Welcome to Stepping Outside My Comfort Zone, 02.2019. In the spring of 2018, I began writing a post on the last day of each month about activities I was doing that had me stepping outside my comfort zone. Some of my experiences have been giant leaps while others have been baby steps beyond what is familiar and comfortable.
Recently came across an article on Forbes.com entitled “Overcoming Fear: 10 Ways to Step Outside Your Comfort Zone”. In it members of Forbes Coaches Council talk about the mental tricks they use for stepping outside of their comfort zone. Some of these are suggestions for or applicable to taking chances and overcoming fear in your career but can be easily applied to doing the same in life.
The council suggests doing small activities to challenge yourself. Most of what I share in this series is just that. Small things. Another suggestion is “When trying something new, enlist a trusted friend, colleague or mentor with whom you can share your concerns. Ask them how they got through their fear of stepping outside of their comfort zone.” And that’s where you guys come in!! I look to you for support and to share ways you are overcoming fear of trying new experiences in your life. So, thank you!
Now, let’s see where this experiment took me in February.
Stepping Outside My Comfort Zone, 02.2019
I say it a lot on my blog, and in person, but it bears repeating. There are no coincidences in life. We hadn’t been to church together in several months, when PC and I went a couple of weekends ago. Inside the weekly bulletin was an invitation to a One Sisterhood Women’s Event planned for 02.22.2019. The title of the program, “Crafted”, immediately caught my eye. You know how I enjoy a good craft! But so did the activity planned for after the service…creating your own vision board! Right up my alley.
I knew this was meant for me so I circled the date in my agenda and on the calendar app on my phone and made plans to attend.
What to Wear?
The evening of the event came and the weather was dreadful. Had kind of wanted to wear a cute skirt but decided against that with the forecast of 50 mph wind gusts, and a chance of a rain-snow mix. Warmth outweighed cute. Opted for Loft Outlet cords, J. Crew turtleneck, Old Navy cardi, Walmart scarf, and Amazon leopard flats. All my favorite stores were represented except Target.
Grabbed my Bible and I was on my way.
The guest speaker was Wendy Treat. She spoke on the ‘ingredients that go into the recipe for a yummy life.’ She says that church teaches us how to mix all the ingredient into our best life. These are the non negotiables or required ingredients for that life.
- Be real. Examine yourself and rejoice in who you are. Galatians 6:3-4: 3 “If anyone thinks they are important when they aren’t, they’re fooling themselves. 4 Each person should test their own work and be happy with doing a good job and not compare themselves with others.“
- Be a giver. Speak an encouraging word. Pour sugar into yourself so that it pours out on others. Luke 6:38: 38 “Give, and it will be given to you. A good portion—packed down, firmly shaken, and overflowing—will fall into your lap. The portion you give will determine the portion you receive in return.”
- Worship on purpose. Life on earth is a bed of roses – full of thorns. Worship God from your heart. Psalms 34:1: “I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise will always be in my mouth.“
- Learn to live in peace. (Peace – my word of the year – crazy, huh?) God’s love doesn’t change but our sweetness changes when we live God’s way. Philippians 4:11: 11 “I’m not saying this because I need anything, for I have learned how to be content in any circumstance.“
- Be faithful to church. Church is the secret sauce to the recipe. Even when you aren’t feeling it, just show up and put a smile on your face and say yes to Jesus.
The stage was set with the cutest decorations…all kinds of craft-related supplies covered in glitter and sparkle.
There was a music service and then Wendy Treat spoke for about an hour.
Treat was animated and down-to-earth and genuine. Her message was so good. I couldn’t take notes fast enough!
Creating a Vision for Our Life
After the service, we were invited to create a vision board representing our dreams for our future. The tables were set with lots of craft supplies to use to decorate our boards. And dozens of magazines that we could clip images from to represent our visions.
There were bottles of water and pots of coffee with all the trimmings…whipped cream, flavored creamers, spices. And on each table were lighted Sterno cans we could use to make chocolate-graham cracker-marshmallow s’mores.
I only began work on my vision board before it was time to go home. The weather was so miserable – rainy, cold and so very windy – that I was afraid to stay too long with a 20 mile drive home.
I didn’t know anyone when I arrived for the presentation. Sat by myself for the service and then just wandered looking for a table with an empty seat where I could work on my vision board. I happened to sit across from 2 very lovely ladies as God would have it. Marisol is a retired art teacher (I was an art education major) and her niece, Michelle is a nurse who would like to become a librarian. The gals invited me to take a picture with them in front of the photo backdrop.
We even exchanged phone numbers and today, I met with Marisol for lunch! She is going to be out of town for several months but I am hopeful that we can grow our new friendship when she returns home. We are both the oldest child in our families, Aries (born in April), art ed majors, ballet students (I am a former student and she is still taking lessons now), we both paint, draw and try to eat healthfully. Marisol writes and I try to! She has a 2 year-old and an 8 year-old grandchild and so do I. Her father was a pharmacist and mine was a pharmacologist! She has 2 children and was a single mom, I have 2 children and was a single mom.
All of this was so outside my comfort zone. Going to the One Sisterhood service. And going alone, at that. Making new friends. Working on my vision board. Speaking with Wendy Treat! Look at the wonderful things that happened when I stretched myself a little!
What have you done lately that found you outside your comfort zone? Would love to hear in a comment below or write up a blog post and link-up with us. The link-up will be open for a few weeks. We can inspire each other to over come our fears and S T R E T C H ourselves.
With the first of the month approaching, things are going to get busy on the blog. Hope you will run by when you have a few moments to visit. Happy March 1st to you! And thank you for stopping by.