Freedom! NoCZ-2012

Freedom is the word that comes to mind when I think of what a week of No Comfort Zone 2012 has felt like. The first week of this challenge I have mainly pushed the limits with photography, experimenting with a photo editing program. Prior to this challenge I was afraid to experiment, but after only one week I’m playing with colors, composition, hues and tints and more. Rather than being concerned with presenting the “perfect” photo, I’ve allowed myself to mix it up, get bizarre, and most importantly, post it for others to see and comment on. I will continue to push myself with photography, to push the experimentation into more edgy areas. I’ve stepped over that boundary line with my photography and I feel good about that.

To some that may seem a trivial thing. But pushing the boundaries with photography is a paradigm for my life, too. For reasons I won’t go into here (I’ll save it for a therapist’s office) I have spent a lifetime working hard to appear “perfect” to the world. It takes an enormous amount of energy to always be “perfect,” and a great deal of angst when I fail to measure up (which invariably happens.) Stepping outside my comfort zone involves letting you see the authentic me, the imperfect, perfectly human me. What I had not expected was how freeing and exciting it is to shed the facade and just be real.

Stretching myself with my photography this week was a lot of fun. Surprisingly my photography got better the more I was willing to experiment and post less than perfect shots. Maybe life is that way too. The more we reveal ourselves, step out of our comfort zone, laugh and get excited about our efforts and foibles, the more real we become. For this coming week I will continue to experiment with photography, but for the challenge I will push another boundary in another area of my life. Check back on Mondays to see how it’s going and what new things I’m discovering through the No Comfort Zone 2012.