How to get out of your comfort zone: the complete guide
In this article, you will discover useful tips to get out of your comfort zone, improve the quality of your life, achieve your goals and grow professionally and personally.
With the tailored support offered by a life coach, you will be able to overcome your blockages and reach your professional and personal goals more quickly.
Before going to our tips, it is important to define what the comfort zone is.
What is the comfort zone?
Comfort zone represents all the situations and habits that reassure you.
What are the benefits of your comfort zone?
When you are within your comfort zone, you achieve what you want with the least possible effort and your results and difficulties are predictable because you operate based on your habits. You have little conscious effort to make. In this modality, you are able to easily protect both self-esteem and self-confidence. You proceed in a situation of great balance with little or no stress.
What are disadvantages of being in comfort zone?
Comfort Zone can become problematic if it becomes your only modality. In this situation, you get stuck in your automatic thinking and behavioral patterns and live below your true potential.
What are the origins of the comfort zone?
The Comfort Zone is created from what we experience in our private and professional lives. From these experiences, each of us gives different meanings to events. Sometimes this meaning is influenced by the beliefs of those around us or our culture of origin. In other cases, it is our own beliefs that are at the origin of our choices. What is essential is the meaning that will influence our actions and therefore the results we obtain.
The comfort zone can then become a system that limits your expansion and fulfillment at work and in your private life.
The development zone
Now that you’ve discovered the basic concepts of the comfort zone, I suggest you move on to tips on how to take advantage of all the benefits offered by your comfort zone while developing what I define here as a development zone.
The development zone represents everything beyond the comfort zone.
It is by developing a better knowledge of yourself and understanding your own functioning that you will be able to overcome the fear of taking action and live the life that really suits you.
Here are my tips to get out of your comfort zone:
1 – Search for your innate talents
2 – Adapt your actions to your own personality
3 – Use the power of game
4 – Reinforce self-confidence
5 – Broaden your vision of the world
6 – Accept imperfection
7 – Update your personal and professional circle
8 – Change your habits
9 – Overcome your procrastination
1 – Search for your innate talents
You have natural talents, facilities that you inherited when you came into the world, specificities that characterize you and make you the unique person that you are.
The problem is that you are not aware of most of your abilities and predispositions.
Contrary to what other people say, getting out of your comfort zone should not be a painful experience at all costs.
For this reason, my first piece of advice is more of a personal search that you need to conduct in order to understand what your innate talents are.
In order to do so, you will start from what you are able to achieve easily and better than most people in your personal or professional environment.
Then, you will start testing using your same skills in different situations and contexts.
And then, you will begin to engage in new and unusual situations to become aware of the full extent of your potential.
You will have to make this behavior a real habit that will allow you to create a new conception of your personality.
Your inner and outer journey will be an opportunity to make peace with your past in order to free yourself from the limitations you have created and with those to which you have more or less consciously adhered.
It is a journey around your truest and deepest identity that you need to take in order to connect with the inner energy that lives within you and makes everything possible.
If you are looking for an effective way to discover your natural talents, I invite you to read the article on how to know your strengths and weaknesses and turn them to your advantage.
Now that you have learned the importance of being aware of your natural talents, my next piece of advice is to adapt your actions to your personality.
2 – Adapt your actions to your personality
You’ve already read in other comfort zone articles about the idea that taking small steps with small, regular actions will make it easier for you to get out of your comfort zone. This isn’t always true because it all depends on your personality.
Going by mini-objectives can work if you’re a rather shy or introverted person. On the other hand, if you’re extroverted or more generally someone who likes a challenge, this strategy may not work.
If you want to get out of your comfort zone, you will need to plan and execute more actions. You will need to create a sense of urgency, use a to-do list, constantly measure your progress, and give yourself regular challenges and rewards to move forward.
On the other hand, don’t fall into the trap of putting too much pressure on yourself as this can have negative consequences in terms of stress, well-being and efficiency.
In summary, take the time to understand your own functioning before choosing the strategy that will allow you to understand how to get out of your comfort zone.
Now that you have learned the importance of adapting your actions to your personality, my next piece of advice is to use the power of the game.
3 – Use the power of game
What if it’s all one big game?
A very effective way to get out of your comfort zone is to switch to game mode.
When you play, you become like a child again for a few moments and allow yourself to explore new paths of your personality.
In game mode, the risks are lower because what counts is being in the experience and therefore in the present moment.
You are less preoccupied with the memories of your past, the fears of your future and the results you want to achieve.
It is in this space, at the same time virtual and real, that you allow yourself to get out of your routines and become capable of reinventing yourself.
The game allows you to get out of the stereotypical version you have believed in until now and you become able to create new characters and stories.
These new scenarios taking place in a protected environment are able to give life to a creative power that will produce the next version of yourself; a healthier and freer version more in line with your needs, values and life goals.
Now that you have learned the importance of using the power of play, my next piece of advice is to reinforce self-confidence.
4 – Reinforce self-confidence and self-esteem
Without a sufficient dose of self-confidence, you won’t be able to step outside your comfort zone and create the life you dream of.
As revealed by Kalischuk & Thorpe (2002), students with high self-esteem are more willing to step out of their comfort zone and contribute creative ideas.
To go further on the topic of self-confidence, I suggest you read the article how to reinforce self-confidence.
But in this article, I would nevertheless like to share with you an effective way to boost your self-confidence, which consists in becoming aware of your progress.
