It has taken me nearly four decades to learn the following distinction between pain versus suffering.

At first glance, they seem the same.

Pain does not feel good.

Suffering does not feel good.

The difference is purpose.

If you’re enduring pain for a purpose, it tends to become a “growing pain” — the TEMPORARY pain of going through an awkward stage of life or career.

Suffering has no purpose. It is pain with no end in sight, with no higher purpose or goal.

Suffering is pointless.

Pain is a necessary part of the process of growth.

Don’t get the two confused.

Are you experiencing (growing) pains, or are you merely suffering?

It’s a question worth considering.