in Life

Seeking Comfort in Discomfort

A popular quote goes like this, “The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers.”

Change and growth are very natural in life. And with every change, every growth there will be times when we will feel uncomfortable as an individual. Infact, growth is always uncomfortable. Lately I have realized that to evolve and grow, be it physical, emotional or spiritual growth, there will always be a certain level of discomfort. Or alternately, if you feel too comfortable in life, probably you are not growing.

Different situations might trigger discomfort for different people. For some, speaking at a public gathering might be uncomfortable and for some, trying a new sport might be uneasy. But all of these situations are those when we are forced to go outside of our comfort zone. The challenge when feeling uncomfortable is to embrace the situation and triumphing over our fear. Only then we will come out of a stagnant, dull life and move beyond fear. And “Darr ke Aage Jeet Hai.. ” (After fear, its victory)

Apart from situations, there could be people, interacting with whom makes us uneasy. This could also be a way of growing as our greatest teachers are those who will make us uneasy while pushing us to try new things and achieve greater heights. These individuals are like a calling for a better us, to develop an area within us which is not fully developed. So the next time you feel uncomfortable in the company of someone, ask yourself the question, are you willing to take it as a challenge to step up to the task? Are you willing to grow up to the level that this person and situation demands?

Most often, we are triggered by certain situations and individuals, and before we even realize, we might have acted in a certain way or said something unconsciously. It takes a lot of practice and patience to not to judge someone immediately on a trigger and say ‘I just don’t get her‘ or ‘He is wrong‘. We need to be patient as we find out how to grow to the next level so that our automatic alarm is not set off based on a person or a situation. As you move your focus from ‘whats wrong with others‘ to ‘what is needed of myself‘, you give yourself control and power rather than handing it out to people and situations. And believe me, it is easier to find blame in others but very challenging to look inside for introspection and areas of growth.

These last few months have been pretty uncomfortable for me, and thats good because there are many things or situations which used to make me uncomfortable six months ago but now I feel at home being in those situations, which means I have grown. I am by far the most uncomfortable these days than I have been in my entire life, but still there is a peace of mind like never before. It is because I know everything will be ok in time, and this period will leave me a better human being.

The important thing to remember is that, “Are we brave enough to continuously find uncomfortable challenges / situations in life to keep growing?

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  1. Well said…didn’t think of this way earlier. Thanks 🙂

  2. Very true, you can only grow when you get out of your comfort zone. That’s the real challenge..

  3. well written. But I think it again boils down to same thing that human always looks for his comfort zone now it depends whether he is cool to be in his current comfort area or he wants to go ahead and convert his uncomfort zone to comfort one. Its again debatable what If i have some uncomfort zone but I am happy to be the way it is. Who will decide that if I get over my uncomfort zone I will be grown & happy. eg. if smoking is something im not comfortable in, i start smoking to get over it though I dont like it. does it mean i grew up? I think that desire factor has to be there before anything which was missing in the blog.

  4. I soo agree with u sumit .. somehow i find this one to be most inspiring article of yours .. it gives a way to inner growth. We rarely introspect within ourselves because this is just not so part of our daily routine but once we make it a habit .. we definitely will be better person ! Comfort zone is not so comfortable for growth.. its an evil which stops us from growing !

  5. I agree with you. I always put myself in the other person’s shoes and try to think. Although this hurts , but then it helps you balance your expectations!

  6. Sumit, your insights are simultaneously brave and beautiful. You serve as a leader and model for myself and others.

    The insights are entirely consistent with the ways of being that I have been introduced to through my work co-authoring The Sustainable Enterprise Fieldbook with many team members working in the organizational development field, Landmark Education and the Institute for Sustainable Enterprise at Fairleigh Dickinson University where I teach.

    I share your struggle to practice what we believe and will look forward to achieving my own “peace of mind”.