Ep 34: Learning To Tolerate The Discomfort Of Others


As leaders, we sometimes have to take actions that create discomfort in our followers. Making others feel uncomfortable can create anxiety and discomfort in us, leading to what Ed Friedman called “A Failure of Nerve.” In this episode Bridgette and Irvine explore why this muscle matters, what it makes possible for us, and how we can strengthen it in ourselves.



Don’t forget to check out Irvine’s You Tube channel with new videos every Wednesday on emotional intelligence, resilience, and leadership.

Check out Irvine’s new book Leadership Lessons From The Pub.

Check out Bridgette’s book which she co-authored with Bod Duggan  Resilient Leadership 2.0.

And as always, don’t forget about all the mind-blowing free resources some of which are mentioned in each episode. 


Bridgette (00:03):

Hey, welcome everybody to the Resilient Leadership Podcast, where everything that we talk about is geared towards helping you to lead with a greater sense of calm, clarity and conviction, even in the midst of heightened anxiety and disruptive times. My name is Bridgette Theueur. I am fortunate to always be, uh, joined at the hip in this podcast with my colleague and collaborator, Irvine Nugent. Irvine, we, we chatted a little bit before we hit the record button, but, uh, why don’t you tell folks how you’re doing?

Irvine (00:36):

Well, I’m doing well despite everything. I think I mentioned that I’d fallen while I’ve since discovered that I had two rather bad fractures on my wrist and arm. So, and of course, I tolerated the pain a little too well. So now I’m just left with some self-healing. So I am pouring all that self-healing energy down my arm and into my wrist at the moment, <laugh> and learning the wonderful gift of patience.

Bridgette (01:00):

Ooh, that’s nice. Patience. Yeah. Patience is a good thing to keep deepening.

Irvine (01:05):

Absolutely. Yes. And dependence on others. Sometimes you gotta ask, you know, and I’m not a great asker, so it’s a good lesson for me as well. Yeah,

Bridgette (01:13):

I can tell that about you. You, you, you are a self-sufficient kind of a guy.

Irvine (01:19):

I am, very much so. Yes. I prefer to be the doing than the asker. So what can I say?

Bridgette (01:25):

Well, so we have an interesting topic for today, don’t we? Irvine is a, a little bit counterintuitive, don’t you think?

Irvine (01:33):

Yeah. You know, we’ve, we’ve been discovering these things in the past as well, you know, about getting empathy wrong or dealing with, uh, resistance and sabotage. So we, we kind of like to approach issues and, and provoke and make people think about it. So I think today’s category falls or topic falls into that. So, Bridgette, why don’t you share a little bit about what we’re gonna spend our time talking about?

Bridgette (01:56):

Yeah. We’re really gonna be focusing on building up a muscle that can atrophy in some of us, and that is the, um, muscle that’s around tolerating the discomfort of others, which seems, again, little counterintuitive because most, most leaders are really about engendering positive emotions in people, right? We wanna inspire, we want people to feel hopeful about the future. We want them to feel engaged. And it’s not like leaders wake up in the morning and think about, gee, I can’t wait to disappoint or make other people feel really uncomfortable today. That’s just not, that’s just not what we’re after. And yet sometimes it’s part and parcel of the leadership experience, right? Yep. So, I wanna get us started with a quote from our friend <laugh> and, um, a provocateur Ed Friedman. And here’s something he said, the real problem of leadership is a failure of nerve leaders fail, not because they lack information, skill or technique, but because they lack the nerve and the presence to stand firm in the midst of other people’s emotional anxiety and reactivity. Hmm. That’s an oldie but goodies. So I’m curious what it provokes for you, Irvine.

