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If You’re Not Outside Your Comfort Zone, You Won’t Learn Anything

Easy When You Know How

We normally avoid stuff that is unfamiliar to us. If we embrace it, by learning about it and making it something we are adept at, we will be more willing to minimize our discomfort and make the activity/task palpable and even enjoyable. To borrow a saying from a children’s book: It’s easy when you know how to do it.

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If You’re Not Outside Your Comfort Zone, You Won’t Learn Anything

If You’re Not Outside Your Comfort Zone, You Won’t Learn Anything

https://hbr.org/2016/07/if-youre-not-outside-your-comfort-zone-you-wont-learn-anything

hbr.org

3

Key Ideas

Running Away From Life

We tend to avoid situations that test us, or are terrifying personally, even though they may be necessary or required professionally. Unpleasant tasks are often required for us to get ahead in life.

Without the skill or courage to handle such tasks, we miss out on opportunities of advancing in our lives.

Easy When You Know How

We normally avoid stuff that is unfamiliar to us. If we embrace it, by learning about it and making it something we are adept at, we will be more willing to minimize our discomfort and make the activity/task palpable and even enjoyable. To borrow a saying from a children’s book: It’s easy when you know how to do it.

Just Do It

To get rid of our fear and anxiety, it is important to take the plunge. What we fear is mostly smoke and mirrors, something that was bothering us psychologically but had no substance. When we take the plunge, we dispel the self-belief that the task is impossible.

In the case of public speaking, we need to build our confidence by taking the plunge, initially with a small audience, and gradually building it. Start with small steps. It is ok if you stumble.

You will come out a different person when you accomplish what you fear.

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Expand your comfort zone

Boosting your courage isn’t something that happens overnight. 

It’s a day-by-day process and you’re more likely to experience success in this area if you focus on expanding your comfort zone one step at a time.

For example, if you notice that you feel fear around talking to new people, start small by asking someone for directions or striking up a short conversation with people you encounter in your day-to-day life.

Remember to breathe
If we want to boost our courage in a particular situation, one of the most effective ways of doing this is to slow down our breathing. 

When we’re feeling fearful, our breathing unconsciously becomes faster and shallower. Taking a few deep breaths sends the signal to our minds that everything is OK and helps us relax.

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