Hello. 🙂 This is the very first post not about travelling. I am walking on this thin ice extremely carefully – it is not easy to get to writing something that used to be decomposed into the prime factors only in the company of loved ones. And those thoughts must be released to the world with full responsibility. I decided not to be too strict to myself and to tell you about my comfort zone adventure, and thereby, cross its closely guarded line yet again.
But let’s go back to the very beginning. It is 2017. I’m single, crawling, and still a little beat up after the last long-time relationship. I decide to go through another change of life. I’m learning myself once again. With great consciousness, I am devoting this year to myself, to my needs, desires, and development.
Sometimes it’s difficult to remember about ourselves in day-to-day concerns. How often do we ask ourselves those questions: Am I happy? Happy about the path I’ve been following? Do I live consciously enough to figure out in time that this path leads to nowhere? What makes me feel happy? What are my hobbies? Do I still remember, what makes me happy as a child? This purest happiness, with a gleam in eye…
In 2017, I get to know slow life conception, and therefore I focus on life right here, right now, on exploring the environment with all senses, on eliminating needless stimuli, minimalism, slowing down, and regeneration. When I finally manage to clean my life up enough to gain some space for a deeper breath, I start to ask myself those questions regularly. I start to provide for a healthy relationship with myself more often.
It is easy to lose yourself and inner desires somewhere at the corner of life path. Easy to fall into the earning reel or just pleasing others. And then one day you wake up in your carefully decorated apartment and you realise that the life you live is everyone else’s, but not yours, for sure.
Suddenly, when I removed those unnecessary stimuli from my everyday life – TV and Internet excess, compulsive shopping, and reduced number of working hours, it turned out that I gained necessary space for soul food in a form of another books, long walks, and soothing silence which effectively inspired me to act creatively.
I asked myself what I desire, what I would like to achieve in the nearest future, what awakes passion, what gives me happiness? And because these questions I realised that 2017 was a breakthrough in my life. It was a year of pushing myself out of a comfort zone. It was THAT year. My personal catharsis.
Throughout this whole process it wasn’t just about answers which we get, but about constant relating to oneself. This is one of the primary elements that leads to keeping balance and coherence between mind, body, and emotions.
Because what actually is the comfort zone? It is our cosy warm, and fluffy life. It is our safety space. Those are our customs which we do automatically to not struggle and sweat overmuch. In the zone, we feel blissful calm. We know this zone backwards and forwards – it cannot surprise us. It is a stagnation. Like a soft armchair near the tiled stove. We feel good in here.
And suddenly some crazy idea appears, idea to breach that space, to get out of this safety line. And abruptly you realise that it turned on all red lights in your head: ERROR! Warning!
It’s the same in my case.
Screamer constantly indicates in my head: ERROR! Warning! The idea, that I have just put on the sheet as the answer for questions above, turned out to make up conflict in my head.
Why 2017 is the breakthrough?
Because for the first time in forever I don’t give in to my inner conflict, and I decide to see every single plan through.
Firstly, I prepare TO DO! list. I absorb everything around me. I deepen knowledge about slow life. And because of that I come upon interesting Instagram profiles, new books, magazines, and blogs. I feel that I start catching the wave. I note on my list all ideas that pop into my head. I feel so excited because of that.
The TO DO! list should lead me beyond the ‘C’ zone every time. And thereby, expand this zone, let me meet my fears, get used to new ones, and overcome them. All actions written in my note, first make me feel passion, happiness, and child excitation. In this exact moment, this is the best I can offer myself. These feelings come straight from the heart, and my mind hasn’t rocked the boat yet.
My list has a lot of various actions. The point is that you should find the real joy in life, and that is why I write there everything that can help me with this.
Here is my list from 2017:
- I will buy myself paints and get back to painting;
- I will start writing blog;
- I will celebrate meals – every Friday I will cook myself something smashing after tiring working week;
- I will travel to Thailand on my own – and it will turn out that it will be a catharsis for my lost soul.
- I will teach myself how to spend time just with myself and enjoy it;
- I will start going to the restaurant, wood, and even to the cinema on my own;
- I will buy a fold kayak;
- One weekend I will organize outgoing with Couchsurfing strangers.
- I will acquire 30 m diving license.
After the first excitation phase, there comes, right from the bottom of inner child, the second phase: mental sabotage.
I come back to those red lights that gleam when I think about pushing out of zone. These are all thoughts from the EGO level that sabotage every, even the most creative idea. This is the conflict between the most truthful need, and the strictest common sense. Our EGO is a guardian of our zone borders. According to Freud, ego looks after reconciling instinct, conscience, and inside conflict activities. EGO feels fantastically in the zone, it doesn’t want those changes. So, the greatest battle human must undergo is always the one with oneself.
I begin with little things – buying paints and finding the joy of a child in myself. With given time, I consider every idea as a challenge that I simply must realise, regardless of demotivating voices in my head. I even don’t listen to my close ones when they advise against a lonely journey to Asia. This is my time, my plan and I conclude a contract with myself that I will be loyal to all of that.
At the beginning, I must play tricks on my mind to move forward. I consider every action experimentally. I talk to myself: this is an experiment – either it will work or not. Don’t take it too seriously, but get through it until the very end. At the same time, it enables me to distance myself from all these tasks. I totally don’t focus on my red lights which prompt me hundreds of demotivating thoughts – they are really creative and extremely intrusive. Sometimes they come back in my dreams. But despite that, I consequently realise my plan.
The persistence award is priceless. Every completed task gives me wings. I completed all of them!
After defeating my mental blockades, opening myself to fears and restrictions, I get to know myself better and better. I grow up and gain self-confidence. I stand on my own two feet, fully aware of my needs. I pick my path, which I have been following to this day.
I will end my post with this thought. I hope it will be useful, inspiring, and will encourage you to work through your own tight comfort zone, or at least, to take a closer look at it.
Feel free to share your own experiences in comments. 🙂