‘The ability to get comfortable with tension and discomfort is necessary for personal growth and it is at the point of greatest tension and stretch where our largest opportunity for growth exists.’
If we are in fact too comfortable then we are probably not productive and in fact have lost our edge. This is often the reason people feel dissatisfied in their role, feel restless and are unsure why.
Stop resisting discomfort in your job and interactions and you will soon find that the more you lean in, the more positive your relationship with discomfort will grow. Simultaneously your ability to have ‘challenger conversations’, respond under pressure with calm and clarity and your ability to lead others and challenge (in the right ways – for growth) will be dramatically enhanced.
So how do you ‘lean in’ to discomfort?
- Actively seek feedback on areas you know are weak/require self work.
- Seek opportunities to practice and explore tasks and experiences that you are fearful of/ feel you do not have a strength around.
- Seek opportunities to present, engage and have discussions with people more senior than yourself, coaches and trusted peers, who will challenge you on your thinking/ways of working.
How do you reduce anxiety around exposure to potential failure/ judgements?
- Prepare yourself mentally before meetings, expected meetings or engagements where you will be uncomfortable or anxious by considering potential areas that you will be challenged on, give thought and make notes on how you will respond.
- Take a deep breath and use positive affirmations or speak with someone, peer or mentor, that will provide some positive interface before this event.
- Lastly – remind yourself that any perceived failures are in fact just opportunities for learning and open your mind to a new learning experience and relish the opportunity.
‘You are in fact the only barrier to your own success, so commit to a learning mindset, get comfortable with your own vulnerability and acknowledge that none of us are perfect and that you are on a journey of exploration and growth, every day’.
Michelle & Wayne are Co-Directors and Founders of Fusion Partners, delivering consulting and recruitment services.