Embracing Productive Discomfort Growing Beyond Your Comfort Zone
“We are kept from our goal not by obstacles but by a clear path to a lesser goal.” — Robert Brault
Have you ever procrastinated on an idea because you were uncertain of the outcome and had replayed a lot of failure scenes in your head? Have you ever wanted to answer a question in class but lacked the courage to raise your hand up? Have you ever wanted to do something so bad but kept waiting for the perfect moment until it passed without any action?
Imagine how much thrill and fulfilment you would experience if you did all the things which were uncomfortable in the interim but rewarding for life. Imagine the rich experiences you will gather and the peace you will have knowing you tried your absolute best. Imagine living your best life, challenging your self and striving to get better continually. Imagine the magic you will create on your terms. Imagine yourself on in old age on your deathbed with smiles of gratitude and zero regrets.
Interestingly, in the quest for avoiding discomfort, we fail to grow. Naturally, humans gravitate towards security and comfort. Anything contrary to that spells danger to the brain to create hesitation. The only way to move beyond our current state is to embrace the discomfort of trying something new or better.
The Yard Stick
The Author of Drive, Daniel Pink, mentioned the need to have the right kind of discomfort called the productive discomfort. In his words, “If you’re too comfortable, you’re not productive. And if you’re too uncomfortable, you’re not productive.” Find the balance bearing in mind the ultimate goal, growth.
How To Embrace Productive Discomfort
- Deliberately opt for the things that push your threshold.
- Start with a small task to gain confidence for bigger tasks.
- Pair the fear you’re likely to face with an anticipation of good fortune and optimism.
- Get comfortable with uncertainty.
“When you become comfortable with uncertainty, Infinite Possibilities open up in your life.” — Eckhart Tolle
- Write down three things you want to do but procrastinated on due to the discomfort it may bring to you.
- For each item, break down how you can achieve it in five steps or more.
- For the next few days, work on one task each day unfailingly (get an accountability partner if the need be).
- Watch your confidence rise as you achieve each task daily.
- Celebrate small wins.
- Move to another task as soon as it gets comfortable.
Create magic with a dream, effort and a dash of discomfort. It’s usually not as bad as you think it would be. Move.
Also published on Medium.