Your “Safe Zone.”
Can you define yours? Can you tell me about it, or is it so faded that you really no longer have one? If you do have a safe zone, is it empty? Do you keep it locked? Are you the only one with a key, or do you hand out copies of your key? If you do, it isn’t a safe zone. It’s just an illusion.
Well, a definition of ‘safe zone’ is a good start.
My safe zone is that place where I evaluate what goes on in my life. That which I want to be beneficial to everyone in my life. Those whom I know as well as those whom I have never met.
Everything I do, even sitting here typing, affects other people. Yeah, I know. Big reveal. We should all know this.
What you do in private eventually effects others publicly. It may happen it ten minutes because you wanted it to, or it may take 50 years because you have hidden it. It may go to the grave with you, but it will affect others now or later. It is inevitable What you do now will affect others later. Say it to yourself.
———->”What I do now will affect others later.”<———-
Least of all, you will carry it with you until you face it and resolve ‘it.’
OK, let’s look at the ‘safe zone.’
Have you ever just wanted to be banished to a deserted island? Somewhere in the Pacific Ocean, miles away from everyone. All alone, all by yourself? That is what a safe zone is. However, it only exists in your head. Shutting everyone out. A place where no one goes with you.
Where. You. Are. Alone.
For me, and most people, this is in our heads, although, for others it can be a real place, but, you are eventually going there to force all things negative out of your head, and hopefully, from your life. For me that real place is playing music on stage. Sometimes writing about things works. It is different for everyone. The question that needs to be asked is this, do you invite everyone back in after you come back from that place? Does everyone whom you needed to escape from re-enter to distract and obstruct you? When you are in your safe place, do you do any maintenance? Do you weed your garden? You should. After all, you went there because they aren’t there, right? You went there to escape the ‘weeds,’ correct?
I’ve posted this in my blog before, but it seems fitting now.
Many years ago, I was trying to garner an audience for some artwork I was producing. My own pen and ink work. I’ve sketched, drawn with ink, never painted, but been an artist since grammar school. A musician as well. One day, I decided that I wanted to try to market my art. I headed out to find out what I would need to do to market my work. I was living in Seattle. I went down to the Pike Place Market, an open air vending haven, and asked around. I really didn’t get any answers, but one guy, also an artist, looked at my work, grabbed a pen and a piece of gator board. He scribbled, “You can either change your act, or you can get a new audience.” I looked at this and was confused. I took the gator board over to the Athenian Restaurant inside the market for a sandwich and a bit of thought. What did this mean?
This is what I got out of it.
“Change your act,…..” Well, that was easy. My artwork didn’t look marketable, but I was a newb, so it would need some tuning. OK, that’s acceptable. Use my imagination, develop better skills. Yeah, thanks for that.
“…..get a new audience.” Again, easy to decipher. Find the niche I need to appeal to and appeal to them.
How does this apply here? Well, let me tell you.
If your safe zone is overrun with those you seek to escape, change your act (fine tune your character, develop coping skills) or get a new audience (stop hanging around with needy or annoying people.) You CAN do both, without much pain. It will mean you need to shift your psychological north and your emotional compass.
That ‘safe zone,’ that ‘island’ you seek is always there, you just may need to learn to monitor whom you are allowing in (change your act) or you may need to redefine your ‘safe zone,’ (a new audience.)
The place where you go when you go to your safe zone is the place where you need to be able to see all that surrounds you, without being involved in what is around you. Where you can decide which door from that zone is the one you want to exit back into the chaos through. This is why you need to eliminate those people in your life that continuously make you exit TO your safe zone and who cause you to have to use a door other than the one you WANT to use. Those who continuously force you into a corner with their self-serving attitude and rhetoric need to go. As we all should do, love our neighbor, etc., we must also know what is good for ourselves and how to maintain under the pressure when things aren’t good for us. Don’t ever assume that when you need space, you are going to get it. Challenge is a part of life and it lurks around every corner.
So, here’s my secret. I quit letting people into my ‘pocket.’ Those whom depend on me to be there for them so they don’t have to accept any responsibility for their own actions or refuse to accept that what they do affects others, every time. If you can’t accept that then stay out of my ‘pocket.’ Better yet, don’t even expect to be close to me or my ‘pocket.’ When you let someone into your pocket, the next step is your safe zone. It moves closer to you because you need it more with someone chasing you to get to your pocket. To be in association with people who will eventually allow you to either discontinue needing a safe zone, or whom do not desire to follow you to your safe zone when you go there are the people you need to keep in your life. Those whom continuously stress you or expect you to ‘complete’ them are just there for the ride. They are only escaping their own weaknesses and hoping you will take those weaknesses, strengthen them then hand them back as a working model which they will never repay you for.
Dump them, leave them behind and don’t feel bad about doing so. Suffering remorse for those whom hold you no higher than as a thing they can use is not a failure. It is an accomplishment and a character building measure. Feeling good about letting go of someone whom is destructive, untrustworthy, continuously selfish and a user is nothing to feel remorse for. As I said in my last piece, letting go of someone who has no remorse for treating you badly is not wrong. It can hurt, it can cause you to question your motives, but if your motives are to rid yourself of emotional black holes, you are doing the right thing.
Just remember this. You are the only one who should have access to your own safe zone and you are the only one who should ever know where that space is. Until you get rid of the trash in that place, your efforts will never pay off in your own well-being. Whether it is physically, emotionally or psychologically available, it is yours and no one else needs to have access to it while you are there. The fact that you need to be there to be free of those whom cause you to escape only means that you need to wean yourself of those people and eventually abandon the need for a safe zone. Your entire life should be the expanse of your safe zone. All of it.
Don’t feel remorse for letting go of people who force you to flee from them. If, in fact, you DO feel remorse, there is nothing wrong other than you aren’t taking yourself as seriously as you should. They aren’t worth your time or efforts because they will never appreciate you until they can’t find you. Then it’s too late. Then they may ‘get it.’ Your well-being is more important than their desire to do you harm. Don’t give in, don’t cave. Take care of ‘you.’
Take care of you, and eventually you will be surrounded by people who care for you, who depend on you to be a part of a constructive team and who will lift you up when you do well and help you when you are weak. They are the people whose safe zones are their entire lives. Just remember to do your best because you know you are helping those who have the same goals in mind. To help others by doing what is best for everyone, even those whom they may never meet, is the reason you should be driven to get out of bed every morning.
Thanks of looking,