Getting out of your comfort zone is one of the most difficult things that you will ever do in your life. Anything that becomes a routine activity becomes a part of our comfort zone. There are no confrontations, conflicts, or provocations there. These unremarkable day to day happenings keep us in a state of indifference towards our own growth. Since there is nothing that challenges us, intellectually and emotionally, we feel no need to stimulate and improve our mental and physical faculties. By staying in this autopilot mode, we disregard and destroy whatever potential we have. No learning or growth is possible inside our cocoon.
Where does learning happen?
Psychologists state that the theory of the three zones can help understand the process of learning. These three zones comprise of the comfort zone, the learning zone and the panic zone. Between comfort and panic, is the learning zone. Learning requires some amount of pressure and anxiety. A bit of stress, that pushes our brain out of slumber is called ‘optimal anxiety’. Performance is optimized and the learning process is accelerated.
Why is it not possible to learn inside your comfort zone? It is because we don’t actually feel the urgency and pressure to learn. It is a state of intellectual stagnation. We sink in mediocrity without realizing it. Since there is no one or nothing to judge us, we follow our own rules and standards and stop caring for the outside world which is the real test of your strength and abilities. Coming out of our comfort zone maybe a tiring task, but once we are out, we see and regret what we have been missing!
How will stepping out of your comfort zone help your learning?
Your comfort zone is a very tight place and has little room for growth. Inside it, your dreams are limited by your current situation. You are not in a position to assess your own worth. Stepping out of it will open new doors for your mental and physical health and growth.
This is especially relevant at your workplace. We all get tired of work. Monotony and boredom sets in and kills our creativity. We feel less inspired and less motivated which results in decreased productivity. It is important to keep challenging yourself and exploring new ways to go about even the most ordinary tasks. It will help you to stay and lead an active personal and professional life. Incorporate your new skills and learning into your work. It will not only get you the appreciation that you deserve but also build your personality in a very positive manner.
Any period of transition is painful, whether it is good or bad. Changes scare and threaten us, especially when we are not ready for them. The safety of our comfort zone spoils us. We become so used to our routine that even a minor incident disrupting it becomes unbearable. If you force yourself to leave your comfort zone and stay open to new and different perspectives, you will find it easier to accept and even enjoy the change. It is significant because without change you will be stuck in one place. Steady or abrupt, the ability to go through a transition is the biggest secret to your mental and emotional growth.
Expand your horizons
With regular self-evaluation you can keep a check on yourself. Aim a little higher each time and keep pushing your boundaries. It may sound very demanding but it gets easier with each try. A state of continued optimal anxiety accustoms you to dealing with rising challenges and navigating seamlessly through complications. You will be able to reach new heights in both your personal and professional life.
Sharpen your senses
Staying too long in your comfort zone is damaging to your intelligence and judgment. Your limited exposure limits your vision as well. Your senses become dull and dormant as they have no new information to process. An active and agile mind is not only beneficial for you but also for your work, and all those that you are associated with.
Boost your creativity
This may sound like a very inconsiderable point but creativity helps you find new ways to deal with your everyday problems and find easy new ways to deal with them. You will also be able to conduct brainstorming sessions with the utmost ease. With new learning and experiences come new motivations. Even if you find yourself falling back into the deadly zone, you somehow still find the inspiration to come back because of the stream of new experiences that you have.
As the famous quote goes, life begins at the end of your comfort zone. No matter how reluctantly you come out of your shell, you are bound to enjoy the variety our world offers. It is important to introduce novelty in each and every aspect of your life. New challenges mean new training and wisdom. The comfort of the familiar patterns may promise security but steering through unknown and unexplored terrains is what guarantees a meaningful learning.