My son was just about four years old when he first mustered up the words to express his feelings about change. His beloved preschool teacher was moving out of state. The morning after her last day I was using my best combat negotiation skills to get us out the door on time. He looked up at me with his big blue eyes and said, “Mommy. I don’t wike change.” Out of the mouths of babes, huh?
Most humans have some level of resistance to change. We love our comfort zones. Like a soft cashmere blanket on a cold snowy night, they wrap us in warmth and security. Our comfort zone is where, well, comfort happens. Don’t get me wrong. I am all about comfort!
I wasn’t yet 30 when I finally gave up the notion of successfully wearing high heels. I loved them. I longed for them. I quite possibly could’ve paid for at least part of my college education with what I spent in the vain hope I would find a pair that would be comfortable for me; a pair in which I could walk with all the grace and sensuality of a runway model. I’d be a liar if I pretended I was over it. Some 20 years later I still feel the pull of idealistic hope as I force myself to walk past a pair of exquisite Manolos, naïvely thinking this time, maybe THIS time, it’ll be different.
When I consider foundational living, a comfort zone is not the place to put down permanent roots. To grow we must change and to change we must push ourselves outside of that zone. To get to a life more fully lived we have to LIVE, not just float or exist. Each day I strive to do something that makes me uncomfortable. This was the advice our beloved pediatrician gave my 10-year-old perfectionist – get comfortable being uncomfortable. In other words, don’t just do things you know you’ll succeed at, do the things that make you uncomfortable as well.
And while we’re considering the necessity of being uncomfortable…where’s my credit card?