Embrace discomfort

Reasons Why You Should Embrace Discomfort Often

By Munachiso Nwosu

Too much comfort breeds a lot of inauthentic, unhealthy habits

Getting to this level in my life wasn’t an easy feat. I’m convinced that it’s similar to almost everyone. However, in my case, I was never brought up to the point of ever accepting discomfort or permit any difficulty in any sector of my life. Even when the situation presented itself. I was taught to always have a good countenance, smile through bad situations, and omens. I was taught to reject the habits of internalizing them.

Until a certain point in my life, very recently actually, when I encountered an inescapable pain of abandonment and degradation from the very people who taught me not to see red and also strangers who didn’t care if I did or not.
My life was crumbling. I experienced a long period of constant anxiety, uneasiness, loathing, you name it. I felt like not existing anymore.

Not funny enough, that became my turning point. The awe-inspiring moment when I found ‘me’. The real me. The current me. The me now who embraces discomfort has enabled me to mature a whole lot in many areas of my life. It was until then I came to the conclusion that I had been rejecting the one thing that makes me who I am, that if only I got to embrace earlier enough, I would be more human.

That one thing was discomfort. I hated the feeling. I was made to be afraid of the times I experienced discomfort and attempts to express it. I was made to feel ashamed too.
But here are some of the upsides of discomfort that I discovered — things it does for you, as opposed to against you:

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Discomfort puts you on your toes

When you’re experiencing a difficult time, it breeds discomfort. If you embrace it as part of the process, a natural phenomenon of what you’re going through, it helps put you on your toes to fathom a way out of it. It forces you to source a better way or encounters out of it, compared to if you deviated from accepting it.

Discomfort helps you get rid of unhealthy habits

When you’re happy and comfortable all the time, it nurtures a lot of unhealthy habits that ultimately derails you. Habits such as eating too much, drinking too much, oversleeping, over-talking, excess of everything. These habits can feed the comfort loop further —  making you more comfortable. Imagine if all you did every day was watch Netflix? That routine alone can stimulate other unhealthy habits.

Sometimes, also, overindulgence (like eating, sleeping, relaxing in excess) kick starts the process of comfortability —  although you might not have been feeling so in the first place.
While there’s nothing wrong with being happy and showing it, being in your comfort zone for too long can make you adopt and exercise traits that aren’t in tune with what you originally want for yourself.

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This brings me to the next point:

Comfort can breed an inauthentic version of you

Similar to the point above. When you adopt and exhibit several unhealthy habits that aren’t in tune with your true self, you’re equally giving in to a fake persona, all in the name of being and feeling comfortable. We can’t all be real every time and do the right things all the time as fallible as we are as humans.

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However, curtailing some measures that will expose us more to being inauthentic rather than our true selves is cheating ourselves and our living. But when you embrace discomfort sometimes or create a healthy one, it helps you to balance that hysteric equation.

  • Embracing discomfort, in this case, would be substituting that enjoyment galore for spending alone time at home.
  • Embracing discomfort could be by refusing to hang out with family, instead of with a mentee.
  • Embracing discomfort could be cancelling clubbing on a Friday night to get a hang of your work project at home.

These might appear either fickle or mean much to you, but the point remains that we should learn to disrupt the flow of being overly comfortable. Because there’s a whole lot to learn, true life lessons, accompanied by growth and maturity when we get to the other side of our comfort zone, which is embracing discomfort.

It’s during those times that you’d get to find out who you really are and what you’re capable of doing —  which are important traits for personal growth and development.

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