Someone once said that “a comfort zone is a beautiful place, but nothing ever grows there.”
There is a lot of truth in those 12 words. How are we supposed to get better when we’re stuck where we are? I think we’re all guilty of this, and many stay stuck because of it. But there are plenty who escape it… and you can be one of those who do.
This applies to your career more than almost anything.
Many people know that they’re capable of more, but they question themselves and their abilities. They’re content with where they are, don’t have an incentive to get better, and/or worry about the “what ifs.”
The “what ifs” are an extremely dangerous part of the comfort zone argument. Most people look at the negative “what ifs,” but think little about the positive ones.
- What if you learn something new?
- What if you find out what you’re really meant to do?
- What if you get a big increase in salary and you’re at a job that you’re extremely happy at?
Don’t let your parents or your friends talk you out of it. What’s the worst that could happen when you apply to a job that you want, but it’s something that is above anything you’ve ever done? Your phone doesn’t ring? There will always be more jobs that you can apply to. Someone will see your potential.
So, how can you get out of your comfort zone? Avoid making these six excuses, and make some changes to your outlook and strategies:
1. The “I Don’t Completely Hate My Job” Excuse
You may not completely hate your job, but you can love something more. If you like your company, but want more, see if there are any other opportunities within your organization. If you don’t like your company, but like the type of position you’re in, seek similar opportunities with other companies.
2. The “There Aren’t Any Jobs Out There Anyway” Excuse
You aren’t the first person looking to advance your career and you certainly won’t be the last. Contrary to what the media and others would have you believe, there are jobs out there, and there is one waiting for you. There is an HR Manager out there who is waiting for someone like you to apply. How will you know if you never look, and how will you know if you never apply?
3. The “I Don’t Know How I Would Even Get Started” Excuse
Go at it from the mentality of someone who is unemployed. What would you do if you didn’t have a job and needed one right away? Have your resume redone so you have a much better shot at landing an interview. Use job boards, such as Indeed.com and Linkup.com to search for jobs. Post your resume to sites like CareerBuilder and Monster. And apply for jobs you find right away, don’t procrastinate, because others aren’t.
4. The “I’m Shy, and I’m Afraid to Go on Interviews” Excuse
You got your current or last position, right? In that process, you obviously made a great impression on them for them to hire you. You can make a good impression on another employer, as well. Know that you are valuable, that you have something to offer them, and show them why they should hire you. After all, they thought enough of you to call you in for an interview. You spoke to them on paper through your resume and now you just have to represent yourself and your achievements.
Always prepare for your interview by researching the company. Make sure that you dress appropriately, and don’t overdo it on makeup, perfume, or cologne. Bring extra copies of your resume, and bring a list of your references. And make sure to show up on time! Fashionably late won’t work with your interviewer.
5. The “What If I Disappoint?” Excuse
Many people are afraid of disappointing others, whether it be an employer, family members, friends, etc. You are human — you are going to make mistakes, and most people will accept that. But just like I mentioned earlier, this is another “what if,” and a negative one, at that. Don’t let it be “What if I disappoint?” Instead, turn it into “What if I succeed and become an inspiration for others to do what I thought was the impossible?”
6. The “I Tried Before and Didn’t Get Anywhere” Excuse
Don’t let one bad experience scare you out of other experiences. The job market is constantly changing, and you will always find new opportunities. New jobs are posted daily. Don’t give up on your goal or on yourself. You will achieve it if you put your mind to it.
It could take a day, it could take a month or it could take a year, but constant effort will not only lead to results, but it will show you that you can get out of that comfort zone. When you see the results of your efforts, it will all be worth it. It may be uncomfortable for a little while, but you’re probably already going to be uncomfortable whether you do it or not, so why not go for it? Even if something doesn’t come out of it, you’ll know that you gave it your all. At that point, you can continue to work at it or re-evaluate your goal and work toward something else. There’s always something you can do. Either way, you’ll come out of it with a lot of new lessons.
Don’t complain, don’t let a lack of results discourage you, and don’t let your friends and family tell you that you “can’t,” because you can. Surround yourself with positive people who will lift you up, not drag you down. That negative mentality can easily get into your head and make you feel like you aren’t worthy. You are worthy. Only you can make the decision to get out of your comfort zone. I’d argue that there isn’t a good reason to stay there. Your comfort zone isn’t worthy of you staying there.
You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Go for it!
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Come Recommended.