Body Positivity and Chronic Pain

Thank you to Miranda from Massages by Mir for contributing this piece.

What do you see when you look at yourself? I’m not talking about physically what your eyes are looking at; that’s only a minuscule part. What I mean is, what is the first emotion that you feel when you look at your own eyes, your nose, your mouth, your arms, your belly, your legs, your feet. Your heart.

Let’s go ahead and ask that big question right away. Do you love yourself? Be honest about the first impression you got when you looked at yourself in the mirror. How many times have you looked in the mirror, only for your eyes to go right to your « problem » areas? How many times has the way you thought about your body or your capabilities as a person, human, man or woman, prevented you from trying something new, working out at the gym, or going for a massage, or getting therapy, because you wonder what others think of when they see you in a vulnerable part of life? How many times have you let your pain hold you back?

Pain is such a general word but comes in many variances. It can affect everything and be all powerful and all consuming if we allow it to be. Shame, guilt, low self esteem, depression, awkwardness, doubt, anxiety, chronic pain, debilitating physical ailments and disabilities and the emotions and connections we make about these characteristics affect the way we care for our physical vessels.
Our pain, physical or emotional – what we think of our pain and what we assume others think of our pain greatly hinders our ability to connect to ourselves, and by extension, to other people.


I see so many clients carry the heavy burden of their pain. What we think we are capable of directly affects what we are willing to extend, stretch and reach for. I see so many clients holding onto their pain because it’s so reliable, and it will always be there; but if we try something new and uncomfortable and it doesn’t work out, it’s just another reinforcement that we are not physically or emotionally able; and it feeds the pain. The caveat is, it’s there because we allow it to become its own vessel and don’t take responsibility for it housing in us.

It takes massive courage to step forward, one foot at a time, and know that even though that chronic pain, shame, guilt, or doubt was there yesterday, and will likely still be with us, it is possible to make a slightly different connection today. Even a micro shift in a better direction, or no shift at all is better than slipping deeper into the darkness that is your chronic pain. The disappointment here is that the more times that negative connection is made from body to brain, the easier it is to stay stagnant and forever remain in that dark space of chronic pain. Even if it’s extremely likely that pain will rear its ugly head tomorrow despite your effort, you have to find the courage to take a step forward and try to make that micro shift towards a new positive connection anyway.

How many clients do I know have a friend that feels, or have themselves felt so much shame surrounding how their body looks that they never get massaged? They feel embarrassed by their body so they assume the massage therapist will be too. They don’t reach out for the connections and self care they deserve and slowly, day by day, give up the right to human connection and self love.

The message I’m trying to relay is this; what you think of yourself directly impacts how you take care of yourself; physically and emotionally. How well you take care of yourself directly impacts what you think of yourself when you look in the mirror – into your own eyes, at your belly, down to your legs and feet. It’s all connected and it all matters.
It will be a never ending cycle unless you decide not to let it be.

As a massage therapist, I see so many people with so many opinions and restrictions they put on themselves about why they can’t take care of themselves. Why they aren’t capable.

“But you are capable and you are worthy if you reach out to take that worth and use it to positively impact yourself and others. You are worthy if you want it bad enough.”

About Miranda:

51907630_531458154031754_4494416433240866816_nMiranda’s Massage

“I’m a dedicated Massage Therapist whom specializes in Deep Tissue and fascial release.

I provide a steady deep pressure to help release your problem areas. I love the problem solving aspect of massage therapy and with a fitness training background, I can empower you with self care stretches and exercises that you can take home.

I offer creativity and uniqueness to every single client’s treatment and individual needs, making them feel deeply unwound and relaxed.”

You can find her online: 

Phone Number: 780-246-0682



Online Bookings through:

Author: Bodypositive

"By sharing your story you are helping the next generation and your peers overcome their fears and issues with body image and mental health."

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