February 23, 2017
Shhhh…just relax. That’s right, sit back in your recliner. Now, ease it back until you are fully reclined. Better? Good. Slowly take a deep breath in…now exhale and release that pesky pent-up tension. Again, deep breath in...hold it…and exhale. Hmmm…feel that? It’s your body relaxing. Now, simply enjoy the tranquility of total comfort as you inhale…and exhale. How do you feel? Helllooo? Hey, wake up. Did you fall asleep? Dickens, I know you’re completely comfortable but for this exercise you must stay awake.
Well, because while you’re comfortable, you need to also be aware. As in, how does total relaxation without nodding off into la-la land make you feel? “Boring.” Good point. What else? “Anxious.” Well, I didn’t see that coming, but okay. Makes sense. In other words, what I hear you saying is being totally comfortable has it’s draw backs. Boredom, anxiety, feeling unproductive or fearful. A stark contrast to the concept of comfort. Isn’t it?
Exactly the point. Being too comfortable with our lives can easily morph into idleness. Idleness breeds complacency. Which understandably becomes a pattern of apathy. And if we’re apathetic, we’re doomed to life of watching the world pass us by. We don’t pass ‘go’ and we don’t collect $200. Plus, the more comfortable we get the more comfortable we stay. Avoiding anything and everything that attempts to entice us away from our proverbial ‘comfort zone’ recliner.
In other words, getting stuck in our comfort zone we actually fear getting uncomfortable. Yet, getting uncomfortable is the next level. The ‘do’, ‘be’, ‘have’ level where magic happens. Getting uncomfortable is when we learn, grow, and often reconnect with our inner child. When we get uncomfortable we try new things like: Go back to school; learn to fly; apply for a new job; write a book; study a foreign language; climb a ladder and jump into a safety net; take singing lessons; learn to paint; bait a hook; or learn to dance. The best things in life can, and do, happen when we’re uncomfortable.
Case in point. When my BFF and I became friends years ago she told me she didn’t dance. Well, I don’t take ‘no’ for an answer when it comes to dancing. (The dance instructor in me.) Soooo, I put dangly earrings on her and introduced her to Bobbi’s closet. After trying on several brightly colored tops she chose one and away we went. Sure, her first attempt at getting uncomfortable was to stand beside her chair and move a little to the beat. Then next time we went dancing she ‘got uncomfortable’ by standing near the dance floor and simply watching. No worries, at least she was there. By the third time she literally broke through the confines of her comfort zone and danced. Now, she hardly gets off the dance floor. The transformation in her happiness is beyond amazing.
Ah, but the magic happened when she met her, soon to be husband, while dancing. He adores her and they are incredible together. I can’t imagine her life right now, still stuck in the recliner, if I hadn’t coaxed her to break out of her comfort zone. She would have never met the man of her dreams and be excitedly skipping down the happily-ever-after aisle. Just think, they have me to thank. Kidding. I didn’t do anything except encourage her to get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
And I’ve had other friends, even you (my readers) say, “Bobbi, you’re changing me.” To which I always respond, “I’m not changing you, you are changing you.” You’ve made the decision to toss the “I can’t, I don’t, or I won’t” list and get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
Besides, getting uncomfortable is when living your best life happens. It’s when we discover talents we didn’t know we had. Busting out of our comfort cocoon is when we tap into passions and desires which have lain dormant our entire lives. We learn, grow, and truly live when we chose to get uncomfortable.
I read a quote, and I’m paraphrasing, but it said something like: A paved road is comfortable, but flowers don’t grow there. In other words, a paved road is solid, like the brick wall we build to hide behind and stay comfortable. But when we get uncomfortable we take a walk on a gravel road, a dirt path, or woodland trail. It’s these walks when we’ll find a flower growing. Sometimes between the rocks. Sometimes amongst the grass. But it’s there, where the ground is the most uncomfortable…and it’s blooming.
“Can you imagine”…uncomfortable magic?