Irvine (03:14):

Yeah, it, I remember first reading this, and I still kind of reread it from now to, uh, every now and again because it really does talk about strike. It strikes a nerve with me, <laugh>. And that is, you know, as I, if like just from my own presence and own being at times, uh, I look back and, you know, the herd mentality is so strong within us as human beings. It’s so much easier to go along with the flow than to stand against the current and say, oops. And it takes a lot of energy. And I know that at times I have equivocated, I have made up excuses all to appease myself and make, but, but knowing that what was required in that moment was taking a stand, and I’m not alone in that. Hmm. And as I look at other leaders as well, I’ve been around and, and asking and pleading for people to take a stand and they won’t as well. So there is, it’s this internal battle within us mm-hmm. <affirmative> that it at times, uh, becomes a lot easier not to take a stand. And yet that’s what so often is required. Mm-hmm.

Bridgette (04:25):

<affirmative>, I like the way you framed it, that it’s an emotional battle within ourselves and it’s like, what is gonna win the day? Is it, yeah. You know, that we succumb to that emotional reactivity and anxiety cuz it just is so uncomfortable. Or do we stand firm? So I think it would be helpful, and, and this will be a reminder to some of our listeners to kind of start with the neuroscience behind what is going on in our brains when there’s this internal struggle, this internal battle that you were talking about mm-hmm. <affirmative>, right. What’s, what’s going on, Irvine?

Irvine (05:02):

Yeah. Well, you know, we have mentioned very clearly in the past that, you know, as human beings we find anxiety very difficult to tolerate both in ourselves and even being in the presence of others’ anxiety, that, that becomes difficult to, to hold and to be present to. And, and remember, you know what we’ve defined anxiety. Let’s just define anxiety. Once again, it’s a state of unease in the face of rail or imagined threats, and that’s really important, real or imagined. And, you know, our brains are wonderful, wonderful organs, and one of their primary functions is to keep us safe and to look for threat. And it prepares us, you know, in those classic terms that we know also well, that when we see threat, we go into fight or flight, freeze or appease response. And what’s really interesting, of course, is this real or imagined, uh, because so often it’s the imagined threats that get us into trouble because, you know, our brain is, is very conservative in nature.


And that is, you know, let’s protect first and ask questions later. And so therefore we do go into, you know, this, this very protective approach. And the only thing we know about anxiety as well is that anxiety’s incredibly contagious. It is, uh, you know, we’ve lived in a world of getting used to, to a coronavirus this invisible virus, which we’re paranoid about, uh, will I catch it? Will I not? Well, from, you know, from our very beginnings, we have had this, this invisible anxiety spreading around like wildfire. And so what happens, of course, another facet that we’ve mentioned in the past is this ability of mirror neurons. This mirror neurons helps us, you know, to, to mimic the emotions of others. And we know that emotions, you know, show up in the face, they show up in our body as well. And so when we mimic that, you know, just say a person is showing anxiety or fear on the face, and we mimic that, we begin to feel that as well. So this aids even the way we’re created, you know, aids in this wildfire approach to emotional contagion. And so therefore, you know, Freeman said, you know, we, we lack the nerve to be present to stand firm. Well, yeah. Because goes against at times the way we’re built. And so it does take a special energy, a courage, and we’ve mentioned courage in the past to really stand in the face of that. And so therefore it’s, it’s easy to see why we don’t do this. Yeah. And easy to see why it becomes so difficult. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>.

Bridgette (07:44):

Yeah. And it’s interesting that you mentioned again, the, the courage it takes, right? We’ve talked about that. I think what’s interesting to me about our topic today is that I don’t know that we’ve taken a deep dive into this also very necessary capacity. Courage is a capacity, but this capacity to tolerate and sit with mm-hmm. <affirmative> the discomfort of others. Yeah. Right? Yeah. So if others are highly anxious, can we be with that? Well, Courtney Friedman not very well <laugh>.

Irvine (08:19):

No, no. And when you think about it, it goes against the grade. It goes like, wait, like what would you want in life? Oh, to be comfortable and happy. Yeah. You know, all of us aspire to have to have comfort. We, we have dreams of sitting by the pool with a pina colada. We don’t aspire to tolerate discomfort, you know? And yet it’s such an incredible, uh, muscle. So why is it, why do you think a Bridgette, it is such an important muscle?

