Perhaps you are someone who isn’t afraid of taking chances outside your comfort zone. You’re bold, you are able to face big decisions head-on and jump in with both feet, you aren’t afraid of change, etc. If I can be frank with you, like so many other people, I have struggled with this in my own life. I prefer remaining in my own safe bubble (also known as the comfort zone). Unfortunately, the harsh truth is that there is no room for growth in your comfort zone. When you step outside your comfort zone, what you learn along the way is immeasurable. Here’s the (somewhat) short version of my experience reaching outside my comfort zone.
Overcome by What-If Mentality
A while back, I was asked to take on a new role and expand my responsibilities. Because this was out of my comfort zone, my brain went into overload and fear kicked in. What if I don’t understand the client’s needs? What if I’m not available when needed? What if I send her to the wrong place at the wrong time? What if, what if, what if? While these thoughts raced through my mind, the offer was passed along to someone else. I was back in my comfort zone – YES!
Fast forward a few months, and I was approached with the same offer. Fear kicked in again. The what ifs returned, but this time something clicked in my brain and told me to take a chance. WHAT IF I succeeded? I decided to jump in, fear and all. Fast forward to the present day – I LOVE what I do – I want more!
What Happens When You Step Outside Your Comfort Zone
Here are three things that happened when I stepped outside my own comfort zone.
- Think and You Become – I pretended to be confident and eventually became confident. The mind is a powerful tool. Tell yourself positive affirmations daily! In becoming confident in my role, I realized I am capable of so much more than I thought I was. I have grown professionally, and that alone feels amazing.
- Growth from Learning – I have learned so many new things along the way. Most importantly, I learned that in order to grow, you must Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway as the book by Susan Jeffers, Ph. D. is titled. Will you make a mistake at some point? Of course! That is part of the learning process. But the important lesson here is to accept the fact that mistakes will happen and keep moving forward.
- Possibilities Are Endless – I realized that remaining in your comfort zone limits you. When you step outside your comfortable bubble, possibilities become endless. You find it easier to push your boundaries. You almost become fearless.
Will You Step Outside Your Comfort Zone?
As you read this, ask yourself what opportunity is making you fearful? Are you holding yourself back from growth and the possibility of becoming the best version of yourself? Try beginning slowly by making a few adjustments. Once you have done this, you will begin to feel more confident and more able to boldly jump in with both feet. Before you know it, you will be learning a new language, trying new foods, visiting new places, and asking your boss for more growth opportunities. Great things are waiting for you, so step outside your comfort zone and let me know how it goes.