Five things that happen after you step out of your comfort zone
By: Angela Hoyos
You know that incessant little voice inside of your head? The one that says ‘no, you can’t do it; it’ll never work, and just give up already?’ That’s your comfort zone and it’s holding you back from following your dreams.
In scientific terms, this nagging voice is related to your anxiety levels.
Think about it like this, when you’re commuting to work, stopping by your favorite coffee shop or meeting up with friends, all of these activities are a part of your everyday routine; if you were to suddenly break this pattern your mind will likely go into panic mode making you feel like any sort of change will kill you.
So you stay comfortable, you keep what you know close and completely reject the possibility of stepping out of your comfort zone.
It’s difficult, I get it. I’ve battled with this most of my life and for a long time I let my insecurities win, but at some point you wake up and realize that you’re miserable. You have to ask yourself, am I going to let my fear define me, or am I going to fight for a life I deserve?
No matter how many times your friends and family members call you out on being safe and scared all of the time the only person who can motivate you to step out of your comfort zone is you.
My ‘aha’ moment came a few days after I realized I wasn’t going to graduate with my university class. I had worked so hard to get into the Journalism program of my dreams but I was on the verge of throwing it all away because I’d been so scared to move forward.
So I fought and was soon enlightened with this revelation: I could do anything I set my mind to.
Once I started believing in myself I felt this immense sense of accomplishment, confidence and hope. For the first time in my life I believed in myself, and the feeling was better than any high imaginable.
Looking back on it now, I can’t believe how simple it was to just change my way of thinking. I realize that I’ve missed out on so many opportunities but I’m happy I didn’t let my own state of mind sabotage my happiness.
Trust me, when you realize you have the power to change the way you think, you’ll change the trajectory of your future and so, here are the magical things that happen when you step out of your comfort zone:
1. Taking risks become less daunting
The hardest part about breaking out of your comfort zone is pushing past the fear. But once you start getting into the habit of taking these risks you realize that the things that once scared you, won’t hurt you. You then train yourself to embrace change and that initial discomfort will become more normal.
2. You’ll feel happier
There’s no greater sense of satisfaction than proving yourself wrong. When you step out of your comfort zone you’ll be praising yourself for actually going through with something that made you so anxious. The hardest part is starting and continuing with the change but if you keep going, as hard as it may feel in the beginning, your overall state of mind will be a happy one.
3. Your level of creativity will grow
When you seek out new experiences, ideas and skills, you’ll push yourself to think in a way that challenges your conventional thought process. We have this habit of agreeing with things we already know but when your mind is introduced to a new environment, you’ll be able to brainstorm and resolve old problems in a new way.
4. You become more productive
Let’s be honest, your comfort zone can make you lose your drive, well it did for me at least, so instead of avoiding new things, push your boundaries. We fall into this trap where we’re comfortable with just doing the minimum to get by and make all of these excuses for refusing to change our routines. When you take that first leap not only are you silencing all of those negative thoughts, but you’re also fulfilling your dreams and finding smarter ways to accomplish them.
5. Opportunities will be knocking at your door
When you step out of that negative state of mind, you’ll start taking advantage of all of the opportunities at your disposal. Remember you have to go after what you want and once your colleagues, managers or professors take note of your efforts, who knows what exciting changes will come your way.
Life is all about progression. No one says you have to jump head first, but just make the conscious decision to change your norm. Follow your dreams, work towards your goals and keep fighting.
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