Let me state this very clearly from the very start. No one but ourselves defines the boundaries of our "comfort zone"; hence, we never have to be outside of it. Resting in this understanding, we can relax and enjoy reading for discomfort's days are numbered.
There are the situations that life offers or subjects us to and there is the degree of comfort that we experience. Furthermore, it is not the situations in and of themselves but only our perceptions that determine how we feel. Additionally, identical situations have profoundly different effect on how different people feel, and even how we feel depending on our mood.
What all experiences termed "out of the comfort zone" have in common? They make us feel or more accurately, we feel uncomfortable while they last. But what is the root of this discomfort? It is resistance.
Resistance takes the form of either:
- Not accepting things as they are - being unwilling to just "let it be" - resisting physical sensations, thoughts, things we need to do, etc.
"Just thinking about speaking in front of people makes me feel sick."
- Clinging to the way things are - being unwilling to "let it go" - grasping people, items, states, etc.
"I cannot imagine living without you." "I cannot live without my smartphone."
Looking at some of its causes already begins to loosen the grip of resistance.
Aesop's fable about the Oak and the Reed teaches us that it is better to bend than to break.
Similarly, as we let go of resistance the boundaries of our "comfort zone" dissipate into spacious openness. This allows us to embrace life's experiences just as they are and be fully present for the unfolding of our life.
Instead of "pushing" ourselves "out of our comfort zone", let us just expand its boundaries making it all-encompassing.
Martin Stefanov Petkov