Consider, for a moment, all the talk about THE COMFORT ZONE. During my days with Dale Carnegie Training®, we talked about it and challenged it. It was core to our work, and rightfully so. Countless books continue to speak to the need to reach beyond it, even way beyond it.
But what is comfort? Dictionary definitions include relief in affliction; consolation; solace; a feeling of relief or consolation; a state of ease and satisfaction of bodily wants, with freedom from pain and anxiety. And what could be wrong with this?
Nothing. As with most things in life. moderation is everything.
I like to think that real and sustainable and sustaining growth can be characterized by four core stages… expansion, consolidation, reflection and comfort. Each step is crucial. Expansion is what we often mean by growth, but following expansion there must be a consolidating of the resources and results of the growth… a coming together and the necessary organizing of the outcomes. There must needs be reflection on the experience too, to learn what worked and what did not.
Still, there must be a process of normalizing the results to create consistency of the goodness of the growth; comfort. This is that space of comfort and settling in. It allows us time to enjoy the harvest of expansion, consolidation and reflection. It gives us time to breathe. The danger is getting TOO comfortable and neglecting the need to return to the cycle.
Maybe we should moderate our talk of a comfort zone… moving from demonizing it to understanding that running any river requires times of expansion, consolidation, reflection and comfort. It is how we travel the river. Without it, we burn out and lose sight of the purpose of growth… its enjoyment.
Peace (comfort), passion and prosperity.
Barry Lewis Green, aka The Unity Guy™