On the other side of comfort
Sometimes life feels like a sitcom cliché – like how you watch an episode and there is clearly a theme or a “lesson” to be learned and somehow, everything then leads up to that lesson or supports it in some way.
“There is no growth, without growing pains”
Now, I am not a masochist, so I do not find much, if any, enjoyment in self-imposed pain. I do not like hurting myself intentionally. Discomfort is an emotional pain or stressor at least, and unfortunately, often we are taught to run away or numb down any form of discomfort in our lives – yet oftentimes, everything we want is on the other side of what we are comfortable with.
Emotional and mental discomfort is me doing things I want to do but that I am unskilled in, or uninformed about or just scared shitless at the process of getting where I would like to be. Yet, every time, I push myself beyond my comfort, I survive! I have yet to die of discomfort but I have grown tremendously thanks to all the discomfort that came my way: Whether by choice or the universe throwing a few balls towards me to help me become a more flexible player and reactor.
Speaking of balls, when I was in high-school, I wanted to become more active, play sports, so I joined the girls’ soccer team. Also, I had seen Bend It Like Beckham a few times and felt pumped about being a dope athletic girl. The first few months of the new season though, I can honestly say that I was the worst player on the team! My lungs used to burn like hell from all the running that I wasn´t used to, my shins felt like they were about to burst out of my distressed legs and I was riddled with shame for some reason for failing so badly at something I had never done before. Yet I knew that I wanted to continue and I wanted to get better – it was a very uncomfortable experience; to obviously suck at something you really wanted to be good at.
From a young age, I was used to be placed in uncomfortable situations, yet for the first time in my life, I had signed up for it and I had decided to see it through. I ended up finding my place on the team; instead of playing as mid-runner, I found my sweet spot as a defender and I slowly bloomed into one of the best players on the team. The discomfort/ growing pains stretched me to reach my full potential as a player.
A few days ago, I had a talk with a friend and I shared with her how the relationship I am currently in, is the one I feel the most comfortable being uncomfortable in. Perhaps because I have gained experiences from other experiences that didn´t break me but made me stronger. Perhaps it was the fact that I had decided for myself that if I couldn´t control what came towards me, I would find my power in the perspective I build around challenging moments and experiences: “I choose to make the best of every situation and use it for growth and not as an opportunity to shrink”.
This doesn´t mean that things don´t hurt nor are they not challenging but I aim to constantly find grounding in the skills I have built throughout my life and dances with discomfort – and the wisdom that has bloomed out of the times of darkness and uncertainty:
You are going to be alright
This too shall pass
Your power does not lie in what happens to you, but how you respond
This will expand your understanding of others
I hope this can inspire you if you are currently going through a rough patch – to persevere and know that if you do the work, if you become relentless in your pursuit of a fuller life with more contentment, you will get to the other side, wiser and emotionally stronger.
May life find you blooming wherever you are planted