Neo Renaissance Means Occasionally Leaving One’s Comfort Zone


(Forgot to claim my 2013 award.) *blush*

Not much time to  post since I’m in the middle of my third writing marathon known as National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo, or NNWM. I signed up to participate (Free, by the way) and set a goal of writing a more or less complete book of at least 50,000 words in by November 30.

I “won” in 2012 and 2013, and hope to do so in 2014, even though my novel isn’t a novel. It’s a non-fiction book about wine. To me, stepping out of one’s comfort zone is not writing about wine, perhaps my most favorite sedentary hobby, but of forcing myself to write every day, and to write more words each day than I usually write in a given session (1,667). So far so good, except I’m a bit behind as of now since I don’t care to write much on weekends.

The strange part is, when I’m motivated and have something to say, I can write 2000 words in a matter of two hours or so. So what I’m talking about is finding the discipline to write for 50 hours in one month, less than two hours per day. But the self-imposed pressure of the NNWM “competition” changes my thinking about writing as work since it becomes more of a challenge to not fail when tens of thousands of other writers will reach their 50,000 word goal this month.

So I’m definitely out of my comfort zone of writing when I want and how much I want, and I’m tossed into writing as a competitive “sport” in which I compete with an anonymous mass of people for bragging rights. All I know is at the end of November, I’ll have all or most of a first draft of another book, which is a huge accomplishment no matter how you get there. Maybe there should be a NaNoWriMo every month! :-)

Since a polymath or Renaissance person always strives to learn and grow, getting out of one’s comfort zone is in itself learning and growing because any new situation or change in parameters requires a fresh response.  We grow by learning from the uncomfortable situation. Maybe we only learn to be less uncomfortable the next time, but it’s still learning. Ah-h-h, success.

My question: What has gotten you out of your comfort zone this month? Do you enjoy the feeling? Is the end result worth your discomfort?

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