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January 19, 2020

The Devil You Know Or The Devil You Don't

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Is there something in your life that’s just bland? It’s not great, and it’s not horrible. It’s definitely not ideal, but it’s not doing too much harm, so it’s probably best to just leave it as is.

You may recall something Nir Eval described in a past SISD, it’s this idea that our natural state is to avoid discomfort. And if this thing is providing a slight consistent discomfort, shouldn’t we be motivated to rid ourselves of it? Yet, we don’t. Why is that?

“It’s the devil you know or the devil you don’t”. This discomfort is familiar. It’s predictable and we've become accustomed to it. It’s even gotten easier over time because we’ve become desensitized to it, and rationalized our way into being more okay with its presence. This is the devil you know.

The devil you don’t know is uncharted territory. In its unpredictability, you can’t be sure that it will make things better. It’s the fear of more discomfort induced by taking action that keeps us from trying it in the first place. We have this bad habit of accepting the realities in our life,  and it’s rooted in this thought.

But, when we get the courage to make a change, challenge ourselves to be vulnerable and outside our comfort zone, we often find that it wasn’t as bad as we made it out to be. And in doing so, we can get rid of our inconveniences, our discomfort, and step into a more authentic and fulfilled self.

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