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March 29, 2024

“Pain is Your Friend.” (WHAT?!?)

Yes, F.M. Alexander said, “Pain is your friend.” But how can pain be your friend if pain HURTS?!? 😱

Actually, the pain itself isn't nearly as much of a problem as how you're likely to react to it.

💧 When you’re in pain… you feel distracted, scared, or angry. Sometimes, you feel utterly hopeless.

💧 When you can’t focus on anything but the pain, your music suffers because you aren’t fully present to the music and your colleagues (if you can play at all).

💧 Being in pain can feel lonely… like you’re the only one in pain, and the only one who isn’t able to overcome it. That can really erode your confidence as a musician.

So, what do you do? Of course, you try to DO SOMETHING to get rid of the pain.

You go to the doctor, physical therapist, or chiropractor. You do your stretches and exercises. You take your medicine. Maybe you even get surgery.

But the pain keeps coming back sooner or later, sometimes in other parts of your body. Nothing you do really seems to make it go away for good.

My job is to help musicians think differently, so they can get different results. 🏆

There are several necessary ingredients for turning around your pain, so you can steadily improve, feel better, and feel hopeful about making better music with ease.

Here are 3 surprising and essential things you need in order to make significant strides in overcoming your pain:

✅ The desire to uncover the truth. Are you willing to open up your mind to All-Possibility? That includes entertaining the idea that your usual way of thinking about pain is backwards and upside-down.

✅ The desire to learn. Are you willing to get curious about seeing things differently?

✅ The desire to realize your freedom by making constructive, conscious choices. Are you willing to experiment with a new way of dealing with your pain?

Here’s what's true about pain, as I see it:

⭐ Pain IS your friend.

Friends tell the truth, even if the truth hurts. Friends don’t give up on you. They keep reminding you of what’s true because they don’t want you to be living in an illusion. They want you to face reality and see the truth about yourself, even if it’s really uncomfortable.

⭐ Pain is not bad – because pain is YOU.

Pain is actually part of you – it is not some evil entity trying to make you feel bad all the time! Your pain is YOU. Pain is simply your body sending information to your brain – that’s all – and that’s a GOOD thing!

Pain signals are just telling you that you need to think differently, because your old ways of thinking and moving haven’t been that helpful – in fact, they’ve been destructive.

❤️ What if, instead of trying to eliminate the messenger – that uncomfortable part of yourself – you could hear pain’s message to you and actually face it, look at it, accept it, and even embrace it?

The problem isn’t so much your pain, it’s how you react to the pain that perpetuates the cycle.

We don’t like pain, so we usually react to it by doing something to get rid of it – FAST.

It can feel like you’ve tried everything to make it go away…

…but there’s ONE THING you probably haven’t tried, which is precisely what I teach my students.

You probably haven’t tried pausing to do NOTHING for a moment, giving yourself a bit of time to acknowledge your pain with gentle curiosity, free of judgment, and then consider choosing a different option:

💡 Constructive Thinking. 💡

When I work with musicians, I teach them how to use that moment of doing nothing to introduce something called Constructive Thinking, which involves a different way to use your brain by getting curious about the EASING that's already happening quietly in your body.

Constructive Thinking allows you to step outside of your habitual fear-based reaction to pain entirely, which gives you a completely different experience of freedom. 🕊️

In the moment that you shift your awareness into witnessing the easing within you, observing and learning more about what's already going WELL within ourselves – curious about the big picture – you're finally giving yourself permission to change and have a NEW experience. 🌈

Once you learn how to include the pain and shift your attention to the areas that are less painful… places of flow and easing in your body… everything starts to move and shift and open up.

Healing energy is finally released from its stuck places, and you slowly but surely start to feel better (and sometimes, really fast!). ✨


How can all of this improve your music-making?


Oh, that’s easy! Because when you listen to your body, you not only feel better…


💥 You have more energy, more enthusiasm, and better concentration


💥 You have more fun with your colleagues when you're not distracted by pain


💥 Your music can flow with ease when your energy is flowing


💥 You become more sensitive, with a wider palette of emotions to express through your music.

In The Musician’s Advantage coaching, I teach you exactly how to do everything I’ve talked about here. If you’re curious about how this approach could work for you, message me now or send an email to Jennifer@ArtofFreedom.me so I can send you more information.

I have a great offer for accomplished musicians who – despite working hard and having tried just about everything out there to feel better and play better – still know that there's something missing and the quality of their playing can be improved – and who are ready to experience much more freedom, ease and joy while making music.

Just message me or email me at Jennifer@ArtofFreedom.me so we can chat about the best options for your unique situation.

~ Jennifer 🦋

p.s. Want a preview of what's possible? Come to my upcoming workshop: “3 Keys to Play Your Instrument PAIN-FREE” on April 1st and 2nd! Just let me know if you want me to send you the details and registration link.


Awareness, coaching, ConstructiveThinking, freedom, Pain

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