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Mindfulness Meditation for Chronic Pain

by Julie PetersJanuary 15, 2019
man meditation


Mindfulness meditation can help us befriend the pain sensations and teach the brain that it doesn’t need to sound the alarm so hard.

Acute pain is caused by an injury or an illness, and it is the body’s way of telling us something is wrong and we need to change something or get help. Chronic pain is like an echo of that acute pain. There is nothing to be done, no warning signal to follow, it’s simply an experience of pain. That experience can seem to amplify over time, sometimes along with painful memories related to the injury or illness that may have caused the pain in the first place. For many people, trying to ignore the pain sensations only makes the suffering worse, and then anxiety and depression can arise as well, further exacerbating the issue. Mindfulness meditation can help us befriend the pain sensations and teach the brain that it doesn’t need to sound the alarm so hard. With time, we lessen our suffering and, in effect, turn down the “volume” on the pain sensations. Studies have shown mindfulness meditation can be very effective for people experiencing chronic pain. Please note that this meditation requires paying attention to pain sensations. If it is too intense for you to do that right now, it’s completely okay to stop and try it again later or leave it altogether. 

Julie Peters

Julie Peters is a staff writer for Spirituality & Health. She is also a yoga teacher (E-RYT 500, YACEP) and co-owner of Ocean and Crow Yoga studio in Vancouver, BC, with her mom, Jane. She is the author of Secrets of the Eternal Moon Phase Goddesses: Meditations on Desire, Relationships, and the Art of Being Broken (SkyLight Paths 2016) and WANT: 8 Steps to Recovering Desire, Passion, and Pleasure After Sexual Assault (Mango Media 2019). Learn more at Follow her at @juliejcp.

Learn with Julie! 

Register for Julie's courses Stress Management Skills for Real Life: Practices for a Calmer Happier Life and Moon Goddess Meditations: A 16-night journey of desire, heartache and connection.

This entry is tagged with:
Chronic PainGuided MeditationMindfulness

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