Stepping off the Ledge (Leaving Your Comfort Zone)
When I started my business, Leverage U many years ago, it was only after several years of battling self-doubt and the limiting belief that I was too young, too inexperienced, and that no one would listen to anything I had to say. Only after I finally slayed those dragons was I able to push off into the unknown, to step off the ledge of comfort so to speak, and to start moving towards the fulfillment of my dreams.
Since that fateful day in 1997 when I finally took the plunge, I have repeatedly taken steps to expand my comfort zone: I have written and published several books, returned to school to obtain my Masters Degree, even traveled to France for the first time last year to speak at an academic conference of leaders in the field of psychology; yet the battle has been much the same as it was back then. I still combat self-doubt, and the fear of rejection or judgement. I think this is true for most of us, isn't it? Some of us face those dragons and slay them easily; for others, it isn't as simple as one quick battle. Rather, it is a series of battles that culminate in either a colossal victory or a staggering defeat.
Toward the end of 2014, I met with a dear friend and joint-venture colleague and we reviewed the areas in our lives in which we needed to expand our comfort zones. We then made a commitment to each other to keep ourselves accountable as we move forward into 2015 with a view towards stepping out into the fearsome unknown beyond our comfort zones. One of those commitments I made was to start blogging again, as well as to revive my dormant radio show. I also have been working on a couple of projects for about two years or more now, and I have decided that this is the year to take them from the gestation stage to birthing. Yikes! Even writing that down with the intention of making it public feels scary!
And yet - in the last few months, I have watched as others around me have put themselves out there with apparent ease (I know it was likely scary for them too, but they did it anyway), and they have been met with support, encouragement, and praise - and it occurs to me that much of my worrying may be for nothing. I believe it was Mark Twain who said, "Worry and fear are interest paid in advance on something you will never own." Why not then push through the deceitful feelings that only exist to hold us back, and see what kind of magic lays beyond the comfort zone?
Don't get me wrong. I'm still scared. Witless. But I'm taking it one step at a time. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, right? So here we go. I'm stepping off the ledge. Can't wait to see where the road takes me. (I'll keep you posted...)
To be continued...