Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Radical Discomfort

Sometimes, if you really want something to change in your life, you have to be willing to do something radical. You have to step out and make the big hairy audacious move. You have to step up and roll the hard six.

I don't mean merely stepping out of your comfort zone; I'm talking about taking a running leap beyond the rim, and diving toward your hope like a tern or gannet plunging out of its native sky into the alien ocean below.

Sometimes, Life asks big things of us. Scary things. Radically uncomfortable things. And thank God it happens, because in those moments of stark, distilled clarity, you simply can't hide anymore behind a wish and a dream. You can't fool yourself with elaborate plans and magical thinking. All of your well-conceived pretension fails you...because that thing you want -- that dream or longing or hunger deep down in your gut that you keep saying is the most important thing, is the thing you can't live without, is the thing you'd give anything for -- it calls your bluff. It calls to you from across the canyon of your resistance and says, "I'm right here. You want me? Come and claim me."

When that moment comes, you know it's time to either play or get out of the game. It's time to do something radical. You either go Evil Knievel on this thing or put away the rhinestone leather body suit and go home...Go home, and settle for the life you've got, just the way things are. Stop pretending that you're ever going to leap that chasm. It's far too uncomfortable. It costs too much on all sorts of levels. It's unreasonable.

Yes. Unreasonable.

I wonder how many people have missed the joy they could have had because they were just too reasonable?
  • What is that thing you've been longing for for way too long?
  • What is the radical act, the running leap outside your comfort zone, the unreasonable decision that you would do if you were absolutely fearless and knew you could not fail?
  • How long will you stand on the edge of the chasm between where you are and where you want to be and hope that somebody, somewhere builds you a bridge?
Maybe it's time for you to embrace some radical discomfort in your life.
Maybe it's time you shoot the finger at your own fear and take the daring leap toward your heart's desire.
Maybe it's time you really honestly counted the cost of that thing you want, and...just...pay it.
Maybe it's time you stopped waiting for it to be easy, and jumped.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

How did you answer your own questions? What "unreasonable decision that you would do if you were absolutely fearless and knew you could not fail?" have you made? What has looked you in the eye and boldly dared you to come and get it?

Please answer your own questions for us.

(Wait...you own a rhinestone body suit?!?!)

Lisa @ illuminatephotos.com said...

michael, great blog! ok, now i ask this only because we just discussed it in bible study this morning and it's at the forefront of my mind...

where in your opinion do you draw the line from something being a healthy longing or hunger, the thing you can't live without to it being an idol?

i learned this morning that ken sande in his book "the peace maker" defines "idol" as "when a desire has become so strong it controls our thoughts and behavior" and he says that you can tell when a desire is ruling your heart by how you react when that desire isn't met.

i was just curious to get your take on this. =)

Michael D. Warden said...

Hey Anon,

Thanks so much for your curiosity--I'm honored, truly! But I'm going to keep this one close to the vest.

Thanks, though, for asking.

(and no, I don't own a rhinestone body suit. It's a metaphor, people!)