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  • Writer's pictureAnnette Nilsson

Have you ever touched...

the edges of your comfort zone? I mean reached your limits, got to the point where it got scary, uncomfortable?

In the interview with Emma Robson, I was asked about my most daring moment. And it was when I bought this young horse, and did not know what I did not know. So daring involves a bit of 'just doing it', or thinking 'I can do it, and let's see'. It has an element of adventure, and a bit of courage. But daring is not taking risks. It is being aware of the risks, making an evaluation in terms of 'what can go wrong', and though being aware of the risks, taking the step, decision anyway.

If we dare to do something which we otherwise would not do, we stretch the edges of our comfort zone. We know we enter a new realm, we are aware of a certain lack of competence, but we feel confident that we will somehow manage. So I thought! I had to think again.

We all know by now that personal development or any form of growth happens outside the comfort zone. That does not mean you have to directly jump of that zone. If you do that, it is more likely that you will 'hurt' yourself, a bit like going to the gym after a long break and starting with the really heavy weights. Or like me, getting on an untrained horse for a trail ride, with me ending up being terrified to death, honestly. I took me a year to get that fear under control, I learned a tough lesson.

Instead, it is much better to make a good assessment of the risks, to be honest with yourself about your level of knowledge and competence, and of course to know the where the limits of your personal comfort zone are. The comfort zone wants to be stretched, nice and slow, step by step, like a muscle.

Therefore, it is important to first of all and with great curiosity approach the limits of that zone. What does still feel easy and comfortable, and where do you feel a nervous tingle, in your stomach or your heart rate increases?

If you get to that point, stay for a moment. What exactly gives you this sensation? The thoughts of going one step further? The challenge is to increase the moments of staying in the slightly uncomfortable zone, not going further but not giving up too quickly.

Soon enough, that zone will feel more comfortable, more familiar, and only then, you are ready to take the next step. If you overdo it, f you do not respect your limits, you will fall back more than your initial progress. So, the ego needs to be kept in check, patience and consistency are your best companions in this process, and of course, a coach can be really helpful keeping you motivated, on track, and also keep you from harming yourself.

Let me know if I can support you stretching the comfort zone, I am available for a free 30 minute talk, send me an email for more information.

And if you are interested in the interview with Emma, you find the podcast on Spotify 'Women who dare', Episode 3.

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