Success, Freedom & Comfort in Discomfort

November 29, 2021 8:41 pm | Better Life, Comfort Zone, Success

Success, Freedom & Comfort in Discomfort

Finding comfort in discomfort is a real challenge in our lives. It is a truism to state that human beings are creatures of habit; this being the case, we usually experience discomfort when our daily routines are ruffled.  Regardless of whether we are aware of the ongoing change or not, familiarity tends to calm human beings down. This desire to adhere to some routine in our daily lives is deeply anchored in our need to have some control over our lives.  This helps us handle what we cannot control.

There are two things we are assured of in life: change and death. The majority of the time, when we talk of change, we usually focus on significant events happening in our lives. While this is a valid point, it is crucial that we are alive to the fact that change is constant. It is always occurring even when we are not going through a massive shift in our lives.

As a human being, your defenses tend to go up whenever you experience something unfamiliar; as a result, we generate fear around it. This human weakness keeps us from fully meeting and embracing change. Change is usually uncomfortable and painful to the majority of us; and while we cannot change that fact, we can improve our relationship with it.  This will enable us to explore our possibilities more confidently and help us escape situations and patterns that curtail us from realizing our potential fully.

In the quest for success, we are usually faced with the question of whether big or small changes can impact the quality of our lives. The truth of the matter is that significant changes may, at times, be necessary for fulfilling our goals or desires.  However, it goes without question that small changes can actualize our aspirations, and usually have the most sustainable impact on our lives.

Discomfort and success are closely intertwined.

There is a common English saying that says it is darkest before dawn. In the connotative context of this saying, darkness can be equated to the discomforts you go through before you get your big break. The movers and shakers of the world became great not by merely tolerating discomfort or finding comfort in discomfort; they became great because they embraced discomfort. When General Hannibal Baca of Carthage marched for Rome, he was fully aware of the risk and inconvenience the march would occasion. Everyone thought the march was a foolish endeavor that would claim the lives of thousands of men.  Had the general listened to nay Sayers and the voice of doubt in his head, he would never have attained the legendary status he is accorded today. He courageously embraced the discomfort of a long march, the ridicule of his foes and friends, and terrible weather.

Discomfort comes to us in many ways during our journey to success, it is on us how we find comfort in discomfort. It comes in the form of doubt, fear of failure, feelings of discouragement, ridicule from peers, and lack of resources. In business, for example, we are advised to start small but dream big. Starting may cause you great discomfort in the beginning, but you should take comfort in knowing that empires are forged in fire. You become uncomfortable because you do something other people are not doing. This is because most of us prefer hiding in our comfort zones. The fact that you are becoming a new version of yourself is also a cause for discomfort.  It means you are abandoning your old ways and adopting new ways that make you better equipped to move to the next level.

Comfort is synonymous with security, certainty, and safety.

This is not usually the case when you go through a phase of radical transformation.  The discomfort and uncertainty that comes with radical change can cause you to quit prematurely and revert to the known, which is familiar and comfortable. To succeed in life, we must learn how to spend more time in our discomfort zones.  In order to evolve and grow as a person, you must act, think, do, and be different from the masses.

During this phase, you can be more sensitive, vulnerable, and tired. This is because a lot is going on physically and mentally. When faced with such a situation, it is important to remember that if life has given you inspiration or an idea, it can also give you the resources and strength you require to realize your dream.  Discomfort is so vital to your personal development; there exists an educational phrase that describes the discomfort zone: the zone of proximal development.

Without feeling uncomfortable about the state of matters, human beings would not have reached where we are today. It is discomfort that led the French to revolt against the feudal system. Had men like Christopher Columbus stayed in their comfort zones, we would probably not be aware of the existence of the Americas. The rule is simple; if you are comfortable with your situation, you are not growing. Discomfort leads to growth.

Find discomfort in comfort because comfort curtails growth

Since comfort curtails growth, it eventually causes you to lose your current position. For example, companies that embrace discomfort are always moving ahead. Companies that stay within their comfort zones usually end up failing in achieving their ultimate visions.  This is also applicable to individuals. Anyone who looks forward to living an extra-ordinary life must be willing to be uncomfortable.

As human beings, we are inclined to pursue pleasure as opposed to pain. This is what causes us to settle for mediocre things, which lead to a myriad of problems. By learning how to be comfortable with discomfort, you will be able to beat many self-defeating habits such as procrastination, saying no to toxic relationships, and peer pressure.   It takes a lot of courage to venture into the unknown; it is, probably, why venturing into the unknown is so rewarding.

Anastasia Mouzina

Anastasia Mouzina