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Growing Out of Your Comfort Zone
It has been said that "if you are not growing, you're dying." As human beings, we are on a constant journey called life. Rick Warren has been quite successful at stimulating thought and faith in his fine book, A Purpose Driven Life, suggesting that we are all here on Earth for a reason. I would like to propose that the concept of success is purpose-driven too. Earl Nightingale referred to success as the "continuing pursuit of a worthy ideal" and spoke of it often. I submit then, that success is not a destination, but a purposeful journey.
On this quest, many of us become stuck in a rut. We are afraid to step out of our comfort zone to experience new growth. Exactly what is our comfort zone? It's an intangible, a thought process actually, that frames our plane of existence. Typically it is our set of limits, our borderline, beyond which we will not normally step. It is a very powerful force, with many internal, deeply rooted psychological components. For the most part, fear of the unknown and fear of failure are the major inhibiting culprits. All of us have experienced the anxiety-induced sick feeling in the pit of our stomach, the sweaty palms or the sudden nervousness similar to having consumed too much caffeine that are often associated with stepping closer to the edge of our comfort zone. Considering these and other symptoms, many people don't bother to stretch themselves in any direction. They remain somewhat content to stay as they are, complacent, safe and sound.
Is staying within our comfort zones really a safe bet? I suggest that it is not. Our society, knowledge, technology, understanding and communications are evolving at a speed of light pace. Sooner or later, we will be left behind if we don't act. Depending upon your career, playing it safe is usually not an option. We too must continue to learn, to grow, or risk falling behind, eventually succumbing to commercial, creative, functional, and spiritual, emotional or possibly physical death. There is little real choice in the matter. We must continue to learn and grow, stretching out of the confines of our existing comfort zone or face the bleak consequences.
I have previously written of the Slight Edge Formula, where we introduce incremental, positive change into our lives over a period of time. This concept encourages exponential personal growth in a consistent, non-threatening manner. This is the means to grow and stretch out of our current comfort zone, to expand our possibilities without experiencing the energy-robbing anxiety previously described.
Knowing these facts then, will enable you to make conscious decisions to move forward, wake up and learn something new. Change is a subject most people don't want to talk about. Change makes a lot of us uncomfortable, but it should not be that way. Change is viewed as a threat by many and welcomed like a warm breeze by others. Many people see change as positive and part of the natural order. The way to reduce anxiety about change is to prepare for it. In my previous article, Learn Faster; Change is Coming, facts were presented to enable us to prosper in changing times. Change is a constant, only its pace varies. The better prepared we are to accept and embrace change, the greater our adaptation and profit will be.
Our comfort zone is dictated by change. The harder we fight change and resist its force, the more difficult it is to break through our current comfort zone and move forward. Start incrementally, embracing small changes and adapting to their effects, then move again. A tree grows a small amount at a time, adding layer and layer to its foundation for greater strength and stability in the future. Be like the tree, ever growing.
My family and I visited beautiful Niagara Falls recently. I was impressed by the sheer volume and force of the white water as it draped down the falls, crashing into mist on the rocks below. Change is like that water plummeting over the edge. Nothing will stand in its way. Like the river, it will move anything in its path and forever impact its surroundings with each gallon of flowing water. The same can be said of our comfort zone. Once it expands, we will grow and never be the same. The greater the circumference of our comfort zone, the more capable we become, the greater our accomplishments will be.
There is no growth unless we embrace change, letting go of fear and expand our comfort zone. Upon reflection, you will see that there is really no rational or practical alternative. Embrace the Slight Edge Formula and fearlessly grow out of your comfort zone.
Daniel Sitter is the author of the breakthrough e-book, Learning For Profit, the revolutionary how-to book providing simple, step-by-step instructions to teach people exactly how to learn new skills faster than ever before. It's currently available from download.com, the author's web site http://www.learningforprofit.com/ and a variety of online book merchants. Mr. Sitter is a contributing writer for several online and traditional publications. His expertise include sales, marketing, effective learning techniques, self-improvement and general business interests.
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Motivation; 7 Musings on Motivation
1. Most of us are motivated by one of two things - inspiration or desperation.
Seeing Through the Pain
We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret or disappointment. ~ Jim RohnNothing lasts-not even pain.
After the Big Project: Recovering From Success
My older daughter got married 10 days ago. The wedding was a joyous and extraordinary experience, way beyond our imaginings.
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Our greatest growth in life comes from pushing through our present comfort zone. This process starts at birth.
The Biggest Mistake Youve Made About Manifesting
What is the biggest mistake you have made about manifesting your desires?You will be surprised by the answer and you probably thought it was the best thing you could do to achieve your desires. However, this mistake has made your desires 100 times more difficult to achieve.
Inertia? 5 Tips to Getting Yourself Moving Again!
Inertia. Even the word sounds like a disease.
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The 21-year-old rookie cop had his big chance to brag on himself at his big news conference. "How do you feel about being the one to capture Eric Rudolph, FBI's Most Wanted?" the reporter asked.
Celebrating the Couch Potato
Ah, the couch potato, that icon of American pop culture values. Isn't that the life? Why would anyone want to exert extra energy to be productive when you can simply plop down on the couch in front of the telly and enjoy all that delicious snack food and a cool one.
Mid-Year Success Check: Are You Halfway There?
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Are You A Visionary
Dreams may seem unimportant in your quest for success. And it's true that ordinary dreams are often a mix of what happened during your day --plus some "wild" random associations.
Let It Fly Over Your Head
Sarah Watson is a young woman who contracted HIV eleven years ago at the age of seventeen. She and her boyfriend discovered that they were both HIV positive.
Beyond Procrastination - 8 Questions To Ask Yourself
Why am I constantly putting things off? Why don't I do the things I'm "supposed" to do, but don't really want to? Why do I always seem to be forcing myself to do things? Whether it's chores at home, work for school, or projects at work, how do I get beyond procrastination? Most often, something is operating "underneath" the procrastination. Asking yourself these nine questions and spending some conscious time reflecting on your responses can help you uncover why you are resisting doing what needs to be done and support you to move beyond procrastination.
Life's an Illusion
I'll get right to the point. Life is not necessarily what we think it is.
The Art Of Using Effectively A Motivational Quote
--Choose a motivational quote related to your goal. Don't have one? Visit http://motivationalcentral.
Daily Motivation: 7 Methods
Isn't a lack of daily motivation one of the biggest problems we face when trying to better ourselves? We often know what to do, or at least the first few steps. But we hesitate, something else catches our attention, or we just don't feel like doing what we need to do.
Work, Action, Movement -You Cannot Get Anywhere Without It
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How To Deal With Denial
Denial is a coping mechanism commonly used when something happens that we really don't want to see. Doing this is actually quite natural.
Qualia and Quanta
Ah, those New Year's resolutions.I suppose that the passage of another calendar year serves to remind us that there are an infinite number of things to do and a finite amount of time to do them in and so we must prioritize.