Discomfort is the currency to your dreams. – Brooke Castillo
Do you ever wake up and just not feel like it?
Or, maybe it’s after work when you’re supposed to go to the gym, and you don’t feel like going.
Or, on that Saturday when you committed to working on your business, but you just don’t feel like it.
Sometimes, you don’t feel like doing whatever it is you have to do.
Sometimes, I don’t feel like it.
So, what’s the solution—the secret to doing what you have to do when you don’t want to?
Here’s something I know will help…
If you want to listen instead of read, here’s the podcast episode that goes along with this post — When You Don’t Feel Like It.
Here’s something I know will help…
Ask Yourself Why You Don’t Feel Like It
Ask yourself, “why don’t I feel like it?”
The reason you don’t feel like it is because of a thought. Your thoughts cause your feelings (always!) so identify the feeling and identify the thought causing it.
That thought is either supportive of your dream life or it’s unsupportive.
If you don’t feel like it because you have to give up short term comfort for long term gain, then you should do it anyways, even though you don’t feel like it.
If you don’t feel like it because it’s not aligned with your future vision, then you shouldn’t do it.
Let’s take a look at some examples…
Examples Of The Good Kind Of Discomfort
Here are examples of the good kind of discomfort…
Getting up at 5am to work on your business before you go to work
- Discomfort: being tired
Going to the gym every day
- Discomfort: pushing yourself physically so your body hurts
Telling yourself the truth
- Discomfort: letting go of relationships that aren’t serving you
Starting an online business
- Discomfort: being vulnerable and putting yourself out there
Eating healthy (choosing healthy food, instead of eating unhealthy)
- Discomfort: feeling the urge to have sugar and not giving in
Studying for certification
- Discomfort: nights and weekends in (instead of with family and friends)
Following through on commitments
- Discomfort: doing something when it’s hard and you don’t want to
Doing what you say you’re going to do
- Discomfort: may mean saying no to something else that comes up
Prioritizing a relationship
- Discomfort: may mean giving up opportunities in your work
Your brain would rather have you stay inside on the couch doing nothing. Your brain will always seek pleasure, avoid pain, and aim to be efficient. This is called the motivational triad. Your brain is just trying to keep you alive. Nothing has gone wrong.
When you don’t feel like it but doing it would move you toward your goal, you have to be willing to go through short term discomfort for long term gratification.
You have to be willing to do something even when you don’t feel like it if you want new and different results.
Contrast this with not feeling like it in a destructive way…
Examples Of The Bad Kind Of Discomfort
Here are more examples of the bad type of discomfort…
Feeling sorry for yourself (self pity)
Self pity looks like this, “I had such a hard day; I don’t feel like it; it’s just not working” It’s very sneaky; we don’t like to recognize it. It’s the “excessive self absorbed unhappiness over one’s own troubles.”
For example, thinking it’s not fair and you should have more and it should be easier and you had a hard day.
It’s thinking something has gone terribly wrong because you experience negative emotion.
If every time you feel unhappy or like you don’t feel like it you stop or slow down, you don’t learn how to move forward while experiencing negative emotion.
With self pity, you start feeling bad about feeling bad. You feel like you shouldn’t write the blog post, work on the business, or go to the gym. You are entitled to feel better.
As soon as you indulge in self pity, you make your experience so much worse.
If you take action and don’t get the result you want and you feel sorry for yourself thinking “why can’t things work out” then you start feeling bad and comparing yourself.
It comes from feeling like you’re a victim of your circumstances and that something has gone terribly wrong.
When you indulge in self-pity you end up quitting because you feel sorry for yourself. Then you don’t get the result you want, which proves you should feel sorry for yourself.
Hating yourself and beating yourself up
Sometimes we beat ourselves up, thinking it’s useful. It’s not. At all.
For example, you might think you’re not worthy of getting what you want.
Or you might say something like, “you’re so fat” or, “you’re never going to make money online.”
PSA: It’s completely unnecessary to beat yourself up to get the result you want.
So, we can just stop that, okay? 🙂
People beat themselves up about their student loans, making it mean something about them. It means nothing about you until you give it meaning.
You don’t have to beat yourself up at all. You can love yourself and get the result you want.
When I learned this, everything instantly got easier and better.
Anything that looks like hiding
Notice if you’re hiding.
Feeling uncomfortable is good if you’re taking action and getting new results.
If you’re hiding in any sort of way, it’s bad. You’re letting the wrong kind of discomfort win.
