|ESPN.com: Smith||[Print without images]|
Comfortable is easy.
Comfortable provides our unwavering truth, cultivated by the plow of check marks on our calendar of experience. It's what we know, the daily routine dispersed through the borders of our emotional personal planners. It is walking through the same door at the same office every day at 8:58 a.m. for two decades; and greeting the same faces en route to the same coffee maker at exactly the same time each morning.
There is strange comfort in that knowledge.
Comfortable feels like security.
Until it feels like monotony.
Just then, suddenly and strikingly, comfortable becomes quite uncomfortable.
And in that revelatory moment of emotional tug-of-war it hits you like an anvil: To maximize potential, I must make myself uncomfortable. I must walk through the door of an unfamiliar office full of unfamiliar faces to rewrite my definition of comfortable.
Taking that chance is very difficult.
I imagine that has been Matt Kenseth's struggle in 2012.
For 14 years at the highest level of his trade, Kenseth has known but one way of doing business. The Roush way. It is a highly successful method, one that produced two Daytona 500 victories and a Sprint Cup championship season so consistently competitive it rewrote the way every champion after it was crowned.
This is not a LeBron James "Decision."
I do not believe that Matt Kenseth is leaving Roush Fenway Racing in search of faster racecars. He has the fastest racecars in the sport. I do not believe he is leaving with the hope of joining forces with more-competitive people in the quest for victory. He and crew chief Jimmy Fennig are already plenty formidable.
I believe Matt Kenseth is leaving Roush Fenway Racing for the liberation of a new start, under the direction of a new philosophy. He knows what he can do in Roush Fords. He knows the company methodology. It didn't especially apply any longer.
He wants to see what he can do under another man's roof in another man's cars with another man's methodology.
To do that he chose to make himself uncomfortable.
Uncomfortable is hard.