The state of comfort can be very satisfying— but it can also come in the way of your growth.

Let’s face it, as humans we seek comfort. We like our soft beds, warm showers, and even comfort foods when we are feeling sad and unmotivated. So why would we give it all up to get uncomfortable? Here’s why. Seeking out discomfort can be a way of moving toward growth in your life.

Imagine you want to try something new, something that you are not sure is achievable, but is a great idea. It’s okay to feel some discomfort and that you may have taken on too much. New research by Psychological Science suggests that acknowledging and embracing these feelings of stress, as part of learning, could help motivate personal growth.

Although discomfort can be risky and sometimes terrifying, it can also lead to powerful breakthroughs and insights that move us forward. Here are some reasons why being uncomfortable can actually be good for us:


Facing the unknown – whatever that unknown may be – allows us to challenge ourselves and accomplish things we didn’t think were possible. We adapt, become faster, and more creative as we work around obstacles. When we realise we don’t have a choice but to succeed, we’re much more resilient and determined.


When we face certain challenges or feel stuck, we ultimately have two options: remain stagnant or move on. And only when we decide to focus on the latter do we grow and evolve.


All new experiences are a learning opportunity, no matter how awkward they feel at the beginning. They give us a chance to meet new people or pick up new skills that ultimately help us become better equipped for dealing with future problems. Another side-effect is that we grow in wisdom and this gives us the power to make better decisions that bring us closer to our goals.

Change your relationship with change. A coach or mentor can offer courage, motivation, and practical guidance towards abandoning our comfort zones. And while embracing the discomfort of change and the unknown is hardest the first time, in time, we do get better at it, even if we don’t actually become comfortable with being uncomfortable.