The fact is, if there is anything you want to change in your life, you’re going to have to push yourself out of your comfort zone.
This is scary for most of us. It is a comfort zone for a reason! However, no change can come from staying in the same place that got you to where you are!
We all have our reasons and justifications, or as I like to call them, excuses, for why we can’t make any changes. We defend our behaviors, justify our lack of action, or blame other people for why we are stuck. We complain that it’s too hard or give up because it takes too long.
There are lots of reasons why we get stuck in our rut and don’t make change, but the most common reason is fear.
Change can be scary. It can be overwhelming. It is unknown. It’s not always guaranteed to be what we expected or wanted. What if you fail?
Well, so what if you fail? In order to grow and make changes we have to be willing to risk “failure.” (Failure is in parentheses for a reason, which I will get to in a future post.)
You have to be willing to do the hard work. And the hard work is stepping outside of your comfort zone.
This is true for any area in your life that you want change; physical health, emotional health, relationships, work, everywhere.
Here’s the real kicker though: You can’t just step out one time. You have to be willing to continually push yourself. It’s really easy to get discouraged because you didn’t see the change you had hoped for right away. I know it’s hard, but I promise you: if you keep trying you will see change! (Keep in mind, we sometimes have to be open to shifting our expectations of what change should look like!)
Here are three steps to guide you in pushing out of your comfort zone and creating change:
1. Identify what it is exactly that you want to change. Where is the problem in your life that needs addressing and what do you want to achieve?
2. Once you’ve identified the core problem and identified the change you want to see, now you need to take action. Contrary action to be specific.
For example, if you want to improve your cardiovascular health, start running. If you’ve already been running, start running faster. Yes, it is hard. Yes, it would be much easier to continue strolling on the treadmill with a good read, but you need to start changing it up! If you want to move on from a past relationship, start taking contrary action. Stop checking their Facebook page, stop sending text messages, start reaching out to other people in your life, stop isolating, step out of your comfort zone!
If you want to improve your self-esteem, step outside of your comfort zone of negative self-talk and criticism and start giving yourself positive affirmations…even though it’s really uncomfortable and difficult to do!
3. And finally, keep it up! If you’ve committed to steps one and two, after some time this new action will no longer be a challenge and it will become your comfort zone.
You must keep pushing the boundaries of your comfort zone if you want to continue growing and changing.
In my very humble opinion, I don’t think any of us are meant to stop growing and changing. Growth is a lifelong journey that never ends. Give yourself permission to keep pushing yourself, keep opening yourself up a little more, and continue growing because unless you do that, you are just depriving yourself of all your potential!
As always, I LOVE hearing your feedback! Please leave a comment below and share with me your thoughts about stepping out of your comfort zone.