It’s called the comfort zone for a reason. We are not lazy, we are scared.

Surrounding our comfort zone is a veneer of fear. We fear rejection, looking stupid, feeling incompetent, uncomfortable emotions and failure. 

If you’re reading this article, you have already pushed through the venue of fear on multiple occasions. Think back five or 10 years and how far you have come. The scary thing is, that we can never sit still. To stay current, we must constantly stretch our comfort zone. 

To help you punch through the veneer of fear here are some strategies you can apply. 

1.  Be selectively courageous

As the great philosopher Oprah Winfrey said: ‘You can have it all, just not all at once.’ Choose your direction as every time you say yes to one thing, you need to say no to another.

2.  Ask yourself what if I did nothing?

Inaction is a choice. If the pain of not doing it outweighs the pain stretching yourself, it is time to move.

3.  Apply courage in 10-minute bursts

Sometimes we just need to act. Set the timer for 10 minutes to craft that email, make the phone call or start a project. Then click repeat.

4.  Challenge yourself with these questions

◦ What is stopping me?
◦ What am I feeling?
◦ What are the assumptions I am making?

5.  Phone a friend

Not just any friend, the friend that thinks you are fabulous, the friend that thinks you can walk on water, bungee jump without a rope, and resolve the conflict in the Middle East. What would they tell you to do?

Our brain has a built-in negative bias to keep us safe. Examine every thought and ask yourself, ‘Is this guiding me in the direction I want to go?’ Our thoughts are just thoughts; we can choose which ones we act on.

Sharon Ferrier
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