Imagine waking up a sunday morning, no obligations and your bed is warm, you get a sleep in!
This is comfort, you love being comfortable. Who Doesn’t?
Within our comfort zones we may set up an environment that is safe, repeatable,
Now don’t get me wrong I’m all for comfort zones, but I am also all for getting out of your comfort zone!
Let me tell you why.
In the comfort zones we can actually conserve more energy!
To explain this let me break up the mind into 2 separate entities, the first we will call system 1, the second system 2.
System 1 = our immediate system, the dominant and effortless system. We use this system majority of the time.
System 2 = our critical system, the thoughtful, conscious system
An example of system 1, the effortless system may look at a simple problem such as 2 +2 = 4. This is quick and doesn’t take a second thought.
An example of system 2, our conscious system may look like choosing a new colour to paint your house, you need to stop and think about this decision.
The book “thinking fast, thinking slow” by Daniel Kahneman goes into more depth on these systems and how they influence your life.
So how does this relate to comfort?
Well, we know that System 1 is dominant majority of the time, it involves having a routine, a structure that is easily applied. Consistency is therefore part of our system 1 learning, we get a routine, perform the same tasks day in day out.
Take a moment now to reflect on some of the common patterns you will go through, throughout your day.
- Maybe you have a certain method for waking up and getting ready in the morning
- Maybe you drive the same route to work
- Maybe you do house chores likes washing clothes on the same day each week
This allows us to form a routine, a comfort zone that doesn’t take much mental thought or energy.
Sounds great right?
There’s just one important set back of purely relying on system 1 – our comfort zone. We become lazy, in that laziness we stifle progression and growth.
This can apply to can facet of your life!
In relation to exercise, a comfort zone program may be continually performing the same exercises each program, the one’s you like the most, that aren’t too hard.
Now keeping in mind that each person will have individual goals, to attain these goals we need to grow.
If you have a goal of weight loss this may look like changing the amount, the type, the timing or where you usually eat.
If you have a goal of improving your movement quality this may look like changing the exercise’s you use and working on your weak areas.
If you have a goal of running faster you may change how often you run, the trails you use or the distances you run.
You get the point, we will need to make a change to grow. That change will get us out of our comfort zones!
Incorporating variability into our programs and our lives is a vital to our overall health and wellbeing.
I want to now set you 2 tasks.
- Write down 3-5 common ‘comfort zone areas’ you rely on – this can apply to any facet of your life, relationships, career, exercise, beliefs, hobbies.
- Now, set yourself the task of getting outside of your comfort zone in each of your written down ‘comfort zone areas’. This should challenge you and push you to think outside the box and do things you wouldn’t normally do.
Some examples of challenging yourself may include:
- Walking 3-5x per week if you are normally sedentary.
- Setting yourself a goal of reading a book every month.
- Completing that task that comes to mind, that you have been procrastinating with.
- Start a new hobby
- Try and learn a new concept and apply it to some area in your life
- Wake up earlier
- Learning a new language
How are you challenging yourself?
I’d love to hear about your success!
Move Right. Live Right.