Why getting OUT of the Comfort Zone may be the most proactive thing you can do.
As humans we have a propensity to create habits that give us comfort. This is a good thing as it makes living life feel a little better. However, comfort zone can also be our regular practice of creating routines that give us a false sense of wellbeing and avoiding the regular work of looking more deeply into the truth of our bodies functioning….and can numb out our receptivity to important impulses, expressions, sensations and other information that our body is offering.
Let’s look at the word “comfortable”. It’s definition means com·fort·a·ble
(especially of clothes or furnishings) providing physical ease and relaxation.
"invitingly comfortable beds"
synonyms:cozy, snug, warm, pleasant, enjoyable, agreeable, congenial, plush, well furnished;
In a standard sense being able to find comfort in a movement, in a particular part of the body, or in a particular setting is a great practice in regulating the nervous system. The problem enters when we, rather than going toward new experiences, relationships, the moment in it’s uniqueness or even “old” relationships with wonder and ease, we avoid them from a place of “seeking comfort”. This avoidance is the opposite of having an embodied sensation of being able to create it no matter what. This is attachment. It takes skill of deep “listening within” to know when we are avoiding and using comfort as a crutch instead of continual growth and change which is natural….adapting as we go from a place of vibrance and health.
Our emotions ( feelings) are the signposts of what is making our nervous system and our mind create stories that may or may not be true. This feeling of “un ease” is often what propels us to find things outside of us to bring comfort. It’s a fueling source of impulses to control or change those around us versus embrace “what is” and finding the comfort in the uncomfortable. Having the capacity to be with an uncomfortable emotion ( building comfort within it) is a skill that takes practice and the huge gift is this emotion will become less “under the surface”….less likely to “pop up” unexpectedly and less likely to become motivators that we don’t notice until it’s too late. Feelings and emotions are the human response to life……being able to practice breathing, mindfulness, personal response-ability, and capacity to articulate from “I” versus generalizing or assuming is a skill well worth the effort. Everyone benefits from the effort it takes….including your body. Health and over all vitality increase when we are congruent inside and out….physically and emotionally.
This wellbeing is seen as a deeper joy, and more consistent feeling of awe, more creativity, less “neediness” and an enhanced relationship with “all” , “the Universe” or “God”.
It starts within and takes humility…..with noticing the circle of “comfort” you move in and being wiling to let go…..let go of the clutches of “need” and seeming comfort……and feeling into the edges of discomfort ( not pain). From the bodies perspective it’s noticing with deep and expanded awareness…..your thoughts. Which ones are often pulsing through? Are they yours? What is their quality and do they serve? What is the emotion behind them?
Next notice how your body moves….not from “good or bad”, rather from noticing your unique patterns in how you move often and how you DON’T move…..parts you hold tightly or forget about often. The shapes we take in our thoughts form into our bodies contours and how we function. If you explore “awkward,” feeling “ugly”, feeling “judged”, feeling “uncomfortable” in your skin….and can stay with the physical long enough to feel the emotion move…..you are developing more self compassion, more space and less stickiness to comfort……you are opening into new ways of being in the body.
This space……this physical space is what the body LOVES and THRIVES in……not perceived comfort. Self care is this practice of being present….not seeking comfort to avoid. With this, allow yourself “sacred pauses” to breathe and rest back. Just be careful of getting “stuck” and attaching to “comfort”. Allow comfort to be a sensation of resting but not stuck in a rigid thought or way of perceiving life. Breathe…..Open…..Allow life to move through you like a gentle breeze and enjoy your capacity to live with more love inside and out.