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Good vs. Bad Discomfort

I’ve had a lot of time to sit with my thoughts recently, and it doesn’t take long for the simple act of thinking to turn into overthinking. This is the year of eliminating expectations, to ease the overthinking and consistent feeling of disappointment, and I’ve realized in doing that, I’ve opened the door for discomfort to come in—a discomfort I’m not used to.

To process everything—my thoughts, emotions, chaos—I’ve had to compartmentalize all the discomfort.

Bad Discomfort

Tension at work. It’s worse when it’s with your boss. Like, do you address it? Or do you remain miserable for eight hours a day and start making dinner plans when you wake up so you have something to look forward to? Getting fired for the tension, a tension that simply required proper communication and an open mind, is worse because you suddenly don’t have a job and are without a legit reason for being unemployed.

The moment you realized you ruin a conversation by opening your mouth and being unnecessary. I’m just going to go hide in a corner. This is me all the time and immediately activates my anxiety, which activates my depression, which makes me want to shut down and never leave the comfort of my firm mattress.

Any injury. Minor or major. They’re never fun.

The cops. The same people I’m supposed to respect and go to for help are the people I fear will kill me without reason.

Being surrounded by men of the same race who are twice your age. It doesn’t matter the race. The second one of them has a predatory look in his eyes, fight or flight instincts kick in. Why are they all in the same area at the same time? Even if it’s a coincidence, it is unsettling.

Rejecting people who ask for your number. It’s my least favorite thing to do, but as I’ve said before, don’t ask for my number before you ask for my name. I am beyond picky about who I choose to be in a romantic relationship with, or in most cases get a free meal with; I’d rather be single than be with someone who asked for my number but didn’t put lotion on first. My grandmother once pointed out that I’ll never know if I’ve rejected The One, but I’m sure he’d come around again. Until then, I will continue to protect my peace and deal with the guilt of not giving crusty boys my phone number.

Listening to family members with opposing views. I have family members who don’t vote. I have family members who are racist and homophobic. I have family members who look down on liberals. Turning the television on at Thanksgiving opens the door for these opposing views to be yelled over the television, and I never look forward to it.

Good Discomfort

The tingly sensation when someone looks at you with nothing but love & admiration. You experience a full body shiver, and The Look of Love comes at the most random time. You don’t know how to respond to it, but once you accept that someone actually loves you, you bask in the glow of the gaze. Sometimes my family and friends give me The Look, and though I feel queasy at first, I want to shed tears of pure joy and love.

Skydiving. Or bungee jumping. Or ziplining. Or riding in a hot air balloon. Something that scares the crap out of you and is nothing but an adrenaline rush. Imagine being able to say you did that?

Witnessing someone’s love. Every single one of my friends is in a relationship, and though it can feel like I’m hardcore third wheeling sometimes, it warms my heart to witness their happiness.

Weddings, baby showers, birthday parties. It always feels awkward because most of the time, I don’t know anyone else there—only the person who invited me. However, every celebration is always fun in its own way.

Solo adventures. Whether it’s the car wash down the street with the guys who stare while they smoke weed or in a different country where you stand out as an American, it can be uncomfortable. However, you’re stepping out of the box and doing something that gets your heart rate going a little, which I think is a good thing.

Talking to strangers (and possible making new friends). How many times will you fake laugh like you understood what they were saying? What witty response will you have to their dad-like joke? What if they don’t accept your compliment? What if you burp instead of saying actual words? But… what if it’s how you meet your best friend?


One of my favorite YouTube channels-turned-brands is Seek Discomfort, a group I’ve talked about before. Recent life events have shown me there’s the good discomfort you seek for the sake of a thrill, and there’s the unexpected, scary but necessary discomfort that finds you.

Part of growing up and conquering difficult adult situations is dealing with the discomfort. Life has moments that are uncomfortable, especially when situations happen/occur for the first time. How do you react? How do you conquer it?

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