by Sue Stockdale
Change something every day
It may be as simple as sitting in a different chair at home, or moving your desk slightly to get a new perspective. It keeps you on your toes and gets you used to change.
Consider what is your greatest fear
Write down what is your greatest fear at work e.g. doing a presentation to the Board of Directors, meeting new people and then not remembering their names, being made redundant, looking stupid in front of colleagues etc. Then ask yourself – What is the worst that could happen if that situation occurred? – How would I overcome this? If you are able to think through a situation ahead of time and find a potential solution it makes it less scary. That’s what we did prior to our expedition to the North Pole.
Accept that fear is in all of us
Once you acknowledge that everyone has fears and it’s a natural part of life, you can look at them differently. Think about how you can make fear a positive thing that works for you. For example, it might cause you to do more prep for that presentation, or create a way of remembering people’s names.
Change the word you use from fear to curiosity
Whilst fear may bring on one type of emotion, try using the word curiosity instead. This can open you up the desire to gain understanding of something you have no knowledge or experience of, and is often associated with anticipation or enthusiasm.
Look for a physical challenge
Many people enjoy stepping out their comfort zone by embarking on a physical activity such as rock climbing or trekking. Make a commitment to try out a new activity this year that you have not done before.
Relax, and reflect
Stepping out your comfort zone does not always have to be about activity. For some people the challenge might be to slow down, relax and take time for yourself. Sit and read a magazine for half an hour, or switch off the radio and see how you cope with silence.
Don’t be on your own
Find a way to share your fears with others because by doing so shows you are human and vulnerable. This takes courage but also can help build rapport with others. Post a comment or reply to this blog and share what you are going to do to step out of your comfort zone this year.
Sue Stockdale is a coach with LJA Learning and Development, author of five business books and the first British women to ski to the Magnetic North Pole.