Examples: staying in instead of going on a date, not doing another webinar because no one showed up to your first one, taking a nap instead of doing the work on your goal, etc.
You know the difference between bad and good discomfort by the results you have in your life.
If you have new results that move you toward your goal, you’re in the good kind of discomfort.
If you have the same results you’ve always had, then you are indulging.
But What About Self Care?!
A lot of people come to me and say they’re taking a break, treating themselves, or some other form of slowing down with the reason being “self care.”
Some people come to me for coaching and think that because I love business and am so happy about working on mine that theirs should just be popping off their vision board.
They think, “if it isn’t flowing to me, if it isn’t easy, I’m going in the wrong direction.”
This is absolutely not true.
This is just how you’re thinking about it.
What if you thought that it’s supposed to be challenging and the more opportunities you have to overcome and grow, the better person you become?
The more you have to show up. The stronger you get.
What I see most is people using self care as an excuse to indulge in pleasure at the expense of their goals.
Self care isn’t about comfort. It’s about discipline.
When you use too much pleasure, it will lead you backward. When you use discipline as self care, you move forward.
Think about health.
Example: Eating cake feels good, but you’ll gain weight. Eating a salad may not feel good and you may be uncomfortable feeling an urge to eat but not giving into it, but it moves you forward toward your goal of losing weight.
Example: Creating a structured calendar where you work on your business as the entrepreneur, technician, and whatever else, may mean time blocking and producing so much that you’re incredibly uncomfortable. But guess what? Do this and you’ll have yourself a business. If you do what feels good in the moment instead, you’ll have short term pleasure but no business.
The truth is that it’s getting comfortable doing it when you don’t feel like it that will lead you to success.
You’re Not Going To Always Feel Like It—And That’s Okay!
The bottom line here is that you need to reframe how you’re thinking about whatever it is you have to do but don’t want to do.
When you don’t feel like it, ask yourself, “why is this a problem?”
You can just not feel like it and do it anyways.
Nothing has gone wrong if you don’t feel like doing something.
I see so many clients make not feeling like it mean something—that they should stop, slow down, or take a break.
Remember, discomfort is the currency to your dreams
Want to design your dream life? Get used to feeling uncomfortable.
“Not feeling like it” is part of the process. It doesn’t have meaning until you give it meaning.
You are going to feel bad 50% of the time—yes 50%.
How do I know? Because the world was designed this way. There is good and bad. There always has been and always will be.
When you think that it shouldn’t be this way, you are arguing with reality.
Just because you don’t feel like it right now doesn’t mean anything until you give it meaning. And it’s not even a problem until you make it a problem.
You’ll feel positive and negative emotion throughout your entire life—right now and on the other side of your goals.
I bring this up here because so many people come to me with a problem in their business or with their goals and they want my help. It’s not long before I realize there’s no problem at all—they’re just unwilling to experience the negative emotion and keep moving forward.
They think it should feel good.
PSA: pursuing your dreams doesn’t feel good and a lot of the time, you’re not going to feel like doing it.
Want New Results? Get Used To Doing It When You Don’t Feel Like It
If you want to make money, if you want to build a business, if you want to lose weight… basically, if you want any type of success in life, you have to set a goal, then take massive action until you achieve it.
This means when “you don’t feel like it,” do it anyways.
This means you incorporate a loving discipline into your life.
You cannot listen to how you feel in the morning right before you’re supposed to get to work on your email sequence and decide that you’re going to do something else because you just don’t feel like it today—or because the last email you sent wasn’t working for you—or for anything else.
You have to have structure and constraint in your life.
- Listen to this amazing podcast on constraint to see exactly how to do this.
You have to follow the rules you put in place.
This is how you get more freedom. By following through even when you don’t feel like it.
A Final Note!
You get to decide how you feel about your goals, about your day, about your life.
Of course, it’s hard.
Of course, you don’t feel like it.
Building a business is hard.
Don’t wish it was easier. Wish you were stronger.
You can do hard things.
Why can’t you do something even when you don’t feel like it?
You can. You’re strong enough.
These are choices and attitudes.
What you will realize is what makes things difficult is the way you think about it. What makes it something you don’t feel like doing is the way you’re thinking about it.
Change your thinking so you do feel like it, or don’t feel like it but do it anyways.
When you don’t feel like it, nothing has gone wrong. It’s a thought. It’s your brain. And it’s okay.
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