High performance may be all about getting in “the zone”, but real high performance is only achieved once you get out of a different zone.
Leaving your Comfort Zone
Our comfort zones tend to be habits. And like all habits, they become routine. We do things without thinking, without exploring to find a better, more efficient and successful way. Especially if exploring involves risk. The risk that we might fail, or come up short. It all too easy to fall back into our old, safe ways of being.
To quote a former England team manager:
The greatest barrier to success is the fear of failure.
Sven Goran Eriksson
So we need to be alert and start to notice when our comfort zone begins to have negative, stagnating, effect. So how do you know when the boundaries of your comfort zone are holding you back? Some people say their excitement and drive has diminished others notice a certain lack of focus or challenge. When progress towards our goals seems to be resting on a plateau that’s a sign that it’s time for some thought.
Getting Off The Plateau
Plateaus, of course, are not in themselves bad things. It is important to have time for reflection, consolidation and planning. So this is a great time to to plan to leave your comfort zone and head for new heights. Make for the next plateau on your journey to ultimate success.
By stepping outside your comfort zone repeatedly, it expands to become your new norm. Things that were previously scary become old hat and you are able to do so much more without having to brace yourself for the ordeal.
So when it’s time to explore new options and do something differently, you might like to pause and work out in what ways you want to expand your comfort zone. Where the next plateau will be.
The Next Step to Success
And then you’ll have some ideas as to what the first step outside your comfort zone will be, and some strategies to help stop you falling back into a rut. Always remembering that you can only fail if you put a time limit on a goal. Otherwise you’re just gathering information…
It’s better to have tried and failed than to live life wondering what would’ve happened if I had tried
Alfred Lord Tennyson