The soul is an amazing place to receive pleasure. Many of us have received great pleasure in our souls. Our soul is the place of our mind, our will and emotions. To say the soul is less complex than the body can only be said by one who has never experienced the soul's full potential.
This is what I do every day at the office—experience the wonders, complexities and resourcefulness of a soul. A soul is a great terrain for pleasure. Much like the body, our soul is created for pleasure.
As we have already noticed, body or sensory pleasures differ from person to person. The same is true for the soul. Every soul drinks in or experiences pleasure quite differently. There isn't necessarily a right or wrong way; it's more of an understanding as to "what is" that can help you create a personal pleasure map for yourself. It also will help you be more open to those who are around you who are wired for pleasure quite differently than you are. So let's start our discussion on some primary pleasures of the soul.
Most of us enjoy a good laugh. Laughing makes us all feel great. A really good laugh can be as mood-altering as a double cappuccino. Laughter makes the soul, body and spirit feel good. Can you remember when you were growing up when you and a sibling or maybe even a parent became so silly? Remember it was as if you were intoxicated with humor. No matter what either of you said, you would continue to laugh and laugh. Honestly if someone would have walked in, they would have thought you were on laughing gas. Laughter can be a primary pleasure zone. For this soul, the invention of CDs and DVDs of comedy is as sweet as any candy.
I'll never forget the comedy records of Steve Martin. I would play them over and over again and laugh at Steve's performances.
Laughter is a great pleasure zone. For some, it's a primary pleasure zone. I had a friend in Texas who kept jokes around his office regularly so he could laugh. This same man had a ritual that before he and his family had dinner, they would read a joke out of one of the many joke books he had and then they would eat.
Like other primary pleasure zones, these humor pleasure zone people like to share. They are the people in your group who can find the funny side of life. They are also the people who know many more jokes than you.
So if you're in a significant, close relationship with a humor pleasure-zone person, get willing to laugh. For them, getting you to laugh is like telling the food pleasure zone person that their meal was the best ever.
The pleasure of risk for a risk pleasure-zone person is absolutely zenith. The extreme sports people would definitely fall into this category. Those snowboarders, skate boarders, ski divers, bungee jumpers are that crazy group of people who aren't really crazy, but just have a very high risk/excitement pleasure zone.
Those whose primary pleasure zone is risk and excitement live for adventure. From backpacking up extreme mountains, scuba diving and actually feeding the sharks to whitewater rafting through the rivers of Africa, these people deserve and need to be celebrated. Often they travel in packs with other primary pleasure risk/excitement people.
Now if you are one of the risk-pleasured people, you will often feel misunderstood, and people from a different primary pleasure zone may often question your judgment. They call themselves rational or normal and other obscure words to you. Don't worry, you will not be fully understood by those of a different pleasure zone.
Now if you are in a close, romantic or marital relationship with a risk/excitement pleasure-zone person, celebrate this. Ask them questions and withhold judgment about their seemingly insane risk. Then they will feel more accepted for who they are.
Risk and excitement is a legitimate pleasure zone for people. Remember if risk is a primary soul-pleasure zone, this is the well from which they drink. This risk is as pleasurable to their soul as any sensory perception experience you could have. As with all pleasure zones of others, patience and celebration is much more valuable and favorable than judgment and criticism.
Now let's jump to the other extreme pleasure zone, calm. Almost nothing is more invigorating and refreshing as a deep cup of calm for those who are pleasured by this primary zone. I mean real deep calm such as sitting in a rowboat at 5:00 a.m. not rowing and just breathing in the mountains, the quiet of the water, the slow-moving mist and the occasional fish that comes up out of the water. And some of you right now are looking for the boat.
Others who have the calm pleasure zone enjoy the hammock, sitting on the porch, being still almost anywhere. There is the incredible quietness that comes into your soul that blows the dust from the day right out of your soul, and it's as though you can breathe again and reengage back in day-to-day life.
This pleasure zone, calm, is indescribable to those wired with this primary pleasure zone. They are often seeking a time in the day, morning or night that is just theirs. Often, they also are misunderstood unless they are married or in a relationship with another calm. This may be the couple who you know who live far from the city and who have known their neighbors for 50 years.
Calm is good; it is a legitimate pleasure zone. These are not loners, but rather they receive pleasure in the calm. To the calm pleasure-zone person, a good book, a quiet room in the house or nearby location is heaven on earth. Calm pleasure-zone people seek out the calm in the storm. They don't mind working hard, rearing families; they just want calm somewhere along the way.
Now to the risk/excitement person, this might be misunderstood or even judged, but acceptance of the calm pleasure zone is important. Asking about what they experienced or thought about during this time can be heard as being accepting of them.
Check back soon to learn more ways on how your soul receives pleasure!
Doug Weiss, Ph.D., is a nationally known author, speaker and licensed psychologist. He is the executive director of Heart to Heart Counseling Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and the author of several books including, The Power of Pleasure. You may contact Dr. Weiss via his website, drdougweiss.com or on his Facebook, by phone at 719-278-3708 or through email at [email protected].
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