When I got my first .458 WM in that late 1950's, I was terrified of the recoil, so I started by loading light loads and gradually increasing them, until at last in about 1963 I was able to stand up against a full factory load. At that point I thought I was ready for anything, but I was unprepared for my then newly acquired .458 double rifle to double on me. I was pushed backward for two paces and ended up sitting on the ground, but was completely unharmed. That put recoil into perspective.
On of the worst "kicking" rifles I have ever fired was a Remington slide action rifle in caliber .30-'06. I was sighting it in for a friend off a bench and the stock design was such a disaster that I almost gave it up. The stock on my double rifle used measurements I had obtained at the Holland and Holland shooting school, and they fit me perfectly.
Later, when I was learning to shoot my wildcat .505 SRE, a cartridge which duplicated the performance of the .500 NE, with a 570 grain bullet at 2150 fps., my rifle was similarly stocked, and I shot it in perfect comfort, despite the fact that it weighs 8.75 pounds and does not even have a recoil pad. The free recoil calculates out at around 100 ft/lbs, but shooting it has never bothered me. The only rifle I ever owned with recoil beyond what I thought I could use effectively was my wildcat .577 VSRE, which fired a 750 grain bullet at 2050 fps. It was not uncomfortable to shoot, but each shot forced me to step backward two paces, and there are situations in the hunting field where that would not be possible.
My advice would be to make sure the stock on your rifle fits you properly and that you know how to hold it properly when firing it. Concentrate on aiming and pulling the trigger correctly, and the recoil will cease to be a concern.
This is me, after taking my first elephant, and firing five shots from my .505. Recoil was the least of my
concerns. The elephant was lying on the ground for four of the shots.