We all have a comfort zone: a sense of safety and security where we function with little, or no, fear or discomfort. My zone is basically places, experiences, and actions that are familiar. I don’t respond well to changes or new experiences.
This started after my brain injury. I was so overwhelmed by sensory input and so confused about what was happening around me and how to interact with my surroundings. I handled it by restricting my activities to what and where I functioned the best. They became my comfort zone.
The problem is the restriction on my life. Imagine going to the same places and basically doing the same things or facing extreme anxiety with possible panic attacks. I go nowhere outside my town or anywhere new without a friend I trust. It gets so frustrating when I consider my past. I responded to change well and could travel almost everywhere alone- and did. Now my life is narrowed to a small town.
Having PTSD from a prior experience makes it more challenging. What I did before that worked doesn’t. It’s hard to explain just how it is different now besides worse symptoms and a loss of being able to ever feel totally safe. Except in my home- the ultimate comfort zone.
Life begins at the end of your comfort zone. ~~~~Buddha
My comfort zone is so small it will be easy to find the end of it. I exist, I don’t live anymore. I think that rebuilding a life will be small steps forward. I’ll never be like I was before. But maybe I can have a broader life than now.
Running is part of my comfort zone. It’s one of the few activities where I almost feel like I did before the crap hit the fan. It’s such a relief from the stress and depression. I still have the feeling of freedom. Yet I run in the same places, familiar. This is the first step . Run somewhere else.
I want to run a road race again. Eventually another marathon. And I want to be able to travel alone to the race, being in a location away from my comfortable home and town. A small step is running a race here in town. It will actually be a huge step for me now.
Life is so limited in the comfort zone. No matter how small the step, move out.