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Humans can be pretty funny at times. We love routine; doing the same thing over and over again, day in and day out. We believe this is safer, much predictable, and yet it lures us into complacency. When the train shows up at the same time every morning in the same place, you know everything is okay. You can settle into a “normal day groove”, get your work done and go about your life smoothly, unbothered. In short, you love being comfortable (maybe a bit over comfortable). What happens when you get confronted with things to do to get out of your comfort zone? You panic!
Your “comfort zone,” however, can become incubators of motionlessness. While we might feel easy planning our days around habitual behaviour, it is easy to fall into the trap of stagnancy (staying the same and never changing).
Especially for entrepreneurs, “not trying out new things” is our old time enemy. If things aren’t changing (positively or negatively), we aren’t growing. If we and our personal businesses aren’t growing, we will quickly become irrelevant in the speed of light.
To grow personally and professionally, we are required to take strategic steps out of our comfort zones, even if only for a short period of time.
Why should I try something new?
Doing things that make you quite uncomfortable (or stressful) can teach you more about yourself, your potential and your personality.
Here are a few things that can help you step out of your comfort zone and improve your life and business in the process:
- Don’t dive into the deep end (until you’re ready).
Taking a step or many steps outside of your comfort zone is like hell and can be quite uncomfortable especially to people who are so used to it. Phoning a potential client or CEO of a major corporation can be scary no doubt. But by doing so, however, you expose yourself and your great business to new opportunities that you would never have thought possible. Though Hollywood is laced with “big break” stories, the truth is “opportunity presents itself to those who go looking for it”.
Comfort zones are just as they sound, “very comfortable”. They zone is so full of things that make us feel safe, secure and are devoid of things that we don’t want and fear. But we can’t experience true progress or as a businessman, land that big client if we don’t reach out and risk rejection, which almost everyone fears. Rejection itself is part of what leaving our comfort zone interesting.
2. Try Public speaking
We carried out a survey in Ekiti State University and found out from about 100 students that their worst fear is “public speaking”. This is quite common to most people, and yet, you cannot present your product to a room full of a thousand people any other way than speaking to them about your products. You can’t become a thought leader without sharing your thoughts with the world and risking positive or negative criticism.
Most things that we’re afraid of — rejection, criticism, failure — are not as terrible as we make them out to be. We’ve all been rejected and criticized at some point in our lives, and we’ve all failed at one time or another (it’s only natural to fail once in a while). This is yet another approach to things to do to get out of your comfort zone.
- Get out of your own way.
A lot of obstacles that we have to overcome in moving our business to the next level are our usually our own. It’s not Jeff Bezos who’s rejecting us or our offer; it’s we who talk ourselves out of calling him. Yes, he may reject our offer, but we’ll never know unless we step out of our comfort zone and initiate the call. Damn the consequences and “make that call today!”
If by chance, your business idol is attending the same event as you, don’t talk yourself out of introducing yourself. Create and grow the connection between you two. Or even better, if you know ahead of time she will be at that event, plan what you will say to get and maintain his/her attention full time. Do not make the mistake of killing yourself with fear and weighing your thought box with too much nervousness.
- Repetition, repetition, repetition.
Make conscious efforts every day to step out of your comfort zone and confront your fears reach time. Every time you step a little outside of your comfort zone, you are training yourself to be comfortable with discomfort( which is a good thing; it means that you can survive regardless of where you find yourself), much in the same way as you train a muscle to grow additionally bulk at the gym.
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