Friday Fodder – Comfort Zone

Once upon a time…

A king received a gift of two magnificent falcons from a neighbouring kingdom. They were peregrine falcons, the most beautiful birds he had ever seen. He gave the precious birds to his head falconer to be trained.

Months passed by. One day the falconer informed the king that although one of the falcons was flying majestically, the other bird had not moved from its branch since the day it arrived.

The king summoned healers and scholars to tend to the falcon. After much coaxing and deliberating, no one could make the bird fly. It remained firm with its sharp yellow talons tightly gripped around the branch.

Having exhausted the immediate brains trust, the king thought to himself, “Perhaps I need someone who is more familiar with the countryside to understand the nature of this problem.”

The king sent for a farmer.

As the sun rose on the following morning, the king was thrilled to see the falcon soaring high above the palace gardens. He addressed the court, “Bring me the doer of this miracle.”

The court quickly located the farmer, who came and stood before the king. The king asked him, “How did you make the falcon fly?”

With his head bowed, the farmer said to the king, “It was quite easy, your Majesty. I simply cut the branch where the bird was sitting.”

“If everybody is always comfortable with you, you’re probably not telling them the whole truth.”

― Aniekee Tochukwu Ezekiel

Moral of the Story:

A comfort zone is a starting place, not a staying place. Comfort is hostile to change. Progress is uncomfortable because it changes the level of comfort. Real change is difficult at the beginning, but gorgeous at the end. Change begins the moment you gain the courage to step outside your comfort zone. Sometimes we need to fall before we can fly. We become so used to our surroundings and comforts that we are afraid to give them up. We are so accustomed to the comforts of “I cannot”, “I don’t want to” and “it is too hard” that we do not realise that when we stop doing things for ourselves and expect others to dance around us, we are not achieving greatness. We have made ourselves weak and cowardly – afraid of the unknown. On the other side of comfort is optimised potential. If we don’t explore this place, we limit our endless possibilities.

Comfort zone simply means the routine of your daily life – it is a psychological safety net that feels familiar, safe, at ease, and secure. If you always do what is easy and choose the path of least resistance, you will only get restriction and diminishing returns. Your comfort zone is where great dreams go to get buried and forgotten. The more you rationalise, the more you move farther away from your authentic self. Often, the things we are meant to do frighten us the most, and therein lies the key: Growth happens in adversity. Get out of your comfort zone. Seek discomfort. Make sure the weakest parts of you do not survive. Be honest about what you want and take the leap, rather than lying to yourself and making excuses. Stop living in a fantasy world and create the life you want to live by taking action. When you come out of your comfort zone, you will discover new levels of creativity and talent. Remember this the next time you get too used to your ‘branch’.

“Step out of your comfort zone. Comfort zones, where your unrealised dreams are buried, are the enemies of achievement. Leadership begins when you step outside your comfort zone.”

― Roy T. Bennett

Affirmation: I've got this!

I have the power to change my life! Every action I take moves me closer to my dreams. I feel strong and inspired every day and ​I refuse to let anyone or anything hold me back. I act purposefully and I am always learning, growing. My vision and purpose are clear to me. I am worthy! I am ready to step out of my comfort zone and make the changes necessary to be all that I can be. I release all blocks to my vision. My days are full of purpose and passion and I live my life on my own terms. I already have the wisdom and courage to bring my vision into reality. My plans succeed because I take action. ​I am prosperous in every area because I take action. My actions speak volumes about my character. I am brave. I believe in myself and I am making things happen!

“If you opt for a safe life,

you will never know what it’s like to win.”

― Richard Branson


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