Stepping back into my comfort zone

We are often told we need to step out of our comfort zone. It is meant to be useful for our growth or a way to keep our brains lively, or something. The problem is that being outside our comfort zones is distinctly, well, uncomfortable. I understand what drives the general advice but the reality is that experiencing this discomfort for a prolonged amount of time is not much fun. In fact, it is pretty toxic.

Despite the fact that I have been teaching for several years now, there is an entire army of factors fighting to ensure that I remain firmly in my discomfort zone; these include changes to syllabus and curriculum, Covid, specific teaching groups, teaching new courses, to name just a few. It is exhausting. Each year, I wait for it to feel easier, more natural. I am still waiting.

Right now, I have no answers; I have not made any decisions yet about how to become more comfortable but I know that it is something I have to do in order to be ok. The easy route is to stay trapped out of my comfort zone and but how I long to be back there, even just for a while.

7 thoughts on “Stepping back into my comfort zone”

  1. I’ve been thinking about the prompt and it’s interesting that you link stepping out of your comfort zone with discomfort where as the majority of the other blog posts I’ve been reading have turned that feeling into a new kind of comfort.

    In my mind, I think of “stepping of of my comfort zone” as taking a risk. I can see your point, though.

    I never considered that this prompt would have different meanings to different people.

    BTW, I’m a teacher in Japan. We’ve had no school closures since the very beginning of the pandemic. You’ll be fine. 😉

    1. As I started to consider ways I have stepped out of my comfort zone, it made me acutely aware that I was permanently out of it at the moment. That is what makes these kinds of exercises so interesting: they spark different reactions for different people. Thanks for the reassuring words!

  2. I know lots of teachers (my other half works in a school), so I get this. The stress they have all been under for the last couple of years has been enormous.

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