Today we joined millions of other people in visiting Thorpe Park, a theme park in Surrey, on a beautifully sunny Good Friday.
It’s fun to scream, to be a little scared, to set your heart racing.
Of course this kind of screaming, this kind of fear, is completely artificial and controlled: it’s all within certain pre-defined boundaries, the rides designed to push you just enough to feel exhilarated but not so much that you actually fear for your life.
Children love that feeling of danger, of excitement. As adults, though, we tend to mellow out. We like to feel in control, to stick with what we know, to stay in our comfort zone.
As we grow older and settle into a particular way of life, that comfort zone shrinks. We work in the same company for ten years and start to think that we can’t do anything else. We stay at home with the children and worry that we won’t be taken seriously when we go back into the workforce. We think it’s too late to learn a new skill, a new language, to do something completely different.
But we need to keep trying new things, to keep pushing the boundaries, to grow our comfort zone instead of shrinking it. That’s how we learn, how we stay interested, and interesting.
So go and try capoeira for the first time, buy an introductory course to Japanese, book that flight to a country you’ve never visited, go on a blind date, sit in a bar by yourself without playing with your phone, sign up for your first 10k.
A little bit of danger, a little bit of fear, is not a bad thing.