When did you last step outside your Comfort Zone??

We all have a comfort zone – some are much larger than others. The things that make us feel a little nervous are just outside our comfort zone. The things that make us panic? Waaay outside.

The thing is that if we just stay comfortable, we never grow. Not only that, but over time our comfort zone may even shrink, so things we used to be comfortable doing are now a little bit scary. So we need to be regularly stretching ourselves and moving beyond the comfort zone, through the fear, and into the learning and growth zones. That is the only way our comfort zone will ever get bigger!

How to Grow more comfortable doing things that scare you:

When I’m working with clients, especially if there’s a real fear or anxiety about what they’re facing, I get them to identify the steps to their goal, or break it down into different actions. Write them out and rank them in order of scariness, from easiest to hardest.

Start with the easier ones, the actions that are just beyond comfort (maybe 1-4 out of 10 on your Scary/Anxiety scale). Repeat if necessary. By doing those things, you build confidence and stretch your comfort zone out so eventually those things are now in your comfort zone. Most things get easier with practice. Now the scarier ones (5+ out of 10 on your scale) are a little closer, within reach, less scary now than before.

And then you tackle the next ‘least scary’ step. All the while, you’re making progress, building confidence, and growing through the fear and discomfort. But don’t attempt to go straight from comfort zone to the most scary panic-inducing thing (9 or 10/10 scary) – that would be like going from couch to marathon and skipping the 5km practice. You might survive but you’ll probably regret it, jump back into your comfort zone and be much more scared to come out!

Every one of us has stuff that lies outside our comfort zone – even the most confident person. Remember that. You’re normal. We all have room to grow. And sometimes, if you’ve got to a point in your life and career where you take most things in your stride (lucky!), then it might just be a good idea to do something that scares you to take you right out of that big old comfort zone, so you can grow and evolve.

What are you doing to grow your comfort zone??