Stepping out of your comfort zone can be intensely hard and end up wildly amazing. Sometimes we have to listen to what the universe is saying and pay attention to what you are doing already that you are unaware of.
Discomfort always means growth.
Our coaches believe this looks like:
When I think of comfort zones I think of a warm, fuzzy, comfy cocoon. Comfort zones are where we rest and restore. In our sleep our bodies use that time to store memories and grow. I think of comfort zones in the same way- they are wonderful! We can’t spend ALL of our time sleeping though. We need to spend time both resting and relaxing as well as living and experiencing.
It can be so hard to decide when to jump out of that comfort zone (or bed!) Setting an alarm can work. Some of us dread that alarm though. Anxiety can build; we might snooze or ignore it entirely. Maybe we aren’t ready for the alarm. In this case I recommend seizing the spontaneous opportunity! Sometimes life presents us with an opportunity to experience things just a bit differently. Maybe one morning you wake up before the alarm. Go with it. Dive in!
Wake up 5 minutes before your alarm? First instant thought is “NO!”?
Try saying Yes. 5 minutes of sleep would be nice- but it likely won’t make a vast improvement in your day. Say yes to waking up in a different way. Stretch, sit, drink water, dance, watch the trees from your window. It won’t likely shock your system and be the scary dive we think of when we imagine breaking out of our comfort zones, but SMALL a change to routine. Saying yes to what the universe puts in our path and making mishaps work FOR us instead of against us can be a way to get comfortable shaking things up! If choice paralysis is getting in your way- let the universe decide for you.
When I think about comfort zones, I always think about the growth that occurs when we start to understand our own. It seems that the common goal is always that of, “How do I push myself out of my comfort zone??” I love the idea of shooting for that, but I also think about how much value there is in understanding the WHY of our comfort zones first. What is it about your comfort zone that makes you keep resorting back to it? What’s the function of your comfort zone?
Learning about the why of your comfort zone is the key to helping to build habits, stepping stones, and alternatives to consider rather than going right back into it.
For me, my comfort zone is to feel a sense of control and belonging in my environment. I am quite social and extroverted, however, social settings are quite out of anyone’s control as you may know. It feels safe for me to be with those who I feel most comfortable and feeling safe provides the foundation for me to blossom out of my shell and allow my personality to come out. My go-to method of pushing myself out of my comfort zone, especially in environments where I am exposed to people I am not familiar with or in a super stimulating environment, is to go in with a goal or specific intention.
For example, meeting someone new? I’ll talk with myself ahead of time and allow myself permission to intentionally experience connection and the ability to relate and enjoy new energy. I tell myself to be interested rather than be interesting, AKA the format of getting to know a new person by asking curious questions and exploring what it is that is important or valuable to them. To me, the goal of being interested is far more easy to manage than trying to win someone over by rising to some self-made expectation. The point is- set some realistic goals for yourself that will push you to unknowingly beyond your comfort zone. That way, rather than expecting you’re going to walk into a party and be the center of attention or be unrealistically outgoing or majorly social, you can hone in on a goal of finding something in common with or to simply ask a curious question to someone new. Much better, right?!
Let’s also think about a more personal experience with growing out of your comfort zone. I am also a content creator so I am constantly getting in my own head about how *good* I am at it or if my content compares or stands out accordingly to the zillions of other creators out there. That being said, my comfort zone is to either hold back from posting things and second guessing about or feeling like I need to present the perfect post to prove myself. I succumb to my comfort zone because I’d rather not post anything at all than post something that isn’t well received. It’s a protective thing entirely.
I am definitely still on the journey, but I have been working so hard at trusting my own creative judgment and eye for fashion, styling, aesthetics, etc. I also have to consistently ground myself and remind myself that the WHY behind me participating in content creation is because I genuinely LOVE it, versus needing to present myself a certain way or look how other people do. So, posting something I am proud of is much more worthwhile than the attention or praise it gets. It’s hard sometimes to remember that because of the pressure I put on myself, so I am totally with you on the push, pull, and patience this journey requires!
As an introvert, I get that comfort zones can be tested pretty easily. I also see the importance of getting out of them. The good thing about venturing out of your comfort zone is learning how your limits can shift and you can always work to control as much as you can.
When you make the decision to try something new, develop an understanding of what the situation might look like and how you can prepare to make yourself the most comfortable. For example, if I’m going to an event and I’m not sure when it will end or what there will be to eat or drink, I will bring extra clothes that are comfortable and meet different temperature needs. I will also bring food and drinks that I know I like and can eat. If I’m uncomfortable with bringing the items in I will leave them in my car and get them as I need them IF I need them. While I don't always need these things, I'm always happy I've done what I can to make my self comfortable in a potentially uncomfortable situation. It also gives me time to sneak away for a quiet minute to regroup, if I need to.
So going out of your comfort zone may be uncomfortable but you can do everything in your power to make it as comfortable as possible.
Bloom Out Babes!