Dancing with Pain

Twenty years ago I wrote a post called My Dance with Pain, about significant discomfort that I had in my body: where it was, how it felt, how it migrated, what I understood at the time, what I learned… Now I am thrilled to share exciting new information that has radically changed my experience of pain. As I write this post, now relieved of that pain (!), what up to recently has been misunderstood, ignored, repressed, stigmatized, now seems to be breaking into the main stream. Pain is not what we have been told it is!

dancing with pain

I highly recommend you read or listen to this episode of The Ezra Klein Show. “The pain psychologist Rachel Zoffness explains how pain is a ‘biopsychosocial phenomenon’ — and how we can better treat it as such.” Rachel has a new publication out called The Pain Management Workbook, and it’s well worth a look. These insights and tools can be life changing for anyone dealing with ongoing manifestations of pain.

In case you are unable to access the interview, here’s a quick summary: we used to think that pain resides in the tissues or joints (or whatever parts of our body) that hurt; it was believed that the pain emanates from that area and that is what we experience. But we now know that this is not true. We now know that pain is a biopsychosocial phenomenon: the brain is always involved in our experience of pain. Learning about the complex ways our mind, brain, and body interact when pain manifests, gives us insight and tools to understand, manage, mitigate and even heal what may have been significant, long-lasting, debilitating chronic pain, as well as other less dramatic but nevertheless painful experiences. Wow!

Exciting updates: the mind-body connection in relation to our experience of pain is starting to be taught in some medical schools, to some physiotherapists, and is being shared in books and newspapers, even the New York Times.

My dance with pain: with a huge drumroll, I’d like to share an App that has radically changed, actually it has healed the various kind of pain I had been dealing with for the past 20 years (and many before that). It’s called Curable, and I can’t recommend it highly enough. Learn more here.

You might also be interested in a related topic: How we can use the body to heal the mind. Read or listen to the Feb, 27, 2023 episode of Being Well, with a somatic therapist Elizabeth Ferreira, in an interview with Forrest Hanson with that title. Here’s to healing our bodies and our minds!

Jill Schroder is the author of BECOMING: Journeying Toward Authenticity.  BECOMING is an invitation for self-reflection, and to mine our memorable moments for insights, meaning, and growth.  Check the website for a sample chapter, or see the reviews to get a flavor for the volume.  Your feedback, forwards, tweets, likes are most welcome. We’re in this together 🙂

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