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Audrey Marlene's YES Ezine
February 15, 2009

Stepping Away From Your Comfort Zone

February 2009

"Man like every other animal is by nature indolent. If nothing spurs him on, then he will hardly think, and will behave from habit like an automaton." - Albert Einstein

I often take a lesson from a hibiscus potted plant I once purchased. I was so excited to see the first flower and enjoyed watching it grow. After some months, I noticed there were fewer and fewer flowers and began to get concerned that my plant was about to die. I added fertilizer, placed it at a different angle to receive more sunlight, and made sure it had sufficient water but it was as if it stopped growing. It seemed the growth was stunted and the health of the leaves and limbs looked unhealthy. I knew what a healthy hibiscus plant looked like and mine was not.

One day my gardener advised me to remove it from the pot it was planted in and transplant it to a larger pot or to put it directly into the ground to which I apprehensively did. Within weeks I began to see new buds. Within months, the plant grew in width and height and every day it gave me at least 3 flowers. I observed how beautifully the hibiscus flourished in its new environment.

Just like the hibiscus planted in a small pot, our growth can become stunted and we will only perform at a level of mediocrity when we refuse to step outside of your comfort zones. Let’s face it…we as humans are often fearful of any kind of change, large or small. By nature be are creatures of habit and we grow accustomed to routines no matter how uncomfortable they may be. When discomforts arise in life a decision to see a therapist is often the solution for many. Some consult with therapists for many years and still cannot resolve the uneasiness they feel. Oftentimes the best therapy we can have is to step outside of our accustomed environments and move past out routine, stagnated way of living.

In a stagnant economy where there’s a lot of financial uneasiness, moving away from your accustomed habits can be the answer you’ve been looking for. Learning to break the monotony and doing something different can be the change you’ve been longing to see. Life happens and it’s up to us to use the things that happen to bring about positive outcomes. No matter how bad a situation may seem, there is always something constructive to be learned. It only takes a new mental angle.

In my experience, moving past my limited patterns of living and taking a step forward or laterally have been my most productive and rewarding experiences. Just like the hibiscus, our roots will have more room to grow and blossom, taking on new foliage in ways we could never imagine. That's how it is when you step away from the comforts of your existence – you will flourish and morph into an incredible human being capable of performing at an optimal level.

Here’s How to Start:

  • First examine your life to measure your progression over the years. Are you still doing the same thing you’ve been doing day in and day out. If so, are you at the top of your game? Have you achieved satisfaction at what you do? If not, this is a strong indication that you need to take some steps away from your comfort zone.
  • Ask yourself what it is you want to feel. Remember it is a feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction that we strive for.
  • Once you have determined how you want to feel, decide what it would take to achieve it. Speak with a coach or mentor to get some insight into your possibilities.
  • List your fears. Is it a physical limitation? Is it your emotional or mental? Be honest with yourself and write down what you feel afraid of. Ask yourself, what am I afraid will happen to me if I do …….? If you recognize you need help seek the help you need. Why put it off any longer?
  • Begin to try new things in your life. Remember this lifestyle pattern you’ve been locked into is due to close-mindedness or fear. In order to break out of this you must be willing to try something new. When you develop the open-mindedness to try something out of the ordinary you are starting to move past you comfort zones and building your muscle for change. Then the answers will be revealed.

    To Your Success
    Audrey Marlene

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