Discomfort is something we all experience. It is also something we work very hard to avoid in most situations. This is natural, you move you hand away from a hot stove, shift if you’re sitting in an uncomfortable chair, but if the discomfort is something less tangible like shame, an “awkward moment” or fear, we tend to recoil in the same way. The latter less tangible forms of discomfort hide great opportunities to improve ourselves and to find greater happiness and satisfaction in life.
When I was a sophomore in college I took a class on Japanese theater, we began each day with zazen meditation, which is practiced by sitting on your knees. The floor was concrete and we had not mats or cushions. As our teacher prepared us for the first ten or fifteen minutes of sitting on the cold hard floor he said “you will learn to find comfort in this position… or you will learn to accept this discomfort.” Though I never pursued Japanese theater much after that semester, “accept the discomfort” became a mantra for me. It helped me gain control of my emotions in situations involving fear, shame, anger, and helped me through the discomfort of bettering myself, be it exercise, studying, practicing an instrument.
This blog is dedicated to accepting, understanding, and managing discomfort like wind in a sail to improve ourselves.