“We cannot become what we want to be by remaining what we are.”- Max DePree
Holidays or long weekend breaks are not just a break from work to relax, but serve as a platform to engage with family, friends and neighbours. In the process of “engagement”, one always learns something new. With children, it’s often a tussle of learning to play the game or sport of the time, get theatrically busy with home productions or simply explore the outdoors with them, the nature’s way. An impromptu gathering of neighbours, friends or family brings “the experimental chef” mode back on, brushing up on the music, instrument or dancing skills among others. Time off from the daily schedule of work, involves indulging in the bucket list or wish list ranging from new hobbies, adventure sports or seeing new places.
“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” Neale Donald Walsch
The underlying common essence of holidays is to step beyond the regular zone and try something new. We all need our own zones to be comfortable, sane and happy. Our zones should be like a second skin, protecting us as well as helping us to remain happy. Yet when the zones become too familiar, mundane or deteriorating into a rut; it’s time to get moving and re-frame the environment, mind and oneself.
“Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” Dale Carnegie
Life is like a big canvas. The picture we paint can’t be done by staying in one frame for so long. When the branch one is perched, obscures the view ; then it’s time to leave it and fly to another. Flitting around will never get us anywhere, but staying on one perch will neither be of any use. Attempting to invest time, discipline, self effort and will to improve oneself will benefit the lives that we lead, to be one of enrichment than mediocrity. Dream right to fly and step out of the “comfort zones” that one is often shackled to, by free will and choice. There’s a big world out there to live, experience and see; and time always has a mind of it’s own.
“The best piece of advice someone has ever given me was ‘do it scared.’ And no matter if you’re scared, just go ahead and do it anyway because you might as well do it scared, so it will get done and you will feel so much better if you step out of your comfort zone.” Sherri Shepherd
The Falcon and the Branch
Once a king received two magnificent peregrine falcons as a gift from one of his vassal state. They were the most beautiful birds he has ever seen. Though the Falcons were still quite young at the time, they were beautiful specimens groomed for keeping in his court specifically. The king called the head falconer and handed the two beautiful birds to be trained. The falconer trained the birds for months. But one day the falconer informed the king that one of the falcons was flying and soaring high in the sky while the other has not moved from its branch since the day it had arrived.
“I’ve never come across a bird as stubborn as this before,” the trainer complained to the king. He went on to describe how the creature ignored, refused and stubbornly lashed out at his every attempt. “May be there is something wrong with this bird. It just won’t fly.”said the trainer. The falconer was one of the best in the land, his talents widely lauded by all who knew him. So, the king decided to give the trainer some more time to make the bird fly. Months passed but the falcon never moved from the branch. The kings summoned all healers, sorcerers and other trainers from all the land to make the falcon fly. But none of them succeeded and the bird did not move from its perch.
One day a farmer was passing by the palace and heard about the stubborn falcon who wouldn’t fly. He thought he would give a try to make the bird fly. Having tried everything else, the king was desperate to make the bird fly, so he allowed the farmer attempt to make the bird fly. The next morning while the king was thrilled to see the two magnificent birds soaring high in the sky from his balcony. The king did not witness the feat himself, so he had the farmer brought before him to answer to his questions.
“I would like to know your secret,” the King said. “Tell me, how did you, achieve what the most highly trained, intuitive and wise men could not? How did you make the falcon fly?”
The farmer peered up from beneath his brow. “It was actually quite simple, your highness. I just cut the branch on which the bird was perched.”
We all are made to fly. But at times we we sit on to our branches, clinging to the things familiar to us and never attempting for a change. The possibilities in the world are endless, but most of it remains undiscovered because we never attempt to go beyond our comfort zone. We conform to the familiar, the comfortable, and the mundane. We need to go outside of our comfort zone, destroy the branch of fear we cling to and free ourselves to the glory of flight!
“Be willing to step outside your comfort zone once in a while; take the risks in life that seem worth taking. The ride might not be as predictable if you’d just planted your feet and stayed put, but it will be a heck of a lot more interesting.” Edward Whitacre, Jr.