no pain, no gain

EDIT:   The wise person reads the comments. The reason being that much of what I learn comes from others.  Thank you to those that comment.  I appreciate and learn from you.

A cliche that I’m very sure you have heard.  But did you really hear it?  Does it really only have to do with working out, getting a hard body, being physically fit, losing weight, or otherwise related to the physical?

I recently read an article about how GPSs have hindered the user from learning a route to a given location simply because it gave every turn and left the user of the GPS with no need to really think.  Thinking requires that the “thinker” actually do something even if only in their head.  Brain strain if you will.  The lack of which leaves the brain less strained and thus less used and thus less over all.

I’d have to say that I agree with this article at least to some level.  That is not to say that it is wrong to use a GPS or that they do not serve a purp0se.  They do.  I would be remiss if I did not have my GPS.  Why?  I do computer work.  I go to new locations all the time.  There was a time when I used Google Maps or Mapquest to map my destination to my new clients.  Often I would get way back in some subdivision and do the necessary work and then have difficulty trying to find my way back out.  The difficulty was in trying to read directions in reverse order and reverse the turn directions at the same time and all while trying to drive.  Not the best idea.  Add to that the fact that many times I would get to the location while it was still light and then have to leave in the dark.  If it rained or was foggy, it just added that many more levels of difficulty to the already hazardous trip.  Not good.

Needless to say, I’m very happy to have a GPS at my disposal.  It normally leads me to my intended client quickly and gets me out of difficult travel scenarios when needed.  Even my GPS makes stupid mistakes sometimes.  It decides that I need to go further down a road and make some kind of circle turn (turn left at…, turn left at… turn left at… = a right turn).  That is a bit frustrating at times.  Still it is a useful tool for me.  But not all the time.

The premise of the article was that a lack of “brain strain” causes the brain not to work and thus not be “physically fit” so to speak.  “No pain = no gain.”

This can be related to emotional development as well.  If someone, let’s say a child, never has to work for anything, it is very likely that they will never acquire the appreciation for what they have.  If someone never goes through any tough times in a love relationship, it is likely they will not appreciate what they have.  Hardship and struggle are needful in order to grow.  From a physical, mental, and emotional aspect.  I’d even go so far as to state that it would take some spiritual struggle to grow spiritually as well.  Those that have never struggled with their spiritual beliefs most likely do not know what they believe.

Have you ever really struggled with a belief?  Have you challenged what you believe to be true?  Have you been challenged on a belief and had to defend it not knowing if it was really correct or not?  Did you challenge yourself to find out what truth was real?

How about emotionally?  Yes.  Everyone goes through emotional challenges and struggles.  For some, the most difficult time is during puberty.  Others of us have emotional struggles that we go through later in life that can tax our emotional strength to its limits.  Loss of job, money, friend, family member, lover, marriage (divorce), or other such challenges can be either a moment of defeat or of victory.  A moment when someone can be trodden down beyond any hope of recovery or of growth beyond dreams.

There are always different sides to the situation.  Different possibilities.  Choices can be and are made that can elevate or devastate.  Some choices are our own.  Some are made by others for us.  It is not what happens to us that matters.  It is how we respond to what happens to us that either kills us or helps us grow.  Either way….  No pain = No gain!


Author: memman

Too much to tell. There is more than what is seen on the surface of any man. Some have more layers than others. I have many.

4 thoughts on “no pain, no gain”

  1. Nice Dan! I like how you bring “both sides” of the issue “closer together” in this. Doing so seems to make the truth easier to find. It is always harder when issues are so polarized. I grew up hearing about things either being good or bad, black or white, success or failure, difficult or easy, open minded or closed minded. Polarizing. That’s how kids in families get labeled: the smart one, the clown, the quiet one, the black sheep, etc.
    It splits us into parts. Boxes us up. Keeps us from seeing the big picture.
    When a role or title such as any one of these gets assigned to one of us… whether in our families, churches, at work… any social situation is where it may occur… being mindful (or aware) that you are being labeled is likely the best way to minimize the damage. Because anything you have awareness of, automatically breaks you free from the bonds that the label attempts to imprison you with… yeah… being mindful… sounds so simple… problem is, unconsciously, it is easy for us to willingly accept these roles… there may be tremendous pressure to do so… people need acceptance and attention… often our life depends on it. Healing, or integrating again, demands that we gain awareness.

    When we are mindful of being labeled, what happens? It brings the polarities close enough together that we can see both ends of an entire spectrum of possibilities… more the way they really are… rather than having an unnatural split between them.
    Then we are free to choose. Having to be one extreme or another, rather than both, or anything in between, is ALL in our mind. We have “choice”- IF awareness is present. If not… our unconscious puts us where it has been programmed to put us. And the trees then block the view of the forest.

