For learning, take a lesson from a baby – get out of your comfort zone. How does a baby learn to walk? She takes baby steps. First, she learns to stand, then bounce, then hang on to something and take a step. Eventually, she lets go and take another step. Then she falls on her bottom. Maybe she sits there for a while – it’s comfortable after all. Finally, she gets back up and tries again. She keeps stretching her skill level until she succeeds.
If you want to develop a talent, build a relationship, or advance in your career, you have to keep stretching, too. Once you learn a skill, you become comfortable performing it. The baby was there when she was sitting on her bottom. She found it easy to manage, but soon she noticed it was insufficient for her success goals. She wasn’t learning, or growing, or walking. So she got back up.
The baby discovered the magic of learning comes from stretching out of your comfort zone. She learned to use her comfort zone mainly as a resting spot between stretching. Think about how often you stretch out of your comfort zone:
- When you go to a meeting, do you always sit in the same place with the same people?
- When was the last time you learned a new computer skill?
- Do you perform mundane tasks the same way every day?
- Are your greetings and goodbyes getting monotonous?
- Do you volunteer to do only what you already know how to do?
Like the baby, who continually ventured out of her comfort zone and learned to walk, you’ll want to keep stretching to learn, to grow, to succeed.
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