Pushing yourself outside your comfort zone is a difficult, but necessary, step in growing your career. Here’s how to stretch yourself and reach new heights in 2017.
- When you push yourself outside your comfort zone, there will be a voice in your head that tries to talk you out of it. Don’t listen to it. Just keep pushing yourself to see it through.
- If you are feeling nervous, ask yourself, “if this was not causing me anxiety, would it be something I would want to do?” If the answer is yes, then keep going. Don’t let nerves keep you stuck where you are.
- If you are truly paralyzed by fear, set a small goal first. For example, tell yourself you can leave the networking event as soon as you have had three meaningful conversations with strangers.
- When you achieve your small goal, set a new one and add to it. At the next networking event, stay until you have had four or more meaningful conversations.
- Let’s face it. Being accountable to yourself stinks, and it is why most people fail. Get yourself a coach or mentor. It is a lot easier to follow through and be accountable when someone else knows your goals.
- Do you always part your hair on the right? Wear your watch on the left? Eat lunch at the same deli? Break a pattern that has nothing to do with your career to get you in the mode of trying new things.
- When someone asks you to do something that is outside your routine, just say, “YES,” (as long as it is safe, reasonable and legal). Do it once, and it will get easier the next time.
- If you are always taking on new projects and responsibilities- But never getting any further in your current job- discover the liberating power of declining unreasonable requests. Put the extra time and effort into something that will get you ahead.
- Do you rarely speak up in team meetings? Make a point to ask one questions at every meeting for the next month. If you talk a lot, make it a point to listen more than you speak for a month.
- Very few people enjoy public speaking. In fact, it’s consistently listed as a top ten American fear. Join Toastmasters or take a class. If you can tackle public speaking, you can tackle anything.