Edition Eight: You make me uncomfortable.

Do it. Make me uncomfortable.

The other day, my partner told me his new boss gave him the following thoughts about his new job: “I want you to make me uncomfortable. I want you to take me out of my comfort zone.”

This comes a few days after my yoga teacher put me in that post I never thought I would bend into and said “Sit there. Be uncomfortable, but not in pain.”

Working with other humans means you’re going to be uncomfortable sometimes. But the key to managing that well is to sit with it. Sit in the uncomfortable and ask why. Are you uncomfortable because this is new and different? Or are you uncomfortable because something needs to be tweaked or change?

Your best employees aren’t there to confirm your own thoughts and bias. We see where that might lead us, look at confirmation bias in politics alone.

You should hire people who push you, who throw crazy-weird-but-wait-that-is-a-good-idea type of ideas at you. It’s part of trusting where they come from, so they will trust you to make the right call, regardless of what you might initially feel.

I’m not saying this is easy, by any means. Who wants to get in arguments and debate about things all the time? But that will only happen if you don’t really openly listen to different perspectives. You ask people for different things, new and interesting things, and then you have to be open to the ideas and thoughts you get and not defensive. This is where that “sitting with it: thing comes into play.

Be uncomfortable. Ask your team, your co-workers, your staff to push you to places you normally wouldn’t go. Sit with it.

Then, rise.


Pay it Forward

One more list of self-care mini tasks from the amazing Benet Wilson.

1. Listening to/watching my kid.
2. Sitting on the balcony and breathing.
3. Talking to/helping journalists (especially young ones)
4. Quilting
5. Binge-watching crappy television shows (Right now, that’s “Good Witch” on the Hallmark Channel)

Here was my list of self-care items to do when I’m feeling off or down.

1. Walking around Target
2. Reading in our backyard hammock
3. Writing in my journal
4. Videos of cats/sloths/animals
5. Two minute cuddle session with our pets
6. Organizing a cabinet (this is one of the things I turn to when I’m anxious)



Great things I’ve read lately
The world’s first global tree database says trees are in trouble. (Huffington Post). Red flags to look for in start-up jobs, actually written for women, but I think they’re pretty genderless worries (Medium, Kirsserin). The story of one remarkable college recommendation letter or, why it pays to be kind. (NY Times)

Jobs jobs jobs 
Director of Development, PublicLab. A bunch of great jobs (including executive editor of The Intercept Brazil!), First Look Media. Editorial lead, Snapchat (and other emerging platforms. (NowThis – come work with me!) Mobile Product manager, Goat (Sneakers!). Technical Relationship Manager – News Operations (Apple).