3 good reasons to step outside of your comfort zone

Alyssa at great wall to use

If you want to see the Grand Canyon, you’ve got choices. You can take a mule, a plane, or hike in the back country. No matter how you choose to get there, you’ve got to step outside of your comfort zone.

Reaching your goals is a lot like that too. So why should you step outside of your comfort zone?

Do it to change your view.

Alyssa made herself a “life list” that included climbing the Great Wall of China. So when a study abroad trip took her to China, she was more than ready for the experience. But as they embarked on the steep, mountain climb up hundreds of steps, Alyssa quickly realized this was going to be no day at the park.

“It was literally the hardest thing I’ve ever done. Many people didn’t make it. They had to stop and go back. I wanted to quit too, but I didn’t let myself. I knew I’d never forgive myself if I didn’t finish it.

Now that I’ve returned home, I see life differently. I compare everything I do to climbing the Great Wall. Things that I used to complain about, like the walk to campus, are no big deal anymore.” she said.

Do it to advance your career.

Ryan was excited to land his first job out of college with an international company. It was his goal from the start to work is way up. After two years, he was comfortable in his role, but he could see there was no clear path for advancement. He knew he had to make a change.

Ryan commented, “I didn’t see any opportunity to grow or to develop professionally. I took a risk and left what was familiar to go to work for another company. Now, I’m being given more responsibility, doing more meaningful work, and I’m being recognized for my efforts.

I learned how important it is to work for a company that supports its employee’s goals for professional growth. And I’m moving forward in my career.”

Do it for the adventure.

Norine’s 52nd birthday was coming up. She had lost her husband, Howie, nearly two years earlier while he was on a waiting list for a heart transplant. What she needed more than a gift she could buy herself was to spend time with her two grown children.

So they went ziplining.

The trio navigated an uphill climb, trekked across bridges, got harnessed, and zipped  90 feet high through a forest of trees.

“I wanted to have an experience and to enjoy an adventure with my boys. I’m not the most physical human being. I’m 52, a little overweight, a lot out of shape, and doing a physical activity in the Florida heat — well some people could say I was crazy.

Zipping is fast like a roller coaster. It’s very freeing. After the two and a half hour experience, the boys and I sat under a tree and drank two Gatorades a piece. At the end of day, we had a new adventure and a new memory that would last a lifetime. Next on our list is swimming with the dolphins,” she said.

Where do you want to go? To achieve your goal – physically or mentally, strap on those Nike’s. Then put one foot in front of the other, step outside of your comfort zone, and “just do it!”

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