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Using pain as your superpower will help you become totally unstoppable and achieve your goals, no matter how tough things get.

Sound a little…well…painful? Let’s just call it pain with purpose and in the following exercises I’ll show you exactly how to use pain to create the life you want.

 We don’t like pain. We humans pretty much do anything to avoid feeling pain and discomfort. It’s just how we’re wired; the caveman ‘fight or flight’ response is still deeply embedded in our physiology.

These days we rarely have life or death encounters with prehistoric mammoths but our instinct to run or fight when faced with pain still exists.

If we think there’s a chance of experiencing any kind of fear, pain or suffering, many times our response is to run from it. Even if it’s not like pain, pain.

A really simple example: waking up at 6am to go for a run on a cold, grey winter morning. Our body is telling us pain, pain, pain…hit the snooze button dammit… there’s pain ahead! This also highlights how avoiding pain or discomfort can stop you achieving goals.

 

Leveraging pain to achieve your goals

Here’s the thing though, harnessing pain as energy that can help us, rather than harm us, is a powerful strategy to smash our goals.

You can use the idea of how painful not achieving your goal will be to give you the fuel to overcome setbacks or challenges on the journey. The pain of going through challenge might be tough, but not as strong as the pain of not achieving your goals. 

 Use the pain to push you forward and avoid anything stopping you from achieving your goals.

So how do you make the future pain (that doesn’t actually exist yet) of not achieving your goals so strong that you’ll do anything to avoid it? I’ve got some exercises to help you out…

Warning… it’s going to get a little uncomfortable, but so worth it. I promise!

 

How to feel the pain of not achieving your future goal

Think about a  goal you really want to achieve. Think really hard about it.

Once you’ve got the idea of the goal strong in your mind,  I want you to think about exactly how you’d feel and what would happen if you don’t achieve that goal a year from now.

What would it cost you? What would you miss out on if you didn’t achieve that goal? What pain and suffering would you feel?

Think very carefully and with as much detail as possible; the idea is to get clear on the repercussions, maybe even a little worked up, and actually feel the pain of not achieving the goal.

Now think about that 5 years from now. You still haven’t made it happen. This goal that’s so important to you, you still haven’t achieved it 5 years from now. How are you feeling? What have you missed out on, what has it cost you 5 years into the future?

What about 10 years? A decade from now that goal hasn’t been accomplished, how does that feel? 25 years from now you still haven’t got what you wanted?

Write down everything you’re feeling in as much detail as possible.

I really want you to stop and think about the things you’ve missed out on and the pain. It’s that pain you’ll use as leverage to keep pushing you forward when you feel like giving up.

You can download a template here to help you work through this exercise or just do it with a pen and paper.

Let me take you through an example based on a goal of becoming fit and healthy.

At the moment, you’re at a really unhealthy place in your life. Poor eating habits and zero exercise isn’t only diminishing your energy levels and physical health but also your self-esteem and mental wellbeing.

 

1 year from now

You haven’t made any progress. Your energy and motivation levels are still low. Weight is piling on and you’re beginning to stop socialising so much with friends and family.

 

5 years 

Now the state of your health is seriously impacting your relationship with your partner because you’re not so fun to be around. You’re always grumpy, constantly tired, miserable and unmotivated. You’re beginning to look much older than you are.

 

10 years

Your partner left you and you’re in an even more devastated place, still not exercising and your health continues in a downward spiral. You’re having more serious health issues like chronic headaches, pain etc.

 

25 years

A bunch of different health problems have ended in hospitalisation. You’re in a lot of physical pain, really sick with the type of issues that could have been improved or avoided entirely through a healthier, more active lifestyle. Now you’ve also got a bunch of hospital and medical bills to pay. Over the years you withdrew from friends and family, having no energy and always being sick, so you’ve ended up with no emotional support.

 

Is that really where you want to be; alone, sick, unhealthy, unhappy? Is that a really powerful feeling to drive you towards wanting to start improving your health and fitness right now?

That’s how you use pain to achieve your goals; getting really clear on how you will suffer forms an emotive reason to push you forward.

That example was a little grim – for a good reason, to up the pain factor! – but let’s look at the positive side too, by doing the exercise in reverse.

This will highlight all the great things you have to gain when you achieve your goals. Let’s stick with the health and fitness example.

 

1 year from now

Since committing to your fitness goal a year ago you’ve made amazing progress. You’ve lost weight and realised that you really love running! Waking up early in the morning to start your day with a run has transformed your energy levels and daily productivity at work. 

 

5 years

Your relationship and sex life are better than ever! You feel attractive, confident and with energy to spend with your family and partner. You’ve met some great friends through running clubs and completed a marathon. Healthy food is now a habit; your family’s health is also benefiting.

 

10 years

You radiate with health and happiness; you’ve set a great example for your friends and family. You’re in amazing shape and look years younger than you are. You rarely get sick.

 

25 years

You’re training for your first triathlon! You have a great group of active, happy and healthy friends. People always ask you ‘what’s your secret!?”. You’ve never seen the inside of a hospital and don’t rely on any medications.

 

Have some fun with it! Think of all the things you can gain if you achieve that goal! We want to leverage the pain and gain equally, to be pulled away from the pain towards the gains.

This exercise will truly help you connect more strongly to your goals and make sure you’re absolutely going to achieve them!

Live vivaciously!

Toni x


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PineappleHi! I am Toni. I'm a passionate success expert who works with busy professional women to help them #balancethebusy, using strategies to elevate their energy and boost their productivity, combined with proven methods to set and get goals they once only dreamed were possible.

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