Settling for the Status Quo Ultimately Leads to Dissatisfaction


I believe most people are naturally tempted to settle into a comfort zone where they choose comfort over potential. They fall into familiar patterns and habits, doing the same things in the same ways with the same people at the same time and getting the same results. It’s true that being in your comfort zone may feel good, but it leads to mediocrity and, therefore, dissatisfaction. As psychologist Abraham Maslow asserted, “If you plan on being anything less than you are capable of being, you will probably be unhappy all the days of your life.”

If you have ever settled for the status quo and then wondered why your life isn’t going the way you’d hoped, then you need to realize that you will only reach your potential if you have the courage to push yourself outside your comfort zone and break out of a mindset of mediocrity. You must be willing to leave behind what feels familiar, safe, and secure. You must give up excuses and push forward. You must be willing to face the tension that comes from stretching toward your potential. That is the only way to avoid what poet John Greenleaf Whittier described when he wrote, “For all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these: ‘It might have been.’ ”