‘Comfort Zone’. We hear this term quite often and like many terms can become so over-used that they lose their impact. Some of you might even say that you are very happy in your ‘comfort zone’ and don’t want to move outside. That is perfectly fine, because to me, being happy is paramount and happiness for one person might be totally different to another person’s vision of happiness.
However, I have a question for you: ‘Is your ‘comfort zone’ too comfortable?’
In the past, I’ve associated the word ‘comfortable’ with boring, routine and rut. It is easy to fall into a pattern where each day we are just existing rather than living.
It isn’t until we explore the notion of looking outside our ‘comfort zone’ that we realise that perhaps there is merit, adventure and satisfaction in venturing outside occasionally.
Rather than saying ‘if I could’ why not look at trying to actually do it. Most of us have dreams or goals and sometimes they seem unattainable. Just think for a moment, think about the phrase, ‘If I could’. to me, the phrase places limitations on us rather than encouraging us. It is a wish which probably won’t happen.
Replacing ‘If I could’ with ‘I will try’ gives us a sense of purpose and will definitely take courage to step outside our comfort zone.
3 simple steps to change your ‘If I could’ with ‘I will try’
1. Define what you would do ‘if you could’
We can’t achieve what we don’t know. Define what you would like to do is the starting point. Be realistic and don’t try to change everything all at once. You don’t have to make huge changes immediately as long as you start the process. We can still achieve what we want by making smaller changes along the way. You will feel more confident with each small change you make.
2. Write it down
Write down what you would like to do starting the sentence with ‘If I could’….. Then determine what you need to do to achieve it. You might need to make some changes in your life. You might need a budget if you want to travel but can’t afford it at the moment.
Once you have your thoughts written down, stick it in a place where you will see it everyday as a reminder to keep moving forward.
3. Be open to change and challenge
By accepting the ‘I will try’ attitude you will be more open to making changes and accepting the challenge of trying new things. Challenge doesn’t have to be huge. A challenge to step out of your comfy comfort zone might be as simple as changing up your morning routine, which can be harder than we think.
Putting yourself out there to try new things will mix life up a little and bring back the enthusiasm for life that can happen when we are just going through the motions of living.
What is one thing you would do ‘if you could’ TODAY?
What did I do to step out of my comfort zone in July?
For the last three months, I’ve been training for a long run with my Saturday Sisters. Last year, before my 60th birthday I had the goal to run the 35km Bloody Long Walk. Unfortunately, due to a bout of pleurisy I was unable to complete more than 25km. I had to listen to my body and stop. I wasn’t devastated but I was disappointed. This year, I trained hard, took up the challenge and crossed the finish line.
I also ran the 5,000 steps ‘Stadium Stomp’ which again challenged me. It was wonderful to see so many people giving it a go either walking or running.
Yes it was hard, yes I wondered why I was doing it at times, but I stepped out of my comfort zone and achieved my goal.
Stepping Out of My Comfort Zone is a monthly idea from my friend Leslie at Once Upon A Time, Happily Ever After. Leslie described her new series as:
My vision for this series is to push myself out of my comfort zone so that I begin doing things that I have until now been scared or uncomfortable to try. Nothing illegal – ha – or too crazy!
and she has invited others to take this challenge with her. You can read about what others did to step out of their comfort zone through the link up at the end of this post.