9 ways to stay firmly inside your comfort zone

Do you ever get sick of being told to ‘get out of your comfort zone’?

God, it’s relentless isn’t it? Heaven forbid we do a steady job we enjoy, or live in the same house for more than a few years, or avoid extreme sports we hate. Apparently life isn’t worth living unless we are on the edge, continuously pushing ourselves further and further out of our comfort zones.

Well I’ve had enough.

I LIKE my comfort zone thank you very much, especially at this time of the year when outside is so cold and miserable. My comfort zone is COMFORTABLE. That’s the point isn’t it?

Let’s take Monday this week as an example – I pushed myself out of my comfort zone by walking to work in the pouring rain. (‘Embrace the weather! Dance between the raindrops!) It was 1pm before my jeans had dried out properly – just in time to walk home again. Getting back after school, cranking the heating up and peeling off my cold, damp clothes in exchange for warm pyjamas and slippers was wonderful.

Weekend mornings are particularly blissful at the moment. Normally when I first wake up it’s still a little bit dark and when I remember it’s the weekend and I can go back to sleep if I want to, I grin and squirm about a bit in the bed, appreciating how it has somehow arrived overnight at the absolute perfect temperature. My feet are extra warm as I can feel the weight of a cat sat on them. I sit up, and when the cats realise I’m awake they all come up close to my face and start purring. I stroke them for a bit, before going downstairs to make a coffee to bring back to bed. I have a scroll through Instagram or read for a while.

Um, why exactly would I want to leave this?

I wouldn’t.

Fortunately this week is ‘Warmth Week’, created by Vaillant as part of their comfort zone campaign as the antidote to the what is commonly accepted as the bleakest week of the year. It’s the perfect excuse to get snuggly.

To help distract you from the urge to bungee jump or write letters to ex boyfriends or whatever hideous thing Facebook would have you believe you desperately need to do in order to be a leading a fulfilling life, I’ve put together nine top tips to help you stay well and truly INSIDE your comfort zone this winter.

top tips to stay warm in the winter

Pick your spot

Everyone needs a spot.

This is your comfort base as it were – your cosy corner from which to observe the world in comfort. It could be a nice comfy armchair, your bed, or your favourite end of the sofa. Come on, everyone has a favourite end don’t they? It’s the one with the slightly better angle on the TV.

favourite end of the sofa

Crank the heating on

I really cannot abide a cold house. I think people worry sometimes that having the heating on has to mean fiddling about constantly with thermostats or whatever, but it’s really not like that nowadays. If you use something like the Vaillant vSMART system then you can control your heating precisely and effectively from wherever you are, so you stay warm and cosy without any stress. Having the heating on doesn’t have to be expensive or too energy consuming either – check out Green iQ from Vaillant for more information about keeping your energy use as green as possible.

Gather your pets

There is pretty much nothing as cosy and comforting as a warm kitty on your lap. Even when they have just come in from outside and their paws are chilly on your legs it doesn’t seem to matter – they are just so scrummy. I will take this one for my collection please.

cat on a bed

Get some comfy clothes on

I tend to know that a cosy evening at home has well and truly begun when I take off my bra. Women across the globe are nodding now and smiling. It’s a happy moment right ladies? I’d also recommend some nice warm pyjamas – something with nice a stretchy waist.

Make a hot drink

Or a gin and tonic or whatever. Actually, my favourite drink at the moment, which I discovered because the only mixer I had in the house was apple juice, is spiced rum and apple. It has a lovely wintery feel AND is one of your five a day. I bet it would be nice warm too.

cup of tea in a teapot

Find your slippers

I love my slippers so much that often I will take them to other people’s houses with me to change into when I get there. (An excellent example in fact of how you can make your comfort zone transportable.)

Light a fire

I had a message from a friend last Saturday night at about 8pm. ‘I’ve got the fire lit,’ he said, ‘and I’m drinking posh tea. It’s from a glass teapot and cup set. Super fancy.’ Then he sent me a picture of his wood burner. (Not the one below, although he would LOVE that one.) He is my kind of man. ROCK ON.

wood burner

Invest in a good blanket

You’re going to be spending a lot of time with it, so best get something decent. You’re looking for that perfect balance – something that will look beautiful when you casually drape it over the arm of your sofa for an Instagram story, but that will also go in the wash easily when it starts to smell of feet.

Pick out a book or a boxset

I’m thinking of starting a monthly post about books I’ve read, so watch out for that – top marks so far this month for Margaret Atwood’s Hag-Seed, Matt Haig’s The Humans and Elizabeth von Arnim’s The Enchanted April. Box set wise, my top easy listening picks are The Good Place, LiFe in Pieces and the Dynasty remake. The day Belle said ‘you look like Fallon Carrington in that’ was a happy day for me indeed.

What does your comfort zone look like? Leave a comment and let me know.

woman reading a book

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7 Comments

  1. 19 January, 2018 / 2:20 pm

    A lot of this ‘out of your comfort zone’ stuff is driven by either corporate culture or social media. It’s FOMO marketing on a cultural level – do more, don’t miss out, don’t focus on where you actually are … and it can really lower self esteem. There are a lot of people who are really brave and hard working who are on this treadmill because they think they’re at risk of being boring and lazy if they don’t hit everything on their bucket list, move house and get a new job every week.
    It can end up in low self esteem and burn out!

  2. 20 January, 2018 / 12:16 pm

    This is such a awesome post! Feeling comfy and cosy at home is surely the best thing in the world at various spots all over the house. Thanks!

  3. 20 January, 2018 / 7:13 pm

    I don’t feel as though I’ve started the year very well at all. I’m completely out if my comfort zone with tasks on my to do list at the moment so I’m retreating to comfy PJ’s and slippers along with my favourite films to balance myself back out again.

  4. 22 January, 2018 / 2:13 pm

    I love this! I love being in my comfort zone.. and you just made me want to crank up the heating and get back in bed, hopefully joined by my two cats.

    • Jo Middleton
      Author
      22 January, 2018 / 2:23 pm

      Do it! Get cosy :-)

  5. Kate Palmer
    23 January, 2018 / 10:22 pm

    After a manic few weeks My family and I pretty much spent the weekend in our PJ’s under a blanket. We played a few board games and ate comfort food and didn’t do much else all weekend. It was utter bliss!

  6. 25 January, 2018 / 9:43 pm

    I’m so glad I read this! Selling our house but only because we are sick of keeping up with the Jones’ and want to spend less on mortgage, more on family. Both work hard…my job is too hard and I’ve changed to part time hours…fingers crossed. I do lots of the same things as you to be in my comfort zone. You made me feel like I’m not the only one…thank you x

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