Can you think back on a time of real growth and advancement, be it in your career, in your own business, or anywhere else? More than likely, you had to abandon your comfort zone for advancement or growth to happen in your career. Yes, you can make progress by doing what you have always done. But it will be slow and more importantly, by staying within your comfort zone, you are limiting your potential growth. It is when you abandon your comfort zone, try something new, take a bit of a risk, and allow for job and professional growth that you start to see substantial changes for the better.
Staying in Your Comfort Zone
Let us say you goal is to expand your professional credentials and get the attention of your employer’s Management by getting out and speaking in front of a larger audience. What you have done so far, and what feels comfortable is authoring articles, thought pieces and reports with your analysis and opinions on existing ideas. And then you have shared them in your department, and maybe broader in your organization’s newsletter. Yes, some readers will find you. Yes, if you multiply your efforts, publishing more posts, articles or more reports and sharing more often across all your company’s publications, you will see some growth in stature and engagement.
But you are staying in your comfort zone. And comfort really is not about comfort. It is fear that holds you back from going after real growth. That is what holds you back from getting what you want out of life and career.
Abandon Your Comfort Zone
What if instead, you used the time you would have spent drafting another article or two per week and publishing them in your company newsletter, you took the time to write a post for a trade or industry publication with a bigger reach. What if you sat down and recorded an informational and useful video that you can then share online? And of course share via several social media outlets. What if you used the time to set up your own industry trends blog and continually send it to new members of online groups like LinkedIn. If those things are new to you, that may seem like a pretty scary proposition. But getting uncomfortable and doing it anyway can have some huge rewards.
Consequences of Abandoning Your Comfort Zone
Writing and submitting a guest post to industry blogs can give you a lot of added exposure by allowing you to get in front of a different and expanded audience. It also gives you the chance to start a relationship with others in your industry outside your company or city. That may lead to all sorts of other collaborations or opportunities.
Recording a series of videos gives you the opportunity to reach a completely different audience. There are plenty of people who prefer video content to written posts and articles. There are people who spend time each day watching YouTube videos who would never otherwise. stumble across you and your written material and ideas.
These ideas can sound like a scary proposition, but once you abandon your comfort zone and attempt something new it and find something that works well for you, you could get a steady stream of recognition and new contacts outside your organization that could lead to speaking engagements and possibly job offers. These could occur for you without any added work.
Another Advantage to Abandon Your Comfort Zone
There is something else I want to mention just in case I do not have you convinced yet that getting out of your comfort zone is something you should be doing regularly. You will not stay uncomfortable for awfully long. After recording those first few videos or submitting a couple of articles to industry publications you start to get comfortable with the processes. Before you know it, they become second nature and yet another tool in your virtual tool belt.
To overcome your fears in the workplace, you need to understand why you have them and then practice facing them so you can live a career and life of growth plus true fulfilment. Once that happens, you know it is time to explore some other strategies and ideas to expand your reach, grow your career and even further abandon your comfort zone.
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