Advertising
Advertising

7 Exciting Things Will Happen When You Step Out From Your Comfort Zone

7 Exciting Things Will Happen When You Step Out From Your Comfort Zone

Are you at ease in your comfort zone, too scared to step outside even though you’d really like to? Or do you love excitement but need to know what actually can happen if you start something you wouldn’t normally do? Well, this post is for you.

Don’t feel bad because you think this way. Changing your familiar routine is a difficult thing to do. When you can accomplish it, though, the benefits will be huge. Get ready, because after you read these 7 exciting things, you’ll be brave enough to venture outside your ordinary, every-day routine. Why? Because amazing things happen just outside your comfort zone.

First, though, just what or where is that comfort zone?

Each person’s comfort zone is the area of their life where they can function with a minimum of stress and a maximum of security. Anxiety levels are low and contentment levels are high. Here, we know what to expect.

Comfort Zone Diagram

    You feel comfortable in this environment. However, to increase your performance levels and try new experiences, you’ll need to introduce a dose of controlled anxiety and stress into your life. Situations where stress levels rise somewhat, are found just outside the comfort zone. This is where you’ll reach your highest potential and live a life of purpose.

    Your aim should be to stay in the green zone above. If you place yourself under excessive pressure, performance will suffer. Creativity will be stifled.

    There’ll be times, of course, when you’ll want a break from challenging yourself. Simply retreat to where you’re most comfortable.

    Why is it good for you to try new stuff?

    The benefits are huge. Following are just 7 of those exciting benefits.

    Advertising

    1. You’ll grow and blossom.

    “Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.” – Brian Tracy

    Maybe you are in a job you enjoy very much. It’s handy to home, hours are flexible and workmates congenial. You’re offered a new position that will extend you and stretch your creativity. But . . . traveling time will increase; remuneration might not be much greater. It’s a dilemma you probably wish you didn’t have to face.

    It’s your choice. Stay in familiar surroundings where you feel comfortable. Or move towards the unknown.

    You find it hard to dash aside the emotional attachment you feel to your current situation. Then you remember Brian Tracy’s words about the necessity to feel awkward and uncomfortable. You take the plunge. It’s scary, but you really want to accomplish some awesome things in your lifetime. So you brace yourself to expect the unexpected.

    Will you regret the decision? Unlikely. You know where you’ll grow and blossom, don’t you? Just outside the comfort zone.

    flying-639522_1280

      2. You’ll release the creativity within you.

      “The comfort zone is the great enemy to creativity.” – Dan Stevens

      Now that you’ve accepted the challenge of the new job, the trip to far-off lands, the University course you’ve just started – or whatever – you’re acquiring a different set of learning skills. New ideas and experiences abound. You’ll find yourself approaching these new experiences with renewed energy  –  an energy that releases the creativity within you in a way you never imagined possible.

      Advertising

      Being creative will fill you with an enormous sense of satisfaction. You’ll be exposing gifts and abilities that until now were hidden from view. Are you ready to discover what you’re really capable of? So where do you find this energy and release of creativity? Just outside the comfort zone.

      steps 640x520

        3. You’ll find the going easier every time you extend yourself.

        “As you move outside of your comfort zone, what was once the unknown and frightening becomes your new normal.”  – Robin Sharma

        Sharma’s words remind me of what I’m doing in my intervals exercise program just now. I’ve found a challenging set of 100 steps that wind up a steep cliff face. I keep climbing until I run out of breath. On my first attempt, I found myself gasping for air at the 50th step. Each week I add another 5 steps. I can feel my comfort zone making adjustments.

        You, too will find that your anxiety levels lessen every time you repeat the stepping out process. Go on. Give it a go. Ease yourself outside your comfort zone. The more you try small things, the more you’ll want to continue to challenge yourself. Success is motivational.

        A very exciting consequence of extending yourself is that your comfort zone adjusts with every success. As Sharma states, the unknown becomes your new normal. How far should you extend yourself? Just outside the comfort zone.

        4. You’ll be in control – not fear and uncertainty.

        “When you become comfortable with uncertainty, infinite possibilities open up in your life.” – Eckhart Tolle

        Being outside the comfort zone enables you to actually acknowledge, then manage, your negative feelings. If starting the business of your dreams, writing a novel or meeting new people is a recurring dream – well, yes, that can be quite scary and uncertain. But if you break your dream into manageable steps, you’ll be in control. You’ll be working towards your dream at your own manageable pace – little by little.

        Advertising

        Because you’re in control, you’ll be doing things you never thought possible. Now you’re free to work and live on your own terms. Where do you truly believe in yourself and start to take responsibility for your life? Just outside the comfort zone.

        man-748733_1280

          5. You’ll boost your self-confidence, resilience and emotional strength.

          “In this world you’re either growing or you’re dying, so get in motion and grow.” – Lou Holtz

          Living inside your comfort zone strips you of your confidence, because you’re not growing and evolving. You’re simply coping with life as it happens.

