“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”
Neale Donald Walsch
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 only when you stop letting fears and anxiety hold you back, will you start to make those major breakthroughs in life.
A comfort zone is a self-imposed boundary where a person will refuse to push past. Doing so often fills him or her with nervousness and anxiety.
For instance, let’s say you just started a new sales job. Probably there are certain aspects of this job that you feel comfortable doing, like talking to individual co-workers or clients.
On the other hand, the idea of cold-calling fills you with anxiety. Basically, you feel uncomfortable with doing anything that’s not a one-on-one conversation.
It’s really easy to fall into the trap of never pushing your comfort zone. The problem with this is it often prevents you from true success and happiness in life. That’s because one of the best ways to grow is to test the limits of what most people consider “normal” to live the life you want.
So let’s talk about the seven steps for getting out of your comfort zone.
1. Start getting out of your comfort zone by getting information. Information is power. And the more you know about something, the less scary and more powerful you’ll feel.
To break through your comfort zone, you need to first educate yourself. Your goal here is to find out about whatever skill or activity you’re pursuing. You’ll talk to people who have done the same thing. You’ll read books on the subject. And you’ll check-out articles on the Internet about this subject.
2. Create a plan of action for pushing the boundaries on what you think is possible.Start with the easiest thing to do.
Then you create a plan to get to each level. In this plan you need to create benchmarks. These are mini-goals that put you one step close to pushing past your comfort zone.
3. Identify the key challenges you’re going to face and what you’ll do to overcome them.This is an important step because the people in your life will keep you on track. You want them to give you that ‘push’ as you’re pushing your boundaries. They will make it hard for you to quit because you know you’ll look foolish if you did.
4. Taking ‘baby steps’ is a great way to de-sensitize yourself to the feelings of anxiety caused by leaving what is familiar and safe to you.“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” Lao Tzu
You’re not trying to become an overnight success. Instead you’re steadily pushing the boundaries of your comfort levels and working towards an overall goal.
5. Take aggressive challenges to shock your system into becoming comfortable.
This is a rapid-fire approach where do a lot of something that makes you scared. You won’t have time to think about your fear. Instead you’ll be so busy pushing your boundaries that you forget about what used to make you scared.
6. Remain positive and recognize that you will have negative outcomes. It’s a natural part of the process.
Something that shakes your confidence and makes you feel scared. The trick is to not let anything prevent you from blasting past the point of comfort.
Don’t allow negativity to creep into your mind. Remind yourself that it’s going to happen. In fact, you should recognize that you’re actually being given feedback about how you can do something better.
7. Never stop expanding your comfort zone. Even if you arrive at your stated goal it’s important to keep pushing those boundaries.
Look for new challenges. Find stuff that you would never imagined you would do. Like teaching a class on the subject that once filled you fear. Or you could work on a related skill.