We are often told we need to step out of our comfort zone. It is meant to be useful for our growth or a way to keep our brains lively, or something. The problem is that being outside our comfort zones is distinctly, well, uncomfortable. I understand what drives the general advice but the reality is that experiencing this discomfort for a prolonged amount of time is not much fun. In fact, it is pretty toxic.
Despite the fact that I have been teaching for several years now, there is an entire army of factors fighting to ensure that I remain firmly in my discomfort zone; these include changes to syllabus and curriculum, Covid, specific teaching groups, teaching new courses, to name just a few. It is exhausting. Each year, I wait for it to feel easier, more natural. I am still waiting.
Right now, I have no answers; I have not made any decisions yet about how to become more comfortable but I know that it is something I have to do in order to be ok. The easy route is to stay trapped out of my comfort zone and but how I long to be back there, even just for a while.