Keith Everett
The pleasure of pain

Happiness Comes From The Pleasure Of Pain

The pleasure of pain, what do I mean by that? lol, it’s not what you think 🙂

If you take anybody, anyone at all, even some random person off the street, they will spend their day in one of two directions, sometimes both. They will be either avoiding pain or seeking some kind of pleasure. This is often referred to as the pleasure/pain principle.

Avoiding pain is not an option, as it will appear in many forms during your life. However, accepting that pleasure comes with a certain amount of pain can lead to actually “going after” the very things you want, rather than staying as you are, by always trying to avoid pain.

Change can be painful, walking into the unknown can be like staring into the abyss.

Achieving any worthwhile goal can be painful – you’ve probably heard the saying, “no pain, no gain” right?

Regret can be painful – not doing something can often end up being more painful than actually doing it, even if you try and fail.

All failure is just data. It tells you what not to do. You can live your life not failing, but this means you didn’t do much. Failure is a sign that you ARE doing things.

Let me give you an example.

Most people work, we work to keep food on the table and avoid the pain of being broke or even losing our home. This is working to avoid pain.

We may also be working to be able to have enough money to afford a holiday or a car, this is working toward pleasure.

However, if you want more, you have to be more. Being more means sticking your neck out and sometimes getting your head knocked off (metaphorically speaking of course).

However, many people don’t or won’t step outside their normal routine during their life as it feels safer to “go with the flow” and try to keep a hold of what they have. This is living to avoid pain. However, there is even pain in safety. People still get sick, things can still go wrong, no matter who you are and no matter how safe you play it.

If anything, living a life trying to avoid pain, can actually create more pain. The world is changing, things change. Trying to keep everything the same can be a battle.

Totally avoiding pain is like avoiding life. Living is a mixture of pleasure and pain. Hopefully, pleasure rules and helps with pain.

The Pleasure/Pain Principle

When people encounter pain on their journey towards a worthy goal, they see it as a necessary evil before they reach a favorable outcome. People who are always moving away from pain, live their lives passively, they are always letting fear guide their course of action. Although they are minimizing the risk of failure, they are also distancing themself from success.

The more you try to hide from pain and painful experiences, the more you are walking in the opposite direction to success.

I hope that makes sense?

You may have heard people talk about the journey. The journey to any successful outcome is always fraught with problems. When you reach a goal, you’ve achieved something great. You celebrate and you get your “fix” of success. Now, you often seek another goal, perhaps a bigger one. Why?,

Because it’s was really the journey that gives us the most pleasurable part, you feel ALIVE, you feel hopeful, and you have positive expectations. The dopamine fix that we get from slowly (or quickly) being in the final stages of achievement, is amazing. but, when you reach the end of the journey by reaching that goal, people often feel a sense of deflation.

This is because as human beings we are designed to achieve. Not stagnate. We want more, once you get on a roll, you want more success. It’s only natural.

I’m not saying pain is pleasurable, it’s not, obviously, any physical pain is not. But all pleasure comes from overcoming some pain. We learn by overcoming the pain of ignorance. We often overcome the pain of being broke and fearful, by achieving wealth. Wanting more isn’t greed, it’s wanting a better life for you and your family.

Achieving anything is really all about overcoming obstacles, no journey toward any worthy goal is totally pain-free. If it was, all the people who spend their life avoiding pain would be doing it.

So why aren’t more people out there kicking A*s? Because most people are just doing enough to keep the wolf from the door, they’re keeping their heads down and trying to get through this life avoiding as much pain as possible.


  1. She’s been hurt too many times, so in order to avoid pain, she stops looking for love and lives a life alone.
  2. He tried several times to create an online business, but his fingers were burnt, so it’s back to the idea of spending the rest of his life in a job.

Anything worth having is worth experiencing pain to get it. Most, if not all pleasure comes with some element of pain, you may not see it now, but it’s in there somewhere.

Years ago, people lived in fear of being eaten alive by wild animals. People’s goals were to avoid death. Nowadays, if you are always trying to avoid pain, you are really trying to avoid living, as living comes with doses of both, pleasure and pain.

I hope you got some value from this post. If you did, please do leave a comment below and share this post.

Have a great day


P.S Recently our blog was voted as one of the top 15 Personal Development blogs in the UK by Feedspot: See here:

PPS Check out the latest books from Keith Everett here.


  • I grew up learning the ‘play it safe’ program. My mom did not want to take chances.

    But I wanted things, a hose, a car, a life…..but my mom would play that what if thing.

    What if you get sick, what if you lose your job…..

    Yes there was a 50/50 chance things could go wrong but what if everything went right!

    I bought and sold 4 houses in my adult life. I bought a n d traded many vehicles. NOTHING BAD HAPPENED.

    I didn’t get sick, I didn’t lose my job!

    If I continued ‘playing it safe’, I would have missed out on life.

    Sure there was pain, there were bad days but you just deal with it as it happens.

    You put your head down and work thru it.

    Live life. Take chances.