The Comfort Zone
We have been discussing intermittent fasting this month. We have covered the basics, how to get started, what to eat, and discipline. It then occurred to me that maybe we need to take a bit of time to discuss the comfort zone.
You see we realized that the idea of intermittent fasting might be something that is way out of your comfort zone and that just might stop you from even experimenting with this idea. Frankly, this was what we did when we first started to learn about IF.
Feeling uncomfortable, going without food for extended periods of the day, not knowing how it was going to feel, or if I could actually do it was more than I was willing to try way back in 2019.
Then I heard the idea of how soft we modern folks are. We are never really cold, hot, hungry, uncomfortable in any area of life. This made me think about myself and how far out of my comfort zone I was ever willing to go.
This was the thought that helped me move out of the comfort zone and give intermittent fasting a try.
I was at an event s a few years ago with the main speaker and coach was T. Harv Ecker and he said, "Nobody ever died of discomfort, yet living in the name of comfort has killed more ideas, more opportunities, more actions, and more growth than everything else combined. Comfort kills!"
And none other than the famous American inventor Thomas Edison stated, "We shall have no better conditions in the future if we are satisfied with all those which we have at present."
So, here is the question - Why is stepping outside of your comfort zone so important for achieving everything you want in life, and why is it so hard?
The level of risk in your life directly relates to your possible rewards, but human beings are actually hard-wired for comfort and low risk. Your comfort zone is defined as "a behavioural space where your activities and behaviours fit a routine and pattern that minimizes stress and risk." But way back in 1908, psychologists John D. Dodson and Robert M. Yerkes noticed that relative comfort caps performance levels, with optimal performance and rewards, only attained just outside of someone's comfort zone.
Begin to Define the shape and size of your comfort zone, and then aim for taking action just outside. Your brain is supercharged when it is presented with situations it has not encountered before or realities that it finds risky and new. This is where wonderful thoughts and ideas can be harnessed to put you on a direct path with your desired destiny.
The way I think about this idea is to practice experimenting with new ideas. I have done this many times, for example when we decided to go gluten-free about 10 years ago. This started because of a seminar I attended on how gluten can cause health issues and the speaker said a couple of things that impacted me. 1.) No human can digest gluten. 2.) He spoke about one of the symptoms of gluten was going up the stairs and having a challenge breathing. Now, this is something that I was having an issue with for quite some time.
It was at that moment that I decided that I would experiment and go gluten-free for 30 days. If after that amount of time I didn't see any change then the experiment would be over. Well, like I said it has been about 10 years and we are still living gluten-free.
The same goes for intermittent fasting. I was having a few digestive issues in the early part of last year. I listened to another podcast on IF and decided I would experiment for 30 days. I wrote on how to get started with IF here
Let us know if you are willing to practice getting out of your comfort zone in the comments below.
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We have outsourced our lifestyle for way too long!