In the pursuit of our dreams, it's easy to get caught up on the idea that growth and success will always feel good. Growth doesn't always look or feel shiny, despite what social media might have us believe.
Certainly, we want to prioritize joy, but building a life of your dreams will likely require a greater capacity than you currently have. The stretch towards those dreams builds bandwidth. Just like stretching the body, creating bandwidth requires consistent motion just beyond our comfort zone followed by a willingness to be still as we learn to tolerate being there.
"Follow your bliss" was wise advice from Joseph Campbell, but there is also an easily overlooked truth that to sustain and integrate growth: we must learn how to increase our tolerance for discomfort and pain.
What we resist, persists.
Discomfort is a sign to slow down and pay attention. Often it is our resistance to pain or discomfort that is scarier than the actual pain itself. Some seasons are simply asking that we embrace the suck and when we do, as if by magic, the intensity begins to ease and there we are back in joy-- or at least greater ease. This is the power of surrender.
Mapping out and aligning with our values takes time. It takes endurance and consistent showing up for the sucky moments, a belief that we deserve joyous ones and a willingness to survey everything in between. It requires our attention and compassion and a level of patience we likely haven't cultivated yet.
Regardless of where you are today, take a breath and know that it's all building the bandwidth that will serve future you in ways you never could have foreseen.