Slum in Cebu City, Philippines

Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

Experience life, grow yourself

Life can become comfortable pretty quickly. Go to school, college or work, do your best not pushing yourself too much, have some fun with your friends and enjoy life as it is.

After living in a comfort zone for a while you will start whining about the weather, about other nonsenses and seeing the negative side of life. This happens because no growth challenges are being faced anymore and you get caught up in a routine that doesn't challenge you to push the boundaries to test your capabilities and seek greatness.

Today I have had a chance to visit a slum district in Cebu City, Philippines and experience first-hand how poverty, drugs and hopelessness take over the people’s lives. They have nothing and their only daily goal is to eat and survive the day. These people and especially children are full of pure happiness and optimism. They are smiling seeing white people and they appreciate your high-five, they start screaming and jumping around if you wave them over the street or say a simple ‘Hello’.

It is very touching seeing young children being stuck in a slum where hygiene is definitely not the priority, where crime and survival guide them every day. They won’t have Christmas presents, Christmas tree, not even a Christmas dinner, I am not sure they even know what Christmas and Santa Claus is.

You, now reading this, think how horrible it is but it’s somewhere on the other side of the world, in the Philippines, but you are simply sitting in your comfort zone, reading this article and thinking what to get for lunch tomorrow or what song to play next.

So what is a comfort zone?

Lets define it.

Comfort zone is a physical or mental area that contains minimized stress and risk potential. You are familiar with the things and events that may occur because you have experienced it all before. You take everything for granted, you don’t use any energy to get something done. This is when it is that you’re stuck in a comfort zone being afraid of losing what you have, being afraid of being vulnerable, afraid to risk, afraid to fail.

Most important thing is security. People will never leave their comfort zone and work the same hated job, have the same boring relationships and will keep dreaming about achieving their life goals.

People tend to avoid risk, stress, anxiety and physical or mental pressure.

That’s why it’s so hard to force yourself to turn off the TV and go to the gym, that’s why it’s so hard to pick up a book when you can simply watch funny videos on YouTube, that’s why it’s so hard to begin producing something instead of consuming everything. There is risk of rejection, there is stress of completing the work on time, pressure from the ones expecting you good results.

Prepare yourself for some stress, risk and potential failure so you can face your challenge with a brave mindset embracing any experience that it will turn to.

You love bed so much because it is the ultimate comfort zone.

Hitting snooze button is just another cheap move to extend the comfort zone and escape the reality, refuse the challenge of life. You may be scared to lose everything you have, you may fear the rejection, you may fear the unknown and that will certainly freeze you up and paralyse you making any bold moves in life.

Review your life goals, what it is that makes you get up everyday and live the life you dream of? What is stopping you? What growth challenges you need to take to make your dreams come true?

Extend your comfort zone by taking risks and challenging yourself.

Comfort zone can be extended, it will, however stay a comfort zone, but you will be able to grow as a personality and will tolerate more unknown and uncertainty in your life that will make it more vibrant and interesting.

“Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.” — Brian Tracy

Why not taking a dance class next weekend? Why not trying yoga for the first time? Or visiting homeless children and facing the life, as the ones who are not that fortunate as you, have to live everyday? Pick a challenge and show some courage to face the life.

Pushing too much will make you burn out and totally hate the whole experience.

Don’t push too much. I challenge myself all the time, physically and mentally and have high expectations for everyone around me. I tend to push them too hard which leads them to panic zone where people freak out and never come back to that zone associated with anxiety and pain.

Take small steps. Little risks and challenges that don’t require too much of your energy and grow gradually instead of trying get everything at once.

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