06 Sep Living at the Edge of Your Comfort Zone
This is exerpted from my Sunday talk at the Center of Universal Light in Cottonwood, AZ on September 5, 2021. I want to talk to you today about your Comfort Zone. It’s a real good, feel good place, isn’t it? Nice and safe, peaceful, calm, inside you can have great ideas, create visions, imagine all sorts of wonderful things,
I’m just curious . . . how long are you gonna sit there and idle ? I mean, it’s a beautiful place to nurture ideas, create images around them, daydream about it, but nothing grows there and all those great ideas? Well, nothing great ever came out of idling in the comfort zone!!!
Maybe you’re wondering if you’re in a comfort zone. Do you know what yours is? If you don’t, you’re probably in it.
Isn’t that kinda what happened during the pandemic shutdown isn’t it? Many, many people didn’t want to leave their home, their safe and secure space and sure, it was all new, we were warned to stay home, we had no idea what was gonna happen, and after a while it kept shrinking and shrinking and pretty soon, some didn’t even leave their homes for the better part of a year.
And so what happens when you don’t step out to the edge? Everything starts to atrophy because we didn’t use them.
The Oxford Dictionary defines the comfort zone as “A situation where one feels at ease or safe”.
I personally think it a useful place to re-group, lick your wounds, take a break, step off the gerbil wheel, daydream, go fishing, go to a spa, a spiritual retreat and afterwards … ahhhh afterwards you feel refreshed, re-energized, refueled.
WHAT’S YOUR COMFORT ZONE?
Most of us do things that require very little thought or effort because we have done them so many times that they come automatically to us. It could be driving to the store, ordering online, vacuuming, washing the car, writing computer code, a place where we can minimize our stress and perception of risk so we can feel a real sense of being safe.
For the most part this space doesn’t protect us from any actual threat, just our perception of threat.
It’s true that there’s danger outside of our comfort zone, like trying to steal food from a lion, or swimming with open wounds next to a great white shark. Ridiculous, right? So the things I’m sharing with you today actually aren’t that dangerous.
For example, chances are that you or someone that you know is scared of public speaking, one of the top fears in the world.
A quick Google search tells me that no one has ever died from public speaking. I’m pretty sure that not many people have ever been injured from it either.
The trick is to move in and out of your comfort zone when you want to and to not let “fear” stop you from doing things you really want to do.
ARE YOU READY TO GET OUT OF YOUR SPIRITUAL COMFORT ZONE?
Today isn’t just about getting out of our physical or mental comfort zone, it’s also about getting out of our spiritual comfort zone. I don’t mean you should leave home and go live in an ashram or convert to a different religion, I simply mean step out of the comfort zone that gets in the way of your spiritual growth.
Here are three ways I’ve been focusing my energy on getting out of my spiritual comfort zone.
- Move from Fear to Hope
It might sound antithetical, but fear and anxiety feels comfortable to an awful lot of people. We can get addicted to the adrenalin that floods our body as easily as we can get addicted to any drug. So when we move from fear into that sense of hope and optimism, we are giving ourselves the gift of expansion which allows us to see that the only thing fear has for us is the promise of more to fear and hope holds the promise of more to hope for. And when you expand spiritually, you can’t help but to light the way for others to do the same.
- Move from Judgment and Criticism to Compassion and Understanding
Because just like fear . . . Judgement and Criticism is easy to be comfortable with to be addicted to. I mean if you’re judging and criticising others, when we’re pointing at others’ mistakes we don’t have to look at ourselves and for brief moments we might even feel better about ourselves, but it never lasts long.
Compassion and Understanding on the other hand, not only provides us the wherewithal to serve and help others but also improves our overall well-being. Looking at life through a lens of compassion we can grow our connection to others and begin to see what a positive impact we can have.
- Move from feeling irrelevant to finding purpose and meaning
At one point, I felt like my life was pointless, that “as Kimberly” I hadn’t contributed a thing to this world and I believed that no one would remember me 10 minutes after I’m gone. That was the worst feeling in the world. It left me feeling more than depressed, it left me feeling irrelevant. Most disturbingly, it felt familiar and comfortable because it was a place I returned to over and over again for years! That dark place I never want to visit again.
Then a couple of years ago, I was shaken right out of my Comfort Zone when I received an unexpected gift which turned out to be the impetus to finding purpose and meaning in my life.
You know, I don’t believe we are here just as a result of some random universal mistake or a big bang event, I believe we are alive for a reason, to share our gifts, so we can feel a sense of contribution to the world. Why, you ask?
Good question! I get the feeling it’s because everything we do, when we pray, when we Gather, when we have parties we feel like we’re contributing to something greater, of connecting to something more. And it’s in that feeling of connection where we assign positive emotional meanings to our contributions AND I believe our contributions wrapped up in those yummy positive emotions are the key to feeling that deeper, more authentic connection to God.
The longtime leader of the American Indian Movement, Dennis Banks, is quoted saying “The meaning of spirituality lays the seeds for our destiny and the path we must follow.”
Without knowing what your purpose is, what your destiny is, how can you possibly know what path to take to your destiny so you can get out of your Spiritual Comfort Zone?
Just for a moment, I want you to close your eyes, imagine seeing your destiny in the distance through the eyes of your spirit, you have a real sense of what that is . . . seeing the path before you. And as your spirit begins floating down down down through the many layers of vibration, closer and closer, you stop to hover near the mother who will soon carry you, feeling her heart beat before yours even begins.
It doesn’t matter if it was a happy event or a happy family, Divine Source needed her to be a resource to bring you into the world for a purpose.
As you hover near your mother acclimating to her vibration, still in the higher vibration of Source, seeing with the eyes of your Spirit, ask yourself these two questions now. After each question I’m going to be silent for a few moments so you can receive your answers before we move on.
What’s important about me being born at this time in my evolution? What’s important to me being born at this time in my evolution?
Sometimes the answers reveal a much higher meaning than we think.
It’s time to return to the room, feeling the chair you’re sitting on, feeling the temperature around you, taking a deep breath and letting out a long sigh.
Maybe you worked in education and you think my purpose was to teach children how to read. When in reality, your true purpose was to open up a child’s curiosity and inspire them to explore their world through literature or art or history or music, flipping that switch in THEIR mind that there is SOOOO much more to the world than our own little piece of it.
If you don’t get your answers right now, do this at home during meditation.
Finding your purpose can be easy and sometimes it can be a lifelong journey, filled with exciting discoveries about yourself.
If you give haircuts to people, you might decide your purpose in life is to help others feel beautiful.
If you work as a school custodian, you might find your purpose is creating an environment that helps children learn.
But no matter what you did back then or you’re doing now, find purpose in it, find that higher purpose Because when you do, you’ll see the path to your next destiny clearly, you’ll be able to find meaning in the dips, curves, forks, and stop signs, so they don’t send you running back to your place of safety and comfort, instead every day you that you look for and acknowledge your purpose, you’ll always be living your best life ever at the edge of your Comfort Zone.