22 June, 2018
Improvement and Comfortability Can’t Be Applied Simultaneously
Have you ever accomplished anything by merely sitting down and thinking about it? Of course not! We can never live a life of both ease and growth. We all strive for success because as humans, we are hardwired to grow and evolve but what baffles me is the fact that many individuals want to achieve their goals without experiencing the struggle that success comes with.
Just like very many individuals are always hoping to go to heaven without wanting to die. How Ironic! I am still looking for anybody in history that became great by having everything handed over to them on a silver platter.
Yes, growth requires a great level of discomfort. As Calvin Coolidge stated that all growth depends upon activity, there is no development physically or intellectually without effort and this effort is work. Beyond work, growth requires resilience and onward push towards your objective no matter the obstacles encountered. This means that somewhere along the line, you will need to take risks thus making necessary changes to accomplish the set goals.
It’s justifiable that it takes discomfort to reach higher levels in both your personal and professional life. We are aware that the road to success is often long and quite rough therefore, the difficulties we encounter on this road help shape and sharpen our character and/or personality. This way, we are capable of handling success and meeting all of the expectations that come with it.
If by a stroke of luck, you end up getting elevated without any struggles – even though this is quite hard to achieve – you may not know how to handle the pressure, stress, and workload that comes with it. When this happens, your stay at the top is highly likely to be short-lived. The pressure to perform while at the top is immense and could consume you if you arrive unprepared.
Sustainable growth can thus only and only be achieved by stretching the self when placed in this kind of situation. Endurance is a catalyst for success. It makes one hungry for more by working hard towards achieving their dreams. When you work through hardship and discomfort, the experience forces you to change, adapt and do everything necessary to grow.
On the contrary, comfort achieves the opposite. It makes you self-absorbed and complacent which leads to stagnation, according to Derek Doepker’s book “Break Through your BS: Uncover Your Brain’s Blind Spots and Unleash Your Inner Greatness.” Anyone who is complacent, has no desire to expand their horizon but instead prefer to operate right inside their comfort zone were their activities and behaviors fit a routine and pattern that minimizes stress and risk.
Unless if you are building a team of lazy creatures without hope, try as much as possible to avoid these kinds of individuals because this behavior, just like any other, is contagious. Always surround yourself with people that constantly have an improvement yearn hence embracing change and new challenges that drive growth. Well, we know that the people we keep around us are a portrait of who we are.
The truth is that growth can be uncomfortable, but let’s face it, the pain of remaining stagnant is worse. Remember, Chris Cool said, “The soft stuff is the hard stuff” which means that discomfort is an integral and essential part of any growth pursuit. We can make a million references for this topic but the bottom line is, nothing about success comes easily. While uncertainties and stress are inevitable in life, your pain can be turned into strength when mastered.
That said, now that we are aware of how important breaking free of your comfort zone is for self-actualization, the following few tips will help you accomplish any goal and also enable you to constantly seek ways to improve yourself:
Only create SMART goals: SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound) goals should be both qualitative and quantitative. Don’t set goals simply because you saw that another person successfully achieved them and they are happy. What satisfies me may not necessarily satisfy you.
Always remember the purpose: With so many things fighting for our attention nowadays, it is easy to find yourself losing your grip. More so, when you encounter challenge, you are going to feel like giving up prematurely. But when you feel lost and hopeless, always remind yourself of why you started.
Always remember that pain is temporary: When you have this mindset, you will find yourself pushing boundaries at all times. Keep in mind that it will be a matter of time and all will change for the better.
Always be open minded: We embrace growth when we open up to new possibilities. Be welcoming of fresh ideas that challenge your current perspective. This will cause you to constantly yearn for more.
Always remember that you cannot have the best of both worlds: It is often mentioned that you can’t walk with God while holding hands with the devil. The choice is yours to make! You either stay comfortable and forget about growth or be uncomfortable and grow.
Always remember that improvement is a journey: There’s always something to improve upon. Do not take pleasure in your current situation so much that you become unaware of your deficiencies. There’s always room for improvement. Always!