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Have you ever wanted or tried to do something new but experienced crippling fears, insecurities, or trepidations that stopped you from reaching a goal or trying something new? You’re not the first person, nor will you be the last. It’s natural to want to try to do something new, and it’s also natural to have fears sabotage those valiant efforts.

YoLU (or Year of Living Uncomfortably) is a little phenomenon based in the Atlanta fetish community that focuses on challenging yourself. YoLU is all about facing your fears head-on, and forcing yourself out of your comfort zone. There is a group on Fetlife about YoLU. There are posts talking about the evolution of YoLU as well as people sharing their YoLU goals, experiences, and accomplishments.

Some of these YoLU goals are about trying new things within the kink-world, like trying a new kind of play, or putting yourself out there by going to new munches, meeting new people, or attending a kink-oriented convention, like Frolicon. Then again some of these goals are about everyday concerns, like losing weight, learning to think more positively about one’s self, embracing your flaws, or getting a new hobby.

These goals are all admirable, but also frightening. Putting yourself out in the line of fire takes courage and commitment, and of course love and support from friends. The YoLU group allows others to see your goals and encourage you down the path to being the best version of yourself. We are all constantly growing and learning, and pushing yourself to face things outside of your comfort zone can help you learn a lot about yourself. Choosing to live life uncomfortably gives you the opportunity to learn your boundaries and push them, making your self stronger in the process. I have chosen to have a YoLU, some of my goals are particular to the kink lifestyle, others are about making me a better individual.

Is there anything you’ve been thinking of trying, but have psyched yourself about? Challenge yourself to a YoLU, and get out there and do it! Take a chance on that dance class, do that photo shoot, put yourself out there in the fetish community, or on trying that new style of play you saw at last weekend’s play party. Do your research, keep yourself informed and aware, and make yourself a little uncomfortable. Good luck, and happy YoLU!

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