Pain is underrated.

Underrated meaning diminishing or underestimating the extent, value, or importance of what it brings. “It” is plain old pain or its many other relatives with first names like suffering, affliction, agony, trial, tribulation or worry.

We typically avoid it and would rather not talk about it especially when we are going through it. We tend to avoid it even when we’re not going through it, hoping it won’t come our way in the near future.

As humans obviously we are averse to any type of discomfort but the more we observe life, nature, biology, agriculture, chemistry, the sciences and life forms, the very experience of pain usually brings forth “more”, “another” or “birth”.

The challenge is as we go through life, how do we prepare mentally to be comfortable with discomfort? Talking about it is the first step.

Seedlings have to be buried to germinate, butterflies have to wriggle out of their cocoon to strengthen their wings in preparation of a life of beautiful fluttering.

Teeth hurt as it grows through the gum and babies need to push through the birth canal to make their grand entrance to life.

The whole concept of discomfort really is a necessary evil. An evil that leads us through a tunnel with a surety of light at the end.

A tunnel that sometimes takes days, weeks and years and each period causing just enough pain to propel you forward.

So what’s the current discomfort that’s happening in your career and on your entrepreneurial journey? Might this be the necessary soil, gum and birth canal required for the new season?

The way discomfort is handled also determines the additional length of time required to come out of it. Operative word here is “additional”. It doesn’t quite determine the time in itself though as in the analogy of birth, children still need to be carried for 7 to 9 months to most likely survive. The type of birth process, hospital, staff, possibly experience of the gynaecologist on the other hand may determine the length of labour and possible outcome of birth and or birth defects if any.

Short circuiting the process does not in any way help ease discomfort – it just leaves one with a limp or weakened wing like in the case of the butterfly.

Ignoring discomfort is usually counterproductive. Feeding discomfort with the right dose of help required per time gives it an ample chance of the individual surviving that phase. So it’s important that discomfort is not “taken like a man” or dismissed with a “weep not child” response.

Figuring out how to deal with discomfort is one of the early steps of becoming comfortable with it. Getting help, talking through it rather than dying in silence is a lifesaving technique in this situation.

So do you have a sounding board, outlet or anchor as you journey through career life, role changes and career bumps? Are you discussing your discomforts with someone who can proffer help as an entrepreneur?

Mentally sizing up your discomfort and assigning it an expiry date or in cases where dates cannot be ascertained, assigning your discomfort an expiry season is life changing! Once you’re able to park it or assign it an expiry date in the future, a mental shift occurs which enables you pace yourself and process an end date for the discomfort.

So the next time you go through discomfort process it differently, this may just be what is required and needed to birth a new part of you that propels other areas of your life.

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