Growth happens quickest when you step outside of your comfort zone. This applies to both your professional and personal life, so it’s important to find ways to step outside of it on a regular basis.
I spoke with Andrea Fausett, founder of Mamele, on how to step outside of your comfort zone to maximize your growth and success. Here are the five tips she shared:
Set ambitious goals.
“When making goals, think big. When making progress, think small,” Fausett advises. Goals provide you with something tangible and measurable to work towards, as well as give you a way to track your progress. Setting goals is one of the easiest ways to start to expand your horizons and leave your comfort zone. Big audacious goals are the desired end result, but it’s the small steps you take every single day along the way that get you there. For the best results, start with one goal, and choose three actions you can take each day to work towards that goal. “When you start building momentum through small wins daily, that is when you’ll see the huge results. Small wins lead to big results every single time,” says Fausett.
Cultivate a success mindset.
It’s important to cultivate a success mindset and overcome the limiting beliefs and fears that are holding you back. “The difference between someone who is doing something that you want to do and you sitting there not doing it is fear,” says Fausett. “It’s fear of overcoming those limiting beliefs and self-doubts. The person that’s doing what you want to overcame those, so if you want to do it, you’ve got to start overcoming them as well.”
“Your thoughts are your beliefs, your beliefs create your actions, and your actions create your results. So if you want different results, you’ve got to dial all the way back to the beginning and start with your thoughts,” Fausett advises. This is true for both positive and negative thoughts, so it’s important to be mindful of your thought patterns and be sure that you aren’t trapping yourself in a negative spiral.
“It’s not all or nothing, it just has to be something,” says Fausett. “You can’t do it all, and that’s okay. There’s always one small thing you can do, even if that’s only for five minutes.” Getting yourself to do sometime even for that short amount of time helps you start to build up your willpower and discipline. You’re showing yourself that you’re committed to making progress and achieving your goals, and those small steps will start to add up to something much bigger.
Set your environment up for success.
Your environment can either help or hinder your path to success, so it’s important to create an environment that supports your progress and growth. One way to do this is so start by simply by removing factors that make it easy to make excuses. For example, if you want to workout every morning before work, prep things the night before. Lay out your gym clothes, charge your headphones, fill your water bottle, and cue up your favorite playlist. This way, when morning comes, half the work has already been done, and you simply need to get dressed and head to the gym.
Fausett says that this helps you create the motivation and discipline that you might feel like you’re lacking. “Ask yourself, how can I make it as easy as possible to make the bad decisions harder and the good decisions easier?” she advises. “You can create your own motivation and discipline simply by prepping your environment for success.”
Be prepared for challenges.
You’re going to experience many ups and downs as you step outside of your comfort zone – that’s all part of the journey. Being prepared to handle and move beyond challenges will ensure that when you’re faced with a setback it just become a minor bump in the road rather than a stop sign. “You need to be prepared for what you’re going to do when you’re faced with a challenge and discouragement comes knocking at your door,” says Fausett. “Take a moment to ask yourself why you’re feeling discouraged and then come up with a game plan to move forward.” Keep thinking about the situation, walk through what led to you the point where you faced the challenge, then work on creating a process to put yourself back on a path to success.
The only way to truly leave your comfort zone behind is to take actions every day to step outside of it. As Fausett says, “the only way to not fail is to not quit,” so get started today and challenge yourself to keep moving forward.