Most Likely to Make You Safe

If you become someone who is uncomfortable unless she is creating change, restless if things are standing still, and disappointed if you haven’t failed recently, you’ve figured out how to become comfortable with the behaviors most likely to make you safe going forward. 

→ Seth Godin, The Icarus Deception

Most people don’t want to rock the boat. They don’t want to experience change, let along instigate it. They want to avoid failure. They seek out comfort.

That’s fine. The world needs people like them.

But we also need people like you: The boat-shakers, the rule-breakers, & the incessantly unsatisfied. The ones who took a chance. The ones who leaped over the edge & learned how to build wings on the way down.

Do you remember what that felt like at the start? How it kept you up at night?

It’s logical to think the goal of all that uncertainty was to get beyond it, to graduate into a place of calm, of consistency, of comfort. It’s logical, but it’s also a bit of a trap.

Being comfortable is a good sign you’ve stopped looking for places to create tension for yourself - the tension of “it could be better;” the tension of “what am I not seeing?”

The folks in your gym, they don’t want you to be comfortable. That’s not what they’re paying you for. They want you to see what they’re seeing, & they want you to make it better for them.

Yes, it’s nice to sail on calm seas every now & again. Just remember that placid waters weren’t what you signed up for when you started, & that sometimes we have to make our own waves.

Patrick Cummings