It’s Your Intolerance to Discomfort that’s Killing you, not the Gluten.

Apr 27, 2021

Intolerance is a buzzword these days. It used to only be used when referencing things like illegal drugs, or insider trading. Now it’s one of the most vigorously contested ideas in politics. 

You know what else it has permeated?

The health and fitness industry.

The industry that I just so happen to be firmly planted in, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t firmly believe that every other legitimate professional hasn’t taken notice of this idea of intolerance. I’m not talking about intolerance to different people and their ideas or even intolerance to hard work, while there’s plenty of that, but perceived intolerances within ourselves.

Here’s an example, you probably know a whole bundle of people who are “gluten intolerant” or “lactose intolerant” or “insert random food ingredient intolerant.” I would also venture that 95% of them don’t actually have any intolerance or sensitivity issues. Don’t get me wrong, I believe that there’s something amiss somewhere in their process but it’s probably not some sinister compound lurking in their diet. Just like 99% of people who are having a hard time losing weight don’t have thyroid problems.

You see, we as humans have a difficult time facing the fact that we might not be living up to our expectations/potential. So what do we do? Do we take a step back, reassess, make adjustments and then re-attack? On good days when we have our heads on straight yes that’s exactly what we do. The truth is though we don’t always have our heads on straight and so instead of looking in the mirror we outsource the root of our frustrations to things that we can’t control, it’s just easier. That way when we fail it’s still pretty comfortable because we can say, “Oh well I tried, it was just out of my control.”

Trust me I know I’ve been there. I’ve lived my entire life with a legitimate excuse for nearly every one of my shortcomings. And you know what? Having the emotional safety net that, that excuse provided for me has been one of if not THE biggest hindrances to my own personal growth.

Don’t believe me? Let’s talk…

I have a birth defect in my stomach. That birth defect makes it impossible for my stomach to seal itself off from the rest of my digestive tract. Long story short that makes me EXTREMELY susceptible to stress, real or perceived. When stress gets away from me what usually ends up happening is my entire digestive tract spasms and I’m left in the fetal position, and or vomiting.

Not a pretty picture right?

An even less flattering picture is me using this condition as an excuse not to take chances to grow. Or of me saying no to opportunities not because I might end up in pain but because I might fail and I couldn’t handle that so I blamed it on “my guts.” Dealing with this situation hasn’t been fun, and it hasn’t been easy, but it’s been doable and I dare say even a blessing because of the lessons learned. The built in cop out that came along with it on the other hand has been a far greater burden to carry. The ease and security it offers has seduced me in far more times than I care to admit, but I’m working on it, and I’m winning.

What does this all have to do with intolerance? 

Everything.

This is a conversation about discomfort intolerance. My discomfort intolerance didn’t come from the physical but rather the emotional and social intolerance of failure, your intolerance might be to something else. Either way I guarantee that if you’re human and you’re reading this, there’s something out there that makes you uncomfortable and if you’re willing to step up and confront it your life would change for the better.

Take ten minutes now, right now, and find that thing you’re so intolerant to and write a plan to confront that intolerance.

Recognize the discomfort, sit with it, and push forward.

You got this!