Original Plan: Touch A Butterfly
Last month my family planned to go to a butterfly garden on this day. I’m terrified of butterflies, so I was going to touch a butterfly for my big finale. However, my family changed their mind and I decided to go with the flow.
New Plan: Cold Water Swim
We were going to the beach. I rarely go in the beach water because I’m always afraid it’s too cold.
Not only do I fear the cold water, but my mother in law assured me that the ocean was cold. And most the most frightening evidence that my discomfort was going to be difficult, was this water temperature report:
Though I didn’t believe this, report, I predicted the water would be cold.
My Thoughts Before The Challenge
I have a feeling that if I go in the water accepting the cold, I could actually have a lot of fun.
This speaks to me more than the butterfly challenge anyways. While the butterfly challenge is more uncomfortable, terrifying even, there are minimal benefits to overcoming a butterfly phobia. Being afraid of butterflies isn’t great. But what’s on the other side of this discomfort? Not much.
On the other hand, what’s on the other side of the discomfort of cold beach water? Possibly a lot of fun.
Discomforts are like bridge trolls. If you can solve the riddle- or if you can manage the discomfort- you often find more benefit on the other side. Often comfort. Meaningful comfort. True comfort; like pure joy or a clear relieved mind.
The best discomfort challenges are unplanned. Facing life head on as it comes. Finding opportunities as they come your way. Taking advantage of life. Living to the fullest in the face of the discomfort.
So I think this challenge will actually be a great finale.
The Key To Dissipating Discomfort
I’m going to give it my all and make sure I feel intentional. The most grueling challenges have been the ones where I half assed them and lost my sense of intention and purpose. I was bound to lose my intention at some point of my 100 day commitment. The grueling result of this intention-less challenges taught me the importance of intention.
Uncle Mark said the key to his success was doing what he loved. If you love what you do, intention comes easy. And when you have intention everything else comes easy. Friction disappears.
Of course, you can foster intention if it’s not there. If you can create intention, that’s the lubricant for action. Purpose. Knowing your “why”. If you lose connection to that, it all becomes hard.
After all the mental prep, the water ended up warm! Shlo came in and joined me. As suspected, we had fun! But unexpectedly, it wasn’t even cold.
We learned a very clear lesson. If you face your fears, you may find that you had nothing to fear in the first place. Many fears aren’t based in reality and keep you from having a good time.