“A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there”. Anonymous
The aforementioned aphorism is true in every sense and even though it resonates with most people, it is very sublimely applied in real life. Each person’s life is characterized by his own ambitions and beliefs. One can either be born with a silver spoon and still choose not to carve his own niche. On the other hand, there can be a person who is not born in the environs of comfort and magnificence, but still goes on and creates significant milestones in the course of his life. In a nutshell, it doesn’t really matter where one comes from or what one is born into.
The power of creating and leaving a mark for yourself lies in the truth that you live which happens when one steps out of his comfort zone and experiences real struggle. The real harbinger of success isn’t measured by the extrinsic value of mere possessions but by the intrinsic value of what truly matters in life.
Let’s be honest and not kid around like minions in “Despicable Me”. Who doesn’t want a successful business, all the lavishness that life has to offer, and a healthy relationship with his family and significant other? Does all this happen overnight? Do you really think one can create a sanctum of inner peace and happiness without working towards it?
True happiness requires real struggle. A lot of us are reluctant to put in the hours and are ghastly impatient to see magical results and wish the same to happen in less than a Nano second. One should understand that there is a fine line between wanting things and making it happen. While the former is simply a fantasy or idealization or a false promise, the latter involves hard work, sheer grit and determination.
So lets take an example of any athlete running for a 10k marathon. It is his daily drudgeries in life juxtaposed with constant struggle that makes him a star athlete. He is not limited by the mere notion; “I want the results but not the process”. However, in today’s day and age with everything being available at the tap, touch or swipe of a button, the struggle of life has become a thing of the past. It is very seldom that people are really willing to put up a fight and are only interested in being victorious without sheer sweat and gumption.
We must remember that our struggles determine our successes. We must pick and choose our struggles wisely. It is crucial to push the boundaries of your comfort zone and work for what really matters. A comfort zone simply provides mental security and reduced stress levels. We must remember that stepping out of your cocoon intensifies increased levels of optimal productivity. This shall enable to harness your creativity in the most effective manner.
One of the biggest motivating factors in my life has been my father who has gone through tumultuous struggles in his life in order to reach his pinnacle of success. Had things been different for him, he probably would not have stepped out of his comfort zone and experience the harsh realities of life. Struggle builds one character, teaches resilience and imparts self-belief.
To conclude I would like to quote a statement I read last night, “Look around you. How many people do you think are settling? Probably a hell of a lot. People settle into okay relationships, okay jobs, okay friends and an okay life. Why? Because okay is comfortable. Okay pays the bills, and provides a warm bed at night. Some people are fine with okay, and guess what? That’s okay. But okay is not thrilling, it isn’t passion, its not life-changing or unforgettable. Okay is not the reason you risk absolutely everything you’ve got from the smallest chance that something absolutely amazing could happen.”
With all this being said, the real question is how does one actually step out of his comfort zone? To begin with, start doing things differently instead of following a regular path. It does take a lot of courage to break free from our comfort zone, but trust me that the outcome generated from the same is infectious that makes one unstoppable and in-suppressible. After all, the best way to broaden your perspective is to push yourself through all the mental blocks that restrict you. Else simply be happy with being “okay”.
Originally published on Times of India