I know on scrap watercolor paper – words: Virginia Rometty

Most of us can admit that these days of social distancing have been times of growth and discomfort, not necessarily of our choosing. We have been forced to face the many elements of our lives and choose to remain the same or dare to admit that we want and need to change. This quote from Virginia Rometty remains us that growth and comfort do not coexist. We cannot expect change if we want to remain comfortable, and we cannot expect to be comfortable if we want the growth that change provides.

I have a dear friend who found out today that her job was being eliminated, along with others from her company. After decades of service that is not a message you ever want to hear. She had grown increasingly unsatisfied with her job and had begun to look for something new, so this news is both horrible and wonderful at the same time. It makes her path clear to find something new and lights a fire of urgency. She is bright, talented and amazing so I have no doubt that she will find a bigger, better, more challenging role to take her towards her future.

I have another friend who has closed her non-profit based business until the end of the year because this pandemic makes it impossible for the public to attend her venue. That was a brave and daring choice, no doubt wisdom and growth will be offshoots from these many months of quiet reflection. Both of these ladies are facing uncomfortable choices, so much so that their lives will never be the same…which is a wonderful gift. Being forced to change feels harsh and unwanted and yet the outcomes and end results are a gift that never would have been opened if it had not been for dire circumstances.

Growth or comfort, it is a hard choice. One sounds challenging and demanding while the other provides peace and quiet and a sense of safety. If you had told the teenage me where I would be today I would probably have said no thank you and chosen comfort. The good news is life doesn’t’ always give us a choice, and time has a way of saving us from the path we would design and provides a more meandering route to reach our full potential and happiness. I am so very thankful that I did not live the life the teenage me had in mind, how boring and mundane it would have been. I’m glad I chose growth and change and was open to the perils of life instead of playing it safe.