Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Pain

Pain is living: Early actions let you live better

The trouble with pain is ignoring it.

Toothaches begin as dull twinges. Tumors are coughs. Before long, fillings are root canals and tumors are death.

Toothaches and tumors never magically go away.

I’m not ready to check with a physician means it doesn’t hurt enough.

By Dan Rockwell?

Pain is a slow sunrise, quiet. But, noon always comes. Listen to pain in the morning; don’t wait for noon.


Life without pain is death.

Leaders courageously listen for pains voice. Delay invites damage. Pain is not the enemy. Invite it in for a chat. “Damn that hurts.”

The role of pain:

  1. Pain screams “something’s wrong” but doesn’t solve or correct.
  2. Pain points to symptoms not root problems.
  3. Pain is a consequence not a cause, at least at first.
  4. Pain succeeds when we look for causes and cures.
  5. Pain solves when stopping is enough.
  6. Everything that hurts isn’t bad.


“Just make it stop,” is a distraction. Leaders look through pain to find real issues.

Under-performing employees are the toothache, but the root problem may be organizational, for example.

Correcting under-performers may provide surface solutions; developing organizations capacities provides deep cures.

Dull ache:

You’re feeling dull aches that suggest intervention.

  1. Relational aches.
  2. Staff malfunctions.
  3. Inner dissatisfaction.
  4. Customer distress.
  5. Procedure failures.


  1. Point out pain-points and ask, “What’s behind this issue?”
  2. “Is it escalating or de-escalating?”
  3. “Does this situation require intervention? Why or why not?”
  4. “What are you doing about it?”
  5. “How can I help?”
  6. “Can we solve this with current or new procedures?”
  7. “Tell me more next week.”

All leaders have stories of toothaches that turned to root canals and tumors that killed.

I’m not ready means it doesn’t hurt enough.

Leaders don’t address every issue; they give space for others to find solutions. However, leaders always monitor pain-points. Don’t pretend they’ll go away.

Do you tend to delay too long, act too quick, or move-in on pain-points at just the right moment?

How do you address pain-points?

Note: For terminally ill patients, when all kinds of tranquilizers stop functioning, do you believe a patient still keep thinking: “As long as I’m in pain, then I’m alive?”

10 principles of Pain. Taxonomy of pains?

By Dan Rockwell?

Pain persists till something changes.

Pain increases the longer it’s tolerated.

Dentist visits weren’t on my list of things to do during my early college years. We couldn’t afford it.

I still have a gap in the back of my mouth where I lost a cavity-filled tooth. Once that tooth started aching, it didn’t stop. It grew worse till it became intolerable. I actually tried pulling it myself.

Toothaches don’t subside they get worse. The thing that’s hurting today will only hurt worse tomorrow if you don’t change something.

Change or:

  1. Organizational stresses worsen.
  2. Interpersonal conflicts escalate.
  3. Internal struggles intensify.

One pain:

The Emergency Medical Technician, before plunging a giant needle into my chest said, “This is going to hurt.” It didn’t. I learned later, the sharpest pain is the only one you feel. The pain in my mangled hip masked everything else.


Look through pain. Biggest pain-points may not be biggest problems. They may be distractions. I could live with a broken hip but the pressure building in my right lung was crushing my heart.

Cause more pain. Stopping pain won’t solve causes. Plunging a giant needle in my chest actually caused more pain not less.

It hurts more just before it hurts less. It hurts to lance a broken department, for example. But, relief and health follow the knife.


Pain intensifies focus. Focus on changing you more than changing others. Change your:

  1. Willingness to listen.
  2. Advisors.
  3. Attitudes.
  4. Definition of success and failure.

The most challenging changes are inside you.

Ever notice how easy it is to focus on changing others? It’s incredibly easy to know what others should do.

Blame exacerbates pain. Responsibility addresses causes.

Pain changes when you change.

The 10 Principles of pain:

  1. Pain persists till something changes.
  2. Pain increases the longer it’s tolerated.
  3. The sharpest pain is the only one you feel.
  4. Pain intensifies focus.
  5. Look through pain.
  6. Cause more pain.
  7. It hurts more just before it hurts less.
  8. Blame exacerbates pain.
  9. Responsibility addresses causes.
  10. Pain changes when you change.

Confession: Adding this list put me over my 300 words.

What have you learned about pain?

How do you deal with pain?




November 2019
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