I turn the heat down in my office every night to save energy. No surprise that the room is chilly by morning. As I went to adjust the thermostat at the start of my day, the words “comfort zone” caught my eye. With the touch of a button, the furnace rumbled on and within seconds, I was right back in mine.
How cozy and relaxing! Time to settle into my day.
But somehow, the idea of “settling” and “being in my comfort zone” kept nagging at me. It almost made me feel guilty that I wasn’t taking huge leaps forward on a daily basis.
As someone who likes adventure, innovation and change, my self-talk went like this.
“Why are you choosing to stay in your comfort zone today? You know the magic happens when you step outside of it.
Remember how you resisted starting a MeetUp group? Then you met some really cool people when you finally hosted one …
And how about that speaking gig you did on short notice to help a friend – that really pushed you. But you ended up really enjoying it!”
And think about how you worried that Thai food would be inediblly hot. Surpirse! You loved it when you tried it…
You need to keep pushing yourself out of your comfort zone!”
Actually, I don’t.
Yes, I do believe that stretching and getting uncomfortable leads to personal breakthroughs and expansion. That’s important. But as a recovering Type A personality, I know how easy it is for me to take this philosphy a little too far. To drive myself too hard in a way that isn’t sustainable or healthy. To ignore the need to integrate all the new learning and growth I’m experiencing. To neglect to take time for rest and reflection. Ever gotten into a cycle like this?
This holiday season, step off that treadmill. Give yourself the gift of more ease and less stress. Go ahead and hang out in your comfort zone for awhile. (You even have permission to stay in your pajamas while you’re there if you want to). And don’t feel guilty about it! I know you’ll be taking on new challenges in 2016. But for now, relax, re-group and step into that place of comfort.
My hunch is that it will bring you some much needed peace and joy.