Bridgette (08:45):

Oh, it’s a great question. And I think there are several things that come to mind, but the very first saying that I think pops to mind is this notion of, you know, how do we create a sustainable work-life balance? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I mean, you and I as coaches hear about this all the time. People are chronically over committed, chronically overwhelmed. They have been for a long time. And when you think about it, you have to be able to identify your priorities and then say no to the requests and the offers and the opportunities that come your way that don’t fit in with those priorities, whether they’re personal or professional. However, uh, say no to opportunities to people that matter to us. Well, what does that do? It produces discomfort. Because, you know, like who wants to disappoint an important stakeholder by saying, no, I’m sorry, I can’t take care of that. We can’t actually do that. Whether that’s like a board member or a colleague or your boss, <laugh>, you know, or a family member. Disappointing people with a no is tough. It’s, it is uncomfortable and it produces some discomfort for them because they don’t like to hear No. At least initially, right?

Irvine (10:09):

Yeah, absolutely. Yeah.

Bridgette (10:11):

So we always talk about, okay, you have to manage your priorities and your capacity thoughtfully, and you have to be able to say no. And I think people understand that intellectually, but when it comes right down to it, if your muscle for tolerating the discomfort and disappointment of others, which you have caused by saying no, like if that muscle is underdeveloped in you, you’re not gonna do it. Yeah. You know, so that’s what came to my mind first and foremost. But I’m curious for you, Irvine, like we have admitted on this podcast that you and I are both people pleasers by nature.

Irvine (10:52):


Bridgette (10:53):

So, saying no, does does that produce some discomfort for you At times

Irvine (11:03):

Yes, it does. And especially around, you know, it’s interesting because I, I view myself as someone who’s pretty efficient, who can get things done. And at times I would rather say yes to something, knowing that I’ll get that done. But it’s not really the correct decision. And it’s not a matter of even will the work be done or not. But it’s even a matter of where should the work be done. Mm-hmm. And my, it’s almost a little bit of my over-functioning, impacting others. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, it’s interesting, I just had a coaching session a few, uh, days ago at this stage of recording. Um, the office of, of the, the budget office has just come out with a, a new requirement that within 90 days government workers have to return to work. Oh. And it is causing huge anxiety. And one of the discussion, we had a really thoughtful discussion with this client about, you know, what will that mean?


And her fear of not being able to say no. Oh. And basically that this new requirement will mean, you know, changing the way things are done, and also a fear of, you know, will it lead to more work, et cetera. And how can I say no? So we had a really interesting question about say No, and really what was wonderful was it wasn’t so much about using the word no. Yeah. But it was really dealing with this emotional anxiety that was this, this was building within and managing that anxiety. Mm-hmm. Because that’s really the core. If we can manage that, then it’s, it, we, it’s a lot easier to say no.

Bridgette (12:43):

Yeah. Her, her discomfort was really in the form of, um, an anxious anticipation.

Irvine (12:49):


Bridgette (12:50):

Right? Yeah. Yes. And dealing with that was the key to her being able to move forward and face this change better, right?

Irvine (12:59):

Yes, absolutely.

Bridgette (13:00):

Okay. So it’s very clear that, you know, a work-life balance, a an ability to manage our capacity in a sustainable way is going to be a lot easier if we have this muscle, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> that allows us to be with discomfort. But what else do you think this muscle, and we’re, of course we’re calling it a muscle, metaphorically, but what else does having a strong muscle in this way, what else does it make possible for us?

