Redeeming the Comfort Zone

Popular psychology (or maybe I’m just thinking of Pinterest, which is often the same thing) seems to place a high value on breaking out of one’s comfort zone.

pinterest collage

all Pins, linked to original sources, found here

But as I grow older, I’ve become an increasingly bigger fan of comfort zones.

Comfort zones help teach us who we are. Comfort zones help show us what our strengths are, what makes us happy, where we feel most confident, at peace, and…well…comfortable.

When did that become such a bad thing? When did we decide that the only way to succeed is to regard our comfort zone as a straight jacket instead of a sturdy foundation?

Do only fear and discomfort motivate? Do only change and upheaval bring reward?

Strangely enough, I’m still a fan of trial, risk, running, thinking big, and all that. If that is what you want, if that is where you are. If doing so fills you with excitement, and not with dread. If you are ready, and not just pushing towards a popular train of thought that says you need to be something other than who you are.

I’m learning to take a bit of my comfort zone with me everywhere I go. It gives me confidence and understanding to face new endeavors, and is more of a steady influence than something I’m trying to leave, shatter, break, or abandon.

I’m curious: how do you feel about comfort zones? Love ’em or leave ’em?

 

  • I’m also a big fan of comfort zones. I also dread change. I’m getting a little better about it as time goes on, but it’s still a big deal for me sometimes.

  • I think the answer to this largely depends on where you are in life. For me, so much of my life is out of control, that there are areas in my life where I have to have comfort just in order to maintain balance and sanity.
    At other times, when all around me is rolling along well, I can stretch and grow knowing I have a safety net to fall back upon.
    Now, its about comfort… but ask again in 6 months and I may be back on the ledge hoping to jump and fly.

    • So, so true, Kim! I agree that it’s more about being sensitive to your own life stages than jumping off that ledge because that seems like the only way to really “live.” Thanks for the comment!