The easiest question…
So I’m on the phone last week to a wonderful guy and fabulous business mentor. I’m talking over my plans for a new programme and want to pick his brains on two ways to deliver the training.
Option A is easy and comfortable for me. What I’ve done before. Tried and tested. Quick to get up and running.
Option B is a bit more of a stretch – a bit of a longer process. Nothing beyond what I can do, just beyond what I really want to do. It pushes me more. There’s more risk and more uncertainty. It’s probably a better result in the long term. But….
…I’m having some resistance. “So, what do you think,” I ask him?
“Cathy” – he laughs – “that’s the easiest question you’ve ever asked me! Get out of your comfort zone. Always.
“Remember, it’s not about how much you get done in a day; it’s about how much fear you get through. How much you push yourself to grow.”
OK – that was pretty definite! I know he’s right. Of course he is.
But is it always that easy?
It isn’t always easy to take that step outside our comfort zone. And it isn’t always the right time.
I’m a runner. And I know, from painful experience, that if I push my training too far too fast, I get injured. And an injury can set me back months, even years. I need to stretch to grow and keep it fun. But I need to step it up in manageable chunks.
Growth and recovery
Growth and recovery. That’s the perfect balance for my running.
And it’s the perfect balance for my business. Growth and recovery.
I’m at the stage I need to grow. My mentor knows that – he knows me. There’s no way he would push me if it wasn’t right for me and he would have given someone else a different answer.
We need to develop that self-awareness. And we need those around to know it. How far to push us. What little encouragements to give us so that we don’t become stale.
If we grow too fast, we don’t have the foundation. The muscle strength. The support networks. The knowledge and experience.
But if we stay inside our comfort zone then it’s, well…, too comfortable. And comfortable becomes boring. It doesn’t help us do our best work.
Get out of your comfort zone
I know that in business there’s always more to do. Always challenges and places you can reach to get outside your comfort zone. Take it in chunks. Know your limitations.
Know when and where you need to stretch to keep it fun and fulfilling. To do your best work.
And know when you need to stay in recovery a while longer so that you develop enough strength for the next burst.
I’d love to know where you’ve stepped outside YOUR comfort zone. Where you took the deep breath and went for it even though it was new, a little scary, and where there might not have been your usual safety net. Just leave a comment and join the conversation!