Photo by Alex Radelich on Unsplash

A comfortable, convenient life is not real life – the more comfortable, the less alive. The most comfortable life is in the grave. – Rajneesh

We equate comfort with happiness. Isn’t it?

So, you are happy if you are comfortable? 

I mean, you are comfortable now. You have a job, a house, a car, and some money in the bank. Are you happy?

That morning walk of yours got delayed as you seek the comfort of sleeping. That course you wanted to start for some learning got delayed as you were comfortable with the status quo of yours.

It’s like you want stars, but aren’t ready to even leave your beds. No wonder we end up being miserable. The cozy beds, fancy devices, and cars were supposed to make us happy, but we are in a pit of comfortable misery. We love being there because it’s the easier one. Why struggle and achieve when you can crib and stay miserable.

We naturally seek ease and avoid struggle, without realizing our tendency of becoming miserable in quest of comfort. Most people find solace in their misery, even when they have a choice to change and improve their circumstances. It’s a risk to change, any adventure eludes them, and the situation stays.

It’s a simple logic where we find comfort in the known. We get comfortable with our problems because they are familiar to us. We know them and our responses.

Imagine this

Your morning starts with no intention to start your day like the last one, knowing what lies ahead. As usual, your day starts, and you get into the grind, only to end up frustrated at the end of the day, cursing life and your situation. But you don’t end up making any changes further. Why?

The reason- You find comfort in the known. Howsoever, the dreaded routine may be, it’s known to you; The pitfalls and everything. You end up finding solace in the known dreaded life while resisting any change for the betterment.

You are in love with the comfortable misery.

The problem being:

The fear that the discomfort we may feel by stepping outside of our current circumstances is greater than the discontent we feel right now.

3 Reasons why your comfort zone is the enemy

You settle for less

That’s how you get conditioned- To settle.

There comes a time when you feel tired and worn down by life. Any new challenge or an opportunity doesn’t feel exciting but daunting. 

Everything that is a deviation from your existing setup is a threat to your growth and happiness. No matter how dissatisfied you may feel of the current scenario. Since you get accustomed to living in your bubble of comfort, everything else feels worthless.

Even if the change is interesting, you pull back due to the fear of losing on your comfort.

“We are so accustomed to the comforts of “I cannot”, “I do not want to” and “it is too difficult” that we forget to realize when we stop doing things for ourselves and expect others to dance around us, we are not achieving greatness. We have made ourselves weak.”

― Pandora Poikilos

You refrain from trying new things

The thought of engaging with an unknown territory grips you with fear. Your inclination suggests taking a risk, but your comfort dictates otherwise. While change and a new prospect excite, the existing routine wins.

You no longer challenge your existing beliefs and push yourself to achieve more. The current order suits you because everything feels ok. This scenario is stagnation, and the belief of being in a good state rules over the possibility of something new to grow.

Within your comfort zone, you rarely try new things halting the development process altogether, keeping you from finding your passion.

On similar thoughts Few Lessons For Extraordinary Life: What we miss?

You don’t progress

The primary recipe for happiness in life is progress. Any progress towards your goal or the next step is bound to leave you joyous. When you move a step closer to the goal, there is an inherent satisfaction.

When you progress, you grow. For progress, you have to move. For any movement, stepping out of your comfort zone is a given.

Since, your beliefs are restricted to the existing situations and their outcomes, making a move is something you fear. Hence, you don’t progress and grow.

What to do

The Comfort zone is only your fear of the unknown. Once you become comfortable doing the uncomfortable, it goes. Not suggesting some magic trick, but practical solutions that applied can change the game for you. 

To view it rationally, it is only the fear that stops you from breaking free and taking that step out of your bubble. Once you break the shackles, the process of taking calculated risks and playing out of the comfort zone becomes enjoyable.

Uncertainty, skepticism, and undecided are the primary factors that play into the hands of your limiting beliefs.

Be comfortable with the discomfort

How do we overcome fear? By facing our fears.

The same rationale follows with the discomfort. Do things that discomfort you. If you detest social settings, visit people more often. If you avoid speaking to strangers, do it more often. There is no magic potion for this cure, but simple practice.

Attempting things you may otherwise avoid is the best practice to become comfortable with discomfort.

Anything other than your routine is a good start.

Know what’s outside of your comfort zone

There are things you dreamt of doing, but are too scared or fear to attempt. Some may be practical, while others may be a far off affair.

Make a list of things that are worth attempting and will help you grow. You will be surprised to know how you have been putting off things that are well within your reach and can be given a shot with some or little effort. 

Agree to something you normally wouldn’t

It may be joining a new social group or hanging out with strangers. It can be as small as trying new food, or a new route than you generally take. It gets you into the unknown territory, the path you fear. Our comfortable misery is a culmination of our fears put together, defining our do’s and dont’s. Our leap of faith signals the mind about liberation and freedom. It ensures you are out of the rut and are ready to explore things.


Closing thoughts

What are you waiting for? 

The time is now.

Break the monotony and explore things you never have, just because you were too scared for a change. Why limit yourself when there is so much to see and learn. Struggles are here to stay and so is your life. You may crib or change, fear, or dare. Either way, you will define how your life pans out.

The decision to step outside of your comfort zone is a power shot to your confidence to go after your life goals.

Check this TEDx talk by Bill Eckstorm that describes this beautifully.

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