Here’s what you do when your life is oriented towards comfort and complacency:
You get a nice apartment. You make a comfortable salary. You spend $200 on Uber rides and marguerites each weekend and you fall into a relationship with someone who it seems to make sense for you to be with.
You spend money on candles. You spend money on throw rugs. You spend money on kickboxing classes and comedy classes and writing classes, because you’re desperate to feel like you’re growing. You’re desperate to fight the stagnation that’s settling in under your skin.
You get obsessed. Obsessed with your online presence. Obsessed with your curated social feed. Obsessed with keeping your bosses happy and your parents proud and your life seeming shiny on the outside, while everything inside of you is crumbling.
You disengage with yourself. With whatever that thing is inside of you that’s begging you to try harder, strive higher, reconnect with what you know, at your core, you’re meant to be doing.
With the person that you’re supposed to be.
Because when your life is oriented towards safety, there’s no room for that person to grow.
There’s no space for your ego to misstep. There’s no opportunity for you to make a big, uncomfortable mess and then craft that mess into a masterpiece.
When your life is oriented towards comfort, that’s all that it is ever going to be – comfortable. Easy. Convenient.
Easy to explain, to parents and old college classmates.
Easy to justify, when the bills need to be paid off each month.
Easy to go through the motions of, when the passion and the spark begins to die down.
Easy to get stuck in, because you can’t remember any other way.
Because eventually, you barely remember a time when your life was any different at all. When it was ever about something bigger than your personal comfort.
You can’t remember what it felt like to be so committed to sharing a message or establishing a connection or experiencing your life full force, that you didn’t mind sacrificing luxury.
You didn’t mind having a few roommates. Working a few side hustles. Cooking rice and beans for dinner on the have-not months. Sacrificing a life that looked damn good on Instagram for a life that felt damn good on the inside.
There was a time when you admitted you were struggling. When you turned to friends and loved ones seeking inspiration, determination, understanding – because none of you had it figured out. But you were together, and happy in the mess of it.
You were true to yourself throughout the thick of it.
You still knew, at the end of the day, that the things you were fighting for were bigger than yourself.
Bigger than your comfort level. Bigger than the way you wanted your life to seem to onlookers.
There was a time when you had stories to tell. And information to share. And people to connect with, and that was what mattered to you most.
It mattered more than designer bags and happy hour drinks and apartments with sliding French doors. It mattered more than Facebook likes and article views and your curated social media presence.
There was a time when you wanted to give something to the world, without worrying about what it was giving you back.
But you forgot that, because you got comfortable.
Because you chose the easy path. Because you chose to clutch tightly to what you had instead of looking at what else you had to give. Because you let security win you over.
And now you can’t remember any other way.
Except there is another way.
Because the life you could be living is still out there.
There’s still another way that this could end.
There’s still the version of you who is willing to give it all up – to choose passion and uncertainty and the kind of change that rips your world to pieces.
There’s still the version of you who knows what matters.
The one who’s worried less about how she looks to others and more about what she can give back to them. More about what she has to offer. More about how she can leave a mark that matters on the world, instead of fading away into comfortable complacency.
There’s still a part of you who knows, way deep down, that she’s meant for bigger things than staying comfortable all through her life.
The question is, are you going to listen to her?
Or are you going to spend the rest of your life wondering what would have happened if you had?