Embrace discomfort

OK, my sixy friends. We have learned that embracing discomfort is part of the new modern motivational triad. We need to utilize some intentional strategies to override our subconscious drives that–while created to keep us safe–unchecked, keep us stuck in our lives and mired in our rigid personality limitations. For a six that means being stuck in fear, anxiety and indecision and unable to access the courage and faith we need to live the lives we desire.

So, that is fine to read, probably makes tons of sense intellectually and something you will continue to “think” about, right? Here’s the thing, sixes, it’s time to stop rolling things around in our heads to better understand them and lean into some of the actual work..which requires actually FEELING some emotional discomfort.

We are thinking repressed AND thinking dominant. It’s extremely easy and natural for us to learn something and think about it or to experience something and think about it. This isn’t all bad, of course, but where this goes haywire for sixes is we spin up stories in our head that make us feel very busy and useful, but nothing is actually happening in our lives. For instance, we learn something and know EXACTLY which friend, spouse, child or colleague would benefit from that concept. We can so clearly see how if they would simply adopt this new idea that we now so fully understand how much better their life would be! And since we are sixes we always like to punctuate a good story with “and if they don’t….insert terrible worst case result”. Then, there we are, learning and spinning and creating bad stories. This is the discomfort we are familiar with, the discomfort created by our lizard brain to keep us safe right where we are. Even though we don’t like it here, we find it difficult to think our way out.

The solution is to use our productive thinking and FEEL our way out. This is generally uncomfortable. THIS is the discomfort we need to embrace on purpose.

Let’s say we want a result in our life that requires us to make a decision. When we make a decision, as a six, the very moment we make the decision our brain gives us ALL the very compelling reasons why that was a terrible decision and all the ways it’s going to ruin everything. It is the work of holding tight to your decision and allowing the strong feelings and discomfort that come with having your own back that will allow you to make progress in your life. This requires courage. It doesn’t feel good to do it. Your lizard brain will tell you that you are going to die. It really thinks that. But your prefrontal cortex, where we get to make our conscious choices knows better. Without the commitment to withstand some discomfort, your lizard brain will win every time.