Our comfort zone can mean different things. It could be
- a specific routine each day
- minimizing activities in order to manage stress
- or an overall state of mind in which people are in control of their environment without any anxiety.
- ‘Comfort zone’ can also have negative aspects such as addictions that may be detrimental to our mental and physical health as well as our souls.
While this pandemic and the situation in the world has caused many people to restrict their movement, staying home more often than we would otherwise choose; this may now cause us to make our comfort zones even more comfortable!
You may be thinking by now: But what is this about? How am I to get out of my comfortable routine? Don’t rock my boat!
A Strong Act of Our Will
In conversations with friends and acquaintances these last few months, I have often heard them say: I am being creative with my time at home, my limited travels outside my home. They continue to list activities they have started to do such as a new hobby, additional prayer time, spiritual reading, researching topics, volunteering for their church during certain events such as funerals, or calling sick parishioners. In the workplace; becoming patient with those around me. These can be good examples of getting out of your comfort zone, because doing so takes an act of will.
Saint Josemaria Escriva, a priest from Spain who died in 1975, spoke extensively about sanctifying all we do, from our home life to work. He said:
As well as having given you abundant and effective grace, the Lord has given you a brain, a pair of hands and intellectual powers so that your talents may yield fruit. God wants to work miracles all the time – to raise the dead, make the deaf hear, restore sight to the blind, enable the lame to walk… through your sanctified professional work, which is both pleasing to God and useful to souls. (The Forge, 984)
The Power of Stepping Out… and of Not Doing So
Our Lord and Savior Jesus, when walking along the shores of Galilee, called out to fishermen to follow him as they were mending their fishing nets. They certainly left their comfort zone to begin a new “career,” one as a disciple to the Son of God! The fruit of stepping out of their comfort zone was not only an incredible new life for them, but for the world; they would become the foundation stones of the Catholic Church.
Stepping out of our comfort zone can do the following for us:
- Build self-confidence
- Discover our gifts and talents
- Give us satisfaction of doing good.
Stepping out of our comfort zone can do the following for others:
- Build an environment of positive action
- Encourage others
- Support an important cause that will bring hope
Not stepping out of comfort zone at times can stunt our intellectual and spiritual growth. It can possibly lead to lack of enthusiasm.
Take the Next Step
Yes, it does take time and effort to step out of our comfort zones. Our Lord knows who you are. Ask him for the grace to do things that you know you should do, but find difficult to do. This not only facilitates our development, it also strengthens our faith and trust in God who is the source of our accomplishments.
For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. (2 Timothy 1: 7)
Mary Jane Fox, D.H.S. is Co-Founder & Co-Director of Pilgrim Center of Hope with her husband, Deacon Tom Fox. The two left their careers after a profound conversion experience and began working full-time in ministry at their parish in 1986. After several years and having impacted tens of thousands of families, the Foxes founded Pilgrim Center of Hope in 1993 as a response to the Church’s call for a New Evangelization. Mary Jane is an invested member of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, a Dame of the Holy Sepulchre.
Answering Christ’s call, Pilgrim Center of Hope guides people to encounter Him so as to live in hope, as pilgrims in daily life. See what’s happening & let us journey with you! Visit PilgrimCenterOfHope.org.