It’s counterintuitive

Nothing ever changes without Discomfort! Literally nothing, you can’t even brush your hair without making some sort of effort! Some discomfort is even comforting, like the muscle ache that comes after exercise…So why are we so down on Discomfort?

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone”

Neale Donald Walshe


WMCM’s and other disabilities

There is another quote credited to my old friend Anonymous “Are you happy or are you just comfortable?” I sit here with all my white middle-class male (WMCM) privilege extolling the virtues of Discomfort. What if was born poor, black and female would I still think Discomfort is such a great idea? I wasn’t so I won’t even pretend to know what it is like to be in her shoes. All I can report is what I see through my WMCM eyes. On that basis, YES! I would because over the past two (2) weeks I have seen thousands protestors, many female, poor and of colour, hitting the streets. Putting their lives at risk, demanding the attention of the WMCM’s (amongst other power bases) because there needs to be change.

Peace and Quiet

What would have happened if they had all stayed at home? NOTHING! As the Reverend Al Sharpton said in his eulogy for George Floyd;

“There is a difference between Peace and Quiet”

Rev. Al Sharpton

“There is a difference between peace and quiet”. Peace is only sustainable through measured and agreed circumstances where everyone has their needs and wants, and aspirations understood and catered for. While inequality of any kind exists in a society, these conditions can never be reached. On the other hand, inequality can exist for centuries if those in control use their power and influence to suppress the needs, wants and aspirations of the few keeping them “Quiet”.

The protestors may or may not know the answers, and it is easy to sit back saying “there are no easy answers”, thank you, Captain Obvious! Eckhart Tolle talks about “being at ease with not knowing is crucial for answers to come to you”. Thousands upon thousands of people have stood up, despite not knowing the answers.

They have moved right out of their comfort zones and put their bodies and indeed their lives (covid-19) on the line, why? Because there needs to be change, and they are prepared to discomfort themselves to bring that change about. They have summoned the Courage to take on the status quo, risk what they have in search of better.

What about you? 

Are you; at Peace with who you are being and the outcomes of your life? Giving full expression to your needs, wants and aspirations? “Are you happy, or are you just comfortable?” Or are you living a compromised life? If you are not being who you think you could be, there is a pretty good chance you are living Quietly not Peacefully! Are you the brother, sister, Mom, Dad, friend, colleague, co-worker, human you know deep down inside you could be? Are you going to die with the music in you because you are COMFORTABLE?

Comfort is a Silent Killer

Is your’s a life of internal Peace or has a part of you been told to “Be Quiet” by the controlling influences of comfort, duty, reputation or other external forces? Are you living a compromise brought on by your own inability to express who you really are? I put it to you the real problem is you are not prepared to take on the Discomfort making changes would involve. Comfort is the silent killer of dreams and aspirations. Ask any Olympian what does it take to make the Olympics? The answer will be “a commitment to do whatever it takes” or some version thereof. Life is what you decide to make of it, and in the end, it is only “YOU” who needs to be satisfied.

Should I dare?

When we ask the question “Should I dare?” the first checkpoint is fear of the unknown. We deal with fear through analysis or Courage.

Analysis can overcome fear-driven paralysis by showing it is False Evidence Appearing Real. Courage is the ability to do something that frightens one. It comes from the root word Cor which is Latin for heart. Courage in its earliest forms meant “to speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart”. We could say having Courage is to have the heart to overcome fear.

Certainly I think Courage explains the thousands of protestors we have seen marching over the past couple of weeks.

Do you have the Courage to leave your comfort zone, to leave what you have in pursuit of something better? Analysis of your beliefs against objective evidence will soon shine a light on what you really have to fear. It is most likely CHANGE itself and how other people in your life may see that change.

But who are you living for? Andreia is the Virtue of doing what is right despite the cost. The paradox is when you do the right thing by yourself, take control of your life and live on purpose instead of by default, you reap both the Discomfort and the Rewards.  The good news is the Rewards are disproportionally high relative to the Discomfort.

Am I BEING all that I can be?

It’s time we changed our relationship with Discomfort. Rather than distance ourselves’ from Discomfort, we can seek it out. Asking ourselves, “who or what is disenfranchised when we are satisfied?” Is this as good as it can be? Am I BEING all that I can be, or will I die with the music still in me? Empowerment is having the Courage to willingly step into the discomfort zone. If you are ready to take that step but are not quite sure what direction to move or how to take that first step. Send me an email at and I will be happy to give you a free empowerment session to set you on your way.

First published on Thrive Global 9 June 2020