I hate feeling uncomfortable, don’t you? It’s such an awkward feeling. I’ve felt so much discomfort in my life in the last week.
So you know what happens when you tell the world that you’re a Phoenix rising from the ashes, don’t you? That’s what I said in last week’s episode.
Well, before I dive in to tell you what actually happened, let me remind you. Being called a Phoenix rising from the ashesis recognition of a spiritual and emotional rebirth that leaves you stronger, smarter and more powerful after a catastrophe. I resonated with this because I’ve been through the fire! And just when I thought I was going down in flames, I rose from the ashes.
But here’s what happened. Because I know that taking a stand spiritually and stepping into your God-given gifts and power is a threat to the adversary - Satan - I know he jumps into action to throw you off course, to discourage you, to make you question your declaration. And that’s exactly what he did. Just as I started making a move forward into something new, I got real uncomfortable. And he used that opportunity to make me question myself and the direction God was leading me. Sometimes he uses people to cause a disturbance. But mainly, he just plants ideas in our head and we just run with it. He knows we’re emotional beings that can easily slip into our own mess-making. Just a suggestion will do.
So here’s the kind of mess that I made, all on my own. All kinds of messages started running though my head, “Who are you to have Another Beautiful Life, really? Who are you to step into something new, and great, and big? Who are you to actually build an exciting, beautiful life for yourself? What will people think of you? You’d better stay small and hidden. Surely that’s the “Christian like” thing to do.” And because I was questioning myself - my new “Phoenix rising from the ashes” self - thanks to the enemy, I was having a difficult time managing my brain around all of this. Yes, this is what I teach as a Life Coach. But being a Life Coach doesn’t exempt me from having a human brain that goes nuts sometimes. That’s why I have a coach, too. We all need one. Well, all of us with human brains, anyway.
I was feeling all the emotions this past week. Yes, every single one of them. All 27 of them. I think 27 is the latest count of the basic human emotions expanded edition. And I ran through them all in a single week. All the confusion, and doubt, and fear, and resentment. But feeling emotions, allowing ourselves to truly feel emotions and not resisting them, is what makes us truly alive. It is the aliveness of the human experience. And it is our willingness to feel even the most uncomfortable emotions that makes us grow.
In our survival mode, our brains want to avoid pain, discomfort, feeling rejection, fear, etc. and that keeps us in status quo. Stepping into opportunities to experience and feel even the negative emotions allows me the chance to have mastery over them. To practice mastery over them on purpose. And if I find that emotions, like fear and doubt, won’t and can’t kill me, then when I step into the God-lead plan for my life that seems big and scary because of the unknowns, then I can remember that fear and doubt can’t kill me and I’ll take one more step forward towards that plan. And then I’m more likely to take one more step…possibly towards a goal that I originally thought was impossible. But if I haven’t been willing to face fear and doubt; if I’ve resisted or ignored processing those emotions, then when the time comes to step out in faith in something that I know I’m called to, I’ll likely shrink back because my brain is trying to keep me safe. Stay the same. In its survival mode, it thinks staying the same is safe. Even when it isn’t.
But discomfort is exactly what’s necessary in order to move forward. Why? Comfort doesn’t change you. Discomfort is the currency of your dreams. What does that mean? Well, discomfort makes us move. Discomfort is a noun and is literally something that makes us feel uncomfortable. Maybe it’s our finances, or a relationship, our job, or a source of stress in our life. Whatever it is, we don’t like the discomfort we’re in, so we move towards change of some sort. It becomes the motivator to get us to change. And I believe God uses discomfort in our lives to do just that. To move us where He wants us to be.
But be aware, making a change can lead us right into feeling uncomfortable again. Because, remember, it was my initial decision to step into the newness of a phoenix rising from the ashes, and making some changes in my life to reflect that newness that brought about the initial discomfort. So, discomfort doesn’t just move us. It changes us. When you’re making a change, you actually have to step into the uncomfortable in order to learn something new or to put yourself in a position of newness; to venture out into the unknown so that you can see exactly what you’re made of. But if you refuse, if you choose to stay where it’s comfortable, you for sure will stay in the status quo. And let me just be clear here. You can be comfortable in one area of your life and have complete discomfort in another. And here’s where you get to decide if moving from the discomfort is what you want to do. And good for you if where you are in life is so great that you’d choose for nothing whatsoever to change. But for most of us, change of some kind is desirable because of some kind of discomfort in our lives.
Let me show you how this all played out for me. So, when I stepped into this belief that I was rising up out of the ashes into something new, and powerful, and God-designed, I started making moves towards building something on that foundation. Then the suggestion of doubt came in, and all the questions, and I just spiraled and fell into a funk. I’m wondering if anyone listening can relate. Our brains can sabotage us so quickly. Remember, it really likes staying in the status quo because it wants to avoid pain, and change is painful according to the brain. So, of course, when I entertained one little doubt, my brain said, “Yep, Tricia, that’s right. Maybe we ought to just not make any new changes and just back it up a little bit.” Silly brain.
Sadly the brain is very convincing…and persistent. And when I fell into a funk, I stayed there a few days - questioning myself, beating myself up. Yep, this is the human primal brain on full display. The executive brain - the part of the brain where all our decision making comes from, that part that says to you, “Yeah, go for it. You can do it. You’re strong and capable. You are made for this and you have beautiful purpose to fulfill in this life.” - that part is fighting hard to win some air space in your head. That week of the emotional highs and lows, I felt like there was a tug-of-war going on in my brain. Fortunately, my executive brain reminded me that if I fell into a funk, I could get myself out. Because here’s the truth, and I’ve said it over and over again in this podcast: We are responsible for our own emotions, and if we don’t like how we’re experiencing our life, then we get the chance to change our thinking….which changes everything. And that’s exactly what I did. Yeah, it took some work. Those old messages that were trying to keep me down and small have been around a long time. But leaning in to God’s truth about who I am and what He’s designed for me to do, I was able to create new thoughts that changed how I felt, which, in turn have changed the way I do things in order to move forward, to step into what God is calling me to do.
Friend, this is the freedom that He wants for all his daughters (actually all of His children), but this is the freedom He wants you to experience so that you are in a position to be living out your God-designed purpose. If you’re bound by unwillingness to make a move in your discomfort, or are unwilling to let uncomfortableness change you, you will miss it. You will never see the fullness of your divine life’s purpose. And God wants you free, my friend. For His glory and for your good.
Friend, if you’re struggling in your discomfort and would like some help in getting some clarity in taking the next steps to freedom and your life’s purpose, I’d love to help you and be your Life Coach.
I’ve put a link in the show notes for a free 30-minute call just so we can see if we’re a good fit to work together and show you how Life Coaching would work for you.
Okay, have a purpose-filled week everyone. See you next Wednesday for the next episode of Another Beautiful Life podcast.
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