Though we have no say in the process of downloading our comfort zone, virus and all, from our parents and others, we have the option of exiting the zone any time we wish. Our imaginary fears are the gatekeepers of our comfort zone which prevent us from exiting or remaining outside for long. Since we have sought the illusionary security and predictability of the zone all our lives, living in the dangerous and unpredictable outer world appears impossible. We do not even know where to begin.
From our comfort zone, the prospect of facing the naked outer world full of threats and surprises initially fills us with terrible fears. These fears increase as we age and become physically week. But frequently we face external storms that force us out of our comfort zone which can be utilised to practise leaving. Adversities such as a substantial monetary loss, loss of a job or a big disagreement with spouse become major opportunities for facing the unknown bravely. They reveal that our resilience in facing adversities is woefully inadequate. Hence, if we want to exit our comfort zone and survive in the outer world, we need to carefully create a resilience zone to support us there.
The resilience zone is the polar opposite of all that our comfort zone is. It is a flexible bundle of our own observations and ideas that change with the outer world. The illusion of protection and security is distinctly missing here. We are always alert with a child-like curiosity. In the resilience zone, we feel one with the entire universe. We are highly sensitive and tolerant towards our emotions and feelings and hence, vividly aware of all the real consequences of our every action. We work with our fears of the unknown to prepare ourselves to face the unforeseen at any time. We have no fear of other people nor any wish to control or manipulate them. All our responses are measured and constructive and we adopt universal responsibility in all our actions. We completely eschew blame, attack or hubris when things go wrong and work with the world to set them right.
Our transition from our comfort zone to the resilience zone involves a fundamental shift in our moment to moment decision-making process. While in the former, decisions were on autopilot fuelled only by our suppressed fear, anger or greed, in the latter every decision is made consciously and deliberately with universal responsibility for all the ensuing consequences. This would require considerable slowing down in the present hurried world. Slowing down and observing the outer world carefully are the initial steps that will take us out of our comfort zone. We refrain from thrashing fruitlessly in the name of survival which immediately stops the adverse consequences flowing out of such foolish activity. We deliberately plan a routine that serves us best and consciously follow it. We adopt an experimental attitude and do not hesitate to change and innovate as the need arises. There is no scope for drama here as all participants are well aware of their duties and responsibilities. As the resilience zone is a way of living rather than a zone, our existence here is a choice we make in every moment for the rest of our lives.
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