The Dangerous Path of Apathy

Comfort. We all want to be comfortable. We believe things are better when their easier. Simpler. But can you get too comfortable?

The answer, of course, is yes. And when I chat with folks, specifically about their careers – where they are – and where they’d like to be, I’ve found that it’s not always, in fact, it usually isn’t, a love/hate relationship.

When we talk about our careers – we look at them as though we must LOVE every moment, every transaction, every task – in order to be fulfilled and satisfied. And if we don’t – we hate it.

But this isn’t the case. If you hated your job – quitting would be easy. Just as if you hated your boyfriend/girlfriend or hated the place you lived. If you did, you (probably) wouldn’t be there. Finding a way out wouldn’t be a problem.

What’s more common is that we fall into a lull of neither loving or hating where we are. We get comfortable. When someone asks us how are day was, we respond with “fine”.

The most dangerous path is the apathetic path. And it’s ridiculously easy to fall into.

To those of you who may be in a situation that has you feeling as though your going through the motions, telling yourself that it’s “not so bad” – I have two things to say:

1. You may be right. It may not be so bad. It may not be bad at all. If this is the case – find a way to make it better. Talk to your boss about taking on more responsibility. Walk in the door each day with a renewed attitude and focus. If you can find a way to leap from “fine” to “great” where you are right now – by all means, do it. And don’t wait.

2. Life is short. If you’re not happy where you are right now – if you’re feeling “meh” about things – you owe it to yourself to find something/someone/somewhere better. A new job, a new place…whatever it is. Take some time today looking within, decide what matters most, and start finding a way to work toward that.

It may be easier to do what you’re doing right now. To settle in and accept it all. But please (please) don’t fall into feeling “stuck”. You’re not, unless you are.

Take action. Be bold. Give a damn. Take a flying leap out of your comfort zone. You’ll be surprised what you’ll find, and what you’ll discover about yourself, when you do.

(Photo credit)


6 Responses
  • Alison Reply

    Great post! Too many people lead unhappy lives these days because it’s easy and they’re comfortable. Taking the leap opens a whole new realm of possibilities and opportunities!

  • Sandesh Reply

    Perfect words! Perfect insight into everyday life of a common person who ends the day convincing himself that the day was fine and will remain fine forever even though he/she doesnt like what is happening!

  • Yoav Burger Reply

    Great post, Matt. Feeling comfortable or complacency is very dangerous. You settle for something and many years later.. you feel like you missed out. Your message is loud and clear and to to benefit even more people, I have included it in ‘Best of the Web’ http://bit.ly/j3bestweb, Facebook http://buff.ly/TVwkOC and Google+ http://buff.ly/TVwjdx . Thanks, Matt.

  • James Reply

    It’s the (career) itch that must be scratched.

    PS. “you’re 40″ not “your 40″ ;)

  • Juma Reply

    Right now am out of my comfort zone. I feel more of myself though still trying to connect the dots! This post is an inspiration to me. Almost at the right time. Thanks Matt.

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