We all want to be comfortable right? Comfortable in our jobs, in our relationships, and how we look… Surely that’s the goal? But being stuck in a comfort zone can create an illusion of being comfortable. Let me explain…
Sarah has a good job. She works for a large firm, at middle management level. She’s great at her job. Her boss would be lost if she left. She gets on well with her work colleagues and she’s comfortable in the role.
The thing is Sarah knows that she’s capable of so much more. She’s been in the same role for 5 years. During that time her job hasn’t changed. She can do the job with her eyes closed. She doesn’t feel challenged. Every week is the same and she spends the week waiting for Friday.
Sarah has recently bought a house. It took awhile to save up for the deposit, but she did it and now she has a home that she loves. Sarah gets paid each month and earns enough to pay her bills with a bit left over for personal spending.
If you asked her, Sarah would tell you that she feels comfortable. Comfortable but not happy. She would love to try something new. She thinks about applying for another job in another company, working with different people, learning new skills. But the security of her current role prevents her from even applying. What if the grass isn’t greener? What if she gives up comfortable for something worse?
Sarah used to dream about running her own business. In her spare time she paints and used to have a dream of selling her art work. That dream has long. Giving up a regular job to run a business would be far too risky. What if she didn’t make enough money to pay her bills? Just thinking about it makes her feel very uncomfortable.
Sarah might not be happy but she’s comfortable, and that’s good enough isn’t it?
Life will only change when you become more committed to your dreams that you are to your comfort zones
So what advice would you give to Sarah? Should she stick with what she’s comfortable with or do something outside of her comfort zone? What would you do in her situation?
It is said that comfort zones are where your dreams go to die. Making do with the situation that you’re in means that you’re not pushing yourself to do anything different. Fear of unknown or the uncertainty of what a change might bring prevents you from taking a chance and making any changes.
So how do you push yourself out of your comfort zone when you feel so comfortable within it?
Take advantage of opportunities
Be aware of opportunities within your current circle, but yet are different to what you do already. Then take advantage of those situations:
- a new position at work
- a training course that you see advertised
- a friend asking you to come to a seminar with her
Volunteer for the new position, register for the training course and be a good friend and go along to the seminar with her. You never know where any of these decisions might lead.
Take advantage of these situations is the first step, just on the outer edge of your comfort zone. You’re not drastically changing anything. Just dipping your toe in the water.
Add to the life that you already have
If you’re comfortable in your current situation, you’re reluctant to change anything in case you make it worse. So instead of changing your situation, or removing something from it, what about adding to it?
Do something in addition to what you do already. Attend an evening course to up skill, start a new hobby, volunteer.. so you’re not changing your current situation, but you’re opening yourself up to new possibilities without rocking the boat that you’re already in.
Book a holiday
There’s nothing like travelling to open your eyes. Learning about another country, their culture, history, language, food, expands your appreciation on just how wonderful our world is. Travelling will definitely change your perspective on your current situation, and once you’ve started you’ll want to do more.
A comfort zone is comfortable. But nothing exciting lives there.
What do you do to push yourself outside your comfort zone? Do you find it an easy thing to do? What advise would you give Sarah. Leave a comment below.