It can be very easy to play it safe. However, to experience personal growth, it can sometimes be necessary to do things that might be uncomfortable. Sometimes you need to step outside your comfort zone.
Life is about trying to make things easier for yourself. You try to have enough food so that you don’t go hungry. You heat your home so that you don’t get too cold. You try to make enough money so you can afford the things you like.
And yet, if everything in life revolves around ease or comfort, you won’t reach your full potential and you won’t experience personal growth or fulfillment.
As a result, you need to purposefully include some discomfort, to stretch yourself and try something that you don’t know how to do. Finding an appropriate balance can be difficult, but is ultimately rewarding.
Are you familiar with your comfort zone? When was the last time you pushed the boundaries of your comfort zone?
Related questions: What is uncomfortable but rewarding? What makes a place feel like home? What are you doing to improve yourself?
5 thoughts on “When Did You Last Push The Boundaries Of Your Comfort Zone?”
Every time I post something to my blog, Prone to Hope, I am pushing the boundaries of my comfort zone.
Am I sharing too much of myself? Will people use my vulnerabilities against me? Will being clear about my challenges make it so some people assume they know my weaknesses? Will the pictures I post on Facebook of me when I am in agony discomfort some in my social media networks, so they no longer want to be friends? Will my writing style strike others as immature?
These are just a handful of questions that confront me every time I sit down to write a post for the blog. Of course, I am also writing to work through depressive or anxious thoughts in my head. And that process helps me a lot more than the discomfort I feel in posting to the blog. Still, as I get ready to post, I must admit the questions from the paragraph above fill me with a bit of hesitation.
I read, re-read, and then re-re-read each post several times to make sure I am getting the point across to others just as much as for myself. And after I post, I go through to make additional edits. There have even been posts I’ve taken down because I feel I’ve crossed a line into too much vulnerability or embarrassment.
These things noted, I am proud of Prone to Hope. I feel I have fairly represented my struggle so that others get a picture of what Depression and Anxiety are like, if even just for one guy who lives with the two mood disorders. And I am grateful to the people who have come to me to express their appreciation for being so open as they silently struggle. The blog helps them not feel so alone.
I’ll end with yet another reason I keep on blogging. There is still a stigma attached to mental illness and sometimes blatant discrimination directed at the people who suffer. Someone recently shared with me that this will not end until enough people who struggle with the mood disorders stand up and demand change.
Prone to Hope is part of my contribution to that standing up and expecting a better society.
(Addendum: The hesitation I feel as I get ready to post to Prone to Hope disappears soon after I make the post “go live.” Prone to Hope helps me address my Anxiety head-on.)
Funny you should ask. Just yesterday I went to Confession/Reconciliation at my church. This isn’t usually a big deal, but I wanted to get something off my chest that has been bothering me for years now. I asked the priest what to do when you confess a sin and are absolved, but you can’t seem to forgive yourself. His answer? (hope I can express this accurately). I’m not the only one that has this problem. He has it also. When these thoughts come, gently brush them aside and don’t dwell on them. After all, a person can choose what to think about. Seems simple enough. I’m going to try it and let you know how it goes. I’m guessing that with practice, I’ll overcome this habit of feeling guilty about something from the distant past. Thank you Michael and Lee for asking!
One more thing the priest told me. 12-step programs have a saying “Let go and let God.” Please pray for me that I am able to do that. Thanks and God bless.
I promised last December to let you know if I’m able to gently brush my guilty thoughts aside. It is working, slowly but surely. Thank you for your prayers.
Last week I did some phone banking to urge people to call their state senator and ask them to support the Governor’s budget which calls for a tax increase on Minnesotans making over $20,000 per week. I don’t like talking to complete strangers on the phone, so I’m happy when I get their answering machine. I hope anyone reading this will call your senator this week. The money generated from this tax will provide much needed funds for things like child care, affordable health care, and education. Thank you.