The Hobbit: Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone

June 20, 2019
In this article, we're going to show you how the movie The Hobbit is a great metaphor for leaving your comfort zone. Read on to learn why!

The Hobbit is a series of movies directed by Peter Jackson. Based on a novel of the same name, they’re part of a fantasy world called Middle Earth. The book was written by the author of The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien. This trilogy of movies is the prequel to the Lord of the Rings movies also directed by Jackson, as they take place 60 years earlier.

Fran Walsh, Phillipa Boyens, Peter Jackson, and the famous Guillermo del Toro wrote the script. The Hobbit tells the story of a little hobbit named Bilbo Baggins and his adventures in Middle Earth. 

A mysterious wizard named Gandalf the Grey convinces Bilbo to set out on an adventure with 13 dwarves. The leader of this company of dwarves is Thorin Oakenshield. He’s on a quest to defeat Smaug the dragon and take back the Lonely Mountain, the fallen dwarven kingdom.

The Hobbit: An Adventure Story

In the book version of The Hobbit, Tolkien introduces you to a more innocent fantasy world than the one in The Lord of the Rings. In it, he talks about happy people named hobbits who live peaceful lives in the Shire. Bilbo Baggins is one of them, and he loves the comfort of his routine. He bases his entire life around that comfort zone.

A still image from the movie showing Bilbo Baggins (played by Martin Freeman) running through a field with papers in his hand.

What Bilbo doesn’t know is that a wizard is about to come knocking and change everything. Gandalf is the wizard who pushes Bilbo to set out on his adventures, just like he does with Frodo years later.

Bilbo meets the 13 strange, lively, and wise dwarves. When their leader, Thorin, invites him to join them on their quest to reclaim the fallen kingdom of Erebor, Bilbo firmly refuses.

He’s so comfortable at home, with his armchair, pipe, and garden, that he never considering leaving. But in the end, he realizes that he’ll never grow if he never takes any risks. He decides that it’s worth going on the journey because it means he’ll get to experience the kinds of adventures he loves to read about so much. 

Leaving the Shire; Leaving Your Comfort Zone

The Shire, the small region created by Tolkien, is a perfect example of a comfort zone. Full of beautiful landscapes, fertile fields, and friendly hobbits, all of its inhabitants are comfortable in their routines. The last thing they want is change.

Nothing unexpected ever happens in their lives. But in the end, all Bilbo needs is a little push to get out of his comfort zone. He leaves behind his friends, his home, and the comfort of the Shire to explore the unknown.

For Bilbo, the moment to leave his comfort zone presented itself to him. Is that how it happens in real life? How can you know when it’s the best time to try and overcome your boundaries? To discover the answer to that question, ask yourself these three things:

1. Is it the Right Time?

You dream about becoming a singer but have never taken voice lessons. Suddenly, there’s an opportunity to sing in an open mic. What’s the right decision here? You’ll have to consider your abilities.

Although it may be true that you can always learn more, it’s smarter to be able to recognize when you truly have the basic skills necessary to do something. In this example, it’d be best to practice before you decide to sing in front of an audience that will judge your performance.

2. Have You Come Up with a Clear Goal?

Having a clear idea of your goals and priorities will help you face the obstacles that come your way. It’s impossible to go through life without any challenges. The one thing that’s truly in your control is your attitude towards them.

One major thing when it comes to challenges is to identify the reasons you have to face them. That list, and all the thoughts that come with it, will help you through difficult times where you’re losing motivation.

An image showing a path of lily pads spreading out across a lake or river.

3. Are You Ready to Overcome Obstacles?

It takes time and effort to be able to leave your comfort zone. It doesn’t matter whether that means speaking in public, learning to say no, or putting on your shoes and going down paths you’ve never taken before. All the obstacles you face will take courage, hard work, and focus.

How are your energy levels? How’s your mood? One good way to find the answer to these questions is by self-reflecting. Once you’ve answered them, you’ll be able to decide if it’s time to leave your comfort zone, if you should find another way out, or if you should stay in it for a little while longer. But once you’ve made your decision, don’t hesitate. There’s no time like the present.

In Bilbo’s case, he had positive responses to those questions. He was ready for an adventure. He wanted to overcome obstacles. Plus, he had a clear goal: to help the dwarves take back their mountain.