So the oft-quoted saying goes….. Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.
When you spend your adult life working in and around the personal development world, it is hard not to be familiar with the idea of us all having a comfort zone, and that by stepping out of that comfort zone, change and wondrous things happen.
The problem for me, is that this diagram got ruined when the film ‘Meet the Parents’ came out and Jack Byrnes (played by Robert De Niro) showed his prospective son-in-law Gaylord Focker (played by Ben Stiller) that his behaviour had led to him no longer being within his ‘Circle of Trust’.
I found it very funny, though you have to have seen the film to appreciate it. Needless to say, it means I now snigger every time I see the comfort zone diagram because I think of the film. Yeah, so, I digressed….
One prominent condition that holds many people back in life is the fear of leaving their comfort zone. What is this comfort zone thing all about? The scientific name for the comfort zone is the “Corley Syndrome,” and it is a type of mental conditioning that can cause a person to create, operate, and stay within certain mental boundaries.
For many, this false sense of security eventually leads to complacency, inaction and people end up staying stuck within this place. Your comfort zone is potentially the greatest enemy of your achievement in life.
For some, it is largely a self-created prison. It consists of the collections of cant’s, shouldn’t, must not, and other unfounded beliefs forged from ongoing negative self-talk, thoughts, and ideas one has accumulated during his or her lifetime. Let’s have a Tony Robbins quote for a change here (feel free to whoop, high five and play Dr Alban’s “It’s My Life” at the same time as reading it):
“If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.”
~ Tony Robbins
I have to hand it to Tony, and as obvious as the quote may seem, he’s on to something there.
Why We Cling to Comfort Zones
There is a scientific explanation behind why we stay put in a place of comfort and routine. Human beings benefit physically from the behavioural state where activities and expectations fit a pattern of predictability Stress levels and anxiety, cortisol levels, and blood pressure, are reduced, and there is a certain degree of security in your comfort zone, which increases your sense of calm, happiness, and safety. There are no surprises, but neither is there the fear that comes with risk.
It’s easy to see how your comfort zone becomes a big part of who you are. Staying where you’re comfortable, at work, with a business, or in your personal life, certainly has its benefits. There’s very little chaos, for the most part, and not much risk is involved in remaining with the tried and true. It’s a place or state-of-mind where you feel safe and in control. Typically, people like to feel safe.
However, if you stay put in the place where nothing changes, nothing is ventured, then you may stagnate. Although life is relatively safe inside the place where you feel safest and most in control, it can become pretty mundane, and even become distressing, dissatisfying and lead to disillusionment. Taking that well-worn path, instead of the one less traveled, leads to boredom and a relatively unfulfilled way of living. When at college studying English literature at A level, I recall reading the DH Lawrence ‘The Rainbow’ whereby one of the latter characters Ursula struggled to find fulfillment within the confines of the existing safe and expected nature of her life, she had a vision of a rainbow towering over the Earth, promising a new dawn. Today, there are far less societal confines that Ursula fought against and so seeking fulfillment by stepping out of our comfort zone is much more do-able for us in Western society.
Within this audio programme, I highlight the major benefits to your life, body and mind of stepping out of your comfort zone, I show you how and give you practical strategies to actually step out of your comfort zone, and then we use hypnosis to really get you stepping out of your comfort zone. You are going to love these sessions!