Leaving your comfort zone for personal development
Leaving your comfort zone for personal development

Outside of your comfort zone is the risk zone, where danger lies, and the chances of failure are high. But how long can you be a coward and hide from the whole world? It's time to get up the courage and take the first step towards success.

In life, we are constantly faced with situations when we need to change something or even just do something unusual and new, but the fear of the unknown often prevents us from acting. Our inner voice begins to convince us that everything is not so bad, but who knows if it will be good if we start changing our lives.

There are internal boundaries within which we feel safe only because everything is familiar and familiar to us there. It is this inner framework that forces us to hold on to relationships that have outlived their usefulness, to jobs that do not bring us satisfaction, and even to the usual way of thinking. These inner frames form our comfort zone.

The comfort zone is an area of living space that gives a sense of comfort and safety. As a rule, the comfort zone is determined by the habitual patterns of behavior, to which one is used to it, it is also comfortable. An established world where everything is familiar, stable and predictable.

Simply put, this is a state in which you feel "at ease". It would seem, what's wrong with comfort and safety? Nothing, except that they greatly complicate the development and mastering of new things. Any teaching and learning is associated with going beyond the boundaries of the comfort zone.

Improving performance
Improving performance

There is a risk zone outside the comfort zone. Reasonable going outside the comfort zone into the risk zone is a necessary condition for personality development. Generally, the younger a person is, the easier and more willing they are to expand their comfort zone. When a healthy person lingers in the comfort zone for a long time and does not make any effort to leave this zone and expand its boundaries, then his development stops, turning into personality degradation.

This formulation very clearly makes us feel the inevitability of overcoming boundaries if we are interested in our own development.

First, we need to figure out how exactly we can understand that we are stuck in a comfort zone. You can understand this by your reaction to any new situation that we have encountered or even just thought about it. The first reaction is likely to be fear. We would like to emphasize that the reaction to new things can be completely different (excitement, curiosity, interest, anxiety), but it is fear that is a destructive feeling and an indicator that one does not want to leave the comfort zone. Further, based on this fear, the person stuck in the comfort zone can choose several behaviors: "run and hide", ignore, protest, resist and try to prevent change, while the path leading to the expansion of the comfort zone implies acceptance and adaptation.


The most important condition for leaving the comfort zone can be considered the realization that we are stuck in it. Without admitting to ourselves that we are stuck in a comfort zone, we cannot get off the ground. It is very important to accept for ourselves the idea that we are stuck here and that we need to break out of the current situation, defining the area of the comfort zone. This is our job, our business, established but not satisfying relationships, the city, the apartment where we live - all this can be our comfort zone, which we are no longer satisfied with, but we are afraid of change and do nothing to change your life.

Don't wait tomorrow
Don't wait tomorrow

Bear in a cramped cage

In one small zoo, a bear was kept in a cramped cage for a long time, so that he could only take 4 steps in one direction, turn around and take 4 steps back. So he walked all day in the cage back and forth. The visitors felt sorry for the bear and said: "How, probably, he would be happy if he managed to be free." As time went on, the zoo began to be repaired, and large spacious enclosures were made for all the animals. They had a lot of greenery, and the bear's enclosure even had a pool. The zoo workers were looking forward to how happy the huge animal would be when it was transferred from a cramped cage to a spacious enclosure. And now the long-awaited day has come. The bear was driven into a tiny transport cage and taken to a new location. Even while in the transport cage, the bear managed to make its obligatory 4 steps back and forth. Finally he was released into a new spacious enclosure. The bear looked around, carefully took a step, another, third, fourth … And then turned and again took 4 steps back. He could not understand that now the bars of the cage, which limited his freedom, exist only in his imagination. But these rods in the memory of the beast turned out to be stronger than the real ones. So the bear still walks in a huge enclosure: 4 steps there and 4 steps back.

That is why the stage of realizing that boundaries exist is so important.

The harsh truth of life
The harsh truth of life

Realizing that we are stuck in a comfort zone, we need to act.

We conditionally divided the program of actions to get out of the comfort zone in our work into five steps and designated them with the abbreviation ZORRO.


1. Problem. The first step in overcoming internal boundaries is to formulate the Objective. That is, we will determine what we want to come to, what result we want to achieve.

Let's say we realize that we are uncomfortable or scared to meet new people. Accordingly, our task will be to get acquainted as much and often as possible in order to make this process familiar, and therefore comfortable.

2. ORM. The next stage is the formulation of the Scope of the planned result. The volume of the planned result (ORR) - specifics, how much and what I plan to get by a certain date based on the results of work on Distance exercises or other commitments in work on myself. As a rule, these are figures, facts or expert judgment. The formulation of the ORM contributes to a clearer and more efficient performance of work (including work on oneself), gives the criteria for performing the exercise and the answer to the question: "How do I know that the exercise has been completed?" (ORM) and prescribing specific steps to achieve it.

