(By the way, the above picture represents us as superwomen fighting for our right to a pleasurable life…Very Xena, Warrior Princess, non?! )
Let’s continue from last week’s start on the Pleasure dynamic. If you missed it, read the first half “The case for pleasure – our resistance” here!
So, how do we overcome this resistance to pleasure?
Firstly, we have to want more for our lives. We have to want to feel better. Feel happier. Without this desire, nothing is possible. This desire can still be wrapped up in resistance, fear, guilt, self-doubt, anxiety and judgement. That doesn’t really matter. The important thing is that we have a desire buried underneath all of that.
We have resistance and we move forward anyway.
We don’t use our heads. You might feel like the case for pleasure will require hours of intense contemplation about how your parents destroyed pleasure for you. About the why of your resistance. Your head is not your friend here. Put her on to other tasks and take this one to the body. Pleasure is something you FEEL, not something you think. So, let yourself FEEL pleasure, not THINK pleasure.
We allow ourselves to let go. Of the ego. The anger, resentment *, bitterness and blame. Of anything that might want to keep us right where we are. Melt it all away with pleasure.
(*As Carrie Fisher said “Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.”)
How I chose a pleasurable life
When I started to think about reclaiming pleasure in my life, yes, there was resistance. Guilt. Feeling selfish. Going against what my upbringing taught me which was hard work first and then fun. And then, how could I add pleasure to my life when my life was so busy with kids, trying to run a business and taking care of a household. IN FACT, I WAS TOO IMPORTANT FOR PLEASURE! So yes, there was a lot of resistance.
But there was this recognition of truth inside of me. I knew that this is what I needed. And wanted. And that it would only add to my life; not take anything away. And I knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that what made me happier, would make all those around me happier too.
Even thinking about having more pleasure in my life made me feel better.
It scared and excited me.
So I started. Just thinking about what I really liked. What made me tingle. What pleasure meant to me. And that gave me pleasure. And then, I started to do some of those things. And that gave me even more pleasure.
And so on, and so on and so on.
What I do when I hear anti-pleasure voices
I don’t hear them very much anymore. Because it’s hard for them to convince me that I’m not happier. That I don’t deserve it. That I’m not worth it. They can’t argue with the fact that I am higher up and so is everyone around me.
And when I do feel the push of resistance, I listen to it. I pay attention because there is a message there. Am I out of balance? Is this a pleasure I really want or not?
So where do you go from here? If you don’t feel that you have enough pleasure in your life, I want you to start thinking about it. That’s all. Write a list of things that bring you pleasure. And that is the first step. And then choose one of those things and bring it into your life. It could be a big one or a small one. It doesn’t matter because every time we add pleasure to our lives, a little habit is born. Every time we push ourselves in that direction, the next time we do it, we are a little closer to our goal.
And that’s how it’s done!
Here’s to a pleasurable day, week and month. You DO deserve it and everyone else in your life does too!