, romance, love, it sucks, doesn’t it? When it doesn’t work out? I wasn’t in a good place, and I was ready to numb. I was at the Ralph’s supermarket, and I had my trolley ready. As I’m walking down the isle I grab a box of tissues, Kleenex, of course. Next stop, the ice cream freezes, Magnum ice creams. By the time I get to the checkout, I have just 3 items, my Kleenex, my ice cream and a loaf of bread.

Now, I live in LA. I knew it was bad, because nobody eats bread. I looked at myself when I got home and I thought, “What are you doing? You’ve just learned this stuff. You can’t be numbing” You’re allowed one day, maybe 2, by day 3 that’s it. You’re going to feel this, and so I made myself feel it. For 22 days, I cried every single morning. I would go out running with dark sun glasses and tears streaming down my face, but damn it, I was running. I was feeling it for the first time ever.

So I had to learn, I had to acknowledge. I had to acknowledge the important role that pain, and fear, and discomfort have in my journey to feeling full joy. I had to acknowledge the important role that they play, and see them as my best friends.

Check out more videos on overcoming fear and shame and vulnerability in the workplace. Or to book Kirsty to speak at your next event click here or email kirsty@kirstyspraggon.com

When we numb pain, we numb joy.

When we numb pain, we numb joy.

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