“One can choose to go back toward safety or forward toward growth. Growth must be chosen again and again; fear must be overcome again and again.” Abraham Maslow
It is extremely difficult to grow while in our comfort zone. As we know, the greatest opportunities to grow and develop ourselves lie in our willingness to extend ourselves in some way. This does not mean we should always be taking risks and constantly pushing the envelope in terms of our comfort and well-being. However, if we are to cultivate our highest potentials and develop ourselves in meaningful ways, it does require that we avoid the trap of complacency and maintain a curiosity and openness regarding new experiences, perspectives, and ideas. It is also essential that we are able to challenge our own ideas and perspectives to see if they are still helpful and productive for us.
Though it is inconceivable at times, we are constantly changing, as are our friends, relationships, and the world we live in. Every day we are gaining valuable experience and have opportunities to increase our wisdom. However, many of those opportunities are missed if we consistently seek the comfort zone of complacency. We can fall into old habits and routines that are well-worn and feel safe. When this happens, it becomes more difficult to fully explore all that life has to offer as we struggle to extend ourselves and endure the uncomfortable feelings such as insecurity, anxiety, or uncertainty.
To truly cultivate our highest potentials and fully engage in meaningful activities requires a degree of fearlessness. Fearlessness does not mean an absence of fear. It means we recognize the fear arising but we do not succumb to it. We engage in healthy and meaningful activities regardless of the fear that arises.
Today I invite you to be fearless. Notice when insecurity or doubt arises, trying to prevent you from engaging in activities you know to be beneficial and do your best to engage in them anyway. This could be as simple as being a little more outgoing and talkative with new people than you are normally comfortable with. – John Bruna
The above is a an excerpt from one the daily emails sent to the members of the Mindful Life Community. You can explore our community and consider joining.