How habits are interconnected with pain pleasure principle?

Understand the interconnected habits

Do you know why you are able to make some decisions easily and some hard?

Do you want to know the reason why taking actions are tough at times?

How pain and pleasure impacts your behaviours and habits

The idea is to get into the deepest roots of our habits, where you and I indulge in our daily actions and decisions.

Usually, you take actions and make decisions depending on the intensity of pain and pleasure it delivers.

You always tend to overcome the pain rather than gaining pleasure.

Most of our decisions come out of avoiding pain in the first preference and then we look for the pleasure that is going to give you in the long term.

Some of our decisions might want pleasure in the short term but ends with pain in the long run.

Never the less, avoiding the pain is the primary goal of everyone, but most of the time you see to it that immediate pleasures make sense to avoid pains instantly.

On the contrary, pain and pleasure take over your decisions and actions to great extent.

The pain and pleasure not only governs your decisions but will make it possible for you to make a smart move throughout your life.

Let,s see how the habit loop of pain and pleasure runs the show.

Instant gratification rules your habits

The first and foremost thing everyone wants to do is, get that immediate gratification rather than going through all the pain of undertaking the complex task or goal.

In some conditions, you don't even try to get that instant pleasures but only avoid immediate pain. Here, avoiding pain itself acts as a pleasure.

Perhaps, your new habits, behaviours, actions and decisions completely depend on how you look and interpret the things you perceive the information around you.

Surprisingly, on the large scale, your daily decisions and actions are based on the pleasure and pains associated with the short term and long term pleasure and pains that you experience.

Finally, pain and pleasure motivate your actions and decisions in your daily life.

Short term pain and pleasure influence more than long term pain and pleasure.

Here time plays a crucial role as far as your choices are concerned. What to choose? and what not to choose? What to decide? and what not to decide? what actions should I take? what actions should I ignore?

This is some kind of a reference to your old experiences that you have gone through and your beliefs, personal principles and self rules have a great impact on the way you perceive the pain and pleasures in the present experiences.

Your brain compares the information according to the past, present, and future experiences yet to be experienced and allow you to make the decisions, whether or not to take the actions in the present conditions and situations.

If the feedback says that the old experience is well fit to gain the pleasure instantly, then the actions and decisions spill out quickly and you'll do it anyway.

It doesn't matter whether or not you'll gain pain or pleasure in the long term as long as there is no pain in the present circumstances(short term).

But, in the case, the feedback reference provides that it's going to give you instant pain, then your decisions would drop immediately without a second thought and search for the other way around to experience the pleasure immediately.

Sigmund Fraud the psychologist introduced to the pain and pleasure principle.

This is just the tip of the iceberg, there is a lot more to the pain and pleasure principle.

And on the flip side, your emotions play a vital role while you are making decisions.

The main reason why you drop or carry on with your goals is how emotionally well connected you are with the task and your goal, gives you a clear cut understanding of your decisions and actions you indulge with.

Here you cannot deny the interconnectedness between everything you do, decisions, actions, emotions and feelings, habits and goals, pain and pleasures, beliefs, self negative talk and intentions behind, and a lot more when you peep into your psyche.

Combining all these things into one system and will loop the process and make it possible for you to build habits.

 That means every time when you have to make the decisions and take the actions it has to go through all the old experiences which you have accumulated throughout your lifetime and in the end, the outcome appears as a decision or action.

Much to our surprise, we could see only the surface level results, but deep down a huge war is going on behind the scenes.

Everyone indulges in decisions and actions for survival

Interestingly, when your brain turns on the survival mode then everything shuts down immediately withdrawing from any nearest pain, and within a split of a second your brain signals you to either run away from the situation or surrender in some circumstances.

Usually, it happens when circumstances alarm danger or threat to your life, though these are in extreme cases.

The life-threatening situation won't occur on a regular basis, but our brain, in many situations though it seems to be a tiny decisions and actions associates with it as a survival mode and operates as needed.

For instance, imagine an ice cream topped up with Belgian chocolate is there right in front of you on a dining table after your dinner, though you know that you are on a strict diet or maybe trying to lose some fat, but still, you would grab that and gulp it off.

 In this kind of situations, your brain turns on the survival mode and put a blindfold to your strict diet and the will power and signals that not having that ice cream is nothing less than death.

Let us put it another way around, imagine when a situation occurs where you have to deal with the lion in front of you and a bag full of cash and gold, needless to say, that you would first deal with the predator by either running away or surrender to it.

Here in this situation, immediately the survival mode operates and say that " leave the bag to the hell, and run for your precious life". It is not like a 'fight or flight' situation but only a flight situation.

And if you surrender to the situation, then it depends on the mercy of a lion.

Your brain either makes you run in some circumstances or makes you stick to some instances, both ways your brain imprints it as the same under the survival mode but varies in intensity of the situation. 

Everything boils down to, if the survival mode is on, then everything seems to be blurred.

 And makes you take actions to either run away from the sight of the lion or eat that mouth-watering Belgian chocolate ice cream.

Not just that, it applies to many areas of our daily life.

