Getting out of your comfort zone is trending right now, but the advice out there doesn’t always lead to success.
So how do you practice stepping out of your comfort zone the right way that builds your confidence instead of tearing you down?
Let’s find out.
“HOW DO YOU GET OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE, AND IS THERE A RIGHT WAY TO DO IT?”
Today, I’m answering a question from Lauren.
She asked about my thoughts on getting out of my comfort zone and if there was a right way to do it — a way that actually works?
Well, I have to share that I feel like my whole life has been pushing myself out of my comfort zone.
To me, getting out of your comfort zone fundamentally means challenging yourself, trying something new, and being willing to learn new things.
It involves risk and a fear of failure, requiring confidence to take that first step.
You have to be READY to get out of your comfort zone. But in the right way.
Don’t fall into the trap of needing the perfect plan.
I’ve fallen into this trap before and often see others in it.
WE ARE WAITING TOO LONG TO BE READY.
We equate being ready with having the perfect plan, the perfect product, or the perfect time.
The truth is — There will NEVER be a perfect time, and you will NEVER be able to create the perfect plan.
You have to get out there and try something.
Then you iterate your plans based on what you see and experience.
So, if you are sitting and waiting, then it’s probably a sign that you need to do some inner mindset work to figure out what’s really holding you back.
If you continue waiting for that perfect time to step outside your comfort zone, you will wait forever.
TIP #1: KNOW WHAT YOUR COMFORT ZONE IS
The right way of getting outside your comfort zone begins with knowing what your comfort zone is.
I find it amazing that nobody really talks about this when we see posts all over social media and the internet saying, “Go out there and just do it!”
That’s great, but it’s not always that simple.
If your life is in a constant state of stress and challenge, stepping outside of your comfort zone isn’t going to work very well because you will drain yourself to zero.
So before you decide to get out of your comfort zone, spend some time IN your comfort zone.
Learn what it feels like to be in that space, to relax, to recharge, and slow down.
Understand what gives you peace and what helps you fill your cup again to prepare for that inevitable moment when you drain it.
Because between those periods of pushing yourself, there have to be periods of rest and recharge.
You need to know yourself inside out, and you need to know what you can lean into in those moments when your energy is depleted.
TIP #2: KNOW WHY YOU WANT TO GET OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE
What does it mean to be ready to get out of your comfort zone?
It doesn’t mean having the perfect plan in place because that’s not possible without first getting out there and getting real-world feedback.
What being ready really means is knowing WHY you want to do whatever you want.
Know what you want to learn or achieve in the process and what you’re willing to experience during that process, and be ready for whatever outcome comes your way.
Whenever you push yourself, there’s a high chance things aren’t going to go as planned.
You might be able to think of one, five, or ten ways things might go, and let me tell you, the universe has millions of ways things can turn out.
So when you try something you haven’t tried before, be prepared for the fact that things will likely go in a way you didn’t expect or plan.
You have to be willing to learn.
You need to be willing to accept every possible outcome.
Going into an experience with a fixed, all-or-nothing mindset will only hurt you.
Instead, practice getting out of your comfort zone with an open mind and a willingness to learn.
Because no matter the outcome, you will learn something.
But if you don’t take the leap at all, you won’t give yourself the opportunity to grow and expand as a human being.
For example, I was moving to the United States from Ukraine. I had no idea what I was getting myself into. I didn’t know anybody, and there was no way I could come up with a detailed plan about how I wanted things to unfold.
But I was excited about the opportunity to step outside my comfort zone.
I was excited about the change and the whole world of possibilities unfolding in front of me.
This is what getting out of your comfort zone is.
Opening your mind to the endless world of possibilities that you weren’t noticing before, but now you’re willing to see and embrace it, to challenge yourself and see what happens.
If it’s easy, perfect!
If it’s not, that’s great too. Those struggles will help you learn because the only way for us to grow as human beings is to challenge ourselves and continue lifting that bar higher and higher.
But not by much.
There are two common mistakes people make when getting out of their comfort zones.
MISTAKE #1: STAYING FLAT
Some people just stay flat because they are so afraid of taking that leap.
They’ll continue doing things they’ve mastered over and over again, even if those things aren’t bettering their life because it is their comfort zone. It’s what safety looks like to them. It’s easy and known.
When you stay flat, there’s no risk or fear. But there’s also no excitement or thrill.
It’s all predictable, and you know exactly what will happen.
MISTAKE #2: SETTING THE BAR TOO HIGH, TOO FAST
Some people push the bar too high too fast, and they’re not ready for that jump.
As a result, these risk-takers fail, and it hurts. In fact, it hurts so much, they avoid getting outside their comfort zone at all because they don’t want to repeat the experience.
The best way to step out of your comfort zone is gradually.
Slowly raise the bar. Don’t keep it flat, but don’t raise it too fast.
You want to approach getting out of your comfort zone step-by-step. Each step should challenge you, but you should always be confident you can do it.
Before you know it, you’ll be at the top of a mountain that you may have never climbed if you saw the size of the mountain at the start.
I’ve climbed that mountain… Literally.
A few years ago, my husband and I went on a hike on the highest mountain in Joshua Tree.
We knew it was the tallest, but we didn’t know much else about it.
The trail didn’t look scary, though. The trees were inviting, and the trail was nice, so we started walking.
Of course, it got steeper, but we could only see the trees around us and the trail right in front of us until the next turn.
You couldn’t see the summit.
Two hours later, a view unfolded before us. We had reached the summit and couldn’t believe how high we had climbed.
If we’d seen how high it was from the parking lot, we might not have hiked it.
But because we took it step-by-step, turn-by-turn, it was achievable. It wasn’t too intimidating.
If you set the bar too high too fast when stepping outside your comfort zone, you’ll likely feel intimidated, overwhelmed, and in over your head.
But when you take it step-by-step, suddenly, you’ve made it to and beyond your destination.
Get 1% Better Every Day
You don’t have to become 100% better every day or every year.
All you need is to become 1% better every day.
Imagine how much better you’ll be in a year with that mindset!
My challenge and question for you today is:
WHAT IS THAT THING YOU CAN DO TODAY TO BECOME 1% BETTER?
Only one. I don’t need five — just one.
What is it?
Think about it and do it. When you wake up tomorrow morning, ask yourself this question again. Then in a month, look back and see how far you’ve come.
You’ll be amazed!
Do you have a question, a topic, or a challenge that you would like me to address in future episodes of The Spark Your Life Podcast? It’s easy – simply DM me on Instagram, or submit this 1-question form! I cannot wait to support you on your journey!