“A comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there. ” – these words I found today on some fanpage I follow. Normally I would just say pffffffff nooooooo and kept scrolling. But maybe today should be the day when I tell you what I think about this whole stepping out of comfort zone thing. Because oh my, poor comfort zone is so demonized!
I google “comfort zone” and go to “pictures”. And I see comfort zone in opposition to success, adventures and good life. Comfort zone as a barrier of growth. I see a picture of this sad grey horse that turns into unicorn as soon as it steps out of comfort zone. I see links to articles “How to step out of comfort zone”, “Leave your comfort zone in 2019”, “4 key benefits of stepping out of your comfort zone” and my favourite: “Why is your comfort zone the most dangerous place to live?”.
I know a ton about stepping out of comfort zone. I changed my life completely in the last 3 years and more changes are coming. I am scared every day, and every day I put myself out there. And I used to believe that – let me quote again – a comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there. That was my mindset.
But not anymore. This is not true, not for me. Some flowers grow and bloom ONLY in comfort zone. Because comfort zone is exacly about this: comfort and SAFETY. Sometimes to grow, to heal, to overcome an impasse you need just this – safety, love, care and comfort. Sometimes your comfort zone, your own house, your old slippers and a book that you read seven times already are exactly what you need. Comfort zone gives strenght, hope and regeneration. Yes, it is not very adventurous. Yes, you don’t learn new things in your comfort zone and if you spend too much time there, you get bored and uninspired and that’s the danger of comfort zone. But you have to spend time there: rest, rejuvenate, appreciate everyday magic to be able to truly put yourself out there to the world.
There is this saying – magic happens when you step out of your comfort zone. And this is true. You meet new people, you learn new things and you get to know yourself better. But hey, magic happens in the comfort zone as well! I call it ordinary magic. Miracles of the mundane.
Step out of your comfort zone by all means. But make sure that all this “stepping out” is not, in fact, running away. A real comfort zone is your great support in growth. If you know that it is always there, it is easier to leave it. If you allow yourself for REAL rest and rejuvenation in safety, your comfort zone will push you out eventually. It’s like with a house. Knowing that your warm, cozy home is waiting for you, makes it easier to go through a hard day or crazy adventures.
I am the person who tells you: every day do something that scares you. And I am also the person who tells you: go back to your comfort zone as often as you need. Make sure that you HAVE a real comfort zone in the first place and that your “comfort zone” is not in fact numbness zone. There is a huge difference between not acting because you recharge in comfort and safety, and not acting because you are numb, frozen abd too scared to do a thing. Feel the difference.