There’s a hidden side of pain which most people don’t realize. It’s a little benefit known as rapid growth. By default, we run away from painful activities and experiences. However, once you realize that a certain kind of pain actually improves your life significantly, you’ll begin to crave it.
This time, I want to show you the good side of pain and encourage you to leave your comfort zone for good, because once you do, amazing things will happen in your life.
If you never really ran regularly before and you suddenly commit to becoming a runner, your first workouts will be extremely hard. Your calves will burn and your mind will scream, begging you to stop. The good news is it gets easier. Except you need to do it repeatedly, and that’s the hard part.
Running isn’t only about staying in shape and living an active life, although that’s a habit that pays off every single time. Running is also a metaphor for going through hard times in life without giving up once you feel uncomfortable or like you are unable to keep going.
If you are able to complete your run, even if it’s painful and you’d rather give up, you’ll learn how to bite the bullet and survive once life throws you some huge obstacles.
“ […] When you’re running, there’s a little person that talks to you and says, ‘Oh I’m tired. My lung’s about to pop. I’m so hurt. There’s no way I can possibly continue.’ You want to quit. If you learn how to defeat that person when you’re running. You will learn how to not quit when things get hard in your life. […]”
2. Lifting weights.
When you start lifting weights consistently, you’ll experience the real power of commitment. You’ll also experience the power of tiny gains. At first, you will struggle with every single exercise, but as you get back to the gym over and over again, you’ll get stronger and stronger. Keep in mind that transformation never happens overnight. Actually, that’s another invaluable life lesson you get from lifting iron. Patience.
Working out strengthens your body, improves your self-esteem and confidence, as well as boosting your health. I could talk about other countless benefits for hours, but that’s not the point. The message I want to deliver is that in contrast to sitting in a cubicle, lifting weights is something your body will be grateful for.
It may be painful and uncomfortable; however, the feeling of accomplishment after finishing a workout, as well as long-term benefits, are worth all that sweat.
“The best activities for your health are pumping and humping.”
3. Taking a cold shower.
I’ve been doing it for months now. It’s one of the best habits I’ve developed. The beginning was painful, but over time it gets a little bit easier. That said, the freezing cold water remains that way no matter how many days go by. And that’s the beauty of it.
When you let the cold water run down your body, you start to panic, and want to stop it immediately. However, before you do it, realize that this pain is fictional. It’s not a real pain. You don’t actually suffer at all. It’s just a vein of discomfort which make you feel alive.
Taking a cold shower tests your ability to experience short-term discomfort in order to achieve long-term success. This is a skill which separates the extraordinary individuals from the average crowd.
I guarantee you, and it’s not a vain promise, but something based on real life experience: if you begin taking cold showers, your life will improve in many unexpected areas.
“Cold shower therapy makes you invincible. No lie. After your first few five minute face-offs with the shower, nothing can stop you.”
4. Organizing your life in advance.
Successful people don’t live on the spur of the moment. Now, don’t get me wrong, it’s not that they are boring. They know exactly what they expect from their lives and what it takes to get there. Pursuing this path requires some strategic planning in advance.
Whatever your goal is, it won’t become a reality by accident. Every success you see is a result of sustained planning and taking action. I won’t lie: it’s painful and uncomfortable. Instead of proceeding, we run to distractions, procrastinate, and come up with thoughts that prevent us from leaving our comfort zone.
However, if you want to become successful, you need to go through that pain. It doesn’t pay off immediately, but it definitely pays off forever.
“Failing to plan is planning to fail.”
5. Eating healthy.
Let me clarify, healthy meals are way tastier than fast food and you’ll absolutely enjoy eating them. The painful part is sticking to preparing them and refusing to eat crap when the opportunity arrives.
Your body is your biggest asset. Most people don’t truly realize it. This is why you see so many smokers, overweight or obese people, and other living examples of health-destroying tendencies.
If you take the time to learn about nutrition and put only high-quality foods on your plate, you’ll make your future self a huge favor.
“There’s nothing more important than our good health — that’s our principal capital asset.”
Featured photo credit: U.S. Naval Forces Central Command via flickr.com