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Growth and Comfort Don't Coexist

Growth and Comfort Don't Coexist

“Do one thing everyday that scares you. Those small things that make us uncomfortable help us build courage to do the work we do.”

— Eleanor Roosevelt


Why Comfort and Growth Don't Coexist

Here’s a tip I picked up from Graham Duncan, founder of East Rock Capital.


When you’re anticipating doing something you know is going to be painful, rub your hands together and say, “Bring it on.” Out loud.


I do this. It works.


Before making a difficult phone call. Before beginning a long run. Before jumping in a cold pool. It’s good for us to do things we know are going to be painful (within reason), because discomfort is necessary for growth.


Growth and comfort don’t coexist.


In 2017, I began leading a team responsible for back office operations - finance, accounting, payroll, human resources, and compliance. I wouldn’t have volunteered for that job. I’m a growth guy. A relationship guy. An operations guy. Not an accounting and compliance guy. I earned mostly acceptable grades as an undergrad, but I got a C in accounting.


But a colleague resigned, and I stepped up. My first 6 months in this role were the most uncomfortable of my career. Over time, and after making painful mistakes, I learned how to do the work.


I’ll never be a CFA, but today I can read financial statements. I’ll never be a CPA, but today I know how to make journal entries. I became a more well rounded leader.


If I retook that undergraduate accounting course, I bet I could get a B. Maybe a B+.


Growth and comfort don’t coexist. Bring it on.


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