In my previous article, I focused on What’s your life profile look like? showing the similarities between the science of flight and the one of life.
In this new article, we will dive in deeper into the analogy.
Most of an aircraft flight is at cruise level, at 35 000 feet (around 11 Km), the optimum altitude to balance the resistance of the air and use advantage of the atmospheric pressure.
At this altitude, we, human beings, won’t feel comfortable because of the low level of oxygen and low level of atmospheric pressure.
This is the reason why the pressure in the aircraft, i.e the cabin pressure, is higher than the external atmospheric pressure.
The difference (Delta) of Pressure (P) between the internal (Int) cabin and external (Ext) atmospheric pressures can be defined as below:
DeltaP= P_Int — P_Ext
All along the flight, we strive to maintain a positive differential Pressure, DeltaP > 0.
How can we apply this equation to our lives?
Let’s say that the external pressure is all the external forces that you can feel in your life, be it social pressure, peer or family pressures.
The internal pressures are your inner forces, your mindset, your strengths, your skillset and your positive energy.
Let’s rewrite the equation for our life:
DeltaP (You)= P_Int(Internal Forces) — P_Ext (External Forces)
Let’s make another assumption:
Your internal forces are here to bring you pleasure.
The results of external forces can be perceived as pain to be avoided or overcomed.
The final equation that I call the Pain-Pleasure equation is as simple as:
DeltaP (You)= Pleasure — Pain
This equation can be seen in a lot of ways. I will just share the two main ones that are relevant for me.
Option 01: Local Positive DeltaP
Often people I talk to say to me: Yes I can try to maximize my pleasure and avoid pain by taking drugs, or drinking alcohol or watching Netflix. Basically, we can find so many ways to have a positive outcome.
The only catch with this approach is that it won’t last overtime.
This is why I believe that the second approach is more sustainable.
Option 02: Global Positive DeltaP:
The way I use this equation is to make sure that it is almost always positive, in general in my life. Let me explain.
Pain is part of life and is not always something negative.
One way I approach this equation is to keep the same level of pleasure and transform pain into pleasure. For instance, I can transform the pain of exercising into the pleasure of having great health.
Another way is that if the pain is increasing, you need a way to increase your pleasure by having different and consistent sources of pleasure.
For me, one example is that I sit down each day to write in my journal 10 reasons why I am grateful to put myself in a positive mindset. Each day , I learn new things to expand my skillset to be able to add more value to myself and to others.
In a nutshell, to balance different streams of pain, you need to build multiple streams of pleasure.
What is the balance of your Pain-Pleasure equation? Leave a comment below.
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You can read my previous article on What’s your life profile look like?. (LinkedIn)
You can read my previous article on What’s your life profile look like?. (Medium)