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Monocycle: Episode 24
Addicted to the Comfort Zone
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Are you addicted to your comfort zone? A good way to find out is by observing as you either attempt to, or put off handling the hard or uncomfortable tasks in your day. We all have to do them, and for the most part get them done (this is an assumption, but I am supposing that because you’re functioning and contributing to society at large, you’re checking shit off your to-do list even when there are devil emojis next to the tasks). But what happens when we get caught in those black holes that prohibit us from doing the things we need to do? Like we’re existing, but with 50-pound weights attached to our legs?

In this week’s episode of Monocycle, I mention a recent phenomenon (which is not actually a phenomenon and is exclusively a figment among my own mental objects) related to addiction. But not addiction in the way we’ve come to know it. This is about what it means to become addicted to your own comfort. How to identify it and ultimately, what to do to break it. (Good news! The first step is awareness).

But that doesn’t matter right now, we’re high tailing it the fuck over to Memorial Day Weekend. You can do whatever you want.

Monocycle is edited by Nicholas Quazzy Alexander; Logo illustration by Kelly Shami; photograph from Calhoun Family Collection via Surf Museum.

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  • Megan

    I feel like literally every episode of monocycle reflects the exact emotions/situations/issue’s I have every damn week. This weeks episode especially. Yet, I think it’s more than the fear of leaving the comfort zone, I think that’s a nice way of admitting that anxiety really is a thing. Thank you Leandra, keep keeping it real.

  • Carolina

    I am in my late 30s and still obssesed with self improvement so, I don´t think it´s a function of millenialism. Great talk bc of the new perspective! We tend to put ourselves down when we are not being pumped up and brave but those weird feelings are trying to tell us something and for those who like a challenge, it´s better to think of the shakes as moments to break through of and not as signs of defeat.

  • This episode really resonated with me today. I just got a call saying I didn’t get a job that I was telling my family and friends I really wanted. Oddly, I felt a little relieved because I was nervous that I wouldn’t be able to do the tasks for the position well and that I probably didn’t deserve the position anyways. After listening to your podcast it got me thinking. Am I addicted to my comfort zone?? The answer is yes. Here’s to working on taking the leap out of the zone.

    • Mariana

      Omg, same here. I just finished a phone interview for a position that it is considered the next level in my career (more €, more work, more responsability) but more than excited of being approached by a headhunter, I am more nervous about the fact that I might get an offer and not be as good as they think, don’t like it, don’t be prepared for the task and so on. I think it is a mix of addiction to comfort zone and imposter syndrome and because of it I don’t believe in my intuition because my mind is always playing this tricks on me.

  • Babs

    Total! Fear is my master, and often it’s so cloaked that I call it something completely logical. It’s bonkers how much I hold myself back without even seeing it happen. ON THE FLIP SIDE, I’ve been wondering how much time spent on self improvement is really worth it. Yes we are really all we have, so it’s worth taking some time and spending some therapy dollars on serious areas of unhappiness. But how tired are we making ourselves by never assuming we’re good enough? Is “better” real or is it a tool we use to hold ourselves down? Are we missing our lives by living them in a constant state of introspection?

  • Amy Mills

    This was !!so!! good, thank you for taking in all that executive coach stuff and then basically being all of our personal coaches. Especially loved the part: “maybe if I break my leg I won’t have to go to this meeting…you know when that happens? I know you know – that can’t just be me. Ugh”

    And ummmm this episode was 100 so I am now team TeaLeandra

  • Sophie.

    Hah! is it millenial typical or American typical? I think self-help books and such, are mainly big in the US, pretty sure they started there.
    I think I noticed (as a european), that americans tend to be obsessed with the idea of perfection, thus to the idea of bettering themselves. And also I feel like you guys tend to refuse negative emotions and want to be perfectly happy all the time, which isn’t realisticly possible. I think a typical mediterranean approach to that thing you experienced would be : whatever, this is human nature, jut our inner sloth expressing its laziness. Taking the metro to go to a meeting in a fancy meeting room is objectively not fun, period. You’re not going to have drinks on the beach, you’re going to a damn meeting, it’s not fun, you’re allowed to not feel 100% happy all the time. Some things are not fun, some things are boring, just might as well accept it instead of fighting your inner reactions even though I do find it great to do your best to not be negative and to push yourself forward.
    Sorry for my bad english and I hope my comment made some sense!

  • Vicki

    Thank you Leandra. Your episodes could literally be me talking to myself. You’re not alone in these feelings!!!!

  • Tamara Guest

    It’s kind of ironic that I’ve had this podcast sitting in a tab for like 3 weeks because I probably didn’t want to confront my comfort zone!! But anyway thank you Leandra for sharing your anxious experience; I’ve definitely had that same feeling before. I think of myself as pretty self aware, and thinking through why I feel certain ways helps me trying to dig myself out of the comfort hole. Overall this whole podcast really resonated with me, thanks for getting me thinking this morning.

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  • THANK YOU! I’ve binged listened to every episode of monocycle since discovering it 3 days ago. I am going through a big transition and it got me in a lazy, sloth like funk. These episodes and your insight was EXACTLY what I needed, particularly this episode. I definitely became addicted to my comfort zone, since listening I have gotten my act together and am feeling exponentially better! Keep doing you, because you is amazing!

  • Uvogin Berserker

    addiction to comfort! my greatest problem! the reason I cannot execute my awesome plans for my life. your storytelling take too much time and i dont think I got the solution from this :/ boomshakalaka? haha I think you should just write an article and cut out meaningless info.

    I found something that helped me a tiny bit with this addiction. I am thinking the opposite of addiction to comfort is addiction to struggle. Someone told me and made me realize that a life without struggle is a life without change and without change theres no growth, no success etc.(reason why i felt so empty i think while im being high with comfort) and also it got to me that struggle has different kinds and different ways to handle it. but despite knowing this i cannot seem to stop seeking for comfort and when i do find a source of comfort i get captivated, trapped etc. and stop and forget anything that involves even the smallest amounts of struggle.

    Once that source of comfort is gone and useless I get the urge to find a new one because it still captivates me somehow. I wanna be in that comfortable state again either binge watching thrillers, animes, (drama in extreme cases) or playing games all day, listening to music, browsing the web for news and self help stuff and hentai ofc, use of social media, snacking etc. I keep on looking and looking just to keep my mind off from any form of struggle. so far despite being aware and acting on it on several occassions my success is very inconsistent and prone to be an overall failure if it keeps this way.

    So i think the only way is to be more addicted to either overcoming the struggle or the struggle itself or even both atleast more than youre addiction to comfort, Like maybe think about it obsessively?