          Choose your first small goal to start things in motion and grow. As soon as you experience how competent and powerful you are, your self-confidence will grow. You’ll be inspired to work toward other goals. As you strive, fail, and strive some more, a resilient and emotionally strong you will emerge. You’ll feel amazing.

          Where does all this happen? Yes, of course – just outside your comfort zone.

          6. You’ll replace regrets with satisfaction and accomplishment.

           “We can’t become what we want to be by remaining what we are.” – Max DePree

          Regrets only appear when you ask yourself, “What if I fail?” This question is always followed by inaction, then later, regrets. Have you heard stories of people who, on their death bed, talk about the regrets they have because they didn’t do particular things? They were too scared to have a go. All of a sudden it’s too late.

          Advertising

          Go on. Take action now. Dare to have a go time and time again. Then you’ll look back on your life with satisfaction instead of with regrets, and with excitement about what you’ve accomplished. So never ask that “What if  . . .? ” question. Instead just do it and see what happens. Where do you toss regrets into the rubbish heap? Just outside your comfort zone.

          beauty-354565_1280

            7. You’ll experience a fuller life.

            “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.”  – Neale Walsch

            Similar to athletes stretching and preparing for competitive events, just outside your comfort zone is where you can perform at your best. It’s a place where being motivated spurs you to success – a place where you’ll experience a fuller life. So, step outside and unlock your full potential. You haven’t yet discovered just what you are capable of. Experiment, participate, pursue, problem solve, question yourself, improve your skills and develop new ones.

            When you feel confident, happy and optimistic, you will be more willing to live a fuller, more adventurous life. The result? Things you previously thought were unachievable, will become a reality. Now that you’ve blossomed, grown in confidence, released your creativity and managed your fears, you’ll experience a fuller life. You are in control of the kind of life you want to live.

            When you experience this fuller life, instead of just surviving, you’ll find yourself thriving.

            So where do you start?

            “My experience is that you cannot have everything you want but you can have anything you really want. You just need to decide what it is and then plan your exit from the comfort zone.” – Jonathan Farrington

            A great thing to do first of all is to focus on quotations that will give you the excitement and motivation you need to get started. Suitable quotes have been included in this post. You’ll reap the greatest benefits when you write several on sticky notes and place them in prominent places where you’ll read and digest them often.

            Then . . . take Jonathan Farrington’s advice, decide exactly what you want to do, then just do it. Now is your time to exit from the comfort zone.

            Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com

            More by this author

            Real Story: “A Simple Act Of Kindness Changed My Life” 17 Signs You Are Stepping Towards Success Even If You Don’t Feel You Are 9 Empowering TED Talks That Will Zoom You Towards Success A Swimming Pool That Belongs To The Sky comfort zone 7 Exciting Things Will Happen When You Step Out From Your Comfort Zone

            Trending in Communication

            1 7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language 2 How to Apologize When You Have Made a Mistake 3 7 Science-Backed Books About Spirituality That Will Change Your Life 4 20 Things Life Is Too Short to Worry About 5 How to Find Inner Peace and Lasting Happiness

            Read Next

            Advertising
            Advertising
            Advertising

            Last Updated on January 15, 2021

            7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

            7 Ways To Have More Confident Body Language

            The popular idiomatic saying that “actions speak louder than words” has been around for centuries, but even to this day, most people struggle with at least one area of nonverbal communication. Consequently, many of us aspire to have more confident body language but don’t have the knowledge and tools necessary to change what are largely unconscious behaviors.

            Given that others’ perceptions of our competence and confidence are predominantly influenced by what we do with our faces and bodies, it’s important to develop greater self-awareness and consciously practice better posture, stance, eye contact, facial expressions, hand movements, and other aspects of body language.

            Posture

            First things first: how is your posture? Let’s start with a quick self-assessment of your body.

            • Are your shoulders slumped over or rolled back in an upright posture?
            • When you stand up, do you evenly distribute your weight or lean excessively to one side?
            • Does your natural stance place your feet relatively shoulder-width apart or are your feet and legs close together in a closed-off position?
            • When you sit, does your lower back protrude out in a slumped position or maintain a straight, spine-friendly posture in your seat?

            All of these are important considerations to make when evaluating and improving your posture and stance, which will lead to more confident body language over time. If you routinely struggle with maintaining good posture, consider buying a posture trainer/corrector, consulting a chiropractor or physical therapist, stretching daily, and strengthening both your core and back muscles.

            Facial Expressions

            Are you prone to any of the following in personal or professional settings?

            • Bruxism (tight, clenched jaw or grinding teeth)
            • Frowning and/or furrowing brows
            • Avoiding direct eye contact and/or staring at the ground

            If you answered “yes” to any of these, then let’s start by examining various ways in which you can project confident body language through your facial expressions.

            Advertising

            1. Understand How Others Perceive Your Facial Expressions

            A December 2020 study by UC Berkeley and Google researchers utilized a deep neural network to analyze facial expressions in six million YouTube clips representing people from over 140 countries. The study found that, despite socio-cultural differences, people around the world tended to use about 70% of the same facial expressions in response to different emotional stimuli and situations.[1]

            The study’s researchers also published a fascinating interactive map to demonstrate how their machine learning technology assessed various facial expressions and determined subtle differences in emotional responses.

