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Thought can be Painful

Keep your thoughts positive, because your thoughts become your words.
Keep your words positive, because your words become your behaviours.
Keep your behaviours positive, because your behaviours become your habits.
Keep your habits positive, because your habits become your values.
Keep your values positive, because your values become your destiny.
Mahatma Gandhi

A friend recently posted this quote by Gandhi on her website. Thought is powerful in regards to pain in ways that defy logic.

About 5 years ago I was in an auto accident. No bones were broken, but my whole body of nerves and muscle were bitterly affected. It took a few years to get out of the funk. And when I was feeling good all I had to do was to be overwhelmed by demands put on me and my body was back in pain again.

One December, school semester was ended, I had submitted grades and all I wanted to do was to sit down in my favorite chair to have a cup of coffee. I was feeling wonderful and happy to be on semester break. Now I could do “my stuff”.

I had been keeping a list of have-to’s. The simple act of unfolding the list and looking at what needed to be done in the next week sent a wave of pain from my head to toes. I felt limp and robbed of my enthusiasm. My body just echoed with ache. I knew I had to lie down and try to meditate or at least relax.

I awoke about an hour later. I tried to rationalize what had happened that morning: I felt energetic, looked at a list of to-do’s and spiraled into pain. What was this about?

I slowly realized that just thinking about things that I felt I needed to do was enough to take the wind out of my sails. So I knew I had to adjust my thinking.  I could control pain on some level through my thoughts.

I threw the list away.  I allowed myself one to-do. And said that when that was complete, I would add one more to-do. One to-do at a time.

It meant that I had to distinguish between what I needed to do and what I wanted to do. There were a lot things that I had to delegate to others or disregard.

No one was hurt. I felt remarkable better.  It was a lifestyle change and it gave me life. Now I know that thoughts alone can be painful.

Have you had the experience that your thoughts alone can cause pain?

How have you dealt with it?

About Mary Byrne Eigel

Before writing children’s books, Mary spent many years teaching in classrooms and creating art in her studio. She was born with bi-lateral hip dysplasia, a painful condition that causes normal activities, like walking, to be challenging. As a child, when Mary had to trek long distances, she often wished she had a wheelchair. For her, a wheelchair offered pain-free opportunities, not limitations. Mary grew up in Chicago, which is the lakefront inspiration for the town of Sail. She lives in Missouri with her husband and two dogs, Beaux and Trey.

6 responses »

  1. Dear Mary,
    I am very impressed by your website.
    Beautifully organized visually and
    wonderful content from your own experience.
    I’m sure others will be helped through
    your sharing.
    Special Blessings,
    Sr. Maria

  2. Thanks for this nice contribution. It gives me hope. I have read a few of your other articles and they are all newsworthy and illuminating – preserve the good work. Again thanks for the useful ideas.

    I am a working mom in my mid 30-ties from the Southwest, and my sport hobby is running. Thus, I have to experience lower back pain quite often. After I did run my last marathon I had to stop for a while. It was aching awfully. In the meantime I am recovering from back pain, because I followed the advice I found here: Get Back Pain Relief Now (Grab Your Free Pain Relief Guide!)

    The founder of The Healthy Back Institute, Jesse Canonne, recently publicized his new book titled “The 7 Day Back Pain Cure” and for the moment you can get it for FREE. Grab a Cost-free copy. And hurry – this offer is going to be taken of the market at any time!

    Thank you again and keep up the authentic work and much success!

    P.S.: Give A Helping Hand to the peoples of Haiti! For your donantion, check out Yele Haiti

  3. Mary Byrne Eigel

    Vera, Thanks for visiting. I look forward to getting Jesse’s brochure and checking it out. It sounds worthy. Be Well, Mary

  4. Wow! Worthwhile post. Well, that makes sense. This is very up-to-date web blog. I think I will share it on Facebook. Thanks a ton !P.S.: Mainly because these days, more and more people are suffering from back pain, I want to share the information about what has aided me. Jesse Canonne, the founder of The Healthy Back Institute, has just released his new book “The 7 Evening Back Pain Cure” and for now, you possibly can grab it for FREE here: But rush, that free offer may possibly end at any time!SOS – HAITI – SOS – HAITI – SOSGive A Helping Hand to the peoples of Haiti! For your donantion, check out Yele Haiti

  5. Mary Byrne Eigel

    Thanks for your comments. I did get a copy of Jesse Canonne’s. It is amazing how it is the little things that can make such a difference. But education is power. Mary

  6. Very helpful article. beneficial Thanks for the insights. I will thank the person who told me to visit your blog.

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