The thought of getting up at 5am to exercise is rarely a pleasant one. The time in preparation to make that phone call when rejection is probable is often one of fear. The lead up to the conversation you know you need to have can be terrifying. The period before the audition, presentation, performance, or interview is always uncomfortable, as the fear of failure is high. We have all experienced this, however, my question is this; how do you feel in the moment after the discomfort?

Christmas Day should be a time of joy, peace, happiness, and togetherness. So, why was I so terrified as I drove to have lunch with my family? I will tell you why. There was a moment of discomfort coming, and I was uncertain and a little bit fearful of the response I would get. However, it was important for me to make a statement to my family as to where I am at in the spiritual area of my life.

I became a born-again Christian about 6 or 7 years ago. It was a decision I made when my life was in crisis, and I was looking for answers. A great mentor and trusted friend suggested that I explore Christianity, and if it had been any other person, I would have probably disregarded it. I am grateful every day that I listened to her and followed through, as my walk with God has changed my life for the better in so many ways.

I have always felt like I am a bit of a black sheep in my family. I believe it is because I have chosen not to follow a mainstream path in different areas. As much as I love them, I have got used to the fact that rarely do I ever get asked about certain things. I think they knew I was a Christian; I don’t talk about it with them a lot, because of the fear I have about how they may respond. However, something happened to me in the Christmas morning service a few days ago. God spoke to me and said, “It is time Andrew”.

So, as I was leaving church and heading to lunch, I knew it was time, but I was ‘pooping my pants’ a little! I was rehearsing in my mind what I would say, and I was mulling over the different responses I may get. You know what it’s like, our mind often goes to the worst-case scenario. Well, my mind did, and I realised that, no matter what, I would survive, so, the decision was made. I arrived at my sister’s home, and the normal banter and light conversation happened, and just as we were about to sit down to eat, I knew it was time. I am not ashamed to say, I was scared. I asked for everyone’s attention. They all looked at me as if to say, ‘Oh no, what is he going to say?!’

I simply said, in a nervous voice, and certainly not as polished as I had rehearsed it in my mind, “Since the foundational meaning of Christmas is the birth of Christ, and since this is an important part of my life now, would anyone object if I prayed for us?” There was no objection, for which I was relieved and grateful, so I went on and prayed a prayer of thanks for God, for Jesus, for my family, and a blessing for the people less fortunate. After it was over, we sat down, ate lunch, and had a nice time. There were several hours of fear and uncertainty in the build up to this moment of discomfort, but as soon as it was over, I felt relieved, proud of myself, and very glad I did it.

Isn’t this the truth with any uncomfortable situation? Don’t we build things up in our head, far worse than they will ever be, and then in the moment after the discomfort we are always glad we did it. I am always proud of myself for getting up at 5am and exercising. I am always feeling more confident after I make the phone call. I am always feeling stronger after having the conversation. I am always excited for the next adventure, after the one I have just had. The point is simple, don’t let fear, doubt, or discomfort stop you, because you know you will always feel amazing in the moment after the discomfort.

In my podcast this week with Kate Martin called Push through discomfort, we discuss the amazing gifts that will come from getting through to the moment after discomfort. The movie We Bought a Zoo was on TV the other night. My favourite line in the movie, spoken by character Benjamin Mee to his teenage son, is, “All you need is 20 seconds of insane courage, just 20 seconds of embarrassing bravery and, I promise, something great will always come of it”. No truer statement has been made. Use that 20 second of insane courage to get you through to the moment after discomfort. You will be so glad you did.