I started a new non-fiction / self-improvement book the other day… okay, last week. But I’ve been finding myself a little unenthusiastic to get into it.
Does that ever happen to you with books? (Or with life?) You choose a book – or you choose to do a thing – and then you let yourself get distracted, or you procrastinate seemingly for no reason.
I know this is going to be a good book. I know the insights and information within its pages are going to benefit me and help me think of new things, or think about old things in new ways. Yet I’m holding myself back from reading it and learning from it.
At first, I was blaming my reluctance to dive in on the ol’ “book hangover” from the last novel I read – Mules, Knaves, and Close Shaves. (You know, a book hangover – where you get so attached to the characters and the plot of the book you just finished that your mind and emotions couldn’t possible open up to anything new?!) Well… I let enough time pass, and now it couldn’t possibly be that.
No this… this is something more. I think I’m nervous or something. As with any non-fiction there’s going to be things to learn from in there. And as with any “self-improvement” material, there’s going to be the need to recognize and accept the fact that there are things that need to be improved. And, while I don’t always feel hesitant to explore that kind of thing about myself, I think I am right now.
Why do we do that to ourselves? Why do we hold ourselves back from things?
“The only thing that holds you back from getting what you want is paying attention to what you don’t want.” – Abraham Hicks
I think a little of it has to do with breaking out of our comfort zones. I was getting all cozy in my reading life with a string of wonderful fiction books, and now I’m trying to direct myself back into my pattern of alternating between reading about made up stories, and reading books that could help me to grow and learn.
Not that there’s anything wrong with fiction books – heavens no! – I just think it’s good for you to expand your mind and broaden your scope.
And not that there’s anything wrong with comfort zones, either! I have gotten very comfortable in certain areas of my life and I don’t plan on changing them any time soon, thank you very much!
But when you want to break out of your comfort zone… why is it so hard?
The irony behind this entire post, of course is that the book I’m trying to read is going to answer this question for me. I know that because the book is about the power of vulnerability. And the reason why so many people stay in their comfort zones I think, is because they are afraid of being vulnerable.
The reason why so many people stay in their comfort zones I think, is because they are afraid of being vulnerable. Click To Tweet
“Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path.” – Brene Brown, Daring Greatly
It’s uncomfortable to acknowledge the things you need to change, or the things in your life that can be improved. It’s uncomfortable to do something hard, even when you know it will pay off later. It would be a lot easier to scroll Facebook, or watch Netflix than it would be to open that book and put your mind to good use.
It'd be a lot easier to scroll Facebook, or watch Netflix than to open a book and put your mind to good use. Click To Tweet
But you have to do the hard things. You have to. And you’d might as well do them sooner than later or else eventually, you’ll be even more uncomfortable than when you started.
Anyways… I’m gonna dive in. Tonight! I’m gonna focus on the book and not let myself get distracted by more comfortable things, not even Pinterest!
What are you putting off? Do you think you can move past your comfort zone?
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I do it all the time. I think the reasons can be multiple though. One, we are afraid to challenge ourselves, two: we are afraid we cannot live up to the challenge, three: we are saying we are faulty in some way and we know we are not, four: we are afraid that change will affect everything else we do and five: change is hard. No one wants to accept that what they’ve been doing all these years is wrong. ON the flip side, you may discover you were doing it right all along, you just have to tweak a thing or two. Have a great rest of the week.
Yes! Those are all fantastic reasons. And now that I think of it, I would add a 6th one: laziness.
But no matter what my reason really is, just gotta shake it off and keep going.
Thanks as always for reading and commenting Jolie 🙂 I hope you have a wonderful week, too!
Yes! You CAN do it!!
I do the same with books. I become engrossed in one genre. But I’ve been reading The Omnivores Dilemma and it’s a very eye opening book about where our food comes from!
Oh wow I’ll have to check that out! It sounds interesting. And then maybe I can stay on this non fiction genre! Lol.
Thank you for mentioning it – and for reading and commenting 🙂
I understand “book hangover”. It’s sister to “Netflix British period drama” hangover. 😉 The thing I’ve been procrastinating is diving into homemade soap making. Have everything I need sitting in a closet. Just gotta find my “get ‘er done” button.
Homemade soap making!? Well that sounds fun. Hopefully you find that button soon! Lol.
Thanks for reading and commenting 😊
i LOVE non-fiction / self-improvement books and abraham hicks!! i am working through the fear of failure that is holding me back! =)
That’s awesome! I think working through that kind of thing is super important… even when I’m feeling reluctant to do it. 🙂
I can personally say fear of the unknown is definitely a factor in procrastination. As you know what was going on with me this summer was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do I procrastinated on that for months. I’m soooo glad I got the strength to do it because our lives and everything is like 100% better than it was and so much more than i could’ve ever asked for in life. I believe getting out of your comfort is super tough but once you’re able to do that its so worth it. I will admit I should probably read more self improvement books I’m embarrassed to say its been far too long since I’ve picked one up. I mostly want to become more engrossed in fiction books to escape what I deal with on a day to day basis. However, now that you’ve given some reviews on a couple of self improvement books you have inspired me to want to jump out of my comfort zone so thank you!
I totally get what you mean about wanting to escape reality by reading fiction. and in your case I think I’d do the same. But to be honest, some non-fiction/ self-improvement books can be just as engrossing! And then you’re also learning things while you’re doing it. 🙂 it might not be AS fun as fiction, but it’s worth it.
I’m really glad to hear that things are so much better now. 🙂 and I always appreciate your support in reading and commenting.
I love the Hicks quote! I sometimes find that, with reading, timing is important. I have been known to put aside a book I just can’t get into, for some reason, only to pick it up later and discover I love it.
Yes!! Oh I should have mentioned that because hat happens for sure. This is actually the second time I’m going back to this book for that reason. Lol. And I’m half way thru and loving it now! 🙂
Thanks for reading and commenting! It’s nice to connect with their readers / writers.
I have so many things I want to do to grow my business income, but I drag my feet and blame it on the fact that there is just not enough time to get everything done. That is partially correct, but I also know I have a fear of failure so it is SO easy to come up with excuses.
Oh my gosh, I know exactly what you mean! Fear of failure is no joke. And actually I wrote another post that really relates to that, too, if you’re interested in checking it out here -> https://malissagreenwood.com/making-a-life/
Personal development books do have a way of challenging us. I think half the battle is won when I get the right book at the right time. If the book that I am going to read is going to help me with an immediate concern that I’m passionate about, I’ll dive in head first, and I won’t forget the reason that I chose that book to begin with. If the book just kind of seems interesting, it will probably end up under the car seat. Not that I’m reading in my car. Best, Nicole.
Yeah I think that could be part of it. I definitely have felt that with other books – that a different time would be better.
Thank you so much for reading and commenting. 🙂
I have such a hard time stepping out of my comfort zone. This seems like such a good book to encourage people to really get you thinking.
It really is an interesting topic – it’s called Daring Greatly, by Brene Brown. It’s wonderful for making you realize that you need to allow yourself to be vulnerable.
Thanks for reading and commenting 🙂
Awesome post! 🙂 Getting out my comfort zone has definitely helped me grow in my biz! I am currently preparing to do my first webinar within’ the next 2 months and that will definitely be out of my comfort zone! 🙂
Looking forward to hearing more about your book! It sounds great!! 🙂
I saw your post today about the webinar! I bet it will be really helpful for me and a lot of other people. I hope it goes well!
Thank you for stoping by, reading, and commenting. 🙂