Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Comfort Zone

Comfort zones are wonderful places, couches with fuzzy blankets and hot cups of tea, chairs in the back yard on a hot summer nights watching the sunset. But sometimes, you have to step outside of your comfort zone. Go somewhere new, try new food, fossil hunt, learn a new language, zip line.

Southern Coast of England 
Now, for me, traveling is within my comfort zone. I like to travel. To me, the research is part of the trip and with preparation, traveling is fun. So far, I've visited eleven countries and half the states. I know exactly where my passport is. I have another trip planned in a few weeks and two others on the backburner.

Last year, my sister and I went to England. We had activities planned but one day we just looked at a map, hopped on a bus and went to the Isle of Portland on the Southern Coast of England, also called the Jurassic Coast. We had no idea what we'd find. We asked the driver to let us off near a museum and we wandered around. We walked over a hill and had a beautiful view of the ocean in the distance and a hedgerow of ripe berries beside us. We had a lovely lunch at the Hayloft Café and the proprietor told us about a nearby pirate cemetery. We then made our way down to the rocky beach and I took this photo. 

Leaving home is not leaving my comfort zone. I left my comfort zone when I decided to enter this photo and another in a juried photography show. I had to first enter the show online through something called thatentrything, all new to me and I paid the fees. I am not a professional photographer. The photos that I entered, I took on my cell phone. I risked putting work out there and not knowing how it would be received. I was pleasantly surprised to learn this photo was accepted. But being outside my comfort zone wasn't over yet. Then I had to find out where to have the photo printed and where to have it matted to the competition's requirements. Fortunately, I was able to ask a friend.  I had everything done and turned in to the gallery a week before it was due.
I didn't win anything. I really wasn't expecting to but I have received many pleasant comments. What is important to me is that I tried. I took something important to me and shared it.  
Kris Reichart-Anderson

What takes you out of your comfort zone? What will you try?