The Comfort Zone

August 9, 2009

Sitting in one of the plush malls in Gurgaon, I was having a discussion with my wife about life in general. It is then that it became increasingly clear to me that I had become like the others…something that I had promised to myself years ago that I would not become.

The Comfort Zone as I refer to it, is the typical situation in which a working individual finds himself in. Resigned to the fact that the rest of his life is going to shuttle between his workplace and his home. The same dreary routine of waking up in the morning, rushing to work, rushing back, having dinner, and falling asleep for the major portion of his life. It’s getting into this comfort zone that I have always been wary of and now I feel that I am getting into this position as each day passes.

I asked myself what is it that I have to look forward to in the next few years? The answer was not very difficult to come up with if I were to look at things from a normal human’s standpoint: I now have a home loan, the liability of which forces me to work days on end, tirelessly. I will soon have commitments towards my family, which again I have to work the same way years on end, tirelessly. Life becomes similar to a million other lives in the past and possibly a billion other lives in the future.

Is this what I thought life would be? Away from friends, family, loved ones? Not being able to find joy in the smallest of things? Am I in a place where I don’t want to be only because of money? Doesn’t that make the meaning of life so trivial?

Well it’s true that the power to change one’s life lies in one’s own hands and my life is not an exception to that rule. However, the willingness to do that rests on more than just one’s whims and fancies. There’s an inherent amount of risk that one has to take and each person’s situation to take on that risk varies. My ability to take on that risk, for the sake of my family, is extremely limited.

My wife asked me, “What do you want to do, what do you want to be”? My answer, which I felt was too dreamy and non-consequential was “I want to be famous. I want to be different. I don’t want to be in a situation where I get uncomfortably comfortable with life the way it is right now. I want to do something that I enjoy, that I find pleasure in. If asked what do I see myself doing 3 years from today, I can only say that I will be sitting behind some desk doing pretty much the same stuff that I am doing now. Sure, there will be salary hikes and I will still have my job till the age of 60 or thereabouts, which is precisely what I mean by being uncomfortably comfortable.”

Of course, there might be unforseen situations that might make things uncomfortable, but my classification of feeling comfortable is different. It doesn’t revolve around my being handicapped and unable to do anything as being classified as uncomfortable, but moreso challenging myself to do new things, following a passion and living life on my terms.

It’s time to move on. It’s time to take matters into one’s own hands. It’s time.