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Get Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable in Business and in Life
Posted on 12th April 2017 in Business
Written by James Marren
Can you tell who this actor is and, for a bonus point, the film he is in? He required a bottom squirming 5 hours of prosthetic makeup each day for the role! This must’ve taken huge patience and an ability to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Most would argue it was worth it, as the film went on to make $333 million worldwide. In this blog, we look at how entrepreneurs need to embrace discomfort to reap the rewards you crave and how to go about doing it. Maybe in the movie that is your life, your business can one day top the box office.
What makes successful businessmen such as Mark Zuckerberg and Richard Branson extoll the virtue of pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and frankly, what does it really mean? Well, It’s more than just an idea for us here at FUTRLI, it’s a reality that we’ve had to embrace along with the many successful business owners and friends that we are privileged to know. Here are our two cents on why it’s so important to get to grips with this concept.
Why it can be positive
It’s not the discomfort you feel that is positive in itself, but rather, the sign that you’re engaging in positive entrepreneurial practices that can bring value to your life. Some examples of the benefits of getting comfortable being uncomfortable include:
1. Helping you move past fear.
You will no doubt feel fear at its fullest, many times over while running a business. You may have to suddenly plug an unexpected and sizable tax bill or feel the gut-wrenching feeling of losing a major client to a direct competitor. Whatever it is, moving past fear requires some degree of acceptance of discomfort. If not, you may cave in at the first sign of trouble and take the easier option of just quitting. By embracing fear as an inevitable part of the process of running a business and seeing it more positively, as a sign you are following your dreams, you can stop it being your master. This has significant positive implications for your business as well as for you wider life, as nothing kills a dream quite like fear.
2. Encouraging experimentation
The biggest risk is not taking any risk… In a world that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks. – Mark Zuckerberg
You have to be prepared to take a risk in order for your business to be cutting edge and attain and retain success long term. Therefore, if you can get comfortable with the discomfort that is caused by taking a risk trying something new, you open yourself and your business to new opportunities. New experience, be it a parachute jump or going to that business conference where you don’t know anyone else, helps your personal growth and allows you to become a more rounded business person that can bring new insight to your business.
We are by no means endorsing you to be reckless, in fact quite the opposite. We are encouraging you to get past your discomfort and venture forward and take calculated and informed risks that have the potential to take your business to the next level.
We manage our own risk at FUTRLI by forecasting with the powerful scenarios section of our software. You can test a range of possible scenarios for your business that prepare you for all eventualities and allow you to develop plans to profit from them. The results that you can glean from testing different possible future scenarios help you to draw insight that makes any subsequent decision that little less risky.
3. Growing your network
Another major benefit of pushing yourself out of your comfort zone is the potential of expanding your network by going out and meeting people in various contexts outside your social bubble. This opens you up to learning from new perspectives and enhancing your ability to relate to a more diverse group of people. This can only be good for when you are next designing a product or find yourself pitching for business.
How to feel more comfortable
It can feel overwhelming when looking at the long, undulating journey one must travel to reach a goal, but like the Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu said, ‘The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.’ Burn the boats and, constantly remind yourself that you made a decision to start something and that you’re not going back. The more you put yourself in challenging situations and stick with things, the more you will get used to the discomfort and give yourself the opportunity to thrive under those conditions.
Remember, the moment when you are about to give up is usually the exact moment someone else gives up too. If you can just hang on in there, you are elevating yourself from the crowd.
When it gets too much
There’s no escaping the fact, however, that there will still be moments when the discomfort gets too much, no matter how inoculated you are. So, here’s our list of things to try when the discomfort is really starting to get to you.
1. Go for a walk, or run outside. Fresh air and movement really help ease those feelings of discomfort and unease.
2. Seek out like-minded people and share your experiences with them. Remember, the worse the experience was for you the better the story is. Meetup.com is a great website for this.
3. Water is a great restorer and mover of energy. Make sure you drink enough and treat yourself to long showers or baths.
4. Get out of your head and into your body and go get a massage.
5. Give yourself the opportunity for some stillness each day and meditate.
6. Notice your improvements, remember your achievements and revel in them. Build your confidence by comparing the person you were, to what you have become and are becoming.