During a recent MBCT training, I learned of a strange and erroneous sounding coping strategy: moving toward the pain. In past posts, I wrote about how in mindful techniques, we focus subtly and nonjudgmentally on neutral stimuli, such as a sound, or a visual cue, etc. Some are in such physical or emotional distress that the pain cannot be tuned out of your attention.
In certain martial arts,there are soft techniques which are methods that use the momentum of your opponent as a defense to neutralize the opponent. When pain or distress is so intense that it seems as though there is no way to pay attention to anything else, try moving toward it instead of struggling away from it. You may find an entirely different and less unpleasant experience when you turn your attention toward this discomfort. Although this may not work for all, you may find some relief through this method.