When we act outside of our habitual patterns, our system says, “Hey wait. That’s not how I do that.” We can respond to this disequilibrium and discomfort in a variety of ways. Simply put, our response usually boils down to either “Whoa Nellie” or “Bring it on!”
When I’m not approaching a situation mindfully, I often end up in the “Whoa Nellie” camp. The discomfort and disequilibrium feel unwelcome and unpleasant. Who needs that messy stuff, right? Then there is the response from my more aware self – “I need that messy stuff.”
Our system naturally leans toward equilibrium. It feels easier, less stressful. The art of growing ourselves is to continually seek equilibrium while also welcoming and embracing disequilibrium.
We must embrace the disequilibrium that comes with breaking out of our habits. It takes courage to make different choices, interact in new ways, or take bold action. Leadership requires courage and leading ourselves through our own development is no different.
Make friends with disequilibrium and discomfort. They are your faithful companions for the journey of development.