it’s okay to be uncomfortable.

by mindy @ just a one girl revolution. on 01.09.14

in Uncategorized

I was at yoga last night, for the first time in at least six months.  I had a Groupon for a month of unlimited classes at a new-to-me studio that was set to expire yesterday, so I knew I needed to cash it in.  Plus, I was crazy sore from my workout the previous night, so I thought the stretching and realignment would do my body some serious good.

thirty day dare

At one point, probably 2/3 of the way through class, we were doing some twists that would have been a great stretch to begin with, but we used straps to really intensify the pose.  I had this overwhelming sense of feeling uncomfortable.  It was a good kind of uncomfortable, stretching out some muscles that desperately needed it, but uncomfortable nonetheless.  My first inclination was to ease out of the pose just a smidge because uncomfortable is hard and unknown and even a little bit scary.  I wasn’t particularly enjoying that moment of my practice.  But, as I was starting to back out of the pose, I heard this little voice in the back of my mind.

It’s okay to be uncomfortable.

It hit me like a ton of bricks, because while it was true of that given moment, it’s also true of life as a whole.  Rarely do we find ourselves feeling uncomfortable for one reason or another, and being okay with it.  Whatever the uncomfortable situation, there’s often that deep sigh of relief when the moment is over.  There’s a reason we trend towards our so-called comfort zone, because it’s that thing we know, it’s that sense of security and familiarity.  Stepping out of that bubble is damn hard.

It’s okay to be uncomfortable.

But, it’s in those moments where we make that step and push our limits that we experience growth.  When I look back at some of the biggest seasons of growth and positive change in my life, it’s because there were leaps of faith that involved taking big, hard, sometimes scary chances.  In 2008, I got on a plane and lived in California for a summer, and it was the most amazing, wonderful, and scariest three months all rolled into one.  But, I came home that August a different person than when I left.

Yet, it’s also in those small, consistent moments of discomfort that have just as much, if not more, potential for change.  When I push myself to run a little faster or a little further, it’s hard.  But, over the years, I’ve seen dramatic increases in what I can do as a runner.  This year, I am choosing to #dreambig and work for some big goals, many that I’ve shared, but some I’m holding close to my heart.  When I look at all I want to do this year, it’s overwhelming but I know that come December 31, I’ll be a better version of myself because of it.

It’s okay to be uncomfortable.

Sometimes, that feeling of being uncomfortable not from the things we can do, but from the times we must admit that we can’t.  That we need to stop, that we need help, that we are juggling too much.  Those moments can sometimes feel even more challenging to get through.  Those instances can be an extremely humbling sense of uncomfortable, ones that needs a big dose of grace and peace to wash over them.

It’s okay to be uncomfortable.

So, yes.  It’s not easy to take on new risks.  I get that.  But, it’s okay.  As I sat in that pose last night, feeling what could only have been every fiber in my muscles, it wasn’t easy, but I knew that in the long run it would be good for my muscles, for my body.  Breathe in, breathe out.  Just keep breathing, just take another step, just push through another day.  One day, we look back on those moments that felt extraordinarily, or just in the simplest of ways, uncomfortable and realize that we got through it alive.  It might not have been easy, but we made it through to the other side.  But in the mist of it, just remember it’s okay.

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Kim @ Fabulous Fit Foodie January 9, 2014 at 8:32 am

Great post! I read something at the end of last year that is right on point with what you are saying. Essentially if you don’t take risks or put yourself out there, you miss out on so much of life. Scary moments are often what turns into the biggest successes and rewards in our life.
Kim @ Fabulous Fit Foodie recently posted..Starting Fresh: Goals and Plans for the Year Ahead

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Katie January 9, 2014 at 9:39 am

YES!!! Thank you!!! It is totally okay to be uncomfortable! I take hot power class every now and then because its so good to get out of my groove and try other things. I’m really anti-plow pose. I don’t like how the throat constricts and I always feeling like I’m suffocating on my stomach. But, I know its a good pose, so I do it for as long as I can in class. And then go to happy baby as a reward. haha.
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Linz @ Itz Linz January 9, 2014 at 10:47 am

LOVE! itz definitely ok to be uncomfortable – that’s how we grow, learn, and push ourselves! :) :)
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Tina @ Best Body Fitness January 9, 2014 at 11:23 am

This is absolutely beautiful and so well written. I love the part about there being so much potential in those brief moments of uncomfortable. I love how much yoga can teach us – about our bodies, but also about ourselves and life.

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Emily @ More Than Just Dessert January 9, 2014 at 1:21 pm

Great post, Mindy! I love the honesty and I couldn’t agree more. Learning to become ok with being “uncomfortable” or “vulnerable” was a HUGE step in me overcoming a lot of issues in life and overall leading me to be a much happier person. :)
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Courtney @ Don't Blink. Just Run. January 9, 2014 at 8:52 pm

Very insightful! The first thing I thought, though, is that if I hadn’t pushed SO hard to be uncomfortable doing yoga yesterday that I would be able to stand up straight today with normal hamstrings. HAHA
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Katie @ Live Half Full January 9, 2014 at 9:41 pm

Yes! So true! My skating coach growing up used to say this A LOT. Our short program was 2:30 and she would always tell us it would take us being uncomfortable to get stronger, and you can do anything for 2 1/2 minutes. It worked!
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Heather Murphy January 10, 2014 at 9:00 am

Love this. I tell my clients all the time that when you go past the point where you think you can’t go any further, that’s when change happens. I don’t really have a problem with it when working out, but real life is a different story! I definitely need to apply this to everyday life because I know it’s true.

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Tina@GottaRunNow January 10, 2014 at 1:29 pm

Being uncomfortable is kind of scary, but it can be a great time to grow!
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Rushfit January 12, 2014 at 6:29 pm

Mindy,
What a great article! I appreciate your candor, writing style, and most of all your heart! Yes being uncomfortable whether mentally or physically, can result in a great victory. The only caveat is that you just can’t quit which you highlighted in your post. Thanks for a great write up, I really enjoyed reading it!
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