The Comfort Zone

A week from today, I will be seated on a plane flying from Toronto to Glasgow. It will be the longest plane ride I have ever been on, the longest day of travel I’ve ever had to endure, and the most terrifying journey I will have ever experienced. It will be the first time that I will be completely and utterly on my own. No friends. No family. Just me and a boarding pass.

I am thrilled.

Of course, I am scared beyond belief, that I cannot deny. But if you were to know me, you would know that this is my lifelong dream. It’s something I’ve longed for, prayed for, ached for, and I almost didn’t let myself have it.

Until one day, I made a decision.

All my life, I’ve lived to be comfortable. I’ve worn comfortable clothes, comfortable shoes, partook in comforting activities, surrounded myself with comforting books, movies, friends, family. I’m not saying this is all bad; we all need some comfort. But for me, comfort was my way of life. I was comfortable, but I wasn’t happy. I thirsted for adventure, wanted it so bad that I felt there was no point in living without it. I wanted to see the world, to experience all that life has to offer, but I wished desperately for all of these things from the comfort of my own home.

I’d considered applying for the study abroad program at my school, but thoughts such as:

That is a long application…

It looks hard…

I’m really going to have to keep up my grades if I want this…

I’d be all alone in a foreign country…

That would be really scary…

…all gave me a strong desire to curl up in my bed and watch Netflix for three days, all the while still wishing I was somewhere else.

Until, one day, I made a decision. I looked at my life, and asked myself what I wanted. Yes, I wanted to read, watch movies, find time to relax and enjoy myself, but did I want to do all that at the cost of living my dreams? Did I want to sacrifice a life of excitement for a life of comfort?

The answer was no.

So I actively decided to get uncomfortable. I decided to do what was against my nature. I decided that when I felt the need to curl up and get comfy, I should instead push myself up and onward towards something I really wanted. Something I wanted not just for now, but forever.

And that’s what I did. I completed that application. I kept up those grades. I booked that flight, and a week from today I will be incredibly uncomfortable as I’m squished between two strangers on a seven hour flight. But, hey, I will be living.