Dr. Deb’s Mental Health Vitamin: Don’t get too comfortable
By Dr. Deb Wade
GCU Vice President, Counseling and Psychological Services
Ahhh … the “comfort zone.” We know what it means to exist in our comfort zones, whether that be socially, vocationally, personally, geographically, emotionally or physically.
When we’re in our comfort zones, we can rest on the assurance that we usually know what to expect and we usually know how to respond. But, as you deeply inspect the “comfort zone,” it’s really not about comfort at all … it could be about fear. Why?
Because, as you settle into your comfort zone, consider that you …
- … are playing it safe
- … are settling for the status quo
- … are allowing yourself to be like everyone else
- … are content with the familiar
- … are in control of your environment
- … are at a steady level of performance
But, most important, you have adopted the truth that it is easier not to change. The problem lies in the fact, however, that the more you buy into that truth, days will turn into weeks and weeks will turn into months and months will turn into years … and before too long, REGRET knocks on your heart.
- “I wish I’d had the courage to start that book I want to write.”
- “I wish I’d taken the risk to move to another state for that plum job.”
- “I wish I’d gone kayaking, skydiving, hang-gliding, horseback riding, cliff diving, marathon running and deep sea fishing.”
- “I wish I had … but I didn’t.”
I’ve heard it said that when you step out of your comfort zone, you step into GREATNESS. I’ve also heard that life begins at the end of your comfort zone. What I know is this: It takes courage to step out of the familiar and into the unknown. And when we tell ourselves, “I don’t have time,” what we really might be saying is “I’m afraid.”
My encouragement to you is …
- Don’t let fear win!
- Just START! (One baby step will lead to another and, before you know it, you’re on your way to fulfilling those dreams.)
- Remember that fertile ground lies outside your comfort zone. Go there and BLOOM!
- And … when you write out your To-Do List for today, put as Number 1 … Leave My Comfort Zone! I fully believe you will be glad you did!