A while back I rolled my eyes at this thinking that statement doesn’t apply to me at all. Now I say this as a reminder about how I want to live my life.
About four years ago it hit me that I was living on autopilot.
I was complacent in my health, my relationships, my home, in everything. I was just letting life happen to me. Then I complained about how crappy it was.
Why was I stuck on autopilot?
I never opened my eyes to my responsibility to be the guide in my life. I just was going through the motions. Fixing breakfast, getting my husband and children out the door, cleaning up the house, running errands, grocery shopping and the like. The autopilot was easy because it was familiar, it was comfortable.
The cost of autopilot living
When we are on autopilot we are asleep to where we have control in our live. We go through the motions without really feeling anything. How can we use this control to build up our lives we want to live.
We live on default we spend our daily lives in a cycle of voiding pain and seeking pleasure. It’s the easiest way to get through the day.
We make decisions every day to stay comfortable, but in this comfort,we are not really pursuing the life we crave, the things that would make our life fruitful. We aren’t taking action that we feel deeply proud of. We are just getting through the day.
We aren’t doing much to feel deep satisfaction.
We aren’t feeling happy
Here is where we have let ourselves down, we think that it is normal to always be happy. We think something is wrong with us if we’re unhappy or those around us are unhappy.
When we feel unhappy about feeling unhappy we double down on unhappiness. At this point, most of us turn to little ways to make us feel better and avoid feeling that ick feeling. We turn to the nearest available indulgence, a easy hit. We turn to food, drink, social media, complaining, judging, and shopping.
I have to admit shopping is my pet peeve. If I’m feeling ick, I go clothes shopping and it makes me happy for a little while.
What do we turn to make us feel better and more comfortable? Is it serving us? Is it life giving or, ultimately making our lives harder?
We might be choosing ways of seeking comfort that are actually making us more uncomfortable in the long run. Habits, addictions, sneak eating in the pantry, pulling away from others. These things do not make our lives better, the usually make them harder.
Living a life that fulfills us feels authentic, and life giving is an uncomfortable thing to get. In my experience, it is uncomfortable to muster up bravery, to make hard decisions, to make a commitment rather that being in comfort and do the hard work rather than looking for the easy way out.
Avoiding discomfort keeps us stuck which can sometimes be more painful that experiencing the discomfort itself.
What happens when we keep avoiding the discomfort of showing up for our life?
We tend to tune out our emotional self and lose touch with how we are feeling and base our happiness on our children or people around us, if they are happy then we must be happy. But, then we wonder why others tune us out.
We can develop a low tolerance for we are really feeling, “I shouldn’t be unhappy every one around me is happy.” We tend to numb out our negative feelings which can cause bad habits we feel shame over.
We spend a lot of energy avoiding negative feelings and it burns us out which makes us feel crappier. This can go on for years until we just cannot take any more. We have stuffed those crappy feeling down inside of us, until we are so full of negativity sooner our later it has to come out.
We just kinda stop showing up for life because it isn’t happy and we are so bummed out that our life isn’t what we want it to be. we stop caring about ourselves, we feel as though it can’t go on.
Over the years, I’ve learned to practice being uncomfortable. I’ve taken positions that I’ve not felt sure about, I’ve started speaking in church, I’ve talked on radio stations about organizations I’m involved with. That I was to uncomfortable with before. I’ve put myself out there.
I wanted to live my life as it was, negative and uncomfortable feeling and all rather than living a comfortable life.
Pay attention to your life and how your feeling. Negative and positive. Step out of your comfort and head to the uncomfortable place. Live your life and feel your feelings as you were meant to.
Make a list of the things you tried to avoid or have avoided because they make you uncomfortable. Then when an opportunity comes jump on it.