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“Always go with the choice that scares you the most, because that’s the one that is going to help you grow.” – Caroline Myss
I don’t like attending networking events. I don’t like teaching unless I am 100% prepared. I hate cold calling.
There are many things at work that make us want to hide – maybe it’s the same things as me, perhaps it’s speaking in public. Maybe it’s presenting to the leadership team.
We all face uncomfortable situations at work. I know that when I step outside my comfort zone I acquire new skills, gain confidence and enjoy remarkable experiences. When I try something that I haven’t tried before and when I stretch beyond the familiar is where I grow as a leader.
The best way to stretch your comfort zone is with small steps. Instead of taking a big leap, take a slight step in that direction. For example, if public speaking makes you break into a cold sweat, then start by taking a public speaking class, or give a short presentation to a friendly group.
Remember to allow yourself to make mistakes. Accept that you will not be perfect, and that’s ok. Instead of punishing yourself for the stumbles, learn from each misstep and improve the next time you try. That’s how we learn to walk, drive a car, and even speak in public!
To become a better leader, you need to continually be trying new things or else you will become stagnant and irrelevant. Through continuous learning you’ll distinguish yourself from your peers.
We only grow once we are outside of our comfort zone. So try something new, take a small step, push the boundaries and learn from your stumbles along the way.
Good luck! And enjoy the journey.
Want some coaching to help you take those first few steps? We can meet "virtually" for a free 15-minute coaching session. Valerie.MacLeod@HainesCentre.com
Also read: Do you have the courage of a lion or are you a scaredy cat? Feeling Stuck? Take action! The best business advice I ever received
PS I took this photo of a tiger while travelling in India. While the idea of visiting India was out of my comfort zone, I had once-in-a-lifetime experiences like watching a mother tiger and her two cubs cross the road in front of us!
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