Comfort Zone

Step out of your story.

What the heck

There´s another one. I spot it instantly as he walks into the hall. His face and body language scream:´I´m not in the mood´….definitely.

Could be a ton of reasons off course. Perhaps he´s just tired. Tired because getting up very early this morning to get here on time. Meeting new colleagues, hear all kind of business talk, generate new idea´s….so he´s exhausted. I understand.

But I see something else. A kind of anxiety, perhaps even fear. I wonder if questions like this wonder round his mind: ´what´s gone happen here, what do they expect from me´.

Where are you afraid of?
You’ve heard people say you need to get out of your comfort zone, right? You need to stretch yourself, they say. It’ll be good for you. Everyone seems to agree with this idea, but what do we actually know about the comfort zone? Aside from the fact that this idea seems to be true:

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Comfort Zone
The most scientific explanation of what a comfort zone is relates it to anxiety levels. Your comfort zone is any type of behavior that keeps you at a steadily low anxiety level. Imagine something you do all the time, like cooking dinner or commuting to work, or watching TV.

Simply, your comfort zone is a behavioral space where your activities and behaviors fit a routine and pattern that minimizes stress and risk. It provides a state of mental security. You benefit in obvious ways: regular happiness, low anxiety, and reduced stress.

Although people often refer to ‘getting outside your comfort zone’ in terms of trying new things, anything that raises your anxiety levels can be counted as being outside that zone. If commuting to work makes you anxious because the traffic is bad or you don’t like being on a train full of people, for instance, you’re not going to be comfortable in that situation.

So, now you are here
Getting stuck in a routine is easy to do. After all, we’re creatures of habit. We eat the same breakfast every morning, order the same coffee at Starbucks and get to work at the same time.

But for entrepreneurs, playing it safe could be curtailing business success. When’s the last time you stepped out of your comfort zone and took on a new challenge? Breaking your own mold can only make you stronger and more confident to reach higher levels in your professional and personal life.

Make a fool out of yourself
One of the biggest things that holds many of us back is our fear of what people think. After all, you don’t want people to think you’re weird or rude or creepy or obnoxious or annoying, do you?

But wait — think about the most lovable, magnetic people you’ve come across in your life. Odds are, they weren’t the meek, agreeable people who are reliably pleasant to be around. They were the people who were crazy and charming. People who blurted out silly, maybe inappropriate things, or who made huge, slap-your-forehead mistakes, or who were over the top most of the time, but others forgave them for being less than perfect and in fact, liked them for it.

So shatter your concern for what people think of you. You’re allowed to be less than perfect, and you may find that people like you more for it, because it makes you a more exciting person to be around. Get laughed at, laugh with ‘em. Do something you normally wouldn’t do for fear of looking like an idiot. Be that idiot. You’ll be fine.

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The point of stepping out of your comfort zone is to embrace new experiences and to get to that state of optimal anxiety in a controlled, managed way, not to stress yourself out. Take time to reflect on your experiences so you can reap the benefits and apply them to your day to day activities. Then do something else interesting and new. Make it a habit if you can. Try something new every week, or every month.

So, step out of your story, pick up the drum, beat the odds  and have a nice day,

Patrick, CEO Drum Cafe
Tips:

Find or date someone crazy. When you discover that person who brings out the

  • adventurous side from within you, it will help to encourage your development tremendously.
  • Spontaneity is a great contrast to someone like yourself who may not be comfortable or familiar with stepping out of your comfort zone often.
  • If you’re having a hard time stepping out of your comfort zone, start small and build your way up. But keep building your way up.
  • Be yourself. Never try to be someone that you’re not, be unique. You’ll live a much happier life doing this. Also this will make it so that you may only live once, but if you do it right once is enough. And everyone else is already taken. Which is good and everyone one (as long as they’re good) is significant and no one is more important than the next.
  • Be as diverse as possible. Sometimes getting out of your comfort zone can require lot of time. Don’t panic, be patient and always believe that nothing is impossible.
  • Luck happens when preparedness meets the opportunity. So step out of your comfort zone and try new things. Don’t be afraid to take the opportunities that comes along, because you’ll never know when you’ll be rewarded for it.

Warnings

  • It’s good to not know what will happen, to ignore dangers a little bit less and to take risks a little bit more. Just don’t ignore dangers too much, always keep yourself safe and do not take risks you will end up regretting in the future!
  • Don’t confuse stepping out of your comfort zone with being reckless and stupid. There’s a difference between being reckless and accepting risks. Reckless people don’t accept risks-they don’t even think about them. You should know the risks, and decide to go through with the decision anyway, ready and willing to accept the consequences if things don’t work out.
  • Don’t do anything that would most likely cause self-harm. Especially when you’re at risk of someone else hurting you in any physical way. Might also be a good idea though to know self-defense if this is the case. But don’t be scared.

 Tools:
If you want to push your comfort zone’s boundaries but you’re not sure where to start, there’s actually a tool online to measure your comfort zone.

A short questionnaire about your comfort levels in professional, lifestyle and adrenaline-related events gives you a score and an idea about how big or small your comfort zone is. It also includes some reading and activity suggestions for increasing your comfort levels in each area.

Madness

 I came after the lunch break and saw those people on stage being busy and acting a little crazy.
I first thought: why should I also do so but afterwards I also beat the drum.
The enthusiasm and commitment of the team has persuaded me.  I certainly don’t regret.  It is due to their strange games and crazy question-and-answer rhythms everyone out of their comfort zone.
R
eally, we did strange things with each other. Thing you don´t likely do in the morning before the congress started.
It was a lot of fun because we were all in there togetherr so actually you where the strangers if you hadn´t fit in with the rhythm.
It gave me a lot of energy which continued througout the whole conference and gave us a clear focus for the rest of the day.
Usually after 20 minutes or so your attention weakens when somebody gives a speech, but after this interactive session it seemed like we could listen for hours.
Quote participant workshop Aalsmeer.