Do you think we live most of our lives in a safe zone? Mostly we are looking for comfort, making sure that we are safe, and looking at the easiest way for everything. And that’s absolutely understandable, and it does seem like a smart approach too. But have you ever thought that if we are always living in our comfort zone then maybe we are missing something?
I always wanted to not be an “ordinary” person. Actually I don’t think anyone is ordinary, only sometimes we allow ourselves to be. I have a friend who lives in Turkey, she is 61 years old and she does extreme races. For example, she has run the Kalahari Desert 250km (150 mile) race four times. She has competed in so many other races all around the world, she can’t speak English, and she is certainly not rich. She just had a dream to want to make it happen. She is actually a retired chemistry teacher who has just followed her dreams, kept believing, and found a way. When people ask her “why are you running so much and pushing yourself so hard” her reply is “because I can”. If you’d like to see more about her then here’s a link to her website.
Of course not everyone has to dream of running ultramarathons or extreme sports events to push their body. But maybe your challenge is to get up a little earlier than usual and do exercise, which normally you don’t enjoy. Or maybe find something you hate and give it a try, whatever it might be. We all know what is good or bad for us, we just choose to ignore and procrastinate the good things that are a little uncomfortable.
This coming week, try something that you know you should be doing but you don’t like to do. You may be surprised, and if you give enough chance you may start to like it — maybe not while doing it, but certainly after you’ve done it. You will see improvements in your character because you will have made a conscious choice to change your behavior. It doesn’t have to be sports related, it might be about your diet, or your lifestyle, anything that for you is radical and challenging.
If you need inspiration then just look at people with disabilities or special challenges who are doing incredible achievements. They always amaze me. Most of us are so lucky to not have any disabilities, but we still create them for ourself.
What I did recently that was radical for me was to compete in one of the biggest fitness competitions in the world. I trained the whole year for this competition, I traveled almost 24 hours with all the travel restrictions and challenges, I spent my savings on it, and I put myself in an uncomfortable position by having to go on the stage and present myself to the judges. I didn’t get a top 5 placing this time. But I felt good to be able to compete and to know that I had given everything that I could to get to that place. We should always feel that we did our best. I think whatever we do with 100% focus and attention will be extraordinary.
Whenever we think something is even a little bit outside of our imagination we tend to be step back. Just last week one of the most talented persons I have ever seen, David Blaine, held on to a balloon to reach 24,900 feet and then skydived back to earth. There’s a link to his livestream on YouTube below.
So whatever you want to do, or feel you should do, give it a go. I believe that we greatly underestimate our limits.