Everyone experiences pain (physical or emotional) differently and everyone has his or her own way of getting through it. For Tracee Ellis Ross, pain is an opportunity to learn something about the self. Teaming up with Motrin for its #WomanInProgress campaign, Ross shares her thoughts on turning pain into a positive.
“I think all of us in our daily lives deal with pain, big pain and small pain, discomfort, fear, emotional pain, physical pain,” Ross says. “All of us deal with it differently and it’s a very personal thing. For me, I don’t look at pain as a stopping point, but as a very important and formative part of the journey.”
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Ross shares a story about finding new ways to stay active after suffering pain as a result of being a high school track runner, looking at the pain as not just an obstacle, but a way to explore new ways of stay healthy without putting stress on her knees.
“Knowing yourself is a part of your relationship to pain,” adds Ross. “And, in my personal experience, some of my most life-changing and extraordinary moments have discomfort in them. For me, that point, when the discomfort becomes painful, is usually the deepest part of the experience and I get to dive in and ask myself some questions.”
She continues, “Life is a series of experiences, life is not a series of perfection. A baby does not learn to walk by never falling down. How many heads have gotten bumped? How many knees have been scraped? How did you learn to ride a bike? You had to fall, that’s totally part of it. And, it’s not that that’s the thing that’s wrong, it doesn’t mean you didn’t do it right, it means you’re learning how to do it.”