Escaping comfort zones is essential
Published: Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 22:02
Without a doubt we are creatures of habit; we have a tendency to form routines, and ultimately we enjoy what is familiar to us. Familiarity breeds a sense of safety, and safety can be comforting.
And let’s be honest, no one particularly likes being out of his or her comfort zone.
By no means am I about to advocate the shedding of responsibility to shatter the boundaries of one’s comfort zone. And please keep in mind that I totally understand a majority of the students, who may or may not read this, have completely uprooted and transplanted themselves in the ever-changing city of Dallas, have pushed the boundaries of their comfort zones and are in the process of expanding their horizons.
In turn, those students who haven’t completely transplanted (y’all know who you are) to some degree have the boundaries of their comfort zones pushed, and traditionally this was enough. Now, it is not.
The times they are a changin’, and if you can’t keep up, you’re going to get swept up. Every nation in the world is dealing with high migration rates. Americans will be leaving this country to live, work, and reproduce in others. And (pick any foreign nationality and put it here) will be doing the very same here.
The way our future fellow Americans break down and understand the world is fundamentally different from a Western perspective of understanding. We live in a highly individualized society and part of our society’s culture affords a large percentage of us a considerable amount of autonomy that a large percentage of the world’s population doesn’t have.
Think about this: some of you will be leaving this country and moving to a different country because of work, and you don’t even know it yet. You could potentially be so out of your element, due to the difference in worldviews, that it could cause some of you to completely rethink your life’s choices up to that point. To those who may be reading and haven’t already taken a leap like this, does this thought scare you? Are you uneasy with the thought of perhaps being the immigrant?
So I am going to be brutally honest with y’all: white people talking to white people does not create an expanded horizon. This knife cuts both ways, so this goes for the exchange students as well.
As a species, we gravitate toward what is familiar to us, what is safe, what is comforting.
And if pop culture has taught me anything about college, it’s that the traditional American college experience is one of the few times, if not the only time, in your life that you are encouraged to test the boundaries of your existence in the quest for
The genuine interaction and communication that needs to take place amongst these varying worldviews here at SMU is a key component to our gaining a global perspective that is going to be vitally important in navigating the emerging global job market and navigating this global existence of ours.
Hare is an undergraduate in Dedman College.