How do we know we have expanded our comfort zone? It is clear that the criterion will be calmness when making acquaintances, but this state does not lend itself to "weighing". Therefore, we define the ORM in our case as a specific number of acquaintances per month of work to leave the comfort zone. And let's outline how many people we plan to include in the plan for each day. It is worth noting that it is necessary to gradually increase their number within reasonable limits. Will the planned number of acquaintances lead to a comfortable state? Even if not quite, then in any case, progress will be evident.

Accidents are not accidental. The regularity of life and success
Accidents are not accidental. The regularity of life and success

The main trick in this case is that by switching the focus of attention from the state to the specific work of leaving the comfort zone, we will develop the desired state. The state of comfort will not come by itself; it requires specific work. We will deal with it.

3. Work. The work includes the systematic passage of the planned steps. We have planned certain actions for each day, and now our task is to carry out them. It would be best to write daily progress reports, analyzing results and progress.

4. Work. Repeating a clause is not just an excuse for the double PP in an acronym.

We wanted to highlight two aspects.

Firstly, the fact that Work is the main thing that is required to expand the comfort zone and, accordingly, we devote most of our time to it.

Secondly, the fact that this Work should be carried out consistently and the increase in volumes should be gradual. And this is very important.

The problem with getting out of your comfort zone is that people often try to jump right in to the level they want to reach. For some people this may work, but for most, it will only keep them in their comfort zone, even simply because of the anxiety resulting from trying to "bite off more than they can chew." It is the gradual development and build-up that can lead to the adaptation of the new zone. And you need to understand that the passage of the stages will take some time. Impossible to instantly get used to the new extended zone. We remember that it takes 21 days to fix a new habit. In fact, mastering a new habit is also expanding your comfort zone.

How to learn to take responsibility for your life?
How to learn to take responsibility for your life?

If we are not convinced that we are comfortable with the increasing volume, then we run a high risk of destroying the results of all our work. Therefore, every stage and every step at this stage should become comfortable.

5. Mastering. And finally, the fifth step is a complete Mastering in the new territory. Achievement of ORM. This is actually our new comfort zone.


“My fear of something usually means I have to do it.” - Madonna.

In addition to expanding our comfort zone in a specific area in which we have recognized the need for this, we find it very important to develop the habit of stepping out of our comfort zone in any situation. To do this, you need to learn how to remove fear when meeting a new one. We offer "simulators" for developing such a habit.

Change the little things you do. You can try to take a different route to work, change your daily routine, or go to the store on the other side of the street to buy unusual food. Get to know someone. This is a very good way to get out of your comfort zone. It doesn't matter where and how, as long as the person is new to you.

Find courses or trainings, clubs that interested you, but for some reason (and we already know why) you gave up the idea to go there. Learn what you once wanted to be able to do. Play the balalaika, make rolls, cross-stitch - all these are excellent simulators for expanding your comfort zone.

How to find your calling?
How to find your calling?

Read a book, watch a movie, or listen to music in a genre that is unfamiliar to you. Love rock, listen to jazz. Love melodrama, watch a thriller. Love prose, read poetry. Take an unplanned trip. Do not plan anything, decide everything on the go. You will be able to get a lot of impressions and precisely expand your comfort zone.

Go to a new, unusual place. To an unfamiliar restaurant and to a better yet unfamiliar cuisine.

Dress differently. If you are a girl not used to wearing dresses, buy and wear. Unusual colors, styles and new brands - all this is also in our piggy bank of simulators. If you are a guy who only wore T-shirts and jeans, dress in classics (nice shoes, expensive trousers, stylish light jacket with a bright tie or scarf). Well, at least wear a shirt instead of a T-shirt - for a start, and that's good.

Rearrange furniture. Take a fresh look at your room and try to arrange at least a small rearrangement.

Get on a bus with an unfamiliar route number.

Make your list of simulator situations.

In conclusion - a great metaphor from Gennady Pavlenko, which fully illustrates our behavior when we cling to our comfort zone or, as in this case, to the usual perception of the world.

“Imagine that you are in a tank. You drive forward through life, observing everything that happens through a narrow viewing gap. The very fact that you are a tanker already suggests that life is a war for you. At the same time, you can see through the gap that people are walking around. They just walk. Do not fight. They fall in love, quarrel, work, are lazy, relax, read … How do these people look from a tank? How fools, right? And if the sniper is from the roof? Or infantry to attack? What will they do in their shirts with painted flowers ?! Therefore, it is better to be in the tank. Yes, it's hot. Yes, it shakes. Yes, it's a bit crowded, but no sniper can reach it! And the fact that they do not exist is only a matter of time. And time, by the way, passes, and the tanker ends his life, never having time to start it. Truth? some, at the end of their lives, when there is nothing to lose, they still find the courage to look out of the hatch, but since there is still no time, they dive back into their tank. It's more familiar there.

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