Irvine (13:31):

Well, I think one of the other things, and, and I think it flows very naturally from this first one, is our ability to have courageous conversations that in life there are sets of conversations which require a little bit of courage because they’re a little difficult. They are unpredictable. And remember, if we go back to the whole brain science about, you know, threat, part of, of, of courageous conversations, and, and by courageous conversations, I’m thinking like conversations, giving feedback or, or perhaps in the workplace addressing a performance gap or, or holding someone accountable. Whoa, there is one that people at times really don’t like. And part of that is the unpredictability of that. What will the person say? And because we don’t know what the person might say, we become even more uncomfortable with it. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And, and, and so therefore, you know, it’s a lot easier to say, let’s just not have the conversation. <laugh>, let’s just, you know, it’s all, it’ll work itself out. And so this muscle really helps us have these conversations and to be present to the reality that it is discomfort, that at times the response may not be comfortable, or at times the response may be pure silence. And to be able to sit in that silence and not feel we have to fill it as well. So this nerve or this, uh, muscle, excuse me, helps us really begin to, to think about and have more thoughtfully those courageous conversations.

Bridgette (15:03):

Irvine, it’s reminding me of a client that shared with me a story where he was having one of these courageous conversations and his employee began to cry. And this was his big fear because, you know, sitting with a, a crying employee produced a lot of discomfort for him. He, he did not have a strong muscle to sit with that. And so we had to strategize how he would respond if she did start crying. And part of it was we, we discussed that he would have a box of tissues at hand, and if she should start crying, he would simply hand or move that box of tissues within her reach, but stay quiet and hold the space. She might cry, she might take a tissue, it might take her a little bit of time to gather herself, but not to, but to notice the discomfort, which would in the past cause him to back off or try to comfort her. Yeah. Right. And he just noticed the discomfort and let her take her tissues and held the space and that muscle for him. Man, it, I think he felt like he’d gone to the gym and lifted a hundred pound weight <laugh>. Yeah.

Irvine (16:23):

Oh, I can imagine. Yeah. You know, and then Bridgette, one other things that comes to mind as well is having, you know, conversations that perhaps will challenge people and challenge them to act in new ways. And, you know, we get very comfortable with the status quo. Last week, we, we talked about change and about how uncomfortable change makes us. And yet to challenge people, perhaps to think out of the box, to challenge people to perhaps act in a way outside of their comfort zone. You know, people don’t like to do this, but leadership requires at times some bold visions. It requires a stretching, it requires new initiatives. And that is going to cause discomfort by its very nature. So fascinating. I’m doing some interviews at the moment with some government employees from their FAB scores. FAB scores are the annual reviews of how each department is going.


Um, going, uh, about, I was talking to, to someone today and, and I was talking, you know, what’s missing? One of the things we’re missing, and it is so fascinating, he said he actually used these world we’re really mis missing bold leadership. Oh, he said, I, I said, I, I, I, he said, I really feel we, we need to be stretched and I think it’s okay to be stretched. And it was so interesting, you know, and at times that is a missing component. And I think, uh, you know, and, and you can see why it doesn’t happen because they say, oh my God, I can pour more stuff in my poor employees. And they’re so stretched as it is, and the last thing they need is someone asking them to do something more or to think out of the box. And yet that’s something that, that is required of leadership.

Bridgette (18:06):

Boy, that is so interesting. Yeah. And for him to articulate that one is missing is bold vision. To me that’s exciting. Like that. Yeah. Right. That’s pretty cool. Absolutely. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>.

Irvine (18:17):

Yeah. Yeah. And he talked about how motivating that was.

Bridgette (18:21):

Yes. See, that’s the thing is that to be challenged can be inspiring, right? Yeah. And, and yet we also know that it can make people, as you’re saying, a bit uncomfortable and sitting with their discomfort of kind of getting their arms and, and heads around this big bold vision, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>.

Irvine (18:42):

Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Like that. So, Bridgette, anything else comes to mind as we talk about why this muscle matters?

Bridgette (18:50):

There’s one other thing, and we’ve devoted an entire episode to the topic of over-functioning. Well, part of managing capacity is dealing with this reactive pattern known as over and under functioning, right? So our listeners are probably well familiar with that. But as I gave some more thought to this notion of building your tolerance for the discomfort of others, I realized that until, unless we do that, we will continue to over function. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, and, and, and because think of it to over function is about feeling, thinking, or doing for others in a way that eventually erodes their functioning. And it’s driven by anxiety. Yeah. And sometimes the anxiety has to do with our concern about them struggling, right. Getting it right. Or we, we look over at the other person and we see that man, they’re flailing about there. Maybe I should step in and rescue them. Boy, they’re really, they’re really having to, to learn something from this mistake they made. And it’s very painful. Maybe I should soften the blow.

