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Using Uncomfortable Times As a Catalyst for Growth


Discomfort can be the price we pay for growth. And at some point, life demands we invest in our growth, rather than being comfortable and doing it our way all the time.

Let me show you how this plays out in practical terms: Let’s say you have had a major disagreement with a partner on how to proceed on a project that you are collaborating on for work.

Well, you traditionally would handle a disagreement by cutting off the person and never speaking to them again or, at least, putting distance between the two of you. But since your paycheck – and a possible promotion – hinge on this collaboration, you know that avoiding your co-worker is not an option.

Life demands we invest in growth, rather than being comfortable and doing it our way all the time. (Adobe Stock)

So, although it won’t be easy, it will be necessary to work through your differences to complete the project and demonstrate your skills to your management team (which could lead to promotion).

Here’s another example. How many of you… whenever you come upon a stressful situation…. soothe yourself by eating sweet treats or grabbing some other snack? Going for those chips, cookies, chocolate bars or ice cream to provide a temporary high and distraction from your current trigger (stressor)?

Or a better one for parents. When your child comes home late or forgets one of their chores, are you tempted to scold them for their negligence, or do you extend compassion and a listening ear to learn what caused the slight?

If we were to be honest, most of us have dealt with one or more of these examples. And most of us have responded 100 percent wrong to these situations at some point. But let me say, the next time we are faced with these triggers, or stressors, we have an opportunity to do it differently, or perhaps even better.

Disagreement doesn’t have to be a deal-breaker. Stress doesn’t have to lead to bad eating habits. And a wayward or forgetful child doesn’t deserve our worst reaction.

The next time we face these situations take a step back, breathe, and allow a more mature response to come forward. Understand that the way you respond has nothing to do with the other person “getting over on you.”

This is about you evolving into the best version of you … this will take practice, but as you hang in there, you’ll see something beautiful evolve.

So, if at first you don’t succeed, another opportunity is coming around the bend; another chance to respond in the correct manner.

Know that I believe in you. And I believe you have to fortitude to pass the test the next time it comes your way. Keep the faith and know I’m cheering for you and just an email away.

Keisa Sharpe is a life coach, author and speaker. Her column appears each month online and in The Birmingham Times. You can contact Keisa at keisasharpe@yahoo.com and visit http://www.allsheanaturals.com for natural hair and body products.