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How to Harness the Power of Psychological Discomfort for Personal Growth

As human beings, we all want to grow and learn. However, growth and learning require us to step outside of our comfort zones and embrace discomfort. This discomfort can manifest in many forms, including physical discomfort and psychological discomfort. 

Psychological discomfort is the result of the quality and quantity of our thoughts. When we are overwhelmed by negative or problematic thinking, we experience psychological discomfort. On the other hand, psychological comfort is the relief we feel when we live in the absence of problematic thinking.

But true personal growth and mastery occur when we learn to not take our thoughts seriously. When we realize that we are the thinkers, not our thoughts, we achieve psychological freedom. This freedom allows us to think whatever we want without getting entangled with any particular thought.

To achieve this psychological freedom, we must distinguish between natural thought and conditioned thought. Natural thought arises spontaneously and without effort, while conditioned thought is the result of our past experiences and beliefs. By recognizing and letting go of conditioned thought, we can return to natural thought and achieve psychological freedom.

But to do so requires embracing discomfort. If we always stay in our comfort zones, we will never grow or change. We must be willing to put ourselves in situations where we feel uncomfortable and vulnerable. This discomfort may be psychological, but it is necessary for personal growth.

So don’t be afraid of discomfort. Embrace it, and use it as an opportunity to grow and learn. Remember, psychological discomfort is a symptom of our thinking, and by learning to not take our thoughts seriously, we can achieve psychological freedom and become the masters of our own minds.

One excellent way to practice getting comfortable with discomfort is by practicing Brazilian Jiu-jitsu (BJJ). BJJ is a martial art that involves grappling and ground fighting, and it can be physically and mentally challenging.

When you first start training BJJ, you will likely feel uncomfortable and even a little intimidated. You may not know any of the techniques, and you may be paired with more experienced students who can easily submit you. However, as you continue to train, you will become more comfortable with the discomfort.

You will learn to embrace the discomfort of being in uncomfortable positions and learn how to find your way out of them. You will develop a resilience to the discomfort and learn to focus on your technique rather than your discomfort. This type of mental toughness and perseverance is a valuable skill that can be applied to all areas of life.

Most importantly, BJJ is a community-oriented activity. You will train with a group of people who will push you to your limits and help you to achieve your goals. The support and encouragement of the BJJ community can be a great source of motivation and inspiration.

In summary, practicing BJJ is an excellent way to learn how to get comfortable with discomfort. It challenges both your physical and mental abilities and requires you to push yourself outside of your comfort zone. So, if you want to develop mental toughness, resilience, and perseverance, give BJJ a try. You may be surprised at how much you can learn about yourself and your capabilities.

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Greg Clowminzer
is a transformational business and life coach who works with business leaders who want to cultivate greater self-awareness, resilience, and adaptability, and develop more effective leadership and communication skills. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, CEO, manager, or executive, his coaching will provide you with a new way to think, insights and a new paradigm that you need to succeed in today’s ever-changing business environment.