I read a post the other day that resonated with me. It was from Confessions of the Nutty Traveler, and her post entitled “Comfortable with the Uncomfortable”. She writes how traveling to brand new places alone is more comfortable than her settling down in her hometown. This resonates with me because I’m quite the opposite of her, I like being comfortable with the comfortable.
However, there are times where I want to break out of this comfort zone. What stops me from breaking out of the box? Fear of the unknown, fear of failure, disappointment, the list can go on and on, but deep down they’re just excuses to not try something new. It’s a constant struggle to get myself to do something out of the ordinary, but isn’t that why I chose Architecture over everything else? A major where constant thinking out of the box is welcomed? I admit, I wasn’t as free in my creativity at my school, but it was me holding myself back. I do have some amazing projects, but if I listened more to myself and didn’t have so much self-doubt, my work would’ve been even better. I had a nagging voice in the back of my head telling me the concept wasn’t strong enough, that it wasn’t right, and sometimes whatever I imagined in my head didn’t exactly make it through in the translation visually.
There are times though, when I’ve successfully managed to break out of this comfort zone, and jumped at the opportunity to do something amazing. Moving to L.A. to begin with was the first jump I made, and it was one of the best decisions of my life. Going to Japan was the next milestone. The fact I was able to travel ALONE to a strange country by myself was an amazing feat in itself. Even though I went with classmates/friends I still explored a lot of Tokyo on my own, and it was exhilarating. The first 5 days of my Tokyo trip, I was alone in the apartment. The idea of being alone scared me to death, and I could have gone to a friends place to stay, but I forced myself to just deal with it on my own. It took a few days, but once I got grounded in where things were I was able to navigate and explore Tokyo just fine.
The idea of travelling alone is another dream I have. But that’s a bit tricky to get past the parentals. Even at my age, they’re still worried about the dangers of a female travelling alone in a strange country. But I’ll get there some day. Instead of stepping outside of my comfort zone, I should be expanding it so that the idea of being uncomfortable doesn’t exist.