Sometimes it’s necessary to suffer to get what you want.
I understand this sounds crazy, but I’m going to teach you a concept called ‘applied suffering’.
It was something that I already knew, but to hear somebody as successful as Will Smith speak about it made me realise that this is a concept I can completely understand as I’ve done this in my own life for a long time.
To begin to understand this, you first need to know that there’s a difference between pain and suffering.
Pain is inevitable. You will not go through your life without some pain, whatever it is, a heartbreak, a death of someone that you love, or getting screwed over by a business partner, you can’t get through this life unscathed, it’s impossible. The pain will happen and there’s nothing that you can do about it.
Suffering, on the other hand, is not inevitable. Suffering is an option. It is optional to suffer.
My father passed away when I was 15 years old and that was an extremely painful event, but suffering would mean that after 19 years, it’s still holding me back.
Do you see the difference?
So how do we use applied suffering to grow?
Pain is the stimulus for a human to grow. It tells the body and the brain to take action and to move on.
If you put your hand on a hot stove, that immediate pain is a stimulus for your body to move into action, to change, and not go back to the same pain.
But if you go to the gym, you work out and you put yourself through pain, through applied suffering, that is a stimulus for your body to grow.
It’s forcing your body to grow, change, move and take action!
I always say that the universe speaks to you in a whisper, that’s why it’s good to meditate, to be quiet, and to ask yourself what you need. This is when you get ideas and realise the things you may need to change. If you don’t listen to it, it begins to get louder, and louder until eventually, the universe smacks you with something huge, like a car crash to wake you up. We usually have to get that universal wake up call because we’re too busy being stuck inside of our comfort zones and we become addicted to it.
People fear to be uncomfortable and will do almost anything they can to avoid discomfort. We usually have to get that universal wake up call because we’re too busy being stuck inside of our comfort zones and we become addicted to our comfort zones.
You know where you currently are. You’re safe, you’re alive, but it’s probably not where you want to be. You want more, right?
And so you have to rise. There’s a part of your brain called the amygdala which creates fear. Even though you consciously know by stepping out of your comfort zone that you’re not going to die, your amygdala will still create all of these fears.
We try to stay in these comfort zones for safety because our brain is designed to do one thing and that’s to keep us alive. If you can understand the way that your brain works and why it works the way that it does, you can use it to your advantage versus having it hold you back.
Your comfort zone is where your dreams go to die.
Everything that you want, the life, the people that you want to impact, the relationships, the money, the house, the cars, the clothes, the success, whatever it is that you want is outside of that comfort zone. You’ve got to decide between either staying in that comfort zone and dying exactly the way that you are now, or push yourself out of that comfort zone to create the life that you want knowing that the amygdala, is going to create fear to try and keep you there.
So what you need to do is not listen to the fear and to embrace the discomfort. The discomfort is your friend. It is built for you to push through because through pushing, and through creating that pain through applied suffering, you will come out stronger and better. You will be a bigger, better version of yourself, and when you’re a bigger, better version of yourself, you can show up for the world in a much better way.
If you want to build more muscle, you’ve got to suffer through the gym sessions consistently.
If you want to be more productive in your day, you’ve got to get out of bed when that alarm goes off.
If you want to build the life of your dreams, you’ve got to stop listening to that voice that tells you not to do it.
Here’s what to do
I want to leave you with a couple of questions and I’m going to give you an assignment that I want you to try which will help you push past this discomfort. It’s really fun, you’ll love it!
1. Is it going to kill me? No. So should I listen to this little voice? No.
2. Can this help me grow? Asking for that raise, going to the gym, pushing past the point of discomfort.
So if the first answer is no and the second is yes, then you need to go full force into whatever it is and you need to seek the discomfort.
I want you to do something today that makes you 100% uncomfortable.
1. I want you to either lay down inside in some store for 30 seconds and then stand up and walk away.
2. Ask for 20% off and have absolutely no reason why because most people are afraid of doing it.
I’ve had people send me pictures or videos of them laying down in Walmart, Starbucks, all these different coffee shops.
We’re trying to train you to seek discomfort, to understand that discomfort is your friend through applied suffering. It’s forcing you to find growth when growth might not even be necessary.