Time for a pep talk, gang – circle up. No one likes to be comfortable more than I do. I love my sweatpants. Crocs are my go to footwear right now. I have had the same hairstyle since I was 8. But this writing and podcasting thing sure has me stretching my comfort zone these days. 

I have been finding encouragement in weird places and wondered if some of these might help you too. Sometimes we need non-traditional methods to break into our stubborn brains. It is sort of like the unmotivational posters from Despair that remind us to take ourselves a little less seriously in the office. 

Slow Growth

I was watching some science thing and they made a comment that a variance in just one molecule changes the make up of something, technically rendering it a different species. This is a pep talk for Uncomfortable Sue (and maybe Uncomfortable Sue) who feels like she is making progress too slowly. I feel like I should have more readers and listeners by now. I want all the results to be successes, no failures. 

This is magical thinking at its best. But what this science inspirational nugget does is tell me that these small, incremental adjustments do matter – even when I cannot see the progress. You cannot see changes on a molecular level unless you have a microscope. I am sure there are microscopic ways the Sustainable Sue business is growing that I just am not aware of. 

I just need to be patient about the time it is taking. Which leads to the next pep talk for Uncomfortable Sue.

Painful Disconnect 

Glennon Doyle said something on her podcast that made me pull the car over and write it down. The pain is between the knowing and the action. This is why when our insides and outsides are not matching up, we feel uncomfortable and disconnected. Because we are – there is a disconnect between knowing something is wrong and doing something about it. 

The fun part (or “fun” – we are talking about pain after all) is that now that you are aware of this idea, it might even show up more for you. This concept has shown up in my life in big and small ways since I heard it months ago. 

  • Each spring I want to be a woman who grows her own herbs and vegetables, yet I don’t take action on making a plan to prepare the soil and remembering to water the plants.
  • In 2017 I knew something was wrong with the way I was drinking alcohol, but I lied to my counselor for years about it, refused to admit I had a problem, and blamed everyone else for my misery.
  • My digital clutter makes it hard to find files and costs money to store and back up. Although this drives my crazy, when the time block to do something about it pops up I have been dismissing it without taking action. 

The truth is when the pain gets great enough, that is when we will change our behavior. Sometimes it take a long, dang time. But I do believe that you become a truer version of yourself as you get older. We can shed the fears and other obstacles to really learn who you are. 

“Travel far enough, you meet yourself.”

David Mitchell

When you meet the true you, this is when your insides and outsides can start to align. You can become a fully integrated person and this is where the pain is relieved. 

Sustainable You Reflections

  • What do you think is taking too long to get the result you want?
  • What small (even microscopic) changes have you made to move from the knowing?

If this pep talk was helpful for you, I would be grateful if you shared it with a friend who might need some encouragement. 

Until next time remember to create productive results in a way that you can sustain and that sustain YOU.