Breaking Free From The Imaginary: The Comfort Zone

“One can choose to go back toward safety or forward toward growth. Growth must be chosen again and again; fear must be overcome again and again.”

~Abraham Maslow~

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The comfort zone is a made up place.  And it’s time for me to stop pretending.  And, if you know me, you know I don’t “half do” ANYTHING.  I dance big.  I eat big.  And I commit big.

This weekend started out with me crying (literally and physically) because I was frustrated as I don’t know what because I couldn’t do something.  It was completely out of my comfort zone and I REALLY wanted to do it and I couldn’t.  I felt like a failure.  A big one.  And I am not even ready to say what it is just yet.  But I spent Friday afternoon in a bad mood because I didn’t know how to rise from it.  And yet as the afternoon went on and I read a little more and answered my phone (which I have a tendency not to do when I’m in a bad mood), I started to feel the cloud come from over my head.  And I started to feel determined.  Not just about “that” thing.  But about everything.  My frustration is because I want to be “comfortable.”  And the truth is, well, there is just no such thing as comfortable growth.

I went from crying on the floor in my living rCYMERA_20131005_183058oom to taking my first Bikram yoga class in months, signing up for another half marathon (if you know me then you know this is WAY out of my comfort zone into the Twilight Zone), took a somatics workshop, made an investment for my financial future, wrote a check at ch20130219_110329urch and didn’t think twice about it (thank you for being patient with me, Lord!), paid extra on my student loan, got up at 5:30 a.m. on a Sunday and read instead of just lying around, getting my 100 lunges daily (one day 200 hundred because I fell asleep and didn’t get them done.  Are you getting yours done?), cleaned out my closet and got rid of some clothes I really need20131005_125059ed to shed INCLUDING a sweat shirt I’ve had from my 200 pound grad school days, did yoga poses in the street, even did one (that I technically can’t even do) in just a sports bra and posted it PUBLICLY and kept my mouth closed when I wanted to go South Side.  How’s that for breaking free?

And breaking free, it is.

The comfort zone keeps us stuck in mediocrity.  It’s a false sense of security.  What it does is it makes us believe that “going for it” isn’t safe.  The truth is there are risks in everything.  Wayne Gretzky said it best: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

Let me add to this conversation by saying that I go between being “careful” and being “crazy.” Somewhere in between I found courageous. Careful has stopped me from doing crazy things like signing up for one of thos20130812_110605e 100 mile races with my friend Christy KNOWING that I haven’t trained for it.  But careful stopped me from signing up for another half marathon before now because I was afraid of failing, so much so that it paralyzed me from doing other things because I was afraid of what other people thought of me and my failures and short comings.  Choosing to be courageous doesn’t mean I do not have fear.  I just have to step up to the plate with my knees shaking.  I’ll just make it look like a dance. 🙂

What is it that you REALLY want to do?  And what will it take to take to make your dreams, visions and goals a reality?

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