“Once we accept our limits, we go beyond them.” – Albert Einstein
My father is a serious person. He thinks he’s fun, but he’s really not. Don’t get me wrong, I love him very much. We have a great relationship. I love spending time with him. But no one who knows him would ever characterize him as “wild” or “goofy.” He was once shocked at my suggestion that we take a trip to Barcelona just because he’d never been there. He’s stable, responsible, reliable, and… a little boring. Honestly, these are some of the traits I love most about him.
He once told me that people worry about becoming the opposite of what they naturally are. They worry that if they’re not leaning into their natural tendencies, then they’ll become the opposite. For example, he might worry about becoming a flake—someone unreliable that people can’t count on. Similarly, I’ve seen people who are free-spirited, creative types that fear losing their creativity if they embrace habits that they perceive as “boring” or “stable.”
The reality is, however, that the chance of someone drastically moving from one end of the spectrum to the other is pretty slim. Even when I dragged my father to Barcelona, he still remembered to leave timers on all the lights before he left so his house looked occupied and to notify the bank that he was traveling abroad so they wouldn’t freeze his credit card. And we still had a great time.
So this week, I invite you to think about what your natural tendencies are. What is your comfort zone? Then think about a way to challenge those tendencies. How can you push yourself, even just a little? How can you push yourself to say yes where you’d normally say no?
It can be scary to move outside your comfort zone in saying yes when you usually say no. But once you’re there, you’ll likely realize you’re still you—just with some new experiences!