What opportunities for expansion have in common is that they’re uncomfortable.

Whether it’s having a conversation with someone you barely know (especially an authority figure), making a request of someone you just met (“hey, let’s go on a date”), or committing to daily action (e.g., working out daily for 90 days), there is always something about the opportunity that will occur to you as a step or two outside your comfort zone.

This doesn’t mean you have to be a nervous wreck for it to be an opportunity for expansion. It’s more so that feeling of “here’s something I rarely or never do.” It’s unfamiliar, and unfamiliar is uncomfortable.

Regardless of the outcome, you learn something. It’s not that you’re better off or worse off after the fact. The conversation you have may not lead to resolution. You may not get the date. You may not reach your goal. But no matter the outcome, you get to discover something new.

Sometimes you will create the outcomes you’re looking to create. But even when you don’t, you may feel a sense of exhilaration and aliveness you haven’t felt in a while.

For instance, if you’re rejected by someone you’ve been pining over for a couple of years, sure it can hurt. But it can also be a relief. And it’s a victory all its own because you worked up the courage to ask someone out.

If you stay in the momentum of courageous actions instead of hiding in a dark room, you’ll find yourself taking a lot more chances relationally, eventually leading to the outcome you’ve been dreaming of. You’ll find someone who says “yes.” And in relationships, the feeling is the outcome sought after, not the individual, though it’s very easy to confuse the two.

So, instead of waking up in the morning dreading the conversations you need to have, or the actions you need to take, or the places you need to go… stop. Remember that they are opportunities for expansion. Remember that opportunities for expansion are uncomfortable.

But regardless of outcome, you’ll feel a sense of relief once you’ve taken the actions you need to take. And if you stay in the momentum of taking necessary actions, even if you don’t get what you want today, you will learn something, and you will get what you want long term.

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