Following the article on 'too comfortable,' I want to touch on the difference in between 'Comfort' and 'Safety.'
If you have plants in your balcony or your garden, they are most likely 'safe.' Given that you water them, and give them extra nutritions they need if necessary to keep healthy.
But are they comfortable? On sunny spring and autumn days most likely, but through scorching hot summers, stormy winters and occasional typhoons? Probably not.
Though every year, you see them become stronger. Why? Because they are safe enough to know they can grow, which gives them the ability to survive through hard weathers.
Home plants however can be said different things. Have you had experiences where you had plants inside of your home, did everything right according to instructions, and yet you couldn't witness what could have been longer lives for those plants? They were safe, and always comfortable - but they lost the ability to self grow.
The same could be said for many living things, and we are not the exception.
First, we all require safety. Safety at home, community, family (whether born or chosen), we all need to feel and know that we are safe.* Safe in terms of not being harmed, harassed or violated both physically and emotionally but rather accepted, included, respected and appreciated by simply existing and being yourself. Safety is often a foundation of comfort and also found in aspects of growth.
Comfort, although connected, is not the same as safety.
Comfort is that sunny spring day or that beautiful autumn day, like you are wrapped in a blanket at home with your favourite cup of tea. It's peaceful, calm, happy and loving. That's comfort.
Imagine if your everyday was comfort. Your automatic reaction maybe great! I would love that! - I am here to explain otherwise.
We all seek for comfort. This is natural to all human beings and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. Comfort provides us with a space to breathe and reflect, which is something we all need and appreciate.
However similar to nature, we all require hardships in order to grow our inner-self (conscience, compassion, humanity). Growing of the inner-self leads to confronting your outer-self (ego, narcissism, conditioning), which enables you to put your inner-self in action. It'll make you a better person, friend, confidant, partner, colleague, and the list goes on.
Without hardships, you will lose the opportunity to understand the depth of your inner-self, hence unable to equally see the depth within others. Growing as a person means digging into your feelings, experiences, traumas, and truly understanding the impact of life's events and how they are impacting your current outer-self, and how that maybe affecting your current relationships as well.
If you aren't familiar with working on yourself, if you're not used to listening to your inner-self, or if you're in a fight or flight survival state, it's highly likely that your outer-self will tell you to push your feelings away or bottle up and keep moving forward. However if you push your inner-self aside - it will eventually push back, and if you bottle up, eventually the bottle will explode or flood. Either way, hardships are to be acknowledged for you to put in the inner-work.
A mentor asked a mentee:
'Do you know why cherry blossoms bloom?'
And he said:
'Because they persevere harsh winter.'
And we are no exception.
*If you feel that you're not safe, please reach out for help. If you are in immediate danger, please call the local authorities or organisations. If that's difficult to do, call a friend or anyone who you can confide in, and take refuge at their place. You may feel alone, but I assure you that you're not - we are here to help.