Pleasure of Denial

Denial is such an ugly word.

It has immediate negative connotations, making you think of items from which you’re banned, for whatever reason, and actions you’re not allowed to undertake. For example, eating cream cakes all day and pushing a car to its full speed on an open road, respectively. It is just not allowed.  

Denial can make you recall the people who have been the cause of rejection, whether they were in receipt or offering it. Either way, I can’t think of many occasions when such a thought would be a pleasurable one, unless you’re particularly sadistic and enjoy reminiscing about rejecting someone.

Denial can mean the curtailment of enjoyment or the claim of an untruth, neither of which creates any positivity.                              

However, denial doesn’t have to be all bad—as long as you look at it in the right way. By initially denying oneself something pleasurable, the anticipation for it heightens and can develop until it takes over and nothing else matters. The need for the subject can be allowed to develop until it becomes a yearning, intensifying so that it becomes a complete focus.

Whether a chocolate bar, a bowl of pasta or a sexual act, we all have our temptations that prove difficult to resist. But when you do—oh my!—how much sweeter is the reward? For me, holding back from the thing I want the most makes me more determined to get it eventually, and enjoying it to a greater extent when I do. Even better when someone else has control, leaving you wondering whether they will relent at all.  

A little denial—an enforced period of waiting—makes me more appreciative when I do get what I want. Increased gratification? Yes, please!


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