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Embrace Growth by Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone

Are you ready to push your boundaries and achieve incredible personal growth? At the me spot, we believe in the transformative power of stepping outside our comfort zones and the need to do it often. And we do practice what we preach! Recently, I had the rewarding (and rather daunting) experience of hosting some workshops that took me way out of my comfort zone.

In April, I ran two workshops at the Hawke’s Bay Chamber of Commerce Wellbeing at Work conference, speaking to 100 people across two sessions. Now I love sharing my insights and thoughts and I LOVE coaching, but my ‘zone’ ranges from one-on-ones to small groups of up to 10 – so the conference size group really got my anxiety levels up and my ‘self-doubt voice’ was on megaphone. However, I was highly motivated to share my knowledge and provide people with tried-and-tested tools for integrating self-compassion and self-awareness in the workplace. And I knew this experience was an opportunity for growth – because it scared me. After spending hours pulling my presentation together, tweaking it and then changing the whole sequence the night before (not ideal!!) the day arrived, and I got up on that stage (following the most amazing speaker who has been delivering talks for ten or so years including TED talks!)  and I did it! I felt a tremendous sense of achievement and, of course, relief!

But I knew there was room for improvement, and I sought advice on aspects of my presentation and delivery that I could work on. In May, I was invited to speak to 80 women as part of a fundraiser and networking event called She Leads (so I can’t have been all bad!!). The topic was self-care, and again, I was in two minds, but the drive to share my knowledge and tools won. Utilising the feedback and my own critique of my April workshop, I felt far more confident going into this talk (no last-minute presentation changes - yay growth!!), and although I was still nervous getting up to talk, I found my grove quickly and actually enjoyed myself!  Not only did I gain confidence in my public speaking abilities, but I also connected with amazing individuals. I am so pleased I pushed through the discomfort of self-doubt and just did it!

So let's look at why stepping outside your comfort zone matters:

  1. Personal Growth and Development When you step outside your comfort zone, you open yourself up to new experiences and opportunities for growth. This process can help you discover new interests, strengths, and aspects of your personality you might not have known existed. Each step forward builds your confidence and resilience, equipping you to handle future challenges more effectively.

  2. Increased Confidence and Self-Esteem Taking on challenges and overcoming them boosts your self-confidence. Each success, no matter how small, reinforces the belief that you are capable and competent. This positive feedback loop encourages you to take on even bigger challenges, further expanding your horizons.

  3. Enhanced Creativity and Innovation Stepping outside your comfort zone often requires thinking differently and finding creative solutions. This kind of thinking can spill over into other areas of your life, fostering innovation and problem-solving skills that are invaluable both personally and professionally.

  4. Better Stress Management While it might seem counterintuitive, facing challenges and navigating uncertainty can improve your ability to manage stress. By regularly exposing yourself to controlled amounts of stress, you can build resilience and learn to cope with larger, unexpected stressors more effectively.

Whether you're navigating a new career path, tackling a personal goal, or simply trying something new, pushing your boundaries can be both challenging and immensely rewarding. And let's face it, life is too short to be sitting on the sideline!

So here are some tips to start pushing your own boundaries:

  1. Start Small You don't need to take giant leaps to grow. Begin with small, manageable steps that gradually push your boundaries. This could be as simple as trying a new hobby, attending a networking event, or speaking up in a meeting.

  2. Set Clear Goals Define what you want to achieve by stepping outside your comfort zone. Having clear, measurable goals can provide direction and motivation. Break these goals down into smaller, actionable steps to make them more attainable.

  3. Embrace Failure Understand that failure is a natural part of growth. Rather than fearing it, view failure as a learning opportunity. Each setback provides valuable lessons that can guide you toward future success.

  4. Seek Support Surround yourself with supportive people who encourage you to take risks and celebrate your achievements. Whether it’s friends, family, or colleagues, having a support system can make the journey less daunting.

  5. Reflect on Your Experiences After stepping outside your comfort zone, take time to reflect on the experience. What did you learn? How did it make you feel? Use these insights to inform your next steps and continue your growth journey.

Remember, growth doesn’t happen overnight. It’s a continuous journey that requires patience, perseverance, and a willingness to embrace discomfort. But the rewards—personal fulfilment, increased confidence, and a deeper understanding of yourself—are well worth the effort.

So, what’s your next step? Whether it’s big or small, take that leap and watch yourself grow. the me spot is here to cheer you on and provide the resources and support you need to succeed.

Here’s to stepping outside our comfort zones, getting comfortable with being uncomfortable and embracing the limitless possibilities that lie beyond!

With love and empowerment xx

Below is a photo of me getting comfortable with my uncomfortable!

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