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November 20, 2005 [ More archived home pages here ]

Expanding Your Comfort Zone

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Today's song is Abraham, Martin, and John by Dion, released in 1968.

With Sherry I saw the new Harry Potter movie on Friday night. The theater was sold out for all shows but we had received our tickets early in the day allowing us to pass the long lines of people. We've seen all the Potter movies when they first came out and the tradition continues this holiday season. Sherry's read all the Harry Potter books and fills me in with any details I might miss from the film.

The latest film deals with the adolescent changes and introduces the concept of appreciation of the opposite gender as the theme unfolds. A dance is planned and we observe the youngsters hesitate to ask another to be their date, and anxiously wonder if their request will be accepted. Some of the dance attendees faire better than others as is the case in real life too. The young characters are beginning to lose their innocence and begin the journey of adulthood in more than one way.

The story also centers around the occasions of life where by no fault of his own, Harry is pushed way out of his comfort zone and initially resists the inclination to continue. In the end he finds his destiny was not altered, instead it is revealed in various forms and gives him time to prepare to live it.

I enjoyed the process of watching Harry struggle with his own moral judgments and mood swings. He tended to react in a very typical fashion and then found his own way along the journey. That is the real-life connection for me. I'll explain in the next paragraph why.

Today would have been the 80th birthday of Senator Robert F. Kennedy had he lived to reach it. He was a person who influenced my thoughts as an eighteen year-old back in 1968. He was the brother who picked up the torch when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated. Robert Kennedy carried that torch for almost five years before he too, was gunned down. I've been to his grave site, it lies not too far from his brother's.

Robert Kennedy made me think beyond my comfort zone just like his older brother had influenced me years before. I still have in my possession, a special edition of a Chicago newspaper printed right after Bobby's death that covered his life in detail. Perhaps it's time I pulled that old collection of papers out to read once more all these years later.

Too many people stay in their comfort zone for too long a time. It's a good thing there are people around (no names mentioned at this time) that take notice of them and provide (cause?) situations to unfold contrary to the status quo. Those who are spectators in life become reluctant participants for whatever awaits them ahead. The deeper they were in their comfort zone, the less aware they were of the process that brought them out of it. The best advice I can give is to stay alert and occasionally expand your own comfort zone, lest someone else do it for you...


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