Have you ever ridden a roller coaster? Do you remember standing in line watching the cars whizz past with all the screaming passengers? As you got closer to getting on the ride how did you feel? Scared? Nervous? Anxious? How about right after you strapped yourself into the seat and started to climb the first hill, listening to the clack, clack, clack, as the train climbs the track? At this point I am usually thinking something like “Why the hell did I let (insert friend’s name here) talk me into this?”

monks_roller_coasterHow did you feel after the conclusion of the ride? Alive? Enthusiastic? Exhilarated? Ever wonder why a roller coaster seems like such a bad idea beforehand and so amazing afterwards?

The answer is your comfort zone. 

You stretched your comfort zone and it was rewarding.

Many of us leave the amusement park and miss the lesson.  We go home, sit on the coach, and say things like “ I want to have a better relationship, I want to make more money, I want to start a business, I want to have more time, I want to be healthier, etc.”  We hope and wish for these things to happen, but don’t do anything different in our day to day lives, and nothing changes. One of my mentors always said, If you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always got.

Ever wonder why nothing seems to change?

The answer is you’re sitting inside your comfort zone.  Its cozy, comfortable, unrewarding, unfulfilling, dull, bland, and boring.

Everything you have in your life right now is a function of your comfort zone and what you are comfortable with.  If you want a more rewarding life you need to get outside your comfort zone again.  You had to get out of your comfort zone at some time in the past to grow enough to have what you have right now.  You don’t believe me?

Think about your first day on your job. You were probably nervous and uncomfortable.  You were in a new environment, with new people, learning new things.  You asked silly questions.  You made mistakes.  You were outside your comfort zone.  Over time, you stretched your comfort zone enough to become comfortable with your job.  Your comfort zone has grown to include your job, that’s why you can do it today without really thinking about it.

I wanted a meaningful relationship with a good partner.  However, I did not like asking a woman for her phone number, even if we hit it off.  I was scared of rejection.  So scared, often I would miss great potential relationships, because the fear of rejection was bigger to me than the possibility of a wonderful relationship.  It was way outside my comfort zone to ask my wife for her phone number when we first met at a party 16 years ago.  I remember being so nervous and worried about what she would say when I asked her.  I ALMOST DIDN’T DO IT.  Thank God I did.  That was a huge moment in my life.  My family would not exist today had I stayed in my comfort zone.  After I got her number, I felt like I could take on the world, just like getting off a roller coaster.

If you want a chance then take one!

The reality is if you want your life to be awesome you must get out of your comfort zone every day.  Take chances, be bold.  That’s what awesome people do. They consistently look for opportunities to grow (stretch their comfort zone) and it leads to an awesome rewarding life. Awesome people have the same fears as you. They just take action anyway.

How can you implement this into your daily life?

When you find yourself talking yourself out of doing something, you should immediately do exactly what you are talking yourself out of. You will feel a thousand times better, empowered, exhilarated and fulfilled if you do this. That’s an awesome life!

Here are some examples:

You’re at a book store. (hey I still go to them) You find yourself looking at the New Age/Spirituality section and find a book that really resonates with you. You have never read or bought a book like this before so you keep looking over your shoulder to make sure no one you know sees you looking at this type of book.  You’re not sure if you should buy it, especially because the cashier will see what book you’re buying and judge you.  You start to put the book down and start telling yourself you won’t be able to read it, don’t have the time to read it, and only weirdos buy this sort of stuff anyway. You just met the edge of your comfort zone.  Look the cashier right in the eye and smile as you BUY THE BOOK RIGHT NOW!

maxresdefaultYou’re at the gym and see a schedule for a yoga class that looks cool.  You have never done yoga but are interested in it.  You’re not in the best shape.  Maybe yoga can help.  Suddenly you get nervous, and start telling yourself, “I can’t go to this class, its too early in the morning, I’m too fat, and I don’t have any yoga gear, plus the people in the class will laugh at me because I don’t know what I’m doing.”  You just met the edge of your comfort zone. TAKE YOGA THE CLASS!

A friend calls you and invites you to look at a home based business.  After seeing the information you get excited and start up with the company.  You start dreaming of all the possibilities of extra money, more free time, and new friendships.  The next day you wake up and your first thought is “What the hell did I get myself into”.  You call your best friend and ask for their opinion and they tell you its a silly idea and you will not make any money.  You start having serious doubts.  You just met the edge of your comfort zone.  CONTINUE WITH YOUR BUSINESS.

comfortzone1Life begins outside your comfort zone. Fufillmenent, happiness, and youthfulness are all a funciton on how often you stretch your comfort zone. Everything awesome in my life has been a direct result of stretching my comfort zone. The more intense and resistant my emotional reaction has been to the challenge the more rewarding the outcome.

Awesome people push their comfort zone consistently. You can be awesome too.  You deserve an awesome life. You are not here to live a life of mediocrity.  An awesome life comes from simply doing something that makes you uncomfortable each day. Do something that makes you uncomfortable today.  You life will get more awesome, I promise you.