In The Comfort Zone: Create a Life You Really Love with Less Stress and More Flow, Founder/CEO of the Power of Positivity Kristen Butler writes extensively about the comfort zone.
Being highly productive, competitive, and overworked is trending. Many of us are obsessed with creating bigger goals, pushing ourselves outside our Comfort Zone, and taking huge risks for the sake of progress. We wear our work-around-the-clock-until-utter-exhaustion attitude like a badge of honor. We accept that much of our population is stressed to the point of physical and mental strain as just another fact of life. All the while, we feel the pressure to also stay positive, peaceful, and healthy while maintaining meaningful relationships.
By forsaking joy in pursuit of growth, you forget that growth should make you feel alive, and that when you reach your goals, you should feel energized, even exhilarated, not exhausted and burned out.
The Comfort Zone
Comfort is a state of ease and freedom from struggle. Comfort is literally what you strive for every time you solve a problem. When humans invented the wheel, we were striving for comfort. When we created a structure out of wood and bricks to live in, we were striving for comfort.
THE THREE ZONES OF LIVING
THE COMPLACENT ZONE
Most people, when they talk about the Comfort Zone, are really thinking about the Complacent Zone.
Here, living becomes about just trying to make it from one day to the next, and the negative emotions we feel on a daily basis can easily consume our days. And when we habitually live in the Complacent Zone, our conscious and subconscious minds switch to autopilot, so all that we see around us reinforces fear, lack, and limitation.
Themes of the Complacent Zone
The internal theme of those who live in and create from the Complacent Zone is I’m fine where I am. Why try for anything more? After all, the world is a hard and unjust place. Nothing ever works out easily for me. It’s pointless to dream, because hope leads to disappointment.
The Survival Zones
If you’re an overachiever and live in the habit of pushing yourself outside your Comfort Zone, chances are you spend most of your time in the Survival Zone. High effort is the driving force of this zone. This is also the zone of endless comparison and competition, and as such, it can foster envy, judgment of others, and resentment. In this zone, you’re always looking outward, comparing yourself to people who have what you want and getting caught up in the need to prove yourself to the world.
Theme of the Survival Zones
The general theme of those who live and create from the Survival Zone is: The world is competitive and the odds are stacked against me. Being successful is hard, so I have to work harder for it. Stress means I am on the right path and working toward my goals.
The Comfort Zone
Think of your Comfort Zone as the home where you can feel safe, free to express yourself fully without fear of judgment. This zone encompasses everything that allows you to feel uplifted and good about yourself and your life. It is filled with things that feel comfortable and natural. It’s a very personalized space where you can stay and remain strong, in your power during stressful times of outside threats.
“Living from within the Comfort Zone means we become intimately aware of how we feel in the moment, and we choose paths that allow us to feel safe, comfortable, and supported instead of paths that create anxiety, fear, and stress. The Comfort Zone stems from a place of safety and security. Once these simple needs are met, the Comfort Zone can be expanded.
Theme of the Comfort Zone
The general theme of those who live and create from within their Comfort Zone is: Life is intelligently designed, and everything is always working out for my highest good. All I need to do to be successful is to be myself and follow my own internal guidance. If I can dream it and claim it, I can receive it.
When you’re in your Comfort Zone, you give yourself permission to be who you are. When you consistently operate from within your Comfort Zone, you give your brain the opportunity to learn new things, which allows you to gain
confidence in your own abilities and rebuild trust with yourself. You send yourself the message that you don’t have to do or be anything other than what you’re doing or who you’re being right now. This is a powerful turning point in most people’s lives.
SAFETY: FEEL SAFE AND UNLOCK YOUR POTENTIAL
Safety is necessary to our survival, but ironically, as soon as we step out of comfort and into survival, safety is gone. Becoming intentional about your preferences in your life and in your home is an important part of feeling safe that’s often overlooked.
The Two Elements of Safety: Boundaries and Self-Care
Boundaries represent your outward-facing needs and preferences, whereas self-care refers to your inward-facing needs and preferences. To create a solid foundation of safety within your Comfort Zone, you must understand and nourish both. Your sense of safety comes from the balance you attain between tending to your outward needs (boundaries) and inward needs (self-care) because it is these two sets of preferences that form many of your thoughts, actions, words, and emotions, whether they are directed at yourself or at others.
SELF-CARE IS SELF-AWARENESS
If you’re not paying close attention, the internal systems of your home can start to corrode or fall apart without you even knowing it. You might learn about faulty wiring after it has caused a fire or find mold after it’s made you sick. In the same way that your physical home requires maintenance, your inner state also requires upkeep in order for you to feel safe and operate optimally. Self-care refers to everything that your inner state needs in order to be healthy and safe.
Being in your Comfort Zone is not saying, “I will never do anything that makes me uncomfortable or scared.” When you’re in your Comfort Zone, you feel safe enough to do the things that you want to do, even if they stir up uncomfortable feelings. You don’t give in to your doubt and fear. You are ready or feel it’s the next logical step. You feel confident that everything will be okay, and that the tools and support you need will show up when you need them.
All the Best in your quest to get Better. Don’t Settle: Live with Passion.