“You can ignore reality, but you can’t ignore the consequences of ignoring reality.” – Ayn Rand
Today I was looking at a touching picture I found on the internet, it was a note
that was found on a co-workers desk, before he passed away from clinical cancer.
This touching image made me realize that as humans we’ve really got only a fixed number of years here on this planet. In reality, no one really knows how much time we’ll really get here, or what happens to us afterwards.
One things for sure though you’ll eventually die just like everyone else,
so the question for me becomes: How will you choose to spend your time?
Make no mistake: this is a choice, and in the end, it’s the only one that counts.
“Twenty years from now you will be more
disappointed by the things you didn’t do than
by the ones you did do. So throw off the
bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbour.
Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore.
Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain
More then often we spend the majority of our lives in a fixated routine,
Playing the xbox, socializing, driving to work, paying off loans, browsing on Facebook. That we don’t spend the fast majority of our time living up to our natural potential making new acquaintances, exploring new locations, meeting new lovers or bettering ourselves physically and this is because our fixation is actually embedded in a deep rooted anxiety.
“Our comfort zones become our prison, within which our potential remains locked up.” – Voice of Love, Dianna Ross
We know that it’s easier not to talk to a random attractive man or woman in public in an attempt to get a date because our minds will begin to rationalize thoughts. Things like ‘I’m not attractive enough, I’m not wearing good clothes today, my breath probably smells’ and a whole bunch of other useless shit.
But what we don’t know and the big secret is: that this fear has been cultivated into us intentionally and unconsciously.
This is really important to realize. All of our comfort zones have been conditioned into us intentionally and we aren’t even aware of it. I’m going to use fish as an alagory to explain this.
You see, a fish that swims in water it’s whole life doesn’t even know that the water exists. It’s whole life it goes around swimming and has no realization it’s there,
It never gets to feel the air so it becomes oblivious to it and is constantly stuck in a state of non-awareness.
Humans are the same, without ever being consciously aware we begin to develop into by-products of our environment. In sociology this is called conditioning.
(Above – The By-Product/Response)
So how does this help in terms of defeating your comfort zones?
Lets say for example you’re out in public and you see a hot girl (or guy) walking close to you. You will either do one of two things.
- Lock up, get tense and do anything possible to avoid eye contact.
- Or walk up to her without a seconds notice and say ‘Hi, you’re cute my names _’
The vast majority – I’d say 95% of people will take option 1.
A really good quote that explains this dynamic comes from Sun Tzu,
a military genius who wrote The Art of War.
“The general who is skilled in defense
hides in the most secret recesses
of the earth; he who is skilled
in attack flashes forth from the
topmost heights of heaven.
Thus on the one hand we
have ability to protect ourselves;
on the other, a victory that is complete.”
– Sun Tzu
The Essence of Sun Tzu’s writing is to demonstrate that by staying within
your security blanket, safety net or comfort zone you are acheiving nothing
but by flashing forward and courageously stepping outside of your defense
and comfort zones you are ascending the heights of victory.
So how does this fit in, in terms of Fear and Comfort zones?
Well the media displays forms of entertainment. Things Like Video Games, Movies, Facebook, Clubbing, Stip-Clubs etc and we get so attached to the feeling of being entertained that it becomes our one form of stimulation. We begin to fill ourselves
up with desires that are easy to obtain and as a result get tricked into thinking they are real.
- Who needs to form a band (and forge new friendships/interactions) when you can create one on your computer?
- Who needs to go out and meet new woman/men when you have porn? (forgetting that porn in synthetic and no replacement for a social connection)
- Who needs to create they’re own business when they can work for someone else? (lack of innovation/achievement)
“Imagine a banyan tree growing inside a pot – only a bonsai is possible. It may be artistic, but it doesn’t serve the purpose for which it was born.”
Being unconsciously addicted to entertainment is what limits you potential in life and wraps you in a comfort zone. Without using your real potential you grow weaker begins to put you in a defensive shell ‘Better not to try then to get hurt’
“Fear creates it’s own self fufilling dynamic – as people give in to it, they lose energy and momentum.
Their lack of confidence translates into inaction that lowers confidence levels even further, on and on.
“So, first of all,” Rosevelt told the audience: Let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself
nameless, unreasoning, unjustifie terror, which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.””
The knifes edge that separates failure from success in life. That edge is your attitude, which has the power to help shape your reality.
If you view everything through the lens of fear, then you tend to stay in retreat mode. You can just as easily see a crisis or problem as a challenge,
an opportunity to prove your mettle, the chance to strengthen and youghen yourself, or a call to collective action.
If we give in to fear, we will give disproportionate attention to the negative and manufacture the very adverse circumstances
that we dread. If we go the opposite direction, cultivating a fearless approach to life, attacking everything with boldness
and energy, then we will create a much different dynamic.