The Rider’s Mind Podcast Episode 99: How to Know if You’re Out of Your Comfort Zone
I think it’s important to be able to recognize the signs of when you’re leaving your comfort zone, so you can acknowledge the feelings and then go ahead and do it anyway! Many of the feelings that come up when you’re about to do something awesome just mean you’re moving out of your comfort zone. When you move into uncharted waters, your brain doesn’t like the unpredictability of what is happening and sometimes this generates fear. Listen to this episode for some signs that you’re moving outside of your comfort zone and closer to achieving your goals!
Your comfort zone is a bit like a coasting zone. It’s smooth sailing, but the waters can get a bit stagnant.
It’s good to be there, it’s safe there and it can be enjoyable. It’s okay to be there. But, we can start to feel stuck and unfulfilled there.
Growth happens outside of your comfort zone.
Leaving the comfort zone feels quite the opposite of stagnant and smooth. Once we have the courage to leave our comfort zone, it’s often where great fun, growth and reward happen. These things don’t usually happen without feedback.
Taking aligned action can feel this way too. This is when you take action on things that are less goal oriented and more about following your heart or following your bliss.
Because we’re about to do something we’ve never done, our body detects that there is something to be fearful of. Leaving your comfort zone could be something quite safe to the logical mind or it might actually be something that does have risks. In either case, different people will react differently.
I think having an awareness of why these feelings come up could help ease some discomfort.
When you can label your feelings and tag them as “signs I’m leaving my comfort zone”, then you can acknowledge them and do it anyway instead of trying to add meaning to the feelings.
When you’re leaving your comfort zone, you might:
- want to turn back
- find all the reasons why you shouldn’t do it
- get nervous
- feel excited
- feel vulnerable
- be having regrets, even if you haven’t done it yet
- find that obstacles crop up making your goal more challenging
These are all feelings in the uncomfortable zone, that zone which is outside of your current comfort zone but on the way to your next comfort zone.
When you have done the thing, it feels exhilarating. Once you’ve done it a few times, a new comfort zone appears. You can stay there and settle in those smooth waters until you’re ready for a new challenge again.
After it’s done, you decide whether the outcome was worth being in the uncomfortable zone. In my experience, it usually is.
When you leave the comfort zone for new territory, things are going to get uncomfortable. That’s the plan and a sign you’re doing it right.
Instead of chastising yourself for having all these obstacles and uncomfortable feelings, think of them as signs of growth. I imagine when plants grow and crack the seed and then penetrate the earth, they feel like they are hitting their heads against the wall a little bit too.
When we’re growing, there’s going to be a bit of darkness to plow through before we get to the light.
Keep your eye on the outcome and focus on how it will feel when you get there, then you’ll be able to dig deep and grind through any uncomfortable feelings that come up.
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