It Is Your Comfort Zone, Embrace It
You can’t swing a dead cat without hitting some speaker who is encouraging you to get out of your comfort zone.
You know, that was great phrase when it first came on the scene. It applied mostly to athletes and people who were doing strength and endurance training. The phrase encouraged them to push themselves to the point of pain. By pushing themselves physically they built muscle and increased endurance. That was great for training.
I Like My Comfort Zone
Good advice if you are involved in a physical event. Dumb advice if you are involved in anything else.
You see, when you are outside your comfort zone, you are, well … uncomfortable. And when you are uncomfortable you do not perform at your peak potential.
Many speakers have lost sight of the fact that being outside your comfort zone is simply a metaphor. It has just become a catch phrase and is becoming meaningless.
What a person needs to do in order to improve their performance is expand their comfort zone. They need to develop an enlarged zone of optimum performance. An optimum performance zone is where you function at your best. It is where all the things you do well reside. those things do not reside outside your comfort zone.
Don’t Be Uncomfortable
Nobody can function for long periods outside their comfort zone. It does not work. How productive are you when your feet are outside of their comfort zone? Or how do you perform when you are nervous and upset?
Fear quickly takes over. However, if an individual will work to expand the comfort zone by trying new things, slowly and methodically, the payoff follows. You expand your comfort zone by taking on new challenges in an orderly way.
When you do, your confidence level increases and you are then willing to accept a new challenge. All the while the new things you have accomplished are now in your comfort zone, not outside of it.
So I Climbed a Mountain, Now What?
Sure, climbing a mountain may be outside most people’s comfort zone. But what real good is that in your day-to-day life? Does that experience make you a more productive person in your career? Probably not.
If you really want to develop your confidence start by looking around you at the things you see as daily challenges. Pick one and address it.
I can’t tell you what it is. We all have challenges in our lives. Meeting those challenges help us grow. We realize that the main challenge was in our own mind. We created a doubt or uncertainty about a situation, event, person, place or thing and then determined it was too hard or too distasteful.
Re-frame your thoughts. Take on a challenge today. Remember that taking on a challenge is an accomplishment in and of itself. You don’t have to have great success at the challenge. You just have to understand you are a better person for trying.
Change your way of thinking. Start thinking about your optimal performance zone. It will help you when you get to that decision point about trying something new and different.