You know the zone I am referring to; the one where you choose to stay because you have grown accustomed to how your life is going, and it isn’t going bad, things are working out accordingly, and you seem to be just fine with how things are. That is the problem with comfort zones. At first, they are what we need to find stability, maintain our jobs, and keep our relationships going; and to a certain extent, our “comfort zone” is not a bad thing...until we allow it to become one. I look at comfort zones as a temporary period of our lives. Comfort zones are there when other aspects in our life seem hectic. Maybe we are going through something that is taking most of our energy, and our comfort zone is there to make our lives a little bit easier. I completely understand that. What I don’t understand is how we allow ourselves to get stuck there. Our comfort zone serves as a safe place for us to resort to; not a destination that we should ever remain in. Because of this, I have come up with 10 reasons why we should be afraid of our comfort zones:
1. Nothing grows there!
To grow, we must fail, and we must learn. We must step out into the big scary world, and take on the challenges we will be faced with. We grow when we force ourselves to stand back up. Don’t be afraid of taking chances. You might get knocked down, but you grow when you decide to keep going regardless.
2. You aren’t reaching your full potential
Naturally, we humans don’t give ourselves as much credit as we deserve. We somehow fall into this belief that “this is my life, and this is just the way that it is.” This is simply not true. You have a lot of untapped potential you just haven’t challenged yet. You will see that once you step out of your comfort zone, you are nowhere near the level of success that you could reach. Believe in yourself.
3. You are holding yourself back from other opportunities
You never know what else is out there unless you look for it. It is so easy to get stuck in how things are going, that you forget you had bigger plans for your life than this. You are more qualified than you have been telling yourself, and there are opportunities out there for you if you look for them.
4. Routine will slowly kill you
If someone told you that you were going to live out the rest of your days doing the same thing, day in and day out, I bet you would have a problem with that. You would have a problem with that, because we are not machines; we are humans. We are not built to do the same thing over and over. We are meant to be challenged, and we are created to figure out the best way for us to live. If you take away that desire to change, and learn, you are inviting routine to come into your life and take control. Don’t let comfort be the reason you stop living for you.
5. Comfort leads to regret
Eventually we will all reach a point in our lives when we think about what we made of ourselves, and who we chose to become in the process of that. You will always hear people tell you, “You are never too old to __________,” and this is true, to an extent. Eventually we will be too old, and I hope by then, that you chose to fill in that blank space properly.
6. No one ever made a difference while playing it safe
How many successful people have you heard of that made it to where they are without cutting corners, and breaking the rules? I can’t think of any. Those who understand that it takes going the extra mile to get what they want in life, are usually the ones who get there. Risk is a huge differentiator between those who go the distance, and those who run with the crowd. Your comfort zone may feel safer, but most things worth doing are worth the risk it takes to get there.
7. You will never know what you are capable of
Don’t live your whole life never knowing what you can accomplish. That dream job you once imagined for yourself, or that hobby you wanted to pursue because it was your passion, or maybe you wanted to learn something new but never did because life happened, and you just let the idea go. If you don’t settle for less, you will be surprised by how much more you are capable of. Only you can decide what you can and cannot do. Don’t give up on your ideas.
8. Comfort is the quickest way to become unhappy
Although comfort may be easy to choose, it is not easy to be happy in. Like I said before, we are not designed to do the same thing over and over. Comfort leads to this kind of insanity, where we keep repeating our days hoping for another result. The only way to get happier, is by putting yourself out there, and getting uncomfortable. If happiness is what we seek, then we mustn’t be afraid of looking for it within new places.
9. Progress doesn’t start until comfort ends
Imagine a graph of your current situation and a line that represents the progression of your life. If you are stuck in your comfort zone, I bet that line doesn’t really move, and it is most likely horizontal, because although you may be content with how things are going, there is also nothing going on to cause that line to increase, or get higher. Comfort zones plateau your growth. Once you escape from this, you will notice that the line will get steeper.
10. You are only allowing fear to win
Wanting to remain in our comfort zone stems from fear. It is the idea that we will never succeed in the ideas we dream about, so instead, we don’t pursue them at all. We cannot allow this fear to beat us. We must choose to get out of our comfort zones and risk the chance of failing, because without even trying, you are failing by default.
Do you find yourself relating to any of these reasons? Is there something you have avoided doing because you are afraid of not being successful in it? My advice to you is this: The time is going to pass you by regardless. Spend that time wisely and pursue the things you find yourself thinking about. Don’t allow your comfort zone to keep you from finding out what you are good at. Anyone can live a comfortable life, but not all are willing to risk comfort for their dreams. Don’t fall into this category. Failing and learning will help you grow as a person, and choosing to live in your comfort zone is just a quicker way to fail. Life is too short to never know what you can accomplish. Now go and put yourself out there. Only you can hold yourself back.