In business and in life there are a handful of simple truths that, when we REMEMBER them, make whatever we're doing SIMPLER.
For me the most powerful and useful of these simple truths is this: it's uncomfortable.
Growing a business, owning a business, succeeding in business is not for the faint of heart because it IS uncomfortable.
And it's MOST uncomfortable when we forget that the discomfort that comes with growing, changing, doing new things, challenging ourselves, and evolving is NORMAL.
In this episode of UNcomplicating Business we're going to talk about how to SIMPLIFY growth by normalizing being uncomfortable.
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Welcome to Uncomplicated Business for Teachers Helpers and Givers. This is episode two in season two, and I am your host, Sara Torpey. I am a business coach. And I am the host of both this podcast and a free Facebook group by the same name called uncomplicated business for teachers helpers and givers. You are welcome in both places, we're glad to have you in either. And if you are interested in coaching, come on to my website, it's called Torpey coaching.com. And let's talk about that. Today on the podcast, we are going to do the first and what I think is going to be an occasional series called simple truths. Today's the first episode and the simple truth series. And the first simple truth that I want to talk about is that it's uncomfortable. So in what I find is that in business in life, there are just these things that we know to be true. These very simple truths as I think of them. And what happens to us is that we forget them, right? Have you ever had an instance where like, oh, gosh, you know what it's, if I would only just remember that it always works like this, right? So when we remember, these simple truths, what happens is it makes, excuse me, everything we're doing simpler. For me, the most powerful of the simple truths that, you know, as a business owner has been most impactful for me, over and over and over and over and over and over again, is that it's uncomfortable. And when I say it's uncomfortable, what I mean is, all of the things that we do as business owners, all of them, I mean, and honestly, the vast majority of things, excuse me, the vast majority of things that I do, even as a parent, are uncomfortable. So in business, particularly, but just what this podcast is about, there's a lot of things in the world that are growing a business, owning a business, succeeding in business, that are just not things that are for the faint of heart. They're just not like no one goes lightly into entrepreneurship. I think sometimes people do and then they're like, Oh, my God, no, get me out of here. I just had a conversation with a new client the other day, who had a business partner for a while, who then finally looked around and was like, You know what, this is not for me, this is too uncomfortable. But I think one of the real tricks of business particularly, is that we make ourselves more uncomfortable, because we forget that it's supposed to be uncomfortable. Right? Like, let me say that again, we make ourselves more uncomfortable, because we forget that the discomfort that comes with growing and changing and doing new things, and challenging ourselves and evolving is normal, we forget. And so what happens is when we get uncomfortable, we look around and we're like, oh crap, what did I do wrong? I see this in a weird way in my math students all the time. Because sometimes when we do algebra, or we do other kinds of math problems, you get to the end of the problem, and you get an answer that is, you know, not a whole number, or is a contradiction of some sort. Sometimes you get to the end of an equation, and it's zero equals 27. The one when students run into something like that in a math classroom context, they immediately assume they've done something wrong. They forget that that's a possible answer that it could just be the answer is not typical, or round or simple. And so one of the things I want to talk about today is how to simplify growing, by normalizing the fact that this just really is uncomfortable sometimes. So here's a couple of things to think about. First. It is really useful to learn to notice your own discomfort. This is easier said than done. But I think one of the most powerful things that I've done for myself as a business owner is learn to notice when I'm like I think about it as Gucci, like when I'm wiggling in my chair in discomfort when I talking to somebody and you know, I'm going to have to make them an offer, I'm going to have to say a price, I'm going to have to do something new. And it's like making my heart beat a little faster. It's making me a little sweaty, it's making me fidget. And, you know, sometimes I think, especially when we are early in business, those things happen to us. And we don't realize they're going on. We don't have the ability right away to step outside of ourselves and be like, Oh, I'm just uncomfortable, and uncomfortable is normal, and then sort of resetting. So I was talking to a client today actually, about an employee she has, and the employee is driving her a little crazy right now. But it's okay. Because what the employee is doing is finding lots of things wrong, that aren't actually wrong. She keeps trying to go back to old ways of doing things that they're no longer using, she keeps trying to find fault with some tools they're using. But the reason she's doing this is because she's growing into a new