Why Being Uncomfortable Is A Sign You're On The Right Track

Registered Yoga Teacher By Rebecca Butler
Registered Yoga Teacher
Rebecca Butler is an E-RYT 500 yoga teacher, writer, inspirational speaker and retreat leader.

In 2012, I've managed to shed a few layers of self limitation and allowed myself to step into a role I’ve long since coveted — writing from my heart, sharing what pieces of knowledge I’ve collected on my bumpy life path, becoming humbly transparent in hopes of inspiring others to do the same.

The really exciting thing is, for me, for many of us, this path is just beginning. If you believe that 2012 was actually not meant to be the end of the world, as per the erroneous interpretation of the Mayan calendar, but rather to signify a paradigm shift as we move into the coming age, an age some say will bring enlightenment, then you can see how much potential we all hold in the palm of our hand in this moment.

What’s more, 2013 is rumored to be the year in which, if you've done your work, you are set to actualize your highest potential.

I like to joke in my classes that one of the major gifts of yoga is the opportunity to learn how to breathe calmly and freely in the face of extreme discomfort. My students, usually being held in a deep twist or subterranean hip opening pose, duck their heads and tap into said breathing. There is great truth to this theory.

Learning to navigate discomfort with ease is tremendously helpful in cultivating our ability to stay connected to our true self during times of chaos, turmoil, challenge and strife. 

And if we are hopeful of realizing our greatest potential, our highest self, in 2013, then perhaps we should employ this aptitude even further... thereby making — Being Uncomfortable the New Black...

What if the next time you catch yourself squirming with a lack of ease as someone is paying you a compliment, instead of shirking it off, you took a breath, looked them in the eye, felt the nicety land in your being and absorbed it? Would that be so bad?

What if instead of doubting your instincts the next time they chimed in, even if what they were commanding made little to no sense, what if you complied (especially if it made you lack comfort to do so...)? What’s the worst that could happen?

What if you welcomed being uncomfortable as a sign that you are on the right path (instead of the wrong one)?

Now, it’s important to pause here and make a distinction: Being uncomfortable is not the same thing as feeling like shit.

Being uncomfortable means a slight bit of unease, a quickening of the pulse, a catch in your throat or butterflies in your stomach... It does not mean grinding your jaw, shaking with frustration, or being generally miserable in life. Being uncomfortable is the cusp of transformation; being miserable is the cusp of destruction.

Be aware of the difference. However, both are usually a catalyst for change — one is just slightly less injurious than the other.

Next time you’re feeling slightly ill at ease, and yet at the same time exhilarated, knowing that you are going for it, going after your dream, moving into that realm of seldom realized effortlessness, consider that being uncomfortable is a sign of expansion, a sign of moving into your highest potential, and lean in.

You’re ready for this.

Now is the time, the time is now. Enter 2013.

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