We are certainly living in a very strange time. Like it or not, we are all being challenged to get out of the “comfort zone” of the “normal” lives we are used to living.
I’ll never forget what my sister said to me the day before I finally broke down and reached out for help by calling a therapist. “Dan, your comfort zone has become TOO comfortable.”
She was right.
I’ve progressively gotten more outside my comfort zone, and I realize more each day that this a process that never stops. In fact, I would say that trying to stay “comfy” is the root cause of most suffering, and at the very least, a less than fully satisfying life.
I think the same holds true for humanity.
I recently heard Marianne Willimanson quote her friend who said, “It’s like Mother Nature is telling us all to go to our rooms and think about how we’ve been done.”
I think this is funny but true, and it certainly has made me step up my introspection game. One of the things I’ve realized is that I often stay in my comfort zone by NOT sharing the wisdom of my experiences.
Fear. What if people don’t like what I have to say? What if they ridicule me? What if no one pays attention at all?
Being quarantined has made me realize none of that ultimately matters, and that expressing myself, while vulnerable and uncomfortable at times, is essential for my well-being. So, if I’m honest, I’m doing this as much for me as anyone else.
My intention is to be as real and authentic as I can be, which is perhaps not so ironically the best way to inspire others. The “please like me” “trying” game doesn’t feel very good and also isn’t very effective.
My beloved dear Mom used to say, “Dan, you’re your own worst enemy.” Wherever she is, I know she’s happy that is becoming less and less the case.
She was my biggest fan and advocate who loved me sharing the wisdom of my experiences with the world. The video below is a great example of what she wanted, and if I don’t mind saying so in non egoistical way, is AWESOME!. It makes me feel good to share especially knowing how
proud it would make her feel. It includes a poem and a great related story.
Enjoy, please leave a comment, and share as you see fit.
Another inspiring poem!
I had always wondered what it would be like to do a mediation retreat of sorts, and shied away from it in the past because I was afraid I’d becoming overwhelmed with the emotional tsunami that would, in my mind, be inevitable. There can be a lot of peace just beyond the threshold of fear, and adopting a realistic (not emotion based) perspective on my experience has made me not as afraid of feeling afraid of my emotions.
Thanks Laura. It’s amazing how much time and energy we waste trying to block out/avoid emotion. I like this sky diving analogy. It’s much easier (in the long term) to just JUMP/LET GO, than to sit on the edge of the seat contemplating, resisting avoiding. YES, the the moment before it terrifying, but beats the long term chronic pain caused by in action. The same holds true for any personal challenge….starting to exercise, seeing a therapist, beginning a new relationship. Indecision is an energy drainer (still learning this lesson). Thanks for your reply.
Another amazing poem. I have found over time that staying in my comfort zone doesn’t really get me anywhere. It can get me stuck in thick mud where I wind up going in circles in my head and winding up further stuck by fear. Comfort zones work if you’re willing to and do step outside of them.
Thanks Linda 🙂