Bookmark and Share Email this page Email Print this page Print Pin It
Feed Feed

Nov 19, 201209:35 AMForward HR

with Diane Hamilton and Nilesh Patel

Step outside your comfort zone

Step outside your comfort zone

“Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.” – Brian Tracy

When is the last time you pushed yourself out of your comfort zone?

If you are a new leader, you may be answering, “Every day.” Those who are more seasoned may have to stop and think about the last time they felt awkward or uncomfortable.

When it comes to leadership, I think it’s good to push ourselves past the point of the known and familiar to the unknown and unfamiliar – to make ourselves a bit vulnerable. There have been many instances throughout my career when I have done this. In each one, I have grown the most. I’m not saying it is easy. In fact, particularly if you like control, this can be very difficult. I think the trick is to recognize the challenge for what it is, make a conscious decision, and learn from whatever path you have chosen (despite the outcome).

It is also important to encourage those around us to push beyond their comfort zone. It’s easier to stay still … it feels safer … you’re less exposed. But innovation and change come from the push. Learning and growth come from the push.


Next time you’re considering whether to take the step (or leap) and move outside your comfort zone, consider the following questions:

  1. What really excites me about this?
  2. What are my biggest concerns?
  3. What is stopping me?
  4. What am I afraid of?
  5. What is the risk if I move forward (i.e., move outside my comfort zone)?
  6. What is the risk if I don’t?
  7. How would I have to change my thinking in order to do that?
  8. What is it that I’m resisting about this situation?
  9. What assumptions am I making? To what extent are they true? How can I reframe them?
  10. What strengths and skills will I bring to this situation (thereby increasing the chance of success)?

Sign up for the free IB Update – your weekly resource for local business news, analysis, voices, and the names you need to know. Click hereIf you are not already a subscriber to In Business magazine, be sure to sign up for our monthly print edition here.

Add your comment:
Bookmark and Share Email this page Email Print this page Print Pin It
Feed Feed

About This Blog

 Diane Hamilton, PCC, SPHR, is the owner and founder of Calibra, a coaching and consulting firm focused on maximizing leadership potential. Nilesh Patel is the principal attorney of the Mahadev Law Group, LLC, which focuses on human resources and employment law issues for organizations. He can be reached at Both bloggers are members of Wisconsin SHRM, which is dedicated to being the state leader in HR management and the premier source for HR expertise and resources. More information can be found at You can follow the WI SHRM blog at



Atom Feed Subscribe to the Forward HR Feed »

Recent Posts