I’m finding myself in a lazy summer morning routine – sleeping late, relaxing with the paper and coffee – then shoving off for work. I took the long way to the office today which entails running East away from downtown and up to the top of Mt Tabor, then down the back of the park, over to Laurelhurst park and onto the regular cycle commute route over the Burnside bridge into downtown. It’s 8.5 miles, starts with a nice climb and then rolls mostly downhill all the way to downtown. It’s nice running trails like a wild animal on the way into the office. The inbound run is always fun. Outbound with wet clothes and tired legs sucks.
On my run I was mentally preparing a deep philosophical treatise on ‘being uncomfortable’ and how good it is for you. e.g. “I didn’t mean to make you feel uncomfortable, but actually I did… mean to.”
It was amazing and inspirational — I was going to write about how everyone should do something to get out of their comfort zone each day and it will become easier and easier and how great it will make you feel. When I got to my desk I tried to write it down and I bogged down in a distinction between being physically uncomfortable or mentally uncomfortable (which is really just fear), or emotionally uncomfortable (which is something else). And couldn’t get past the distinction between the three types. I thought of examples of being physically uncomfortable which were really just physical exhaustion, mentally uncomfortable (some climbing examples).
Then it just devolved into a litany of things I’ve done over the years where I was just really terrified… stories of misadventures in the mountains (they were really adventures). In the end I’m not sure what I actually meant about being uncomfortable — maybe something about breaking out of habits, trying something new and dreaming big dreams (that are worthy of your time and attention).
A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. — ‘Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.’ — Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Something like that, well stated by someone much more eloquent than I.
I *cannot believe* I was able to 808 State my average. Amazing.
This was uncomfortable.
2 thoughts on “Lazy Summer”
I think you’re spot on about forcing yourself into uncomfortable spots being a good thing for your life, both physically and mentally. There were / have been a couple places online / in books recently where I specifically pulled out that word because we do naturally lean toward comfortable, what we know, what we’ve already done, etc..:
a) http://www.x-journal.com/member/ericlars/?xjMsgID=261854 –> “One of my favorite authors, Sigurd Olsen, used the term ‘Lighting Out’ to describe the physical act of leaving the comfort and convenience of modern civilization and heading out into the wilderness. For some, purposefully putting yourself in uncomfortable situations seems ridiculous at best. But for me, Lighting Out only brings a sense of tranquility. I love the simplicity of wilderness travel.”
b) from the book about Pat Tillman (Where Men Win Glory: The Odyssey of Pat Tillman) –> “… I think you’ve got to get out of your comfort zone. If you’re kind of comfortable all the time — it’s like you’re skiing and you’re not falling, you’re not trying. I kind of want to push myself, a lot.”
Surprised there’s not a book out there already on the subject.
I really like the ‘lighting out’ concept. I’m pausing to think about what I want to do next after the last race I did… I won’t spray anything before I do it; but I’m researching PLB’s.