the comfort zone

Don’t you love that phrase? Me, too. So reassuring to imagine that there’s a tangible place where you can feel comfortable. And comforted.

The comfort zone. Where did that idea come from? About 30 seconds of online research taught me that it was first used to refer to the range of comfortable temps on a thermostat. Okay. There’s that. But my comfort zone looks more like this:

Susan Spangler, shy girl talking, comfort zone, pictures & words

Our living room. Not an exact replica. I’ve moved the furniture around several times since I drew that picture. There’s a lot more art on the walls and clutter in general. Not to mention, it has an actual ceiling that’s painted, well, white. But it’s close enough. If you walked in the front door, I think you’d recognize it.

I’m a homebody. That doesn’t mean I’m a good housekeeper (ahem). I just love to be at home. In the center of the comfort zone.

Here’s what got me thinking about zones of comfort: Blogging. Specifically, writing this blog. And beyond that, personal blogs in general. Two years ago, according to Wikipedia, there were more than 156 million blogs online. By now there must be a zillion. Lots of them sell things and offer advice. Maybe most.

Probably no one knows how many blogs are up there or out there or wherever the Internet is in space. I mean, how could anyone possibly keep track? I guess there must be algorithms to extrapolate percentages from small samplings. If a person knew how to create an algorithm. Or what an algorithm actually is.

But anyway. My theory is that a hefty portion of blogs are probably a lot like this one. A kind of journal, with unlimited pages. A place to reflect on ideas and feelings and experiences. A sort of a conversation. Except that you don’t know who’s listening. If anyone.

And for a shy person, that part is okay. It’s kind of intriguing, really. Putting your thoughts out there. Into the space between the comfort zone and the rest of the world.

About Susan Spangler

I'm a graphic designer and illustrator, observer and survivor. My website,, contains a wide portfolio of my projects and images – some for pay, most for love, many for both. These graphic essays are inspired by things that catch my eye, my ear, my heart. Funny, confounding, astounding and encouraging, all at once. You know. Life.
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