This is an extraordinary time, isn’t it? It’s the type of situation you imagine reading about in a history book, not living through. The very idea of the entire world shutting down stores, working from home, and mass layoffs would have sounded insane at the introduction of 2020. Yet, this improbable event has thrown the world into disarray. Now may just be the perfect time to embrace the DIScomfort Zone and move forward in 2021 as the best version of yourself!
We’re all quarantined at home, socially isolating, and constantly refreshing the news for updates on the newest hotspot of COVID-19. We are worried about our jobs, we are worried about our families, we are worried about our friends, and we’re worried about our future.
The difficulty that you are facing right now can be one of two things for you. You can view the pandemic as an obstacle. Or you can view this as your catalyst for change. Your circumstances can be viewed as an existential threat that requires you to barricade yourself in negative mindsets. Or you can recognize that this moment of uncertainty is your opportunity to heal and to grow.
It’s easy to trap yourself in the perspective that brings comfort, routine, and familiarity. When the pandemic ends, however, there is little chance you will be the same person you were when it all began. Of course, it’s up to you to determine whether that change is a negative one or a positive one.
We have always dealt with circumstances outside our locus of control. The pandemic is unique in that the world has experienced it all at once. Before this, there was the traffic jam that made you late, the emergency that drained your savings account, or the persistent medical issue that wouldn’t give you peace.
There are issues from the mundane to the absolutely monumental, but you always find a way to get through. This pandemic is no different, you will find a way to get through it and this is your chance to embrace discomfort for personal growth.
Get Comfortable With DIScomfort
COVID-19 has presented the world with a unique situation. It is pushing everyone outside their comfort zones and it’s doing so in the most radical of ways. Physically, your habits and routines have been disrupted. There’s no more meeting for coffee, grabbing dinner with your friend, going to the gym, and many people are working from home.
There’s a very different feel in supermarkets, with some bare shelves and everyone wearing masks. Confined to home, we are desperate for some semblance of normality. It’s unsettling.
This article by Lu Ann Buechler also touches on how getting out of your comfort zone helps you rediscover what you love.
With Great Uncertainty, Comes Major Opportunity.
The only thing for it is to embrace the discomfort zone. When you enter unfamiliar territory, there is growth. If you allow your fear to confine you, then you will never expand or grow as a person. If you live in your routine, then how will you ever discover new things? Think about how it feels when you learn a new skill. It’s uncomfortable at first, it feels awkward for a while. The more you practice, though, the easier it becomes.
Now, if you had given up after your first attempt what would you have learned? Nothing. Discomfort is the same. It’s a sign that you’re learning. When you look for ways to live outside the comfort zone, you are pushing boundaries and taking the chance to expand yourself as a person. Celebrate discomfort, don’t shy away from it.
In a time when the outside world offers danger, the thought of self-improvement or personal growth probably seems trivial. The reason we are fearful now is that we feel powerless. By embracing the discomfort zone, you are actively choosing to live free of fear and to encourage personal growth.
When you walk out of this pandemic, you will be strong enough to face your deepest fears. Everything that’s going on now is being shared with everyone else in the world. Own it, own who you are, and take this opportunity to heal and grow as a person. A recent article over on my blog Are You Gritty? could be of help if you are feeling like you need to get a bit more perspective!