“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”
When the Wildebeest migration gathers on the slopes of the Mara River on the Kenyan Savannah awaiting to cross the Crocodile infested rivers they are so out of their comfort zone, but does it stop them from crossing over to greener pastures?
If they were driven by fear they would all die.
Same with us & simply put:
Only when you stop letting fear and anxiety hold you back, will you start to make those major breakthroughs in life.
Like the great Migration, fear is a valuable thing. It keeps people safe and encourages caution when caution is due and above all else keeps both us and our great Nature alive. But it’s also a limiting thing: Not everything you’re afraid of deserves fear or caution. And sometimes, moments of bravery are what are needed to make your life better.
Unfortunately, many people have problems with getting out of their comfort zones. They want to do more in life, but they’re afraid to challenge themselves and push the envelope on what they think is safe.
So, in this post we’re going to talk about your comfort zone. Specifically, I’ll give you nine steps you can use to push those self-created boundaries of what you think is possible.
1. Become Clear About What You Are Aiming to Overcome
Take the list of discomforts and go deeper. Remember, the primary emotion you are trying to overcome is fear.
How does this fear apply uniquely to each situation? Be very specific.
Are you afraid of walking up to people and introducing yourself in social situations? Why? Is it because you are insecure about the sound of your voice? Are you insecure about your look? Or, are you afraid of being ignored?
2. Get Comfortable with Discomfort
One way to get outside of your comfort zone is to literally expand it. Make it a goal to avoid running away from discomfort.
Let’s stay with the theme of meeting people in social settings. If you start feeling a little panicked when talking to someone you’ve just met, try to stay with it a little longer than you normally would before retreating to comfort. If you stay long enough and practice often enough, it will start to become less uncomfortable.
3. See Failure as a Teacher
Many of us are so afraid of failure that we would rather do nothing than take a shot at our dreams.
Begin to treat failure as a teacher. What did you learn from the experience? How can you take that lesson to your next adventure to increase your chance of success?
4. Take Baby Steps
Don’t try to jump outside your comfort zone, you will likely become overwhelmed and jump right back in.
Take small steps toward the fear you are trying to overcome. If you want to do public speaking, start by taking every opportunity to speak to small groups of people. You can even practice with family and friends.
5. Hang out with Risk Takers
There is no substitute for this step. If you want to become better at something, you must start hanging out with the people who are doing what you want to do and start emulating them. Almost inevitably, their influence will start to have an effect on your behavior.
6. Be Honest with Yourself When You Are Trying to Make Excuses
Don’t say “Oh, I just don’t have the time for this right now.” Instead, be honest and say “I am afraid to do this.”
Don’t make excuses, just be honest. You will be in a better place to confront what is truly bothering you and increase your chance of moving forward.
7. Identify How Stepping out Will Benefit You
What will the ability to engage in public speaking do for your personal and professional growth? Keep these potential benefits in mind as motivation to push through fear.
8. Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously
Learn to laugh at yourself when you make mistakes. Risk taking will inevitably involve failure and setbacks that will sometimes make you look foolish to others. Be happy to roll with the punches when others poke fun.
9. Focus on the Fun
Enjoy the process of stepping outside your safe boundaries. Enjoy the fun of discovering things about yourself that you may not have been aware of previously.
So, isn’t it time to get out of your comfort zone. Start by contacting me and we can get comfortable with getting out of our comfort zone.
Breaking out of your comfort zone gives you more opportunity in life. Don’t let anxiety prevent you from doing what you truly want. Attack your fears and push the boundaries of what makes feel comfortable.
The truth is you might actually learn to like what you’re doing. Maybe you’ll find that this experience will provide an opportunity you never knew existed.
Before concluding this post, I want to ask a simple question: “How do you get out of your comfort zone?”
In the comment box below, I would love to hear your thoughts about what you’ve done to push past your anxiety and break out of your comfort zone.