Irvine (20:03):


Bridgette (20:03):

And it reminds me of this phrase that a coach in, in, um, in our coach certification course, a phrase that she shared with us that she got from a sports coach who was talking to parents and he said, don’t steal the struggle. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, in the struggle is, is the growth. Yeah. And, and, and yet we have to be able to sit with somebody as they struggle mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And that can, for some of us be a really uncomfortable proposition.

Irvine (20:32):

Yes. Yeah.

Bridgette (20:34):

Okay. So that’s why the muscle matters. And of course, the people listening are probably saying, yeah, my muscle’s not too strong, but how do I, how do I build it? But before we talk about that, I’m just curious, you know, why does the muscle atrophy in the first place? Or maybe a better way to say it is why is the muscle weaker in some than in others? Because I was talking to my husband about this VIN and he was asking me, what is the topic for this episode? And I shared it with him, and I know he used to, uh, lead lots of teams and lots of projects, complicated projects and so forth. He was never plagued by this. He, he never struggled with this muscle. And he said, you know, I always was just focused on getting the work done and the tasks at hand. And so it, it kind of made me think, oh, some of this is about what is our balance in the task relationship dynamic or polarity. So I have a more relationship oriented focus as I think you probably do. Am I right about that Ivin? Yeah,

Irvine (21:46):


Bridgette (21:46):

Okay. So we’re gonna be paying attention to the relationship dynamics and the consequences of what we’re asking people to do, or, you know, whether we’re stretching them or holding them accountable. Whereas some of our listeners might be like my husband, very task oriented, and the muscle is not, it’s not underdeveloped for them at all. Somebody can cry, somebody can have a fit. Somebody can say, I’m outta here and this does not cause them discomfort. Yeah. So, any other thoughts about why you think this muscle might be stronger in some and weaker in others? Just curious.

Irvine (22:27):

You know, I also think it comes within our own emotional intelligence, our own ability to be able to have conversation. So I think our ability to be empathetic in the right way mm-hmm. <affirmative> in that we are able to make a distinction between being able to feel other people’s and be with them and not take that burden on. Yeah. So I think, you know, even as relationship people as well, there’s some, you know, who, who are not able to make that distinction. And any failure in the relationship means that it’s gonna break down, et cetera. And others who are more definitely able to, I think, and they’ve practiced this muscle in the sense of no, they’re able to take some stands as well because they’re skilled enough to know that they’re able to manage this space and the relationship.

Bridgette (23:16):

Yeah. It’s like that it’s not an either or, it’s a both and, right. Yeah. In other words, we can, we can focus on people and relationships and we can focus on tasks and progress, and it doesn’t have to be to the exclusion of one or the other. Yeah. Correct. And that’s a, that’s a, you know, you called it an emotional intelligence. It certainly is. Yeah. Because there’s a lot of self-regulation and a lot of self-awareness involved in striking that balance, right?

Irvine (23:41):

Absolutely. Mm-hmm.

Bridgette (23:42):

<affirmative>. Yeah. Makes sense. Okay. So say we’ve got some listeners who definitely want to grow their capacity to tolerate the discomfort of others and to tolerate their own discomfort. And they’re thinking, yeah, sounds good, but how the heck do I actually build that muscle? What are your thoughts, Irvine, about what are your strategies for that?

Irvine (24:06):

Yeah, it’s an interesting question. So let me throw a few at you. When I think about this. One would be to always remind ourselves that human beings are more resilient than we give them credit for. You know, part of, uh, one of my previous work positions, I was c e o of a very large agency that dealt with homelessness, especially youth homelessness. And the majority of the population were kids aging out of foster care. Hmm. And you know, part of that is you look at these, these statistics and say, oh my God, this is awful. And it is. And yet when you hear the stories, what you become is this overwhelming feeling of how resilient the human person is. That after all of these things, these youth have endured and are still able to function and able to have aspirations and dreams, et cetera. So the human person is, is a lot more resilient perhaps than we give them credit for.


