What moving out of comfort zone taught me?
The only twist here would be I left my place after spending 24+ years in my hometown. I am born and brought up in Chandigarh, a city indeed very beautiful and well planned. I moved out not only for my higher studies, but also to be able to meet my partner-in-crime (we are happily married now, back then we were in the stage of madly in love).
I remember the time when everyone in my family was against my decision to move out of Chandigarh. I can never forget how I was made to feel bad about taking this decision and so called well –wishers calling me names and telling me to take up a government job, work towards making better name and money in a place where my parents have been staying with their whole life. It was those heart wrenching moments which made my decision more strong than ever and came 18th July, 2013 when I boarded a train to Hyderabad.
I didn’t know what I am going to do after my studies in Hyderabad. The only thing which I had in mind was that I wasn’t going back over to Chandigarh. Things changed drastically. The first 10 days were terrible to the point that I happened to plan my excuses to leave Hyderabad and face shame… But eventually, with each passing day, I started getting comfortable. I was lucky enough to have the support from my lover, few newly made friends in University and very supportive seniors.
So, let me put in words what five lessons coming out of the comfort zone taught me:
- Have fun and be funny enough to accept fun at your cost: you are wondering what does it mean?Aren’t you? In simple words, be at your funny tickle bone as you are bound to be laughed upon as an outsider. Accept it, learn to make fun of yourself (up to a limit) and let it be.
- Be Self Reliable: Be friends with others, but don’t expect too much. Remember grandmom’s saying, “ expectation hurts”. Learn to be self- reliant, ask for help, be grateful for what you have and move on… live on your intuitions if you feel things are not moving in the right direction.
- Create new avenues: This one is like that hard lesson time teaching you. I had a pact with my mother that I wouldn’t be coming back to her over for my fees. I had saved enough in a year of my first job and took a plunge to Hyderabad. However, I was left with 10% of what I had during a period of six months with second semester yet to start. Thanks to my illness, sudden migraine attacks and expensive root canals. Knowing my pact with my family, I still tried asking my parents for help… The answer was fortunately “NO”. This situation turned into an ugly yet motivational “DO or DIE”. I started teaching tutions and became a helper to visually- challenged to be able to pay my semester fee.
- Build trust and self-worth: Trust your abilities, you can do more than what you think you can. Be peace with your inner-self, you are what you are and… Remember “You are the most special person to yourself”. Yes, self-worth is commendable. Love and live for yourself.
- Learn and Relearn: The most important lesson is learning to re-learn. Cherish each experience bad or good.. Rewind, recall and re-learn your I learnt to be accountable for my own actions and re-learnt to be part of a community which has diversified members in it. I remember going out for interviews, taking wrong route buses and getting lost on the way back to the hostel. Each passing day taught me to relearn what I had learnt at my hometown.
Though, the learnings didn’t end with these 5 lessons, but there are many more which I cherish till date. The only key take away, I feel for others and for my own self is “Be You” and follow your guts.