Breaking out of your Comfort Zones

Why do we have comfort zones and how do we know we’ve broken out of them?

Is being in a comfort zone just recognizing something that you’ve done before and not feeling anxious about doing it again? Do you just need to feel nervous in order to know you’ve done something outside of your comfort zone?

There are so many hurdles every day that we have to get over and for some it is harder than others.

Starting a new job is scary enough, but for others, just getting a new bus can be the scariest part of it all! Anxiety in every walk of life is common and I am writing this mainly to prove to a lot of people that they are not alone. We are all more anxious than we let on but we mustn’t let it get the better of us. Sometimes, we just have to put our head down and run full speed into the wind. No matter what you’re thinking in the back of your head! Those voices who are saying, this is too hard, let’s go back inside: You have to ignore those.

It’s easy to not doing something because the pain and fear that comes with it is just too much. I have been a no show for so many interviews because I have found the tiniest excuse and wriggled out. What’s embarrassing is I tell myself “That was fate, I wasn’t meant to work there,” or “What came next was meant to be.” But what is really quite frightening is that I could have really missed out on some seriously good opportunities if I had just shown up.

Thinking about the immediate future and how nice it would be if the feeling went away now isn’t helpful. Of course you won’t regret not doing it, because you’ll never have known what you missed. It’s not possible to regret in these situations. But what is possible is just to begin to imagine the sense of pride you might feel if you do achieve something. That overwhelming buzz that you can get so quickly will make up for every last ounce of anxiety you have ever felt in your entire life on this planet.

Obviously, the fear can return because there are always new things to do, but so will the excitement if you beat it again.

My recent big steps include quitting my job, getting an internship and having my own articles produced daily on their website. I have covered topics from dementia to virtual reality. If you’re interested you can follow me on Twitter @MeganAtSMF.

I was comfortable, pretty miserable, but comfortable at my old job. I knew how everything worked, I knew which toilet wouldn’t bite my bum, I knew all the people (all 3 of them) and I knew my bus route like the back of my hand. Quitting my job was easy, because I knew this internship would be life changing. But during my last two weeks at the job, suddenly the work wasn’t so bad and was 3 months with absolutely no money worth it? I had to remind myself constantly that I was suffering from “graduation goggles.”

As if moving to a workplace on the outskirts wasn’t frightening enough, I signed up for my first ever poetry open mic night, just a week after the move.

It didn’t really hit me until the night of the event how scary it would be. I realised there was an actual hall, an actual microphone, an actual bar with actual bar staff and more than my boyfriend and best friend listening.

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It was daunting and I might have had the help from a few whisky and cokes but I read my poem and shocked not only myself, but even my friends. Everyone was surprised with my performance because I managed to deliver it like I was totally cool and calm. I certainly didn’t expect my passion to come through, at all.

The video wasn’t spectacular but do I plan to post it here.

Try the Facebook link but I can’t guarantee it will work:

https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10204983109071915&pnref=story

In case that doesn’t work I also have the poem here, which is just a poem about having some balls!

The Poem that was Worthy of an Open Mic Night

You’re a poet

Embrace it

be brave and don’t fear it.

“It’s old fashioned, it’s boring

it’s so gay.”

Says who? Teenagers.

A truly formidable group of young people.

End up with A stars in English lit and suddenly

don’t forsake it.

So it’s for open mic night

I’ve turned up to the door and never walked in

I’m a Chicken with a capital C, because you see

it scares me. You scare me.

Because I can’t let it be free.

Because I am silly.

The poems write me,

they’re always there, my control.

Don’t want to lose my shadow.

My fear is a disease, where it’s easy to not seize a passion because

others just don’t feel the same.

But it’s time to stand up, be a woman

know flow and grow against this society

that doesn’t move from the truths that it

thinks it knows,

that poetry

isn’t cool.

I’m not a singer, I’m no performer.

Yet poetry brings that out in me.

So here is an ode to a poem, this poem infact,

that marks the occasion where I learnt to distract

myself from this thought, that was killing me inside,

that I couldn’t open up. That I wanted to hide.

So my poem, this poem, I just want to thank

you for giving me the oomph and giving me the knack to

get up on this stage and nearly pee my pants

but it’s not cut me down, it’s not made me weak.

I hear my voice is loud and it’s ready to speak.

How Poetry is still relevant to the 21st Century

Ok guys, so I have been a fan of poems since I was a youngster and I can’t help but feel that everyone is a bit ashamed of poetry these days … it is not outdated and certainly not irrelevant at all. So over the last few weeks I have been (for lack of a better word) experimenting and I have found so many exciting constraints and new ways of writing that have opened my eyes and I really wanted to share them with you.

The poem I wrote this week is called ‘Smart Warship’ and here it is…

Lived land, silly prey.

Sad boy down, soul July.

Light-heartedly, winds not

Clothing repeat – nation’s fate.

Saying:

Up Queer, Rose Hens.

Now ambition by the fire.

Their eyes just crack

Rank, it’s due.

Chimpanzee crossing

Father, thee was plenty

Fluttering fine thread

The tree afterwards wood.

Smart Warship.

First thoughts?

That made absolutely no sense, am I right?

Read it again.

Still doesn’t make sense?

Well that’s the fun of this type of poetry. It is called Cut-Up poetry and you can go about it anyway you like and to be frank it seems like the fun is making it as absurd as possible.

I took an anthology of hundreds of poems, flicked through it and randomly stopped on a page, stabbed a word with a pencil, wrote it down and made a list.

Then I didn’t reorder these words, or even add any joining words in. I just gave them a structure!

THEN, I read it a few times. And I made up a meaning… what was my book trying to tell me…something about war? or Chimpanzees? or maybe nothing at all …

Why as humans do we NEED things to make sense? Why are we always looking for meaning in everything? It doesn’t need meaning. What we’ve all forgotten about poetry is why people loved it in the first place. Not because of the metaphorical meanings or the clever forms … it is because people have a love for words and the art you can create with your voice! Why would music and lyrics have become such an important part of the 21st Century… of course it is just a modern, melodic version of poetry.

Even if you think the sound of Cut Up poetry sounds silly I really think its worth a go. Cut up a poem you’ve written before and reorder it and you might learn something new about yourself! There are so many different ways to experiment with poetry and writing!!!!!!!!!! Please, if nothing else, just give this a try, I’ve written a few methods you could try below.  If any of them come up really funny, stupid or actually quite deep let me see them by posting below 🙂

Cut Up Methods

  1. Cutting up a poem you wrote or someone else wrote and put it back together in a completely new order
  2. Take a book / magazine and cut out words and re jiggle them on the table and make a poem out of them ( I have one of these to show you soon from a H&M mag )
  3. Try random word generators online, that comes up with some good words!
  4. Try what I did: stabbing words with pencils.