Growth -- personal growth and professional growth -- is all about change -- stretching yourself beyond your limits, trying new things, embracing new ways of doing things and adapting to new circumstances.
Make it a point this week to LOOK FOR opportunities to step out of your comfort zone and jump back on a growth curve. Accept the idea that you may open yourself up to risk, to making mistakes and even "embarrassing" yourself, but step out of your comfort zone anyway. Growth is all about falling down, getting back up again AND learning something new.
Consider these ideas for stepping out of your comfort zone this week:
• Volunteer or be aware of opportunities to speak in front of a group of people. Throw your personality at others in a setting that you have a bit of control over.
• Take a different route to work this week. You may happen upon something or someone new that has meaning to you.
• Say "NO" to something that you would normally accept -- Use the time to take care of something more important.
• Speak up in a group situation -- share your thoughts, your ideas, your opinions -- the impact on the topic at hand COULD be significant.
• Attend a "networking" event that you would normally avoid. Take the opportunity to meet new people and possibly spark a new business relationship that could lead to something "big" for you.
• Leave work one hour earlier and use the time to spend with a family member. Surprise your kids at an event or treat your spouse to a surprise dinner out.
• Force yourself to get up 30 minutes earlier this week. Use the time to plan your day or read inspirational material.
• Turn off the news, give your newspaper to your neighbor. Remove yourself from the negative energy that seems to pervade the media these days.
• Ask for the business. No more dancing around this week. Close the prospect meeting by asking for their business.
Make your own list of ideas for stepping out of your comfort zone. Reflect back on these things at the end of the week and consider their implications going forward. You may end up lighting a fuse that ignites a growth spurt.