Why moving beyond the safe and familiar is essential for growth.
Each of us had our own “comfort zone’ which, more than an actual place, it is a psychological/emotional/behavioral construct that defines the routine of our daily life. Being in ones comfort zone implies familiarity, safety, and security. It describes the pattered world of our existence, keeps us relatively comfortable and calm, and helps us stay emotionally even, free from anxiety and worry to a great degree. Creating a comfort zone is a healthy adaptation for much of our lives. But so is stepping out of our comfort zone when it’s time to transition, grow, and transform.
Experiencing a little stress and anxiety now and then is a good thing, too. If all you ever do is stay wrapped in your little cocoon, keeping warm and cozy, you may be missing out on a lot of new experiences, challenges, and risks. Looking at the bigger picture, if you can’t step out of your comfort zone you may experience difficulty making changes or transitioning, growing and ultimately, transforming ; in other words all those things that define who you are and give your life meaning.
Very simply, what we fear most about challenging ourselves is that we may fail and/or get hurt. But most of us have the ability to arise to the occasion, overcome hurdles and obstacles, and actually succeed in accomplishing something new and challenging.
I always try to step out of the my comfort zone. Everyday at work I meet different people from different places in their lives. Even if I don’t agree with Someone I am able to learn from them. I sometimes go to different churches for events the are holding. I get exciting about meeting new people and learn how they think. And different aspects.
Your real life is waiting for you. Heal life exists beyond the bubble of your own personal thoughts. Your real life is the sum total of all of your experiences, not just the one’s your comfortable with.
Challenging yourself pushes you to dip into and utilize your personals store of untapped knowledge and resources. You have no idea what your made of unless and until you venture outside of your familiar world.
Take risks, regardless of their outcome, are growth experiences. Even if you make mistakes or don’t get it right the first time those become experiences you can tap into the future. There really is no such thing as fail if you get something out of the experience. And just so you know Fail reframed is First Attempt In Learning.
Don’t settle for the mediocre just to avoid stepping out of your comfort zone; it’s too big a price to pay. Your challenges and risk experiences are cumulative. Every time you try something new, and allow yourself to be open to whatever experience arises, you are learning, expanding your repertoire of life skills and self-knowledge. As you do this you also expand the size of your comfort zone.
Leaving your comfort zone ultimately helps you to deal with change-and making change in a much better way. Life transitions are all about change. Each time you transition you move to another level. Inevitably, these life transitions transform you.
All you need to do is take that first step out of your comfort zone. And amazing things will begin to happen.