On a day to day, or minute to minute basis in our lives, we don’t often think about utilizing the virtue of courage. We are not even really conscious about needing it or using it. We’ve been conditioned to think that courage is reserved for the heroes on life, the firefighters, the soldiers, or for the moments when our lives or lives of our loved ones may be in danger. No doubt, these situations require courage but utilizing the courage that we have inside on a daily basis is what creates a full and exciting life for each of us. It’s what creates a life worth living, vs. surviving it.
Were you taught in life to not be bold? Were you taught to be nice, not make waves, not stand out, and certainly not go against the current? Does your family have a certain way of living that you never really considered going against? Maybe you don’t even know why you do certain things a certain way, you just do. It’s all you know. It’s your personal paradigm.
Security has become the way to live these days. People will give up their own passion, integrity, and zest for life in order to be secure. We will stay in an unfulfilling relationship, tolerate a difficult employee’s behavior, and settle for the status quo, because it’s comfortable. It’s our comfort zone.
Even if you’ve established a high level of success, you still have a comfort zone. It may be different than someone else’s but it’s there. Each of us can become complacent in what we know we do well.
However, the cost for staying too long in our comfort zone is tremendous. A comfort zone gives us an arena to master. It’s where we feel proficient and confident. It’s not a bad thing. But when we rarely venture out of it we can eventually feel depressed, frustrated, held back, numb, anxious, and unfulfilled. Often times we think it’s because of our circumstances, or because of another person that we feel this way. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s all because of our choice to not get outside our own comfort zone, to avoid risks, to stay safe in what we think is SECURE.
True security comes from being willing to live a courageous life. What I mean by that is on a daily basis deciding to take risks. Have that conversation that you’ve been putting off with that employee, address that difficult issue with your spouse, go speak in front of that group that you know you could contribute to, start that new business you have been dreaming about.
We often avoid emotional risks because we don’t think we could handle what might happen if we did. We tend to get attached to a particular outcome. Great confidence comes from trusting yourself that you can handle anything that might happen as a result of your risking, knowing that even if it didn’t turn out great, you’d be OK. And that you’ll do whatever you need to in order to get back up and keep going.
What is it for you? What would have you outside your comfort zone? Living a passionate, full life is a choice. It’s not something that one day gets bestowed upon us. The longer we wait, the harder it is to tackle those challenges. What awaits you on the other side of your comfort zone is YOUR LIFE! Go and get it.