And indeed we need challenge in our lives. So I think that’s, we forget that we’ve, we, I think we think if we, if if I challenge this person or whatever, they’re gonna crumble before us. And rarely is that the case. Yeah. People are more resilient than we give them credit for. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, one of the other things as well is it’s not our duty as a leader, as our parent, even to, to ensure the happiness of others. We can ensure the happiness of others. You know, what we can do is create an environment where everyone can do their best thinking or their best work. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And once we do that, and part of that is challenge. We need challenge without cha you, you mentioned that, you know, without challenge, we can’t grow. So is the focus, I think, to move the focus away that I’m in charge of your happiness to, you know, what am I doing to create an environment that creates great thinking and is conducive to good work.


A third thing is reframe, you know, discomfort maybe as a natural part of the growing process. You know, one of the things I like to think of is we, you know, when we, when we come to a situation discomfort, and we’re sitting there in the discomfort and it’s, oh, this feels awful. And it’s like, I’m anxious and it’s ooh. And I always think, can we rename that anxiety? Can we just say, I have a lot of energy around this because anxiety is such a negative thing. Yeah. It’s just like, so this is, I have a lot of energy around this. And energy can be positive, energy can be many things. And just say, why, why do I have so much energy around that? Hmm. And then it’s, it’s, okay, this is important. I, I, I have a lot of energy because this is something important and it’s okay. And it’s, can I sit with this energy? Can I contain this energy? And I think it’s, it’s subtle. Yeah. But I think that it helps us kind of this, this, I’m holding this energy because this is something very important.

Bridgette (26:48):

I love that way of reframing it. I have not heard that before. That’s very, very helpful for me. I can, I can, yeah. When I reframe it like that, I can feel the shift in my body and in my capacity to sit with, you know, that discomfort.

Irvine (27:06):

Yeah. And then just one final thing is, uh, it’s the old proverbial, how do you eat an elephant wombat at a time? <laugh>. It’s, it starts small, you know, and it’s, it is that sometimes we, we take on the biggest conversation to start with, or, or the most crucial, and we feel at times we have to commit. But can we take things a little slower? So say for example, you know, if, uh, a young child who’s learning to walk, and that’s part of growing up, part of that is it’s a built-in failure rate. It’s a hundred percent guaranteed. And yet at times, do we, do we find ourselves rushing in or can we just kind of sit and let, let a child struggle a little bit mm-hmm. <affirmative>, because that’s part of, part of, you know, growing up. Yeah. And then the second thing, you know, morran work is, you know, people come and they ask for something, and we feel on the spot that we have to say an answer right away. And, you know, a nice little practice there is, you know, I’m gonna commit to commit so that I don’t have the answer now, and give yourself a little bit of time mm-hmm. <affirmative>, because that will help you realize perhaps what’s happening, be able to see your, um, not being able to, to live in the discomfort and maybe then to recalibrate mm-hmm. <affirmative> and formulate an answer, which perhaps is a little more courageous. Mm-hmm.

Bridgette (28:28):

<affirmative>, I love that. You know, when you were talking about the small child that’s learning to walk with a hundred percent failure rate, I thought of my grandchildren, right? And so my youngest grandchild, who’s almost eight months, not quite, but boy, he’s a mover and a shaker. And so he’s climbing and, uh, he’s trying to go upstairs, you know, and, but sometimes, you know, he falls on his face, <laugh>, you know, now I don’t mean like hard, but you know, like Yeah, yeah. On carpeted stairs, let’s say, you know, or he just gets a little frustrated. And what I notice is that I immediately wanna swoop in to console him. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, right? Yeah. His discomfort becomes my discomfort, which I have a hard time tolerating. And so I’m just gonna start practicing not swooping in so quickly and just sitting with that, you know, I mean, he’s, he’s hardy.


