OUT OF CONTROL
While for many, the comfort zone is a psychological space, for me it is a physical one. It’s my kitchen. And I was recently evicted from there. It wasn’t a brutal act but now that I think about it, there was an element of threat involved, albeit sugar-coated – ‘Stay out of here as it’s not good for you.’ I could not stage a full-on protest as I knew the so-called trespassers, who came in the garb of wellwishers, were right, but I did try to sneak back in at every opportunity I got. Of course, I failed.
You see, my kitchen is my happy space, the place where I love to escape to, especially when the rest of the world feels like an opponent that is out to get me (OK, I’m exaggerating a bit here but you know what I mean). I derive a sense of calm from knowing that I am not just the captain of the ship now but have some control over how the future is going to unfold as well.
So you can imagine my state when I was asked to abdicate my comfort zone. I have never felt so helpless. (OK, I’m exaggerating again.)
It all started with a surgery. Nothing major, just that I was advised two weeks of bed rest after, which was the reason why three of my family members decided to leave their own fiefdoms – their respective kitchens – and fly down to take over mine.
As I sat around making feeble sounds (groggy from the medication) every time the spice rack was not in its ‘rightful’ place, I also wondered about the relevance of a comfort zone.
However much we understand that change is the only constant, ironically, there is a certain comfort in knowing that nothing changes in our comfort zones.
However much we understand that change is the only constant, there is comfort in knowing that nothing changes in our comfort zones
So when it does happen – change in our comfort zone, that is – it throws us off, makes us anxious, stressed even. And for that reason, I salute all the kids who sacrificed time, money and energy saving lives during the recent devastating floods in the southern Indian state of Kerala (page 26). Without fearing for their own lives, these kids stepped out of their comfort zones – their sanitised lives – and made a difference in every way they could.
And I also bow down to them for giving me perspective.