Choosing growth over comfort

I was watching my 7-year old niece play in the pool the other day and started thinking about the good ol' days.


Do you remember the good ol' days? When you were constantly excited about all the different kinds of experiences you had to look forward to as an adult? Your first love, making your own money, going to university, moving out on your own, drinking alcohol, world travel, getting a "real" job, getting married. The world was your oyster and the future was bright. If you were anything like me, all that opportunity and optimism was the driving force behind your achievements and a key factor in where you are in your life today. 


And while I wouldn't change a minute of my childhood experience, on this particular day, while watching my niece execute a perfect belly flop into the pool, I couldn't help but wonder if I'd ever feel that sense of excitement, wonder and anticipation again. 


I created the life I wanted, hadn't I? So why did it feel so stale? So...meh?

Because nothing new was happening. Because I am no longer being challenged and fulfilled in ways that are meaningful to me.  I was forced to admit to myself that in order to stop feeling stuck, something(s) need to change.  If I wanted more/better/different, I needed to grow. 


Take my weight for example. I am not overweight and some would even call me "fit", but I can count on one hand the number of times I have felt happy in my body. And while I work out and eat healthy, I've never really reached the point where I feel completely at home in my body.


For the longest time, I indulged in confusion and made excuses for why that was. 


I don't know what to eat.

I don't know how to work out.

I'm eating all the right things and still not losing weight.

I'm working out 6 days a week and my clothes don't feel any looser.

My body just doesn't lose fat like other people.

My job makes it hard for me to eat regularly.


But the most sinister excuse of all: It's not like I'm obese or have a health condition, I'm fine.


I mean sure, there is truth to this. I'm not obese and I don't have a health condition that demands that I lose weight. But is that the only reason I should want to?

I think we get caught up a lot of the time in thinking the only way or only reason to make drastic changes in our lives is when we hit rock bottom: someone dies, we lose our job, we get a diagnosis. It always seems to be the extreme situations that we believe justify changing our lives. 


I don't believe you need to go through an Eat.Pray.Love. experience to go after the life you've always wanted; I don't believe it always has to be so extreme.


What if you simply feel unsatisfied with one (or more) areas of your life?

What if you simple want MORE?

What if you want to stop saying that your body, your job, your relationships are FINE?


As Mel Robbins writes in Stop Saying You're Fine


"We're all frustrated by some aspect of our lives. We want to be something bigger than we are. It's built into our DNA. As long as you're breathing, you will be looking for something more. What you decide to do with that feeling determines everything about your life."


The truth is, most of us want to avoid suffering. That's a no brainer. But on our path to avoiding suffering, we get detoured and decide to rest in mediocrity.  We think: as long as we're not suffering, as long as we can avoid rocking the boat, as long as the "check engine light" isn't on, we can coast on comfort. 


This is the essence of the Motivational Triad:

  • Seek pleasure
  • Avoid pain
  • Conserve energy


But here's the thing: growth and comfort do no co-exist.


Rather than living a life of "not suffering", why not live one that is ridiculously amazing? I'm only 30 years old, my whole life is ahead of me. I can do, be and have ANYTHING I want in my life.  My personal evolution did not end when I moved away from home, cashed my first Big Girl paycheque and started paying rent. And it never will.


I'm making the commitment to blowing my own damn mind. I want to see just how good I can get at creating the exact results I want in all aspects of my life. And I'm starting with my body, but that dear friends, its just the tip of the iceberg. The journey has just begun.


It's time to get to work. Who's with me?


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