My 3 Takeaways from Amanda Lang’s The Beauty of Discomfort

While it might not sound appealing to lean into discomfort, it may be necessary for progress.

In May, we here at Talk Boutique decided to focus on the theme of failure and added Amanda Lang’s The Beauty of Discomfort as a part of our #TalkBoutiqueReads book club. It’s a fitting topic for the theme, as the failure can create so much discomfort that we will often avoid it at all costs.

I received many valuable insights from this book, but here are my top three:

1. See Discomfort as a Sign of Growth

Every time we study, work out, or try something new we are putting ourselves in a position of being uncomfortable. An amateur at the gym might feel discouraged after realizing how much of a struggle their workout is. But every athlete knows that discomfort is a necessary part of building strength, so they will lean into it. If you can see your discomfort through the lens of growth, you’ll be less inclined to avoid it.

2. Don’t Internalize Criticism

Try to depersonalize criticism that makes you uncomfortable. Ruminating in uncomfortable thoughts and feelings will cause unhappiness and may even distract you from your goals. Instead, try to put important criticism through the following filter: Ignore any commentary that isn’t constructive, and choose to address only the valid concerns. This will preserve your momentum and keep you from ruminating on the negative.

If this topic is interesting to you, you might be interested in learning about one of our speakers, Louisa Jewell. She gave a talk on having a growth mindset and responding positively to failure at our last Salon event.

3. Embrace Discomfort and Win the Long-Game

If you’ve ever tried to achieve a goal or learn something new, you’ll know that lasting change doesn’t happen overnight. That’s because every time you do things differently, you’re pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. And although discomfort may not feel good in the short term, it’s an inevitable part of achieving your long-term goals.

Don’t be blindsided by the challenges you face; try to embrace discomfort instead. If you avoid discomfort, you’re only slowing yourself down.

The Beauty of Discomfort is a book about stories.

While the messages in The Beauty of Discomfort are important to consider, I was more impressed by how the messages were conveyed. Amanda Lang shares advice and insights about the nature of discomfort through anecdotes and stories of remarkable individuals. At Talk Boutique, we believe that stories are the carriers for ideas, and The Beauty of Discomfort demonstrates this beautifully.

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