We always think of doing something but something strange put's off and slides into the old patterns of behaviours.

At least if we could notice that the pain and pleasure cycle is dictating our lives is enough to make some changes to our choices to live a better life.

What I mean to say is our own experiences can prove that in day-to-day routines and actions. But the main struggle is you won't question them and blindly follow as it is perceived at that moment.

Though you won't have a choice in case of facing a lion, except to escape out of the sight, in fact, we humans takes everything like a do or die situation.

  • Want to lose weight and at the same time want to indulge in unhealthy junk food.
  • Want to build a million-dollar business and not willing to take that initial step.
  • Want to be more smart and intelligent at the same time don't want to read books or learn new skills.
  • Want to accumulate wealth, but don't want to save and stick to the process and the system which leads to wealth.
  • Want to write a best selling book, but don't want to go through the pain of brainstorming ideas and writing that first draft.
  • Want to share your thoughts fearlessly but don't want to choose a proper channel like blogging, ebooks or writing to the magazines.

We are habituated to quick fixes and always it won't work that way. If you want to accomplish your goals and want to do what you love or you are passionate about, it requires tiny changes in every aspect of your life on a daily basis.

Most importantly stick to the process and the system which leads you to your ultimate goal.

However, when you are unaware of the fact that all your habits are interconnected with this strange phenomenon of pain and pleasure principle things might look complex to solve, but now you know that what to do and what not to do.

Anything when comes into the conscious awareness there is no more struggle,
Focusing on what is needed and ignoring the unnecessary will lead to the best decisions and add more value to your actions.

How can you benefit from pain and pleasure principle, where you could change something better in your life and reap the fruits of your actions and decisions.

Observe and notice why are you making certain decisions and try to figure them out, have you chosen those decisions for avoiding pain or to gain something tangible pleasure.

If you are able to point out the pain points, and the pleasure points then it is easy for you to either make those good habits or to break the bad behaviours.

Now, let say that your goal is to build a profitable business then evaluate the reasons for starting your business and not starting at all.

If you want to build a strong business then you should keep in mind that you should have to go through the short term pains like:

 and later you can reap the long term pleasures like:

  • Name and fame
  • Health and wealth
  • Peace and happiness

1. Whether it is a short term goal or a long term goal, you should be able to minimise the short term pain and make it that easy so that you couldn't say no to start at the initial point.

For instance: if you have a goal of reading one book in a week, now don't think about reading the whole book all at once, but divide your goal into chunks and allow your self reading at least 2 pages at first and increase by 2 pages on a daily basis.

In this case, you could finish your book in at least in 1 month, otherwise, you wouldn't start at all.

2. On the other hand, maximise the short term and long term pleasure so that you can continue to put an effort to reach it.

For instance: Imagine how would it be when you reach your goal and you have gained that financial freedom that you have never thought of before.

Visualize it in the present, that fulfilment which you get at the end of your goal. 

On the contrary, the sense of fulfilment should be there right from the beginning of the goal, that sense will act as fuel to drive you to the ultimate goal.

3. And to avoid bad behaviours and habits, maximise the long term pain by knowing what would be the situation if you don't take action now.

For instance: If you want to make a habit of saving money, then you remind yourself of the pain you have to go through at the time of your retirement so that your mind will take instant action on saving money by sacrificing some unwanted expenses in the present.

 4. And minimise the short term pleasures for not taking action and make it hard to do the habit at the initial point.

For instance: if you find yourself at the comfort zone(short term pleasure) and not taking action, then come out of that comfort zone and try something new every day so that you will be able to think out of your comfort zone every time.

Your brain(reticular activating system) says that "don't you take the pain of doing something new, because you need to learn from the scratch, and you don't want that", try something readymade so that you can grab it and use straight away.

Ignore it and try it anyway, then your brain proves to be wrong. This is some kind of deceptive brain messages which you have to go through all your life. 

Surprisingly, despite you can take action and succeed to reach your goal. Always do something more than a day before and continue the improvements till you reach your goals.

Final thoughts:

On the whole, the pleasure and pain principle revolves around the feedback loop of pain and pleasure, which is continuously taking the information from your five senses touch, smell, hear perception and taste, letting your brain making decisions and actions.

This is how your habits are interconnected with pain and pleasure principle.

Which are not necessarily good or bad, but they are unconscious. Unless and until you are conscious enough and be aware of that.

Why am I making certain decisions?

Why am I taking certain actions?

Do they benefit me in the long run or are they just because they should be.

When you question yourself while you are taking actions and making decisions, then it shows that you are out of the habitual loop of pain and pleasure.

Being aware of this fact and putting yourself out of the grip of pain and pleasure and use it for your benefit.

How would you use the pain and pleasure principle for your benefit? comment in the section below.

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Milan Tomic

Hi. I’m Designer of Blog Magic. I’m CEO/Founder of ThemeXpose. I’m Creative Art Director, Web Designer, UI/UX Designer, Interaction Designer, Industrial Designer, Web Developer, Business Enthusiast, StartUp Enthusiast, Speaker, Writer and Photographer. Inspired to make things looks better.

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