Productive Pain vs Unproductive Pain

LESSONS OF THE CACTUS FLOWER

The Cactus is native to hot, dry climates of America. Mostly known for its ability to conserve water in the extreme conditions, it is also adaptable enough to survive in winter conditions as well.
In the language of flowers, the cactus flower pictured symbolizes warmth, protection and endurance. Because it can not only survive but thrive in harsh conditions, it is also a symbol of maternal and unconditional love.
Native Americans recognized its medicinal properties, hence attributing a mother’s nurturing and protective energy to the flower since the pulp and juice was used to treat numerous wounds and illnesses that were due to digestive inflammations.

PRODUCTIVE PAIN vs UNPRODUCTIVE PAIN

Megan Caldecourt once said that pain comes in two forms, productive pain and unproductive pain. What does that mean? Productive pain is pain that brings healing. Productive pain asks the body to send resources so it can heal. It is the same for productive emotional pain as well. However, unproductive pain is just pain. There is no ultimate outcome to our benefit. There is no resolution. It Is Just Pain. So how can we turn unproductive pain into productive?

MOVING BEYOND THE PAIN

Looking at ourselves and the truth that lies within us and looking at our ability to adapt and “mother ourselves” can help turn something unproductive into something productive. Taking a look at what is causing unproductive pain (any kind of pain) in your life and using a parent’s voice, ask yourself the hard questions about it. Are you willing to learn from it; move beyond it? It is important to note that Caldecourt also said, “productive pain is still pain.” Once you move pain into the productive category, don’t linger on it. Take the victory from moving beyond the pain and learn so your victory stands solid.
“We are sick today because we did not finish it yesterday. Find it. Fix it. Forget it.”

Kathi Springman

Click here for a downloadable version of this article as it was printed in Natural Awakenings OKC November 2015.

 

The views expressed are educational in nature and reflect the personal and/or clinical experiences of the author.