“A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there.”
“A dream is your creative vision for your life in the future. You must break out of your current comfort zone and become comfortable with the unfamiliar and the unknown.”
– Denis Waitley
December 8, 2019
Zy Marquiez a.k.a. Noctis Blackburn
Comfort is a feeling that brings myriad moments that allow individuals a moment of rest, familiarity, and even peace. Likewise, comfort also brings about many other positive considerations. But not every aspect that revolves around comfort is to be lauded, for many times comfort is the anchor that prevents us from moving forward and often achieving growth.
Arguably, the most amount of growth an individual will have will take place beyond a particular comfort zone. This type of growth can come about in myriad ways, sometimes being planned, and other times coming wholly unexpected.
In my life, there are four vanguard instances that have spawned endless growth, all of which stemmed from venturing beyond my comfort zones, but in the interest of time and simplicity, I will only touch upon three.
Some of the most resounding growth that I have undergone as an individual came about by pursuing my dreams of playing Poker, starting small businesses, and also publishing books while pursuing dreams with writing. The growth that each of these has imparted upon me is vast and far reaching, but I am where I am due to those three avalanches of growth, coupled with the fourth instance as well.
Before moving forward, let’s take another gander at the backdrop quote above by Ralph Waldo Emerson:
“Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow”
The reason this quote resonates so deeply for me is because at the current moment in time, I’m seeing myself not only struggling in many areas, but also growing in many areas as well, and those areas of growth are areas in which I pushed myself outside of my comfort zones.
Beyond those considerations, where I am struggling the most is where I have either developed a new bad habit, or fallen back on old patterns of behavior that do not serve me well. These all stem from my inability to get back to where I was before when I was proactive about moving forward as a self-directed learning individual, and my inability to grow beyond the normalcy that I have for all intents and purposes created in my ill-suited behavior patterns that I have undertaken.
Even so, I do realize that venturing beyond those areas of comfort are something that I not only want to do, but I need to do, because they are incredibly problematic. I must do this because if I do not, I will simply keep repeating the same mistakes over and over again, and continue wasting dozens of hours a weeks for example, without having anything tangible to show for it. The point is, if I don’t put my best foot forward, first and foremost for myself, I cannot be the best me that I can be. Moreover, I also cannot be the best that I can for others. This is why it’s paramount to make sure that my every action is as incisive as it is thought out, while carrying those actions out with a foundation of mindfulness in order to have the best chance at succeeding in venturing beyond comfort zones.
Outside of that however, I do find myself in other comfort zones that I wish to venture from. Some of these include but aren’t limited to, falling into the bad habit of not reading as much as before, not going to the gym as much as I was before, which was almost every day, not being mindful to the best of my ability, which translates to every other area in my life, not putting myself first when it matters the most on certain specific personal considerations (particularly health), and a whole host of other issues. The good news is I can make progress in all of those areas. The bad news is, I have not made any progress to any significant extent recently because I have allowed my poor choices, my poor mindset, and my inability to stay focused and mindful to set the stage for my unfortunate mistakes. Regardless of that though, I will not quit, and I also know where I want to go. And that’s the starting point.
Once you realize that comfort zones hold you back, particularly those that are highly noxious to you as a person, then you realize that you’re one step closer in venturing beyond that comfort zone. But to begin venturing beyond your comfort zone, it takes effort, sometimes incredible effort, and significant focus on the task at hand. This isn’t a one-and-done situation by any means, for it is something that’s a lifelong path if you deem it so, and that’s how I see it. I don’t only want to venture out of comfort zones now, but I want to do so for the rest of my life. If I fail in doing so, or fail in even trying, then I realize that I will have only sold myself short, and not lived the life that I intended for myself.
Because of all those considerations and more, I will be more mindful of the choices that I make in order to make sure that every step I take is with purpose, but more importantly, precision. If every step that I take is mindful, deeply thought out, and with purpose, then I am sure to grow beyond the boundaries of my current comfort zones, moving the bar higher for myself, and growing as a person, thus increasing my repertoire in myriad directions. That is why I have chosen to start this mindset series, which I have admittedly had in mind for a very long time, far too long in fact, and I hadn’t followed suit due to overlooking what was best for me.
In the end, this is only one step. But it is useless if it’s the only step that I take. It’s a starting point at least, and that’s all you need to begin stepping out of your comfort zones.
Ultimately, time will tell if I continue taking such steps. I will admit though, I am definitely looking forward to it, that’s for sure. And whenever you yourself begin taking steps outside of your comfort zone, you should look forward to it as well, because once you do, your life will never be the same again.
Noctis Blackburn (aka. Zy Marquiez) is an author, bibliophile, writer, poet, dreamer, star gazer, autodidact, logician, researcher, lover of life, Carmel Macchiatto addict, and more.
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