            This study highlights the social importance of facial expressions because whether or not we’re consciously aware of them—by gazing into a mirror or your screen on a video conferencing platform—how we present our faces to others can have tremendous impacts on their perceptions of us, our confidence, and our emotional states. This awareness is the essential first step towards

            2. Relax Your Face

            New research on bruxism and facial tension found the stresses and anxieties of Covid-19 lockdowns led to considerable increases in orofacial pain, jaw-clenching, and teeth grinding, particularly among women.[2]

            The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research estimates that more than 10 million Americans alone have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ syndrome), and facial tension can lead to other complications such as insomnia, wrinkles, dry skin, and dark, puffy bags under your eyes.[3])

            To avoid these unpleasant outcomes, start practicing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and taking breaks more frequently throughout the day to moderate facial tension.[4] You should also try out some biofeedback techniques to enhance your awareness of involuntary bodily processes like facial tension and achieve more confident body language as a result.[5]

            Advertising

            3. Improve Your Eye Contact

            Did you know there’s an entire subfield of kinesic communication research dedicated to eye movements and behaviors called oculesics?[6] It refers to various communication behaviors including direct eye contact, averting one’s gaze, pupil dilation/constriction, and even frequency of blinking. All of these qualities can shape how other people perceive you, which means that eye contact is yet another area of nonverbal body language that we should be more mindful of in social interactions.

            The ideal type (direct/indirect) and duration of eye contact depends on a variety of factors, such as cultural setting, differences in power/authority/age between the parties involved, and communication context. Research has shown that differences in the effects of eye contact are particularly prominent when comparing East Asian and Western European/North American cultures.[7]

            To improve your eye contact with others, strive to maintain consistent contact for at least 3 to 4 seconds at a time, consciously consider where you’re looking while listening to someone else, and practice eye contact as much as possible (as strange as this may seem in the beginning, it’s the best way to improve).

            3. Smile More

            There are many benefits to smiling and laughing, and when it comes to working on more confident body language, this is an area that should be fun, low-stakes, and relatively stress-free.

            Smiling is associated with the “happiness chemical” dopamine and the mood-stabilizing hormone, serotonin. Many empirical studies have shown that smiling generally leads to positive outcomes for the person smiling, and further research has shown that smiling can influence listeners’ perceptions of our confidence and trustworthiness as well.

            4. Hand Gestures

            Similar to facial expressions and posture, what you do with your hands while speaking or listening in a conversation can significantly influence others’ perceptions of you in positive or negative ways.

            Advertising

            It’s undoubtedly challenging to consciously account for all of your nonverbal signals while simultaneously trying to stay engaged with the verbal part of the discussion, but putting in the effort to develop more bodily awareness now will make it much easier to unconsciously project more confident body language later on.

            5. Enhance Your Handshake

            In the article, “An Anthropology of the Handshake,” University of Copenhagen social anthropology professor Bjarke Oxlund assessed the future of handshaking in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic:[8]

            “Handshakes not only vary in function and meaning but do so according to social context, situation and scale. . . a public discussion should ensue on the advantages and disadvantages of holding on to the tradition of shaking hands as the conventional gesture of greeting and leave-taking in a variety of circumstances.”

            It’s too early to determine some of the ways in which Covid-19 has permanently changed our social norms and professional etiquette standards, but it’s reasonable to assume that handshaking may retain its importance in American society even after this pandemic. To practice more confident body language in the meantime, the video on the science of the perfect handshake below explains what you need to know.

            6. Complement Your Verbals With Hand Gestures

            As you know by now, confident communication involves so much more than simply smiling more or sounding like you know what you’re talking about. What you do with your hands can be particularly influential in how others perceive you, whether you’re fidgeting with an object, clenching your fists, hiding your hands in your pockets, or calmly gesturing to emphasize important points you’re discussing.

            Social psychology researchers have found that “iconic gestures”—hand movements that appear to be meaningfully related to the speaker’s verbal content—can have profound impacts on listeners’ information retention. In other words, people are more likely to engage with you and remember more of what you said when you speak with complementary hand gestures instead of just your voice.[9]

            Advertising

            Further research on hand gestures has shown that even your choice of the left or right hand for gesturing can influence your ability to clearly convey information to listeners, which supports the notion that more confident body language is readily achievable through greater self-awareness and deliberate nonverbal actions.[10]

            Final Takeaways

            Developing better posture, enhancing your facial expressiveness, and practicing hand gestures can vastly improve your communication with other people. At first, it will be challenging to consciously practice nonverbal behaviors that many of us are accustomed to performing daily without thinking about them.

            If you ever feel discouraged, however, remember that there’s no downside to consistently putting in just a little more time and effort to increase your bodily awareness. With the tips and strategies above, you’ll be well on your way to embracing more confident body language and amplifying others’ perceptions of you in no time.

            More Tips on How to Develop a Confident Body Language

            Featured photo credit: Maria Lupan via unsplash.com

            Reference

            Read Next