Last Updated on November 10, 2022 by Kayla
You might be reading this while lying in bed or cozied up with a hot cup of coffee. Perhaps you’re on a lunch break, combing through your inbox. Whatever the case, look around and observe your everyday comforts.
A climate-controlled environment, access to clean water, and your smartphone readily available to prevent any hint of boredom. We have individually wrapped, microwavable meals and access to food 24/7 – no scavenging required.
Sadly, we complain when the barista fails to bring our sugar-free vanilla latte to the desired temperature or that the hotel bed is too soft and doesn’t provide enough pillows. I mean, really. Can you imagine being stripped of these privileges?
Have we gotten too comfortable?
This week, we’ll examine the irony of how modern-day comforts might be stripping us of happiness and connection. You’ll learn how to “embrace the suck” and, perhaps, find yourself going out of your way to do UNcomfortable things. 😉
Believe it or not, psychologists are discovering that everyday comforts may do more harm than good. Think about our current crisis of declining mental and physical health.
Humans are wired to look for threats. Research shows that the more comfortable we become, the broader our definition of a “threat” or problem becomes; we begin to make problems where there are none.
In addition, we default to our comfort zone to save mental and physical energy. Drive-thru dinners versus home-cooked, effort-expending meals. Netflix to unwind rather than fresh air and a walk outside. We do what’s easy.
What might surprise you is that injecting little bouts of “suck” and discomfort might actually be the solution to living your healthiest, happiest life. Let’s see how.
Downtime is necessary to allow for brain processing and foster creativity. We’re not meant to absorb input 24/7.
Today, we are engrossed in our smartphones, and boredom has been filled with endless cat videos and recipe hacks. But, unfortunately, we’re never subjected to true, sit-on-your-hands boredom.
Researchers compared two groups of individuals and discovered that the “bored” group came up with more creative ideas. So if you feel uninspired or sucked dry of good ideas, perhaps you need more, not less boredom.
Try going for a walk without earbuds and leave your phone behind. Don’t bring your phone into the bathroom. Or, forego the phone while you wait in the checkout line or waiting area for your next appointment. You might strike up a conversation with a real human – gasp!
Make a habit of being uncomfortable
The average American spends 93% of their time inside a climate-controlled environment. Honestly, I’m surprised this figure isn’t higher.
In our temperature-controlled, always-comfortable state, it’s ironic that we still never fail to point out how the weather is “too hot,” “too cold,” or “too windy.” Again, making problems from nothing.
Have a stressful day at work? Rather than defaulting to Doritos and chocolate chips to numb your worries, sit in the discomfort and examine the feels – something we discuss throughout the 10-day Back On Track Program.
Resist your defaults, and do little uncomfortable things. Before you know it, the habit of being uncomfortable will morph into opportunities you never thought possible — a better-paying job, finally losing that last 15 lbs, or mending relationships you never thought possible.
Go the extra mile – literally
Go out of your way to challenge yourself physically. Too often, we set the bar low and go after what we know we can achieve. As a result, we never uncover our potential.
You walked a mile – great. But remember how you felt after your first 5K?! Empowered and exhilarated. Like “I friggen’ did it!” 🎉
You can do hard things! And let’s be honest, doing easy things within our comfort zone is unfulfilling and mundane – not to mention pretty forgettable.
Forget comfort and embrace challenge (AKA the “suck”). This is where big things happen!
Words from the Wise
“The more you seek the uncomfortable, the more you will become comfortable.”
Instead of subjecting ourselves to discomfort, we seek the easy way out which lands us right back in the same position. Every. Single Time.
Being comfortable isn’t a bad thing; however, it will indeed stunt your growth and you forfeit achieving your true potential.
If you’ve wrestled with getting back into a healthy routine after weight loss surgery, then the LIFe Back On Track Program is for you! We discuss uncomfortable things like managing emotional eating and navigating the discomfort of changing routines and habits.