It has been quite a year so far. In January, I entered the Professional Massage Therapist program at Cortiva Institute of Muscle Therapy in King of Prussia, PA. And it changed my life. It took me about 15 years to make this step, and it came at the perfect time. I was laid off from my job in August last year – one of the best things that could ever happen to me.
Sometimes, you have to be forced out of your comfort zone, that place that you believe is safe but which actually limits you. The comfort zone is the place you should be most worried. You don’t grow, change, make progress, or truly live while you are in the comfort zone.
What is the comfort zone? It is that mental space where you believe everything is certain, or at least familiar. Or to put it another way, it has an apparent lack of uncertainty. Not exactly the same thing. Just because you don’t see the uncertainty right now, doesn’t mean it isn’t there.
The comfort zone is where you develop a lazy mind. This happens because we relinquish control, and therefore, responsibility to someone else (think “boss” here). We are simply distancing ourselves from the unpredictability of life. And that is the great deception. We can’t. Not really. Life has a funny way of coming to find you no matter how well you hide.
I am learning to become confrontational. Life’s realities, unpredictable situations, difficult circumstances, and learning what to do to solve them requires confrontation. Face the problem, deal with it, and move on. Simple. Not easy, but simple.
After being laid off, I had to face reality. I was tired of working for someone else and having no say in the direction my life was going. I sought counsel from people I trusted, and that led to going to school for massage therapy. Then I completed the program. Graduated, got certified, earned my license. Now I have a skill set that I can use to determine my future. As Seth Godin would describe it, I have found my art. Simple. Not easy, but simple.
That brings me to the travel. In just a few weeks, I’ll be moving to CA, where my girlfriend will be in school for a year. It is a temporary stay before we move into the next chapter of our lives, so we will travel light and gain experience in our respective fields. It won’t be about putting down roots just yet…that may not happen for several years. Uncertainty. But we are looking forward to embracing the journey and confronting the challenges ahead. It is going to be quite a ride.