phase of her role. And it's uncomfortable. So rather than be uncomfortable, she's looking for problems that she can solve. This is a really normal reaction, I find myself doing this all the time, right? I find myself looking for things I can fix in my business when I am uncomfortable, because I feel safer when I'm fixing things, when actually, you know, it's there's nothing broken. I'm just uncomfortable. This happens to you, it happens to me. So in order to notice this, one of the things I did for a long time, in my journal is I like legitimately asked myself what's uncomfortable in my business right now? How am I growing right now? And how is that uncomfortable? And even just lining it out to myself on a pretty regular basis, like I think I did for a long time every couple of days, even weekly, lining it out to myself and being like, Okay, right now, I'm doing a lot of work in trying to be more visible and trying not to judge my own ideas as harshly and writing down that that's uncomfortable right now. And being like, oh, okay, I am doing this on purpose, and it is uncomfortable, makes it much less likely, at least for me. And I've seen this in clients, much less likely for me to find a fault in it when I'm uncomfortable, because I know it's on purpose. So when we step out, and we notice that we're uncomfortable, we can also notice that we're doing something that's making us uncomfortable on purpose. Because really to grow a business, to do something new to choose to do something new, is inherently uncomfortable. Like we don't change by staying safe by staying comfortable. Like that's not that's not how we do new stuff. We know this. And actually, you know, one of the things that helps me sometimes also, in addition is noticing how I talk to other people about when they're uncomfortable. Like my kids, for example, when my daughter is trying something new, I'll say to her, You know what, I totally get it, you're afraid, it feels weird, and you're going to do great. And then of course, I don't offer myself that same kind of grace. So I've really had to practice noticing when I'm uncomfortable, and reminding myself that I'm doing it on purpose. This is this is part of the battle. One of the other things that I think can be really helpful in normalizing this discomfort is making room to just feel it now. Like my coach will listen to this podcast and be like, Oh my god, she hears me. So this is my least favorite thing to do. Because I would just like to make the orderly processes to go through my day and not have to feel the feelings because they're uncomfortable. But creating space, like actual space like space where you don't have 1000 things to do, even if it's 10 minutes to acknowledge and sit in the fact that you're growing. It's uncomfortable. And it's amazing that you're managing to pull it together to do it, that you still show up, even though it's uncomfortable to create the space and the time to acknowledge it, but also kind of sell Bring it, I don't even kinda really celebrate it to be like, Okay, I did this, it's uncomfortable, go me is super helpful. I constantly am like, Okay, I'm going to do this thing. It's really uncomfortable. I'm gonna be really proud of myself when I'm done afterwards, right? Like, I think I have a lot of clients who feel that way about showing up to networking events, it's like, the, the biggest hurdle is going in the door to the event, right? If you're going in person, it's showing up to the zoom. If you're going on Zoom, the biggest hurdle is getting there. And then you're there. And you're like, okay, I'm okay, I did this uncomfortable thing. And afterwards, you're like, Oh, look at me go. But if we don't create the space, to acknowledge and sort of, like, pat ourselves on the back, when we're uncomfortable, we then just continue to carry around this, like growing unease, right, this growing discomfort and we're live Oh, everything is uncomfortable. It's like wearing pants and shoes and a shirt, and a hat that don't fit. Instead of just a pair of shoes that don't fit like a pair of shoes that don't fit well. Okay, you're gonna survive the day. But if every piece of clothing you're wearing doesn't fit well, is a problem, right? Like, if everything you're doing is too tight, it's too small, it's gonna be a really tough day. So it is first noticing, second acknowledging and creating space to like, be in the discomfort. And then the third thing that I think is really, really helpful in normalizing discomfort is reflecting. So when I say this, what I mean is, for me, I think about where I was in business, six months ago, a year ago, two years ago, three years ago. You can even think about it from like yourself as a parent yourself as an employee yourself as a teacher yourself as a whatever. But when you look backwards like that, and you think, okay, and this is how I think about it, I always think, Okay, six months ago, what was I uncomfortable with? A year ago? What made me really uncomfortable? What was really scary three years ago, what was really scary, I'm gonna tell you what, three years ago, the idea of being participating in a Facebook group, let alone having my own was wildly uncomfortable was like never I've ever legitimately told people I would never do either of those things. And today, I proudly and happily in love my Facebook group. I love some of the groups I'm in I love the people I've met, I am not uncomfortable in those places at all anymore. Two years ago, in person networking was