Lately, the topic of “commitment” has been present in most everything I encounter lately. Commitment to my partner, commitment to my fitness, commitment to my job. Seeing it from a place of fear in the heart, it’s easy to see how commitments can be terrifying and limiting and how the methodology of mediocrity can prevent me from doing the things I was meant to do or the things I want to do.
I want to be a better boyfriend, I want to be a better climber, I want to be a successful employee. The only barriers to these things is my abject fear of commitment. I can’t always have the option of simply being able to jump ship or hide when I want to or when I’m afraid of being exposed when I fail, while at the same time having the choice to be extremely visible when successes occur. It’s common to hear this particular phrase now that the internet has taken self-help to an entirely different level, but it holds just as much water as when it was first uttered as it does now: “Outside of your comfort zone is where the magic happens.”
I admit, I have gotten far too comfortable with the prospects of being able to abandon my positions, people, projects, and resolutions without real repercussions simply because it’s the “easy way out”. Sure, it might be easy but it’s one of the worse ways to live one’s life. The only way more severe would be to take no risks at all and thereby avoid all rewards preemptively.
To say that I haven’t taken risks in the last few years would be both unfair and untrue, but to say that I have moved out of my comfort zone into the magic zone would be equally so. I’ve moved across the country on (basically) nothing more than a whim and a desire to obtain a better job, to move closer to places that would more easily fit my lifestyle, and to be closer to people I both love and care about.
On the same token, there is also the idea that commitment is just another form of attachment, and that placing too much weight on the idea of commitment as a set-in-stone variety of methodology is just as bad. Believing that my boyfriend (or even myself for that matter) will be the same person a year, five years, or ten years from now is just as foolish as believing beyond a shadow-of-a-dobt that we will always be together once I have made a commitment. We might not be together later on if we mutually agree that the relationship no longer serves either of our desires… and that’s okay. We grow as human beings, and sometimes we are forced to grow faster than we are comfortable with and we come eye-to-eye with an inexorable kind of truth: that nothing is constant but change.
Maybe the idea isn’t to be so mentally committed that you become a slave to the will of someone else or buckled-at-the-hip in terms of activity or life decisions, but maybe to make coherent and cogent decisions
I don’t know what the future holds, and I don’t pretend to understand the forces that are at-work in my life or the lives of the people I am close to, but I do know that I am working my way out of my comfort zone. It’s just going to take me a while to get to the place where the magic happens… keep an eye on this space, because awesome things are bound to happen sooner or later.