772 – Comfort Zone

National Integration Through Thirukkural And Sanskrit

Out of Comfort Zone

Once there was a king who received a gift of two magnificent falcons. Falcons have thin, tapered wings, which enable them to fly at high speed and to change direction rapidly. He gave these two birds to his head falconer to be trained.

Months passed, and one day the head falconer informed the king that though one of the falcons was flying majestically, the other bird had not moved from its branch since the day it had arrived.

The king summoned specialists to tend to the falcon, but no one could make the bird fly. Having tried everything else, the king thought that he should consult someone more familiar with the countryside to find a solution. So he invited a farmer to treat the falcon. Next day morning, the king was thrilled to see the falcon flying high above the palace gardens. He asked the farmer as to how he made the falcon fly?

The farmer said to the king, “It was very easy. I simply cut the branch where the bird was sitting.”

We are all made to fly, to realize our incredible potential as human beings. But at times we sit on our branches, clinging to the things that are familiar to us. The possibilities are endless, but for most of us, they remain undiscovered. We conform to the familiar, the comfortable, and the mundane. Let us learn to destroy the branch of fear we cling to and free ourselves to the glory of flight!

 Our comfort zone is a place in which we feel safe and secure and where there is no sense of risk. It is made up of the known, the accepted and the expected and it can be physical, emotional, intellectual or financial.

 According to psychologists, people can overcome their fear and move out of their comfort zone by just breaking their habits. Research shows that it takes only 21 days to develop a habit. An individual who wants to reach the top must appreciate the power and force of a habit. He must be quick to discard those habits that can break him and adopt those practices that will become the habits that help him achieve the success he desires.

 Getting out of one’s comfort zone is not always easy and often requires lots of hard work, discipline and persistence. Over 90% of people withdraw to the comfort zone when what they try, doesn’t work. Only the balance, continually improve and eventually succeed.

 A mountain climber, in the beginning does not start with Everest. He starts with smaller peaks until he gets the required confidence and skill. Once that is acquired, he tries to for the next higher level and so on, till he reaches the peak. Breaking down the goals into tiny steps and persevering with them as a habit, is the easiest way to reach those goals. Not all of one’s experiments succeed, but there is something to learn from that failure too.

Thiruvalluvar in his couplet 772 suggests that it is better to hold an arrow which has missed an elephant as its target rather than hold an arrow which has killed a hare. Metaphorically, it is better to experience failure venturing into a new activity rather than priding on success while operating in a comfort zone.

கான முயல்எய்த அம்பினில் யானை 
பிழைத்தவேல் ஏந்தல் இனிது.

Kaana Muyal-yeidha Ampinil Yaanai
Pizhaiththa-vel Yendhal Inidhu

பரிமேலழகர் உரை:

கான முயல் எய்த அம்பினில் – கான முயல் எய்த அம்பை ஏந்தலினும்; யானை பிழைத்த வேல் ஏந்தல் இனிது – வெள்ளிடை நின்ற யானையை எறிந்து பிழைத்த வேலை ஏந்தல் நன்று. (‘கானமுயல்’ என்றதனால் வெள்ளிடை நின்ற என்பதும், ‘பிழைத்த’ என்றதனாற் பிழையாமல் என்பதும், முயற்குத்தக ‘எய்த’ என்றதனான் யானைக்குத்தக எறிதலும் வருவிக்கப்பட்டன. இது மாற்றரசன் படையொடு பொருதான் ஓர் வீரன், அது புறங்கொடுத்ததாக நாணிப் பின் அவன்றன்மேற் செல்லலுற்றானது கூற்று)

Sanskrit Translation by Shri S. N Srirama Desikan

அமோக⁴ம்  பா³ண-முத்ஸ்ருஜ்ய ஸ²ஸே² ப்ராப்தோ ஜயோ வ்ருதா² |
க³ஜே ப்ரயுக்த-பா³ணஸ்து மோகோ⁴(அ)பி ஸ்யாஜ்ஜயாவஹ : ||