Following on from part 1, how being uncomfortable is a part of achieving your dreams.
As we’ve said, your comfort zone is a space we’ve created ourselves over the years. We don’t realise we’ve become trapped in the space because we’ve become so accustomed to the way it makes us feel. It keeps us from realising how we’ve been limiting our possibility to grow.
Tips for Leaving Your Comfort Zone Behind
“A comfort zone is a beautiful place…but nothing ever grows there.”
Once you’ve discovered the benefits of getting out of your comfort zone, you will see how it affects your life. You know you need to, but the thought scares you and you end up staying in your comfort zone.
Here are 12 tips to help you leave your comfort zone behind.
- Start small by switching up the easy stuff. Instead of jumping out of an airplane (unless that’s what you want), begin by changing something you do every day. Go down a different street on the way to work. Brush your teeth with your non-dominant hand. Try a new restaurant or even a new dish at an old restaurant. Move the furniture around in your home. Try a new gym. Get up 15 minutes earlier. All of these things are small, but they can feel uncomfortable and help get into the feeling of moving forward.
- Push yourself to do things outside your comfort zone like not hitting the snooze button or finishing a project even when you don’t have to. When you push yourself physically, you are making your mental strength stronger naturally. This is a key to staying and pushing the boundary outside your comfort zone.
- Make a list of everything you believe is good about getting outside your safe area. Keep adding, finding the deeper, emotionally driven reasons. When you feel yourself retreating into your comfort zone, take out the list, and look at it.
- What do you want to achieve? Creating a reason big enough of why, will help you to get out of your comfort zone and help you have a mental breakthrough. Remind yourself of your why if you are struggling and close to giving up.
- Rewrite your story. What do you want to change? Don’t let your old story effect your story today. Begin rewriting it today by making small changes toward the changes you want to see in your life.
- Skip being perfect. That will just make you afraid to try. Things are never going to be perfect. There are many ways to step out of your comfort zone and none of them have to be perfect. Just do what is right for you.
- Be who you are without fear. We spend our lives not making waves, minding our own business and staying out of trouble. But this is not where growth is. Instead, act when you find yourself wanting to play it safe. You might get into an argument, ask out that person you want to date, or express your opinion on something. What’s the worst that can happen? But then again what’s the best that could happen?
- Make yourself do it. Sometimes that’s the only way to get out of your comfort zone. Maybe you need to take a class, set a deadline, get some accountability, or tell the world what you’re doing. That fear of someone asking how you’re doing or how it went just might be enough to make you do it.
- Find a way to bridge the gap between your comfort zone and the new situation. For example, if you’re at an event where you need network but are more comfortable one on one, figure out how to make it easier for you. Maybe instead of a large conference room filled with people, you ask someone to step out into the lobby so you can hear and sit down. You can figure out how to make it more in-line with your comfort zone.
- Break it down into smaller steps. Whether you want to learn a new skill, start a business, or meet new people, work out the smaller steps you need to take to make it work. Instead of having a goal of starting a small business, try finding your first client for a side hustle. How does this feel? Are you ready to take on more clients?
- Keep a journal of all the new things you try. When you journal about it, ask yourself what you enjoyed and what you hated. Build on the experience.
- Read your journal when you are facing a new challenge. Reading through all the ways you have pushed yourself and faced your fear will encourage you to keep going. Stick with it even if you feel discouraged. Push past the doubt and keep trying.
Stepping out of your comfort zone is scary. And it can be difficult to do. It’s important to remember why you are doing it and take small steps to get there. Remember your current comfort zone started out different to how it is now.
For me, my work has involved traveling to London frequently by train and now, that doesn’t bother me at all. It doesn’t register on my ‘freak-out-anator’ and yet 10 years ago it would have.
Our comfort zone can be as wide or as narrow as we choose to make it. The wider it is the happier and more successful we’ll be.
I am reading ‘Everything is Figureoutable’ by Marie Forleo and she is so right about this, especially in this information age. If a client needs me to use software I’m unfamiliar with I will take a little longer but I will learn to use it. I can figure it out. And so can you, whatever the challenge, whatever your goal, you can do this!