Dec 7, 2017
Training ourselves to be comfortable getting uncomfortable is super important in order for us to lead a fulfilling life. To do this we need to consistently expose ourselves to progressively more uncomfortable situations. Exposure to these situations creates a stress on our body which if use correctly can lead to a state of OPTIMAL ANXIETY. It stimulates our individual growth and increase in our capacity. However being under stress constantly isn’t good for us. We also need to be able to switch that stress off.
Rest is an important part of that equation. Uncomfortable is OK isn’t about becoming OK with the discomfort that living in a constant state of chronic stress brings. A state that we can easily slip into if we get caught up in the drift of life. Instead it’s about strategically using acute stress in our lives to our advantage.
Once we’ve experienced this acute stress we need to take time to rest, recover, and renew. We can think about it in the concepts of physical training. If we lift heavy weights one day, or go for an intense run or ride, we place a stress on our body. This stress actually damages out body, creating small muscle tears. So long as we haven’t gone crazy and grossly exceeded our capacity, then our recovery is relatively quick. This small amount of damage stimulates our body’s natural healing response, and rather than just repairing the muscle, we create more muscle and get stronger. This repair and regeneration improves if we look after ourselves while we rest. Good food, good sleep, and gentle movement, not just Netflix and chill on the couch.
Training ourselves to get uncomfortable works the same way. Once we’ve placed ourselves in an uncomfortable and stressful situation we are depleted and need to recover. Much like muscle repair we will come back stronger and better able to cope with uncomfortable situations in the future if we rest adequately. We’ve likely learned new skills, trained our body to deal with uncomfortable situations, and hopefully increased our confidence in our abilities.
Like with muscle repair and recovery, there are things that we can do to optimise our rest and the gains that we make from getting uncomfortable. Like the physical recovery this includes getting a good amount of sleep, eating good food and performing relaxing activities. Reviewing the uncomfortable challenge is also important. Looking back on what we have attempted gives us a fantastic learning experience. It consolidates the lessons that we have gleaned. This period of rest and review is especially important if we haven’t “succeeded” in what we were attempting. This rest and review gives us time to decompress, analyse any mistakes and figure out why they happened so we can correct them next time.
Resting in this way helps us repair and grow in our ability to take on challenges, but also makes us all-round better people.
Remember SRTESS + REST = GROWTH
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Host: Chris Desmond