To leave our comfort zones appears to be a constant thing we are told when things are not working out for us. Why not step out of your familiar terrain? Why not launch yourself out et al. We hear this all the time, and we just nod our heads and say, oh yes, very well indeed. Without an iota of what this portrays or means. I will not elaborate on this scientifically but would tackle it from a lay man’s perspective.
Getting out of existing routines is a big problem because as humans, we are creatures of habit. We follow existing norms and rules, eat the same food, drink the same coffee because we are used to those things. Well, the world is changing fast and clinging to the good old ways, might not be so favourable anymore.
The word ‘Comfort Zone’ is quite relative. It depends on exactly where we are in the scheme of things. Your beliefs, time and space. It’s simply about broadening our horizons. Often times, people equate and mistake this as leaving your location and migrating to another country or place. No. This is not so in all cases.
To buttress more on the intent of my post, I’d say that everyone’s comfort zone is different. And how we view this perspective is equally diverse. For instance, what may expand your horizons may actually paralyze someone else’s. It’s about making a change to the existing status quo. Altering the present schedule a little bit. Shaking things up a bit to improve our lifestyles in general.
I left Nigeria to seek further education. And that singular step has impacted greatly in my life and has given me new experiences and new springboards. Of course, there were daunting challenges but that’s another topic altogether.
Being stagnant in routine could result in plummeting creativity. Sometimes launching yourself out is the answer to stagnation and complacency.
One’s comfort zone can be seen as a behavioural space where one’s activities and behaviours fit a routine and pattern.
This reduces stress and risks. You feel mentally secure because you are just relaxed in that capacity of low anxiety. You feel you are content but in actual fact, you may not be fulfilled.
Leaving your comfort zone does not necessarily mean leaving your country or your city. It ranges from acquiring new experiences to learning new skills, making new contacts and connections, getting into new social networks that could change your trajectory, trying out new procedures and generally, being open to new ideologies while reflecting on old ideas. It’s about injecting and infusing new energy into our lives. It’s about not settling for less but seeking ways to expand and build on our talents and skills.
It’s about doing things differently every day. It’s about trying out a new dish/food, watching some new sets of movies, reading a different kind of book altogether, checking out a new restaurant instead of sticking to the old one you’ve patronised since 1900. It’s about breaking the custom or position we are by getting to strike new accords with people. Make new impressions. Instead of frowning all the time, it’s about using the art of ‘smiling’ when you encounter new people. It’s about beginning at that new prospect you’ve been procrastinating to start. And quite to a larger truth, it could mean taking yet the giant step of migrating elsewhere if you feel within you that you needed such change. It’s all about identifying your fears and taking steps to work on them.
Have you ever thought of connecting with the people that inspire and motivate you the most? Have you ever thought of volunteering for a good cause? Have you ever thought of travelling abroad to further your education? Have you ever thought of getting to know that new colleague, the new person in your network better? Have you ever tried to strike a conversation with a stranger at the bus stop or even with that new foreign student in your class? These are ways to leave your comfort zones… Yes. Because that could transform your life’s curve. You learn something new that becomes pluses in your life.
Well, if you have lived all your life eating only pounded yam and egusi soup. Perhaps, it’s time to be more daring and take your taste bud to a new adventure by exploring out Amala and Gbegiri soup. Or try eating potatoes with brown sauce for a change.
If you’ve lived your life travelling only to your village during Christmas, perhaps, it’s time to seek out new options. Yes, dear, it won’t kill you if instead of going to Aba, Owerri, for Christmas you aim at spending it with your friend in Calabar, Benin, or even travelling abroad. What’s the essence of this, stretching your knowledge further away from the norm? Away from the obvious. Away from your entrapment that Christmas is sweetest when spent watching your village masquerades. Who told you that? Have you experienced Christmas in Europe? Aha! Do you know that the Christmas Eve, the 24th is actually Christmas day in most European countries? No. You won’t know because you haven’t tried to broaden your horizon. Haha.
All I’m trying to say here is that if you’ve lived your whole life still mingling with your childhood friends, high school friends, still seeing the world from your front door or not past your tribal circle, then you are missing out on some goodies spread out in the world. You are limiting yourself and starving your growth.
Exchanging your focus and attention doesn’t have to be expensive or difficult to do. There are new experiences to acquire whether positive or negative but this doesn’t matter now.
The theme here is about starting something different and pushing yourself past the mental blocks that offer you nothing new.
Yes, we are comfortable in our familiar environments. And we enjoy this space more than anything else. We feel safe. We feel okay. And the brain tells us that trying new things is a great risk taking and yet this same brain is very malleable.
Freshness, novelty, newness to space, to an environment, to a thing or belief most likely improves our memory and boosts up new learning abilities and new pathways to growth.
PS: My Facebook post today.
PSS: I write for a different audience on FB and use some phrases or terminologies to fit into that space.
Peace and Love!
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