In order to make progress in life we need to operate outside of our comfort zones- we need to experience DIS-comfort on a regular basis to strengthen our minds, spirits and bodies. In the modern age we often seek a life of ease and comfort, a lack of struggle and sometimes even “something for nothing”. These ideas are often supported and reinforced by modern media and those that sell us items for our “comfort” and “convenience”. The only ones that really seem to profit from many of these items of convenience are the ones selling them.
I have had a lifelong desire to always be making progress. Whether it’s being in better physical condition, improving my playing, singing, producing, writing, riding or whathaveyou I always like to be making progress. Sometimes, however we can get a bit complacent as the time that we spent being in discomfort earns us the comfort of an earned skill or ability. It’s important (at least to me) to try to find new goals and to move into the area of discomfort again. Sometimes I have to push myself a bit at first because the discomfort tells me to stop. Taking things in small chunks can help to ease us back into the discomfort zone and helps us to not overwhelm ourselves with the time and effort necessary to achieve more challenging goals.
Pain- on the other hand- is a warning signal. If something literally hurts that means that it’s time to stop. To step away. To sit down and take a breather. The goal is not only to push ourselves every day but to also live to fight another day. Causing ourselves injury in the name of progress can not only set us back but possibly prevent us from ultimately achieving our goal. You can improve your pain threshold by working diligently and mindfully in the discomfort zone but make it a practice to know the difference between discomfort and pain. Discomfort nags at you to stop- it’s our body and mind fighting change and progress. Pain screams at you to stop or else. Ignore the nagging but heed the screaming.
I think I’m going to go seek out a little discomfort right now. How about you?
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