Why Pain Can Often Be the Spark for Emotional Growth in Recovery
It may sound strange that something we try so hard to avoid and protect ourselves from can actually be one of the beneficial things for personal growth. Emotion pain can spark change, growth, new perspectives, and self improvement when processed in a healthy way. This is true for anyone, but for a person going through recovery, dealing with emotional pain can be an especially valuable tool.
The following provides a more detailed look at the role pain plays during the process of recovery, the healthy ways it should be handled, and how it can be an impetus for growth.
Pain leads to increased knowledge and self awareness.
Emotional pain acts as feedback, telling us that something that we are thinking about or doing in our lives needs to be examined more closely. During recovery, we will go through all sorts of uncomfortable emotions, from guilt to shame, to anger and sadness. It’s important to be aware of what emotions we’re experiencing and then try to figure out what they’re trying to tell us. When this kind of awareness and critical thinking is practiced regularly, we learn to view our emotions more objectively instead of letting them control us.
Pain helps us take inventory of our lives.
How do we know if there’s something we need to reassess and perhaps get rid of in our lives? Emotional pain will usually act as a signal that something is amiss. This can be a relationship that’s not healthy for us, a job that isn’t fulfilling, or a situation that is no longer useful for our well being.
Pain helps us improve ourselves.
When we feel angry, ashamed, or hurt in certain situations, it could point to an area of our personality that we need to look at more closely and perhaps improve. Again, it’s an awareness of the pain and how we experience it that can lead to a deeper self knowledge.
Pain can force us to face our fears.
You can learn how to face and process fear simply at observing how a painful emotion arises. This is because a painful emotion is almost always tied to a deeper fear. For example, you might feel angry at a person or situation that actually arouses some kind of fear. Figure out what you are afraid and make the decision to face it.
Pain is a natural part of life.
This is a difficult truth for many to accept. Most of us go through our lives trying our hardest to avoid pain, or at least look forward to day when we won’t feel any and our lives will finally be happy. This approach to life will ironically lead to even more pain and emotional suffering. Accepting that both physical and emotional pain is a part of being alive will allow a person to let go and fully surrender themself to the ebb and flow of life. The next time you feel any sort of pain, chose to accept it and examine it closer to see what it could possibly teach you.
Pain helps us experience and appreciate happiness more fully.
Without going through the various types of emotional pain and allowing ourselves to experience it, we could never fully appreciate the moments of happiness in our lives. A life with all the various types of emotions, both negative and positive, deepens a person’s capacity to love as well as feel compassion for others.