It’s easy to get comfortable…even with the things that are “good” for us. You have a choice to make. How do you push past comfortable towards something larger to be the best version of you?
I went to a yoga class recently, and the teacher was giving us instructions to set up in a pose. As we were all settling into tree pose, she made the comment that if we were stable in this variation of the position, she was challenging us to push the pose further, even if it meant falling out of the pose. Normally, my goal during yoga is to avoid toppling on the person next to me, so my initial thought was “Push to the point where I fall? No thanks.”
“You could choose a version where you are stable, or you can choose to experience discomfort and growth. Both are okay, because either one is a choice that you make.”
The power behind that statement was enough to make me fall out of my pose. Right in the middle of yoga class, it made me think, “How often do I make a choice because it’s easy or because I know I already have it mastered?”
I think this is a common space for many of us. It’s human nature to want to do the things we know we’re good at. But unless we want “good” to stop right here, there’s value in pushing past this point to discover something more. These moments may be frustrating, exhilarating, uncomfortable, or so many more emotions that are unique to you. Why? Because this is your journey. This is your meaning to make. This is something only you can experience.
Along your journey, remember:
There is beauty in the struggle.
It’s not uncommon for meaning to be created in the midst of a trial, but the responsibility lies within us to decide if we are going to find it. This is where mindset comes in. If we choose to have a fixed mindset, we stick to what we know, and failure is viewed as a limit of abilities.
When we shift to a growth mindset though, challenges are viewed as opportunities, and we begin to embrace the struggle. These are the moments where we grow as individuals, as parents, as professionals, as partners, as friends. These are the moments where we acknowledge that we are enough simply because we are, but we also deserve to be the best version of ourselves.
Growth is a choice.
In Man’s Search for Meaning, Victor Frankl writes, “Between stimulus and response, there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” Growth is a choice. And it’s a choice that only you can make. There is almost a certain power and responsibility that resides within the concept of choice.
In reflecting on the last part of the challenge from my yoga teacher that day, “Both are okay, because either one is a choice that you make,” I realize how powerful her validation is. We are going to have moments of being in a fixed mindset.
When we allow ourselves the freedom to go there safely, we also allow ourselves the freedom to come back to grow and learn. You may have moments where you aren’t ready to change. That’s okay. Acknowledge this place. It may be where you are now, but it’s not a place you have to stay.
While the words we hear from others are important, I’m talking about the words we tell ourselves here. What truths do you speak to power about yourself? How are your words putting blinders on taking in the big picture? What if our “I’ll never be able to…” statements became “One day, when I’m able to…” statements? Our words create an environment for mindset to thrive. And even better yet- when we put action behind these words, when we commit to the struggle, when in the same breath, we acknowledge both what is and that we are also shooting for something more, this is the space where we find meaning.
This is the space where we find ourselves.
Think about where you are really stable and have a little room to fall this week. Where can you practice being comfortable with the uncomfortable? Embrace the fall- you may be surprised what you learn about yourself on the way back up.