The Paradox of Comfort


a state or situation in which you are relaxed and do not have any mentally or physically unpleasant feelings

Comfort is a funny thing. In small doses it allows us to recover and marshal our resources, but in excess it can become crippling. Most of us unwittingly allow unhealthy levels of comfort into our life. This typically presents as settling for comfort at the expense of putting up with some level of discomfort to help us grow.

The truth is that actively pursuing resistance makes us stronger. Friction and resistance mark the boundary between our current ability level and our potential. Challenging our boundaries extends their borders, thereby expanding the field of possibilities available to us. Where there was once a boundary, now there is newfound strength of character and capability in its place.

This principle applies to every aspect of our lives, including exercise and diet. If we don’t have access to motivation, we can manufacture it. When we are tempted to make poor choices we can summon the force of will to overcome the seduction of complacency. You can contend with the familiarity of comfort when you should be exerting mental or physical effort over an aspect of your life you want to improve. With practice, over time, we can make discomfort and resistance our allies.

Here are a couple of questions to consider.

  • What are some of the habits you wish you had?
  • Can you identify a few areas of your life that you want to improve?

All of our aspirations depend on sacrifice and discomfort. We have access to the same 168 hours each week, yet those who continually reach and strive to get out of their comfort zone are able to achieve much more with their time. The greatest gift we can give the world and everyone we meet along the way is the gift of self-improvement.

In conclusion, the paradox of comfort means something different to each of us. The question is, how can you best apply the virtue of welcoming discomfort in your own life? Personally, I see opportunity for growth and challenge in little moments. I embrace being cold or hot. I work out late or early, often outside in the dark. I read when I would rather watch television. I write when I would rather not. Each moment offers a chance to step over our smaller self and closer to our more ideal self.

Have a good week, and FULLY get after it.

Shane Niemeyer is the Director of Wellness Services at The Redpoint Center, a drug and alcohol rehabilitation facility in Longmont Colorado. The Redpoint Center specializes in helping those suffering from alcoholism and addiction in Colorado to create a compelling vision for their future that encompasses recovery and sobriety. Each participant at The Redpoint Center has the opportunity to work with Shane both individually and in a group setting.

If you or a loved one is struggling with alcohol addiction, drug addiction, Mental Health problems, The Redpoint Center is here to help. The Redpoint Center treats both adults and youth struggling with addiction and alcohol. To learn more about our Longmont Drug Rehab, call 888-509-3153.

We are here to help.


The Redpoint Center
1375 Kenn Pratt Blvd
Suite 300
Longmont, CO, 80501

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