How do you get yourself out of [your] comfort zone? – Wanxuan
Getting out of your comfort zone means doing whatever it is that makes you uncomfortable.
This means doing things that you resist, hate, or even fear. As long as you do that, you will naturally expand your comfort zone.
However, for someone to want to push him/herself out of his/her comfort zone constantly, to always be in the face of discomfort, uncertainty, and resistance, AND be okay with that, there needs be a reason, a spark, a fuel, to drive him/her forward despite resistances. This reason can be a passion he/she is trying to pursue or a vision he/she is trying to realize.
Knowing this reason is actually more important than learning tips and strategies to expand one’s comfort zone, because once you are driven by a vision bigger than you and a force greater than any other, you will naturally do whatever it takes, including grotesquely expand your comfort zone, to achieve that vision.
If it means having to do the most painful and most uncomfortable of things, then so be it—I will do them. If it means having to stretch my comfort zone to the infinite maximum level, then that is exactly what I will do. I will cross whatever the chasms are between me and my vision and make it happen.
Directing this back to you, what is your passion or goal? What is the vision you want to achieve? What is the end objective you want to attain?
If you can identify what is it that you want to pursue, what is that vision you want to achieve, and what is the end objective you want to realize, you can then use that to fuel you in your growth. By letting yourself be inspired by what you want/love to do, you will naturally be okay with doing the things you dislike/resist/hate/fear to realize your dream. You will simply step out of your comfort zone and make things happen. This is a far superior and sustainable approach than blindly pushing against fear for the sake of it.
As for specific tips and strategies to nudge yourself out of your comfort zone, here’s what I have to share:
- Move towards your fear (rather than away from it). This means if you feel fearful about something, then feel the fear, and boldly do it anyway. Your fear dictates the things that lie outside of your comfort zone. By stepping into the emotion of fear, you are literally expanding your comfort zone.
- Take actions different from what you normally do. Every little thing you do that is a deviation from your usual routine is one step outside of your comfort zone. For example, try a different route to work. Order a different dish from your favorite restaurant. Speak to that colleague whom you normally would not talk to. Email that guy/girl you like to say hi. 😉
- Fall in love with discomfort. The whole essence of moving out of one’s comfort zone is about learning be okay with being uncomfortable. Better yet, learn to love to be uncomfortable. Whenever I feel uncomfortable (cue: tingling of spider senses), I know it’s a good thing because it means that I’m growing. I don’t resist that feeling of discomfort; rather, I embrace it.
- Constantly try new things. Make a point to try something new every week. It can be as simple as reading a new book, trying rock climbing, or something. I’m always open to doing different things, as long as they fall within my personal agenda. In fact as a personal principle, I will always give something at least one shot too before I write it off.