    Having said that… I don’t have a GPS. But I’d love to get one! I hear your point about thinking and exercising the brain. And it could be said, a GPS cheats our brain of exercise. There were a lot of math teachers that felt the same about calculators being used in school when they became more commonly used. Still do.
    But just like the practical helpfulness of the GPS you described… which COULD be seen as countering your argument about it cheating our brain : )… the same can be said of the calculator. The fact is calculators are an essential part of training engineers. Yes it’s a shortcut. But that is also a part of technological advance. Letting the calculator do those shortcuts, not only frees up time, but allows you to think in a “higher mode” of thought than what mental calculating requires. See what I mean? We’re looking for freedom… and toward that end… I agree, no pain, no gain… as pain is feedback for us, without which, we are quite blind.

    1. Just like anything else, technology can be used for good or for bad. It can become a crutch or can make one (a person) more productive. It all depends on the person and how they choose to use that technology. The calculator you mentioned… while it certainly IS a good thing, it can become a crutch. Those that ONLY use a calculator and never learn the basics or the foundation of the math itself are the ones that have lost out. Without understanding the workings the user has nothing to fall back on or to even check that what they are given as an answer is correct. Using the calculator as an example; simply using a calculator does not guarantee the user that they are getting a correct answer. A person that understands how it works, understands the mathematical calculations going on inside, may catch something that looks wrong simply because of that understanding.

      Lets do some applying to awareness: Having understanding of what is going on in your life gives a whole different meaning to being able to see the “whole picture” as you say. Knowing that what is considered a “bad thing” may not really be a bad thing but just “another” thing and part of life and growth would certainly allow that person to grow beyond that experience. It would allow them to “catch” whats going on and be able to see that there is light at the end of the tunnel. Life goes on. The pain we experience in the now only helps us experience joy in the now as well through understanding.

      I’ve begun to see things from the point of view that they no longer have beginnings and endings. The “big picture” is really that there is no ending. It is the Yin/Yang. It is the endless circle. The plane of existence where nothing begins or ends but merely exists. Not so much from a physical perspective but rather simply is. No… this is not a reference to what your deffinition of IS is. Someone, a good friend of mine, says… “it is what it is.” I simply am. That is all. Nothing more and nothing less.

      I have all the freedom I choose to have. Each of us does. Even those in bondage of one sort or another are either free or not by their own choice. It is a frame of mind. Not what is physically going on.

      You’ve heard the saying, “you can lead a horse to water…” but that applies here too. You can attempt to change other people’s minds but in the end they either change their minds or not by their own choice. What exist in the mind is in fact real. If not to everyone else, at least to that person. That, in fact, is the truth. Their pain is real. Their joy is real. Their choice to accept or reject truth, their choice to learn and live or to exist in pain and so in their own death of spirit is a choice they make. If they choose to hide from the pain and suppress that pain inhibits their gain. All people live life or live death by choice. Yes… I said live death. Death of spirit.

      Death of spirit is the worst death in my opinion. I see them every day. People that exist without hope. People that live a life of existence only. Living their deaths over and over again. A hell they create for themselves. For some it may be something that happened to them long ago. For some it is much more fresh in the mind. Getting past that event, feeling, loss, defeat, abuse, loneliness, or any other thing that has caused that death of spirit is something very individual. It can not be grown past until that person is ready. Until that person chooses life. That abundant life that is available to anyone that chooses.

      It looks like this could have been another blog of it’s own. I should stop now.

  2. Note from 1mansthought blogger: The views expressed in comments from my readers do necessarily reflect the thoughts or views of this blogger.

    I read this article a while back, that said that Microsoft employs more millionaire secretary’s that any other company in the world. They took stock options over Christmas bonuses. It was a good move. I remember there was this picture, of one of the groundskeepers next to his Ferrari. Blew my mind. you see shit like that, and it just plants seeds, makes you think its possible, even easy. And then you turn on the TV, and there’s just more of it. The $87 Million lottery winner, that kid actor that just made 20 million o his last movie, that internet stock that shot through the roof, you could have made millions if you had just gotten in early, and that’s exactly what I want to do: get in. The Notorious BIG said it best: “Either you’re slingin’ crack-rock, or you’ve got a wicked jump-shot.” Nobody wants to work for it anymore. There’s no honor in taking that after school job at Mickey Dee’s, honor’s in the dollar. Anybody who tells you money is the root of all evil doesn’t f’ing have any. Its strange to think how anything can change everything, everything, hey don’t get me wrong here, I don’t believe in fate, i believe in odds. I really enjoy reading your posts. It’s not often that I respond but some of them set me down a track where I let my fingers do the walkin!

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