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By ANWAR HADI alltherage@thestar.com.my

THEY say small minds talk about people, average minds talk about events, and great minds talk about ideas. Let’s have a go at all three, shall we?

Since I can’t seem to get Zayn Malik’s PillowTalk out of my head, I’ll talk about him. This unapologetically good-looking 23-year-old made waves last year by leaving One Direction, so let’s focus on that event.

The idea that we’ll explore is why a member of the most successful boy band of the past five years would break away from that and try to do his own thing.

And even though he did tweet that he wanted the opportunity to show us who he really was, for this article’s sake we’ll focus on an alternative reason, which is the comfort zone. We’ll explore why the comfort zone can both be an ally and an enemy.

So as we’ve established, Zayn has the face that could make even a 26-year-old married man like me blush if we were to ever make eye contact. And on top of that, he has one of the best voices on radio today. His performances in One Direction songs such as Midnight Memories and Little Things always stand out, even when part of a five-person outfit.

When it was announced that he was no longer going to be a part of the boy band, hearts broke. If you’re a Directioner, you know as much as I do (probably more) how much this revelation devastated fans. Most took to Twitter to pour their hearts out, crying over the loss of one of the most important members of the band.

Upon Zayn leaving the band, he tweeted that he intended to show his real self in the new music he planned on releasing.

Upon listening to PillowTalk, that meant that he wanted to put out music that was different from what he was doing at One Direction, which is fine, but with his stepping out of the band to explore new things, he also stepped out of his comfort zone to try his luck at being a solo artiste.

One Direction was a sure thing for him. As long as he played his role, he was surely never going to get kicked out. He had millions of adoring fans around the world. They were playing similar songs, day in day out. Not to mention the amount of money they were being paid to do just that!

Sure they worked hard, but at the end of the day, after four years of doing pretty much the same thing, you wouldn’t blame anyone for falling into a comfort zone.

And even though comfort zones are great to rest at for a while, it can also cause one to stagnate and stop growing. You stop feeling challenged by what you do every day, and the challenge becomes more like a challenge of finding ways to not get bored.

You’re not taking up new challenges, mainly because of the lack of opportunities to seek out new challenges as well as a lack of motivation in yourself to seek out new adventures, since being where you are and doing what you have always done has become so much of a sure thing, ruffling the feathers really doesn’t seem all that appealing to you.

And suddenly, exiting your comfort zone to seek new challenges and to have that thrill of being unsure again becomes an appealing idea.

Force yourself to learn new things in order to adapt and survive, and hopefully come out of the process becoming an improved version of yourself – one which you’d never have realised had you decided to stay within your comfort zone.

That’s what Zayn did, and I have come to respect him for that.

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Our columnist IniAnwarHadi talks about his respect for Zayn Malik leaving One Direction. Head to rage.com.my/new-directions-with-zayn-malik/ for the full article.

Posted by R.AGE on Tuesday, 23 February 2016

 

Anwar Hadi is a YouTuber at youtube.com/IniAnwarHadi. Read more of our R.AGE columnists here.

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