Are You Letting Your Comfort Zone Limit You?

On the edge of a cliffBeing risk-averse. Avoiding mistakes. Having a fear of failure.

All of the above seem to feed that same place that causes people to retreat to their comfort zones. By staying in that safe, warm spot, there’s nothing happening with the career path. That is a problem whether you are looking to change careers, get a promotion, or even stay current in your existing role.

The reality is: guarding against making mistakes may seem like the safe path, but it carries its own risks. By sticking only with what you know, you not only miss out on opportunities, but you ultimately will fall further and further behind as the ever-changing world moves forward.

Pushing the boundaries of your comfort zone doesn’t always entail taking huge gambles, like starting your own business or taking on a large project at work. Sometimes it’s as simple as learning a new skill that can put you on the cutting edge of your field.

I had a recent conversation with a friend in photography, and she was very excited about a new technique she tried out with her work. “Melissa,” she said, “you wouldn’t believe how well it worked! It’s taking my photography to a whole new level.”

Was it a risk? Certainly, it was — she was experimenting with a new technique with clients whom she never had shot before. It could have been a disaster, which would have been frustrating and could have affected the entire shoot for her. But she knew how it was supposed to work, she took the chance, and the results were amazing!

What about you? Are you trying new things to be where you want to be in your career, or are you letting your comfort zone limit you? What’s feeding those choices?

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