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Discomfort, a stepping stone to joy

Welcome, come in and sit down. Make yourself ... you ever greeted a guest at your door that way? I ... but maybe we should consider doing so. We usually wantour guests to be

Welcome, come in and sit down. Make yourself uncomfortable.
Have you ever greeted a guest at your door that way? I haven’t
either, but maybe we should consider doing so. We usually want
our guests to be comfortable. But offering discomfort might be
a better gift. Why?

Personal growth comes when we push through discomfort. Some say
life begins at the end of our comfort zone. Yet think of the
time and energy we spend keeping our loved ones and ourselves
comfortable. I know I often expend my energy to stay in my
comfort zone. At home and work I resist change. Eating the
same foods, going to the same restaurants, using the same
services and businesses, and associating with the same people,
all these keep us feeling comfortable.

But with hindsight I recognize that the major leaps of growth
in my life always followed periods of discomfort. Familiar
surroundings and situations allow us to live in a sort of
autopilot mode. Do you take the same route to work every day?
Have you ever realized half way there that you don’t recall
getting where you are? You just navigated a familiar route with
little conscious effort.

Think about this, which situation do you associate with
adventure--the routine or the new and unknown. Which do we call
boring--endless repetition of that which we always do or
trying something we’ve never done before. In the last moments
before this life ends do you want to think of your life as
boring and repetitious or an exciting adventure?

Now I’m not suggesting that our lives should be one constant
adventure. The routine, the known, helps us to complete our
daily tasks with minimal energy output. Calmness and quiet are
conducive to meditation and introspection, important to our
understanding. But living full time in a comfort zone equates
to a life with little growth and growth is why we’re here.

So don’t always strive to be comfortable. And don’t work hard
to keep your loved ones feeling comfortable. Strive instead for
some regular discomfort in your life. Think of it as a stepping
stone to joy. Why? Well, we know we feel joyous when we behave
as who we really are; this is our soul shouting encouragement.
And who we really are is, for most of us, not who we are being
much of the time. Most of us are operating below our highest
self. So we’re comfortable at our current level because it’s
familiar. But joy comes when we’re being our highest self. The
transition in between, a necessary stepping stone, is
uncomfortable. We’re out of the familiarFree Web Content, but not yet at the
joyous level of highest self. Welcome that feeling of
discomfort as an opportunity to advance your life. Take the
next steps to joy.

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Jerry Lopper is an author, personal coach, and consultant. Jerry combines many years of technology and business experience with a focus on personal growth mentoring and coaching. Jerry recognizes the totality of the human experience—mind, body, and soul—and helps people utilize all that is within them to achieve personal success. Jerry’s latest book, “Who Am I? Why Am I Here?” can be previewed at

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