The older I get, the more I realize just how large the list of things I hate has gotten.
I hate traffic.
I hate having my picture taken.
I hate 100 degree days.
I hate seafood.
I hate slow internet.
I hate injustice.
I hate getting outside my comfort zone.
Recently, I've started getting massages with some regularity. Those of you who know me understand just how big of a deal this is. I don't like being touched. I never really have. As a child I was extremely ticklish so friends or family would touch me and tickle me until I was curled up on the ground in an embarrassed, tormented mess. While I learned to control it and have grown out of my intense ticklishness, I still am not a fan of being touched by others.
Today, while my friend was working on my back, I felt less uncomfortable than I was the time before and the next time I will be even more comfortable than I am today. While I don't know that I will ever like being touched, I know the benefits that getting outside of my comfort zone have provided me. After the first massage from my friend I didn't have a headache for 2 days, a rarity for me. I had less pain in my back and shoulders and was able to move more freely than normal.
After that first massage I had to make a choice. What was more important: remaining in my comfort zone or a reduction in my pain?
Now I have made getting out of my comfort zone a priority because of the benefits it brings.
When was the last time you pushed yourself out of your comfort zone? Do you regularly seek opportunities to experience discomfort with the goal of growing yourself?
This could look like taking a course at a community college in a topic that interests you or reading a challenging book. This might mean asking a friend to read your manuscript or daring to open that online store you've been dreaming of. It could mean speaking up in a meeting or having a frank conversation with your significant other.
Let's choose to embrace the discomfort this week and see how we can grow in the process.