Thursday, August 8, 2013

Sit with discomfort

Six weeks without chocolate? I didn't think I could do it. But one year I decided to try going without something I really liked during Lent. Since I'm a dedicated chocoholic, that was my (tough!) choice.

I did it. That was several years ago, so I don't recall now just how painful it was. I don't think it was awful, however. But then I knew that there was an end to my deprivation in sight: I could do it for six weeks.

Last month I read a blog by someone who is giving up something different each month for a year. In a recent blog, he spoke of his month without coffee and what he learned. One thing really struck me: He talked about sitting through the strong urge to grab a cup of coffee—of feeling it and, as he said, "sitting in discomfort." He said, "Sitting in discomfort, allowing yourself to feel it, is a great learning experience."

Indeed, I'm sure it is. I'm really thinking about what that would be like, whether it relates to something I want to eat or drink—or to some habit I'm trying to change or behavior I'm wanting to transform. I want to learn to be with the discomfort, to feel it, to see what I can learn from the experience of discomfort.

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