not my jam, Zoom networking, hell, like summer 2020, like zoom networking. I was like, Oh, this is the worst thing ever. This makes me so uncomfortable. I would come off of every meeting like literally a pile of sweat. I wouldn't be like soaked through my clothes and be like, such a mess. And today, I show up to those things perfectly happily. But I think being able to look back and going, okay, that made me uncomfortable for a while. And I kept practicing. And I got better at it. Now, it doesn't bother me at all, is a good way to remember that. Yes, we are uncomfortable today doing whatever this new thing we're doing is, but no new thing that we're doing is new forever. Right? No new thing that we're doing is always going to be new. Eventually, it's going to be something we're really good at. We're expert in. We've practiced for a long time. So there's no more need. It doesn't even occur to us to be uncomfortable with it anymore. Because we're comfortable. We found our way to comfort. So reminding myself looking backwards to remind myself that I'm going to find my way to comfortable. It just takes being uncomfortable for a little while to get there is really useful. In so I think that's really it. For this episode, what I want you to walk away with is just knowing that you're not the only one that gets uncomfortable. We're all out here changing and growing and in like uncomfortable is uncomfortable. Like sometimes it's like ghoul so much. And it takes a lot of it doesn't even always take a lot of time to do the uncomfortable things. It takes a lot of like emotional bandwidth and willpower, right? It's like gearing yourself up to do that thing. That's going to take two minutes but it took a lot of gearing up. That is totally normal. Please know that your level of discomfort doesn't mean you don't belong here. It means you're doing it right. It means you're challenging yourself. It means you're evolving means you're growing. You know, when kids are growing and they're getting taller, they call them growing pains for a reason their legs and their arms literally hurt. Sometimes that's what happens when we're growing in business two, we just forget that growing sometimes doesn't feel awesome, right? My one of my kids is like growing pains in his legs right now. And he's so complainy about it. But like, it's just part of the process of him getting taller, he's going to end up being like 14 feet tall at the rate he's going. But that's a whole nother story. So for you, this discomfort you're never alone in, we're all in it with you. And part of making it less uncomfortable for yourself is noticing that it's there, creating space to sit with it and let it be okay. And then remembering that you've done this before, you know how to be uncomfortable and get comfortable with it. You know how to normalize discomfort for yourself, and grow into this new thing. You just got to stick with it. And listen, one of the most powerful ways to grow through discomfort is coaching. Like I say that as somebody who is a coach and works with people on things like this, but I also say that as someone who gets coached, the reason I get coached every week, is because I am wildly uncomfortable with the new things I'm doing. And it really helps me to have someone think them through with me, remind me that everything is normal, and nothing is wrong. Like I regularly tell her to shove it. Because I don't always like hearing it. But at the same time to be able to work with someone who can see inside and go Yeah, it's uncomfortable. But yeah, you're doing great. And here's the data that says that. Here's the next step, here's the next most uncomfortable thing that you're going to be great at. And here's why. And having someone do that planning with me, having someone helped me hold myself accountable, because she can't make me be accountable only I can. But having someone in my corner like standing beside me normalizing discomfort is really really powerful. It is what she does for me, it is what I do for my clients, it is a part of coaching. And if discomfort is stopping you. Instead of you know normal part of growth, it is time to invite someone else into your business. You can work with me in a couple of ways you can join my small group coaching program, which starts the week of October 10. There are a couple of seats left, I think to at this point, but you would just send a message and we will talk about it. You can ask all your questions. And if you say no, you say no, it's not a big deal. Or you can come coach with me one on one. Small group coaching is about learning, getting what you individually need and also learning collaboratively. individualized coaching is really just focused on you. And that's the difference. It depends on you know, what's the best fit for you in the moment and what you need most and like what how you want to handle your discomfort. So, if you're ready to talk about coaching, head to my website, which is Torpeycoaching.com or send me an email I am email@example.com and then please please come into the Facebook group. It's called Uncomplicating Business for Teachers Helpers and Givers. If you love this podcast, we would love love love. I would love love love if you would leave a review or rate it on Apple podcasts or whatever platform you're listening on because that is how people find it. And it is how we do more good for more people. Thank you guys for being a part of this and being with me, and I will see you on the next episode next week.