The improvements you make every day, especially the smallest ones, are the ones you miss the most.
However, they are also the same ones that allow you to grow as a human being and as a professional.
In short, it is by getting into the habits of:
- perceiving your progress
- taking credit for it
- valuing your accomplishments
that you will be able to effectively strengthen your self-confidence.
You will become capable of dealing with all kinds of disappointment and demotivation.
By staying focused on what is up to you, you will always be in control of your emotions, your thoughts, your actions, your results and therefore your ultimate destiny.
If you need to boost or strengthen your motivation, I invite you to read the article how to motivate yourself: 7 easy tips to implement.
Now that you have understood the importance of strengthening your self-confidence, my next piece of advice is to broaden your vision of the world.
5 – Broaden your worldview
Getting out of your comfort zone requires changing the way you think. One way to do this is to get new information from people who have already achieved the result you are looking for.
You may decide to attend a training session, a conference, buy a book, or spend time with people who inspire you to progress.
One extremely effective way is to meet new people on a regular basis.
The most important thing is to borrow new worldviews, new beliefs, new skills, and therefore new ways of thinking from others.
If you feel blocked because of your beliefs, I invite you to read the article on how to overcome limiting beliefs.
You will see that by exposing yourself to new information that is very different from what usually governs your behavior, you will be able to begin to move out of your comfort zone and grow your developmental zone.
Now that you have understood the importance of broadening your worldview, my next piece of advice is to accept imperfection.
6 – Accept imperfection
In some cases, the worst enemy of your personal and professional development is perfectionism.
If every time you try to undertake something new, you take one step forward and two steps backward for fear of the end result, then you need to learn how to better manage imperfection.
An effective way to do this is to become more caring with yourself, especially as the new situation you are preparing to face is difficult for you.
To be caring, pay particular attention to your internal dialogue, i.e., how you communicate with yourself before, during and after you take a given action.
Another effective strategy to accept imperfection, and therefore the fact that your actions are not immediately up to your expectations, is to focus on the end result you want to achieve at all costs.
If you are having difficulty taking action, I advise you to read this article on how to overcome the fear of taking action.
Now that you have learned the importance of accepting imperfection, my next piece of advice is to update your personal and professional circles.
7 – Update your personal and professional circles
The people you spend most of your time with have a significant impact on the way you think, the emotions you feel, the actions you agree to take, and therefore the results you get.
At the same time, you influence others – sometimes positively, sometimes negatively.
Over the years, you change, even if you are rarely aware of it, and you become someone else.
You become an updated version of the individual you used to be.
Over time, a strong variation will occur between the different versions of yourself.
As you change, others change too, sometimes for better and sometimes for worse. Changes can be so different that at some point you may find yourself facing strangers.
The people you used to like to spend time with may not seem as pleasant to you anymore.
At the same time, you feel inspired or even attracted to new personalities who seem closer, more in line with the new version of yourself.
In some cases, you will be able to adapt to these new situations. But in other cases, you will need to separate yourself from certain people who are no longer beneficial to your personal or professional development.
Now that you have learned the importance of updating your personal and professional environment, my next piece of advice is to change your habits.
8 – Change your habits
Getting out of your comfort zone requires getting out of your habits. These habits are procedures that act unconsciously and therefore automatically, leading you to constantly repeat the same behavioral patterns.
These habits are often advantageous in the sense that they allow you to save time, optimize your mental resources and make your life easier.
The problem occurs when your behavioral routines no longer work to your advantage and limit you.
When your habits are serving you, you need to change them to regain full control of your life.
To do this, you will need to learn how to manage discomfort in the short term for greater long-term growth and success.
An effective way to create new habits is to rely on:
- the power of contextual factors, that is, what you put in place to facilitate the achievement of a new behavior.
- implementation intentions, i.e., instructions such as if…then, for example, if I realize that I am afraid to step out of my comfort zone then I take a new action despite the fear
- mental contrast, the process of imagining everything that might prevent you from getting out of your comfort zone and defining in advance a few solutions to be followed to get there.
By establishing better habits, you will be able to become more disciplined and reach your goals more easily.
Now that you have learned the importance of changing your habits, my next piece of advice is to move beyond procrastination.
9 – Overcome your procrastination
An extremely effective way to get out of your comfort zone is to start from what you are procrastinating all the time with the goal of getting out of procrastination.
When you procrastinate, you decide to postpone a number of tasks and therefore actions for very different reasons.
If you have procrastination problems, I invite you to discover the articles: 10 extraordinary tips to stop procrastinating and 11 tips to fight procrastination at work and at home.
You can procrastinate something because of fear.
You can’t get out of your comfort zone if you don’t become aware of your fears and decide to take action to overcome them.
The fears that limit you can be very different, among the most common fears are fear of judgment, fear of failure, fear of success, etc.
If you find yourself in a situation of personal or professional failure, I invite you to discover the article how to bounce back after a failure: 8 tips for a new life.
But procrastination can also be linked to a lack of clarity about your priorities and therefore about what motivates you the most. In other cases, procrastination may be related to a conflict of values.
Procrastination may also be related to unproductive habits or a lifestyle that reduces your physical and mental energies.
Conclusion on how to get out of your comfort zone
In this article, I have presented 9 tips on how to get out of your comfort zone. By following these tips, you will be able to expand your comfort zone and thus enjoy your full potential.