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On comfort zones and other issues…

July 27, 2010

Hanging out with my friends on a beautiful Ammani summer night, I asked them what would be the one thing they would change in one of the guys with us. It is a recurring topic in our discussions lately, each time facing a certain friend with what we feel are his flaws. We realize we can’t force change in someone, but maybe we can shed some light.

We talked and talked, our friend resisted and explained, but we halted when we felt that our ideas had reached across to him. When we felt there was no need to go further, we just stopped and asked him to think it out a little bit.

But then, the jury decided to turn on me. And here’s what they had to say.

One mentioned the fact that I can’tย get out of my comfort zone. He said I have mental barriers that I can’t seem to break through, that I am too passive, and that I have trouble making up my mind, often deferring decisions to someone else. I have to agree, but most of the decisions he speaks about are trivial. ย I feel it would be more accurate to say that I don’t have a plan of my own most of the time, which is a problem.

I guess I have to decide on what to do, and maybe make my mind on unimportant stuff, and just ask myself: What do I want to do in this particular point of time? I love spontaneity, so I won’t plan a full day a-z, but I can always ask myself at any given moment.

I’m not sure if this could point to an underlying problem, such as lack of self-confidence or a desire to please people by all means. But now I’m just thinking in a vicious circle.

Another guy told me I have trouble taking action on my ideas; he said I enjoy thinking and blabbering without putting the ideas to use. And a third said I have problems socializing with new people. But this whole thing could be traced back to the comfort zone/passivity thing. Should I just shatter my comfort zone? Or maybe I can stretch it bit by bit?

Regardless, I know I’m slow at making friends, and that I’m not good at small-talk. He said I’m not at ease around new people, so I think I should open up a little bit. Is it fear of being judged that cripples me? Do I feel safe only around my close friends? I don’t know. Maybe I’m afraid I open up and end up not liking the other person. Doesn’t matter, I should still meet new people, and embrace the unique opportunities they present. I guess I would regret not meeting a potential good friend more than I would regret meeting somebody and not enjoying it afterwards.

What do you think?

  1. Douja permalink

    From one friend to another, I will be blunt. Why stay in the arms of your comfort zone? Why stay in the same position and in the light and not see into the dark? If you stay in your zone of comfort you will never experience life in its true form, you will never see the beauty it possesses, though there is a sense of fear in the idea of leaving something you call ‘home’ it is best to leave it, comfort is safety and once you leave this you will truly understand life in a new light. I say try it, in the end good or bad you will learn something new. But regardless you are/aren’t able to see your flaws, when someone has the ability to see your flaws and help you enhance the good in you they are true friends.

    Great post! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Douja,

    You’re right, I will learn something new regardless. How do you think I should do it?

  3. Douja permalink

    I think you start with baby steps really. Go out and maybe talk to a stranger, compliment someone, go a different route home, eat something new. Just be willing to take small steps and soon you will be able to take leaps!

  4. Thanks for your advice. I certainly can do some of these stuff.

  5. Well, Ehab, I really find it hard to define what is absolute and what is relative in human beings! I mean, why do people think that being social is the way human beings should be?

    Second, there is this one thing in our lives that makes planning for your future almost impossible! A human being life is a complex system! You can’t really know how things will go on! The smallest input can blow off the system! So your best bet is to have a purpose in your life, with as many plans as you can conceive, within the frame that this purpose sets!

    My advice, changing should not be embraced for the sake of changing! Evolution noticed this thing long time ago! Whenever it finds something that works, it just keep it! This is why human being share 20% of their genes with earthworms! And may be this is why it is called evolution, and not revolution! It takes time to build something formidable!

    I’d really recommend “built to last”! That is one fine piece of book!

  6. Douja permalink

    What is wrong with change Haitham? Change should be embraced! Humans are social creatures it has been proven many times, in some cases without social interactions people begin to slowly fall apart and become manic and crazed. Change is a process that takes a toll on us all and if were are unyielding to change the world with change without us, checkmate Haitham! ๐Ÿ˜›

  7. Haitham,

    It’s not about being social for its own sake, it’s more about new relationships which can lead to new opportunities. You can choose to waste those new opportunities, but why? The thing is, you never know what you can lose…

    I agree that one should have a purpose (that serves as motivation to act in the PRESENT, because you can never predict the future), but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t explore for new openings within your purpose, and that’s what being social might do. But that shouldn’t detract from your purpose.

    BUT, how many people our age, know their purpose, AND know it won’t change in the next 10 years. Our purpose is not encoded into our DNA, it is merely drawn from past experience. I would say one has to keep looking around for new ideas, keep expanding his experience; being social is one way of doing that.

  8. Douja permalink

    Ehab is on my side! I think we easily won this round! **High Five**

  9. Well, it’s about winning and losing…

    Nah, we won ๐Ÿ˜›

  10. lol no you did not guys! I just expressed my opinion!

  11. Douja permalink

    Lol just admit your wrong so we can move on ๐Ÿ˜›

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