He’s a hardy, he’s a hardy guy. So very interesting. Okay. So those are wonderful ideas, and each of them could be their own practice mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And we always like to leave our listeners with a final practice. So I’m gonna build on what you’ve said so far, and you know, you’re talking about starting small. I think that’s really important. And I’m going to pull from a book called The Coaching Habit, which is the subtitle of something like, ask more questions, tell people what to do less often, and change the way you lead forever. Something like that. Are you familiar with that book?

Irvine (29:55):

I am,

Bridgette (29:56):

Yeah. I really like it. The author is Michael. Oh gosh, is it Michael Bunge? Steiner, yeah. Right. Yes. An Australian guy. Great book. And what he says is, if you want to build a new habit, you have to have a plan. You have to have a very specific plan. And it goes like this. First you Id you identify your trigger. So when this happens, and you fill in the blank. So, you know, we’re talking about situations that produce discomfort in other people and in us. So when this happens, well, what’s, what’s a person or a situation that does provoke discomfort for you? But start small, right? So for me, in this situation that I just mentioned, I could say when my grandson falls or gets a little, you know, cries a little bit, right? That’s my trigger. I have to ID the trigger and then I have to, ID or identify my old behavior. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So my old behavior is swoop in and go, oh, it’s gonna be okay. And be very quick to console him. So that’s my old behavior. And then the third part of creating this new habit is to define my new behavior. So I will, instead of swooning into immediately comfort, I will notice my own discomfort, take a breath and allow him to maybe comfort himself for a beat. Hmm. Right? Yeah. Yeah. And I think that’s a lovely way to help us turn insight into action.

Irvine (31:33):


Bridgette (31:33):

Right. It’s one, it’s one thing to sit here and talk about, oh, we need to build our tolerance for the discomfort of others. It’s another thing to know how the heck do we do that? And I find that formula to be so helpful.

Irvine (31:46):

Oh, it, it’s so actionable. I love it. Yeah. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>.

Bridgette (31:50):


Irvine (31:50):

Break it down. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>,


It’s been a fascinating discussion. It’s evoked a lot of thought within me as well about how well I tolerate discomfort. I love how important this is. This is such an important muscle to develop and is really the key to being a great leader and to be a good parent. And I think, you know, if we can just break it down, that practice, I think is, so I just invite our listeners, you know, as you, as you think about areas of discomfort, um, that you’re experiencing, holding, holding space, can you kind of break it down into a little actionable exercise that we’ve done in the end? And think about your, your trigger the old way, and then the new way and, uh, come up perhaps with a new behavior change.

Bridgette (32:35):

So Irvine, what are we thinking about tackling next time?

Irvine (32:41):

So it’s gonna be a little juicy conversation. You know, we, we have this age old description is leadership in the genes, and there’s a lot of research around that. But what we’re gonna do is have a conversation about the impact, uh, of our family and the impact of those who’ve gone before us on the way that we lead. And I think it’s something we don’t fully appreciate its impact, and we’ll have an interesting, uh, conversation around that.

Bridgette (33:07):

Oh, I really look forward to that. And I do not think we have really spoken about that at all, uh, in this podcast. So I look forward to sharing with listeners some interesting and new, uh, distinctions.

Irvine (33:22):

Yeah, absolutely. Well, thank you Bridgette, for this conversation. It was wonderful. And, uh, thank you for listening in. Uh, once again, if you ever wanna contact us, if you’ve got some ideas, if you’ve got comments on the podcast, if you’ve got a suggestion, uh, for a future episode, please feel free to reach out to us at resilient leadership podcast gmail.com and we’ll be more than happy to hear your suggestions.

Bridgette (33:47):

Thanks always for joining us, folks, and we will look forward to being with you next time.

Irvine (33:51):

Thanks everyone. Take care, Bridgette. Bye-Bye.

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