Day 3087: Sitting with the discomfort

Last week, when I was sitting at my laptop conducting an online therapy session, I gave somebody the assignment of sitting with the discomfort. When that person had some discomfort figuring out the details of the assignment, I said, “Sit for ten minutes every day, get in touch with the discomfort, and see what happens.” My belief was that it would not be difficult to get in touch with discomfort, because we are all feeling some discomfort these days.

Because I feel discomfort asking somebody to do something I am not willing to do, I committed to doing the same assignment of sitting with the discomfort daily for ten minutes until our next therapy session.

I have been sitting with the discomfort since then and, as I sit here with some discomfort (the aches and pains of early rising), I am comforted to tell you that I am finding that assignment helpful.

Too often, we deal with our discomfort with distraction, addictions, avoidance, and disconnection. It helps to just BE with the discomfort for ten minutes a day, noticing and observing without judgment.

Here are some images I captured yesterday when I was not sitting with the discomfort:


There is some sitting, some discomfort, but mostly joy in “Good Morning” from Singin’ in the Rain.

I won’t be sitting with discomfort waiting for comments on this sitting-with-discomfort blog post.

I am grateful and comforted to be sitting, standing, walking, and blogging for you!

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

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22 thoughts on “Day 3087: Sitting with the discomfort

  1. I am much more comfortable with the e now safely in place, Ann.

  2. I agree,it’s good to feel discomfort and not ignore it, then set it aside. I feel a great comfort

  3. In seeing that lobster roll

  4. I will give that a try. Thank you.

  5. By the way, I appreciate this thoughtful post and the diverse and fascinating photos, including the work of the graffiti poet. I will return to this later today because whenever I do that, I find so many things I missed the first time that it is like reading a brand new entry.

  6. I found comfort in the three headed, four legged, single bodied robot next to the whatIF boat, whilst sitting with the discomfort of being told by the vet, today, that Daisy, our 12 year old British Shorthair cat, has a large inoperable tumour and we must decide when is the right time to say thank you and goodbye.

  7. puella33

    What happened when you got in touch with your discomfort? Was it less painful? i think I would rather be distracted from it. What’s good for one person may not be good for another.
    I love the picture of the white flowers blooming in the midst of the field. Have a nice day, Ann

    • Since I am doing it daily, it is changing. The first day I found it difficult; now it is getting much easier. We all need to find our own ways.

  8. I don’t think I’ve ever thought of sitting with discomfort but I can really see the value in it. Becoming comfortable with discomfort can presumably lead to healthy ways of dealing with it.

  9. You are right. It’s hard to learn sometimes that sitting with discomfort is a good thing. I once read an interview Debbie Reynolds gave about her discomfort dancing with two such well known dancers when she was something like … 19, maybe.

    • Thank you for this comforting comment, Lisa. An interview with Debbie Reynolds came up for me yesterday right after the video I included in this post and here it is:

  10. #13 is really nice. Sitting with the discomfort is a great exercise as it’s a bit similar to mindfulness as discomfort ceases to be noticed after a while.

  11. I think that sitting with discomfort is probably something I may not willingly choose to do, but there are times when that’s the only response I can manage. Wait it out! You were in some interesting places yesterday if these were the photos. I really liked the green and “foresty” location. I think a walk in that space wold help me clear my mind, and maybe I wouldn’t NEED to sit with discomfort after that walk?

    • You can definitely walk with the discomfort, Debra, and thanks for sharing another comforting comment here!

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