There are two components to becoming a more resilient person and learning to play nice with the uncomfortable things in life. The first is very specific: becoming acclimatized to an environment or used to doing a certain action that was previously uncomfortable for you. The other part is the meta-skill: getting used to the feeling of discomfort, regardless of what is causing the feeling.
For example, one challenge I did to work on my conversational skills was to talk to at least one random person a day. That could be the barista at Starbucks, the server bussing my table or a stranger I’m sitting next to on the train.
Initially, I did this to learn to converse with different kinds of people and to get used to approaching strangers. That is the first part of becoming a more resilient person: getting used to doing a certain action. But as I got over the feeling of anxiety and awkwardness of approaching people, I realized that I had also started saying this script in my head whenever I was faced with an uncomfortable situation: Nah, this isn’t too bad. I did it once with social skills, I can do it again here. And this is when I realized that I had learned the meta-skill of resiliency, as well: I had become used to the general feeling of discomfort.
Without knowing it, I’d hit two birds with one stone.
I wonder how many more things in life are like that – skills that seem straightforward on the surface but when you apply yourself to them, you end up coming away with lessons that apply to other areas of life?
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