As part of my vow to embrace life a little more and focus on The Stuff That Truly Matters, I’ve been thinking a lot about my personal comfort zone and how I need to push myself out of it a little more often than I have been. I know for me, too much comfort leads to complacency and just plain old fashioned laziness. I do better when I’m pushing myself just a little bit. After all, it’s only through life’s challenges that we grow and become better people.
My running is a perfect example. I’ve been running a lot these past 7 months or so. Ever since this year began and I promised myself that I would focus more on running (what with not having a wedding plan and all), I’ve been doing a good job of getting out there and hitting the pavement on a regular basis. It’s been good for me on a number of different levels.
Up until recently I was going out there and basically just doing what I felt like in terms of my runs. I haven’t been pushing myself to go further, to be faster, or be stronger. Granted, these things have been happening anyhow, slowly and gradually, but not in any big way. No, in order to be able to run further, I need to push myself to run longer distances, to go a little bit further than I feel comfortable doing. In order to get faster, I need to hit up some hill training. I need to push myself to actually run faster than it feels comfortable for me. I’ve been focusing on these things a little more lately and I’ve been rewarded by feeling stronger and faster. Yes, it sucks to push myself at the time that it’s happening, but in the long run I’m happy that I did it.
The same applies to all aspects of life. In friendships, in my job, in my marriage. In all of these areas if I continue to happily hang out in my comfort zone, there’s no way that these things will challenge me and help me to improve. And if we’re not improving, if we’re not learning and growing, then what’s the point of life?
Breaking out of our comfort zones is never easy. It’s…uncomfortable. But when you feel that old familiar discomfort arising, all that means is that you need to keep pushing forward. That’s exactly what I intend to do.