Good Tuesday morning to you. If you came to my blog yesterday to read a Monday post, you may have noticed I took a day off. After much thought last week and wanting to create some good themes for the month of September I decided to take a day off to enjoy with my family and with guests we had over this weekend. But yesterday I thought good and hard about this subject that will be written about this week.
This coming Sunday will be the anniversary of one of the darkest days in our American history. It has to be the darkest in my life-time. Many blogs and articles will be written over the next two weeks about what happened to us on September 11th, 2001, how our country was attacked by foreign terrorists on our own soil. I thought it was most fitting to begin our subject about comfort zones by talking about this very tragic event. You see, the terrorists who carried out the attacks on that September day looked to see what habits we had when they planned their attacks. For the most part, they could plan around what we would do and what we would not do because so many of us build a comfort zone, create a set of habits that help us feel safe.
For me the day before September 11th ten years ago was my 35th birthday. Yes that means that this year on the day before the 10th anniversary I’ll be 45. So let’s take it from a national level to a personal level. In your life it may be two years, five years, or ten years, but look at your past. Are you set with certain habits in your life that could represent a weakness, a vulnerability in you?
I thought of this today, while driving down a road in Texas and watching a lady hanging her arm out the window of her car with a lit cigarette. Most would think, “Yeah, what’s wrong with that?” Well here in Texas we have faced unbelievable drought this year and this weekend alone within a one-hour drive of my home there are three large wildfires burning. One huge one near our state capital of Austin, has destroyed almost 500 homes and killed a mother and her young child; and it’s still burning out of control. So this habit of driving with a cigarette hanging out the window, tossing it out without even thinking, could cause another fire.
Now this blog isn’t about suggesting you quit smoking, even though, in my opinion, it is bad for you. Smoking is a habit that has been proven to have negative effects on your health. In life we have many habits, some we want to break, others we want to hold on to. Ten years ago this coming December was the last time that I had a seizure as well. At the time of my last seizure I was in a comfort zone of bad habits; I was working a job I hated, drinking on a daily basis, not eating right and would forget to take my medication on a regular basis. Those habits, and my comfort zone of just doing what I felt like doing when I felt like doing it, resulted in a seizure that caused me to end up in the hospital. I had to change my habits, and come out of a comfortable life to improve my health.
I could go on and on about things I needed to change to form new habits, to get out of the comfort zones I was in. But instead, I’m going to leave you with a thought: imagine your comfort zone, yourself set in your ways. Like those terrorists did ten years ago, someone learns your bad habits, and sees your weakest point. How would you feel if you failed to catch someone like them and many people lost their lives? You see sometimes in life our bad habits affect more than ourselves. They have a lasting consequence on others.
Most of the time when people build a comfort zone, what they do not see is the world they live in getting smaller and smaller. That is the other thing comfort zones bring: a smaller world. If you are reading my blog, most likely you are working to grow in some area of your life. Well if you are building a comfort zone then you are building an area that you will start making smaller. That is because your world only grows as you grow and find new experiences, learn new things. If you’re in a comfort zone where you are just staying in your little area and not branching out at all, you are, in effect, making your world smaller.
Why not find a way to look over your life and review it, find a way to break habits that are not good for you? For me, I had to quit drinking at the level I was. I was told by my doctors in 2001 that I could have a drink, but it had to be in moderation. So over the past ten years from time to time, I take back control of this area of my life. There have been times when I went a year without drinking; then at times I only have to take a month or two off. From learning to control this area of my life, I now have learned to enjoy a good drink; I enjoy good wine and good beer one at a time. It brings my taste buds great joy. It also allows me to ride my motorcycle many miles each year because I keep myself sober.
So take a look at your life and make a list this week of some bad habits you may need to break, then make a plan to get the control of them in your life. If you are always working to make things better, this will keep you from getting to the point of having to start over. Always be in a growth mode, and keep on rocking.
I’m Tim Gillette, the Rocker Life Coach. It’s time for you to live the life you always wanted, to love what you do and those you share your life with, and learn to become the RockStar in your world. Need some help pinpointing what you want to do? Contact me to help you.