This world is yours, and you can create it to be anything you want it to be. In order to do that you have to learn to be comfortable with the uncomfortable. I have to give it to my sales professor for teaching me this concept; I remember on the first day of class he said “be comfortable with the uncomfortable” as he  explained to us that we would have to  role play in front of the class.

Public Speaking

It’s unnerving to speak in front of a crowd, in fact public speaking is said to be the number one fear of the average person, death being number two. There is a funny clip in Seinfeld where Jerry says “To the average person, if you have to be at a funeral you would rather be in the casket than doing the eulogy.”

Alright maybe it wasn’t THAT funny, but think about how absurd that is!

It’s interesting how irrational our thoughts can be, but there are studies suggesting that social anxiety is actually part of our genetic makeup. Our ancestors had to be careful of what they said in front of people with power. If they were to say the wrong thing they could be thrown out of their tribe, leaving them out in the wilderness to fend for themselves. It sounds weird, but that anxiety is our primal instincts telling us that we are rising above our standards. (notice the key words “rising above”) By getting up and doing a presentation you will have conquered your old self and will have taken a step towards greatness.

Honestly there is nothing to be afraid of when you are speaking in front of a crowd. All those terrible things that you think are going to happen is just your anxiety hitting you. Trust me, no one attending a presentation is going to be a tribe leader looking to leave some food for the wolves. Everyone there knows the pressure of being up in front of a crowd, especially for first timers.

Your heart starts beating fast, your mind is racing, you feel the sweats starting to form… But let me tell you, the feeling of having people clap for you is so rewarding. I mean imagine doing a presentation for a morning class and having your classmates clap for you as you finish. A round of applause to start of my day? Sounds good to me!

A quick tip that I can give you to boost your confidence is to use the “superman pose” before the speech, and even during if you like the power associated with that pose. This pose consist of you standing legs spread apart, hands on hips and head facing forward. Psychological studies have shown how standing in a spread out posture for just two minutes will release testosterone (a hormone associated with power) which will help you convey a sense of confidence and independence. Compared to being in a closed posture such as shoulders hunched and arms crossed, which releases cortisol. (a hormone associated with stress)  *More tips at the end of “Be Comfortable With The Uncomfortable”*

Talking To Strangers, Professors, Interviewers, Your Crush, etc.

It is not always a simple task communicating with certain people, at least that is what our mind causes us to believe. Our mind will begin to fill itself up with a bunch of negative or outlandish thoughts. That is just what our mind is notorious for doing. As the creators of our own lives, we must practice implementing positive thoughts throughout our days. This is especially true during moments where you have to be comfortable with the uncomfortable.

Now what can you do when you have to talk to someone that you feel uncomfortable around? My best advice is to maintain eye contact. That will help you feel like you two are in the spotlight, which will cause you to keep the conversation going rather than shying away from it (lack of eye contact). Sure you might feel weird when you start working towards maintaining eye contact, but think about it, why should you shy away from looking at someone? It’s your world too. And just for clarification purposes, I am not saying to stare people down… Instead, try to mirror how long they hold eye contact. The point of this post is to help you feel comfortable, while respecting others comfort levels as well.

Picking Up A New Skill

This world offers everyone numerous fields to master. It is not essential for us to master everything that we touch, but it is important to feel comfortable enough with trying something new. It is on us to understand that we are going to be amateurs when we pick up a new skill, and that we must be strong enough mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally to not give up.

One thing that I think holds a lot of us back is fear of what other people will think/say. As long as you care what people think/say you will always be under their control. As DJ Khaled would say “stay away from THEY.”

It is important for us to work on freedom from judgement within ourselves, and also to work on towards other people. What I mean by that is that we should go out of our way, and praise new comers for doing something other than staying home all day. If you refrain from judging then everyone will be in a win-win situation, which will help mold us into greatness.

The beauty of it all is that each of us play a role in every area of life. Some of us are novices while others of us are experts, but no matter what skill level you are at, you will always be able to help each other to become better. Remember that we learn to teach and teach to learn.

Tips On How To Be Comfortable With the Uncomfortable

  • Practice deep breathing
    • Make sure that you breathe deeply before and during your uncomfortable situation
  • Acknowledge the anxiety, accept it and continue to act normal
    • Your imagination is working to keep you safe, but sometimes it can be over dramatic
  • Create a happy place in your mind with as much details as possible and go there
    • Great for uncomfortable situations, such as, medical visits
  • Focus on the external world by using your senses (describe your surroundings in detail) and get out of your head
    • If your able to use 3 out of 5 of your sense you will not be able to think anxious thoughts
      • I find combing smell, hearing, and sight to be the most convenient
  • Take the first step and don’t look back
    • The ball is rolling, go at it with all you got
  • Expect the best
    • Remember that once it’s all done you will have evolved from your old-self towards greatness
  • Practice gratitude
    • This is something you can do all day that will help you be in a positive state of mind
      • You have so much to be grateful for and so many people that are proud of you for being comfortable with the uncomfortable, whether you know it or not.

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it” – Nelson Mandela