As humans, we naturally seek comfort and security in our daily lives. We prefer routines and familiar environments that make us feel safe and secure. However, staying within our comfort zone can limit our potential and prevent us from experiencing new opportunities and growth. Stepping out of our comfort zone and trying new things can be intimidating, but it can also lead to personal and professional development, new connections, and a more fulfilling life.
It can be a scary thought, but it's worth exploring. Here are some potential benefits of stepping out of your comfort zone:
- Personal Growth: When we challenge ourselves to try new things, we inevitably learn and grow. We discover new skills and talents, develop resilience and problem-solving abilities, and build confidence in our ability to face new challenges. This personal growth can translate to all areas of our lives, including our relationships, career, and personal development.
- Increased Creativity: Trying new things stimulates our brains and can increase our creativity. When we step outside our comfort zone, we are forced to think in new ways. If we create a habit of stepping outside our comfort zone, a process called neuroplasticity actually creates new neuropathways in our brain to support new habits. This helps us identify innovative solutions to old problems and come up with fresh ideas for new or existing projects.
- New Connections: Trying new things can also lead to new connections and relationships. When we put ourselves out there and try new activities or attend new events, we have the opportunity to meet new people and expand our social circle. These new connections can lead to new opportunities and experiences that we might not have otherwise discovered.
- Overcoming Fear: Trying new things can be scary, but it can also help us overcome our fears. When we challenge ourselves to step out of our comfort zone, we are forced to confront our fears and push past them. This can be a powerful experience that can give us the courage to tackle other challenges in our lives. Remember to breathe. Deep breaths work well. Heart breathing works even better. I've heard it said (and I've experienced this for myself when leaning into new experiences), fear and anxiety is excitement without the breath.
- Increased Confidence and Self-esteem: Finally, stepping out of our comfort zone and trying new things can lead to increased confidence. When we push ourselves to try new things and succeed, we build confidence in our abilities and our ability to face new challenges and our self-esteem increases. This can have a positive impact on all areas of our lives.
Of course, stepping out of our comfort zone isn't always easy. It can be scary, uncomfortable, and perhaps even painful at times. However, the benefits of trying new things far outweigh the temporary discomfort. Here are some tips for challenging yourself to step out of your comfort zone:
- Start Small: Just lean into whatever your big goal might be or whatever new thing you'd like to try. You don't have to take on huge challenges all at once. Start with baby steps. Try small things that make you slightly uncomfortable, such as trying a new food or taking a different route to work. If you get stuck, ask a friend to join you until you build up your "lean into it" muscle. Build up to bigger challenges over time.
- Embrace Failure: Trying new things often involves some degree of failure. Embrace failure as a learning opportunity and a necessary step on the path to success. This is about progress, not perfection.
- Surround Yourself with Support: Having a support system can make stepping out of your comfort zone feel less scary. Surround yourself with friends, family, or a coach who can offer encouragement and support as you take on new challenges. Share your big dream or goal with them and invite them to celebrate your small wins along the way.
- Focus on the Benefits: When you're feeling scared or uncomfortable, remind yourself of the potential benefits of stepping out of your comfort zone. Focus on the personal growth, new connections, and increased confidence that can come from trying new things.
- Keep a Victory Log: Dedicate a small notebook to jot down your victories, no matter how small. Trust me that the more you step out of your comfort zone, the more you'll experience what I call the magical zone. The space where our vibration rises and we can more easily interact with universal flow. Over time, you can look back over the small victories and celebrate your progress as you live the new life you've created along the way.
So what kind of new things should we try? The possibilities are endless, but here are some ideas to get started:
- Travel to a New Destination: Traveling to a new destination can be an incredibly enriching experience. It exposes us to new cultures, languages, and perspectives, and allows us to step outside our familiar routines and environments. Keep in mind this can be as simple as changing the route you usually take to the grocery store or as big as embarking on a month long safari and trekking adventure in Tanzania, East Africa and Mount Kilimanjaro.
- Learn a New Skill: Learning a new skill can be both challenging and rewarding. It can expand our knowledge base and open up new opportunities for personal and professional development. (I recently took a deep dive into developing a new skill learning how to use artificial intelligence, specifically ChatGPT to help me streamline routine tasks in my business to free up more time to enjoy life! I was resistant at first, but a friend challenged me to join her and it actually turned what we learned into a course to help others and it into a side income stream for us! And it's been so much fun doing it together!)
- Try a New Hobby: Trying a new hobby can be a fun and enjoyable way to step out of our comfort zone. It can introduce us to new activities, interests, and communities, and provide a break from our usual routines.
- Attend a Networking Event: Attending a networking event can be intimidating, but it can also lead to new connections and opportunities. It provides a chance to meet new people, share ideas, and expand our personal and professional network.
- Take on a New Responsibility: Taking on a new responsibility, such as leading a project at work or volunteering for a new organization, can be a great way to challenge ourselves and build new skills.
Ultimately, the key to stepping out of our comfort zone is to be open to new experiences and willing to take risks. We may not always succeed, but the act of trying new things can lead to personal growth and a more fulfilling life.
Challenging yourself to step out and live outside of your comfort zone can lead to personal and professional growth, increased creativity, new connections, and increased confidence. While it can be scary at first, it's well worth it in the long run! By taking small steps, embracing failure, surrounding ourselves with support, and focusing on the benefits, we can make stepping out of our comfort zone feel more manageable and less intimidating. If we commit ourselves to feeling the fear but stepping out of our comfort zone anyway, before we know it, we have created a life with more joy, happiness and fulfillment than we ever knew was possible.
So what new thing will you try today?