According to newly-released Gallup data, using one’s best talents can play a role in finding comfort from pain.
In more than 120,000 interviews done during the latter half of 2012, Gallup found that the more people used their strengths throughout the day, the less likely they were to say they felt physical pain.
And, despite health problems, 50% of people who do what they do best for at least 10 hours a day said they experienced pain, while 69% of people who use their top strengths for 3 hours a day or less said they experienced pain, according to the report.
In addition to playing up your strengths, here are some all-natural ways to make yourself feel better:
*Laugh – It’s not medicine, but laughter does have some health-promoting properties. It’s likely due to laughter’s triggering a surge of feel-good chemicals called endorphins – which some studies have shown act as a painkiller.
*Curse Like a Sailor – In a 2009 study, students who had been asked to hold their hands in a tub of cold water for as long as they could, stayed submerged 40 seconds longer when they were allowed to swear while doing so, according to Scientific American. However, swearing selectively may be more beneficial than just swearing more. The pain-reducing powers of curse words appear to drop if used regularly.
*Get Busy – Sexually – Sex has been shown to release endorphins, as well as other types of the body’s natural painkillers. Sex may be especially helpful for migraineurs, 60% of whom said sexual activity during a migraine or cluster headache relieved their symptoms, according to a 2013 study.
*Be a Picky Eater – Inflammation, the redness, warmth, swelling and pain that, despite being associated with discomfort, helps you to heal, is an important part of our body’s response to injury and infection. However, chronic inflammation has been associated with serious health concerns, including cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s. Studies have found eating lots of refined grains, sugar, saturated and trans fats may contribute to inflammation and pain.
*Keep Stress at Bay – The body’s physical response to stress – the heart starts pumping, breathing quickens, muscles tense – is similar to the body’s physical response to pain. Thinking about a stressful event has been shown to significantly increase muscle tension in patients with chronic back pain. The more stress, the higher the level of cortisol, often called the stress hormone. This in turn can lead to vulnerability to pain. Finding a way to de-stress, like meditation, reading a book or taking a nap can help.
*Listen to Music – A 2006 study from Case Western University, and the Cleveland Clinic found chronic pain patients who listened to music for an hour a day, and kept a pain diary reported a 12 to 21% drop in pain, compared to people who kept a diary, but did not listen to music….. huffposthealth 12/20/13