Rough draft, being written, will be reorganized later, but some of the content could be helpful, the resources cited should be helpful.
Lessening physical pain
Can I live a worthwhile life even with pain?
Where is the "big tradeoff point"?
Interpreting and misinterpreting
The child conversation
Never make a decision in a dysfunctional mode
The realistic effects; the realistic strategies
LESSENING PHYSICAL PAIN
There are plenty of sites that deal with lessening physical pain, so we'll not try to duplicate those and just refer you to a few.
Here we intend to deal with the emotional implications and how they relate to our behavior, motivations, and living life.
CAN I LIVE A WORTHWHILE LIFE EVEN WITH PAIN?
The conversation here is prompted by the questions:
Can I live a worthwhile life even with pain?
How do I stay effective in my life when feeling pain or physical discomfort?
Typically, pain and discomfort are allowed to rule our lives rather than vice versa.
WHERE IS THE "BIG TRADEOFF POINT"?
My challenge was simpler than my cousin's (who is in extreme pain from acute chronic rheumatoid arthritis), but nevertheless I consider it to be on the "pain-discomfort" spectrum - and I think what is true at the less severe part of the spectrum is also true at the more severe levels. At some point where the pain is unbearable and closes out life, there is probably a "tipping" point at which it is not worth it anymore - but never make that decision without wise non-prejudiced counsel.
I believe that there are many people who let their lives be run by seeking relief from discomfort, some of it as "trivial" as a wee bit of anxiety. They are, essentially, letting their bodies and their primitive mechanical brain run their lives, rather than using the higher brain that we spent so much time evolving and which has worked so well for us. To try to get people to use their higher brain is a real challenge (read Using Your Higher Brain to gain a greater understanding).
INTERPRETING AND MISINTERPRETING
We'll start at the lower part of the spectrum since that is where most people are at least some of the time.
I noticed that when I wake up and feel a stuffy nose or sinus pressure in my head/cheeks/eyesockets I interpret that as my being sleepy and/or having low energy. The low energy thing has always "gotten me", for I've heard in many workshops that we have lots and lots of energy that is available. I do think that is true when I look at it fully intellectually, but I need to understand how to see that when I need to and how to uncouple from letting the physical discomfort have so much power over my thinking.
I need to get straight that if I have a stuffy nose or some other minor pain, I still can engage my brain and body and do things. I also need to practice those things that will energize me physically, besides using my brain rationally. Energizing oneself physically does help one to be in a higher state of resourcefulness where one is more likely to, and more able to, engage the higher brain.
Since seeking "relief" from discomfort is a major detriment or issue in life, read
Living With And Managing Discomfort.
THE CHILD CONVERSATION
The "young conversation" in my primitive brain from my childhood says that I need sympathy and taking care of and that I have no power. Well, at this point I declare that that is no longer true. I am certain that I have power even if there are conflicting physical signals - and "I take a stand right here and now that I will choose to use that power to run my life at that time. I am fully capable of reengaging my higher brain and/or following a rule I created when I was in my higher brain."
NEVER MAKE A DECISION IN A DYSFUNCTIONAL MODE
One of the solutions is to write out what I will do in the various situations where I go into my victim mode (or partially into it). Part of that will be an analysis of whether I will do any harm to my physical body or not, as I choose to be responsible for having it serve me well for many, many years to come.
I will, of course, pay attention to the signals if they get really strong. But I still need to decide "when do I 'push' through it and when do I heed it and do something to heal it?
As for colds, it's generally considered ok to exercise, though this probably will not cure it quicker, but the circulation may be helpful to your body moving some of the toxins out. If you have a fever, don't exercise.
If it's above the neck, you can keep going through the discomfort, but make sure that you get some extra sleep and lots of water. Otherwise, there is no excuse to be less responsible and much less active.
THE REALISTIC EFFECTS; THE REALISTIC STRATEGIES
Since there is "alarm" in the body at any tiredness or sickness it draws away energy and attention from other areas, so it is more difficult to maintain motivation elsewhere.
This is a good time to continue to use "the Rule Of The Opposites".
When one is tired or sick, it is even more important to not have sugar increasing the acidity level in the body, as that is where disease lives.
And the old mainstays of rest and deep relaxation make a huge difference. inserting (reading it if no other energy) positive statements is essential, even though one doesn't feel like it. Movement of the body is twice as necessary. It moves the lymph to move out the bad stuff plus it invigorates and cleans out the body while generating some good hormones that are healing as well as enhancing the immune system. If you are actually ill, it is good to let the pressure off of trying to do too much, so "acceptance statements" are useful, like: "I accept that I may do less while I am in this state. I will not fault myself for that and I will nurture and support myself."
(Recall that if there is anything "bad" that is happening, we should simply look for what the opposite is and generally, with some common sense, of course, do the opposite consistently. That goes for thoughts or movement or anything that affects you.
Proinflammatory cytokines acting in the brain cause sickness behaviors. These nearly universal behavioral changes are a manifestation of a central motivational state that is designed to promote recovery.