Unclean. I was thinking about this word. How do you unclean a room? Yeah, you could be throwing dirt around, but it wouldn’t make much sense…
How do you unclean a room?
Maybe… it’s because you postpone cleaning it?
This is the strangest yet best metaphor I can use to describe a comfort zone, and why it’s such a bad thing. Trust me, I am a master of comfort zones. Professional procrastinator. Olympic Netflix Marathoner.
I used to watch so many episodes from a tv series, so many movies, listen to music, until I could get anxious just watching them. I couldn’t stand still. It felt as if I was wasting my life, wishing it away by never having the guts to do what I wanted to do. Imagine what happened when I found myself in front of another human being…
I wanted comfort so bad. I think I first wished for it when my father went bankrupt and he had to sell everything. Here I was, eighteen years old, living on less than $30 a week, doing my best to survive. It was a complicated process just to get enough food to eat. Had to walk some ten miles every day to my mother’s to get something to eat. We once spend two weeks without being able to cook any food, because we couldn’t afford to pay the gas bill. Lucky us, it was in the middle of summer.
So, when this blog took off, when I started earning quite a nice bit of money, all I wanted was comfort. I wanted it to end. You know, the struggle. The grind. The fear that you have to fight day in and day out.
Netflix marathons. Being comfortable for as long as possible until there was no more comfort at all. I often say that it’s all in the mind, so here’s what would happen… I was always afraid of running out of money. Paralyzed by fear, my ambition handicapped by the desire to be comfortable, I would run out of money.
It’s so ironic how we’re our own prophets, how we attract what we fear.
You know what I realized by doing this for about five years?
There is no comfort. It never ends. Yes, you might dream of weekends, vacations, or retirement, but the struggle never ends. You can either choose to clean your damn room, when you want to, or you’ll have to clean it when it feels like you can’t even breathe anymore because of so much dust, when you can’t have anyone come to your place because you’re so ashamed.
Comfort zones are not beautiful places. They are deserts. Nothing ever grows there. It’s a struggle just to stay alive. It’s being emotionally reactive, passive to the point of becoming aggressive, being bored most of the time, aimless, hopeless…
Don’t wish for comfort. Wish for as many opportunities to grow, to face your own limitations.
Here’s another weird metaphor: take a cold shower once in a while and you might discover, surprisingly, that it’s not as bad as you imagined it to be. That’s the irony: it’s never as bad as we fear it might. Nothing ever is. Hence, nothing is impossible to overcome.