The Beauty of Discomfort - How What We Avoid Is What We Need
I enjoyed the perspective from this book and hope the next time I come to a decision I question the comfortable choice. I would recommend it and attempt to talk it up below.
Amanda Lang a journalist, news anchor, and author from Canada wrote this book as a collection of personal stories surrounding different types of discomfort. Each story is an example of why growth is predicated by discomfort. In nature the path of least resistance is usually taken. That's also a predictable path. As a hunter you can usually bet the animal you're hunting will travel predictable paths of least resistance throughout their home area. That is an exploitable weakness. In business the companies taking the path of least resistance are the norm. That is an exploitable weakness. The companies questioning the norm and focusing on change STAND OUT.
The book sites support from science in most chapters confirming the need humans have had for discomfort in order to develop. In it there are also examples of how our brain works to "trick" us into taking the path of least resistance. From one of the contributors, "The human brain is old school, or at least its reward-based learning system is. Even though we're no longer roaming the savannah dodging predators and trying to score our next meal, our brains are still wired as though we are..." He goes on to explain how relatively modern substances like sugar hijack the brain's dopamine reward system. Cupcakes = good because of calories. Your brain says, "Remember what you're eating and where you found it" Your brain then associates the cupcake with comfort, the reward is the sugar and then you become addicted to avoiding discomfort of any sort. Having a bad day? Comfort yourself with a cupcake! Having a good day? Reward yourself with a cupcake! It's all very interesting. I basically finished that chapter wanting a cupcake and then immediately becoming suspicious of why it was I wanted one...;-)
Some discomfort quotes I enjoy -
"Too often we...enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought" - John F. Kennedy
"Comfort zones are most often expanded through discomfort" - Peter McWilliams
"Fatigue, discomfort, discouragement are merely symptoms of effort" - Morgan Freeman
Happy Independence Day! Thanks to those who have given their life, who have served, and who are serving.