Just a few days ago I read a posting in LinkedIn which said that uncomfort zone isn’t something we should aim for. The argument, in this posting, was that we shouldn’t try to make ourselves feel uncomfortable on purpose. For example, no-one enjoys walking when they have a rock in their shoe. I don’t think you can really compare physical uncomfort to uncomfort of pushing yourself to do something you haven’t tried before. I can honestly and proudly say: I’m an uncomfort zone junkie!
“I’m an uncomfort zone junkie!”
I’m that kind of a person that I rarely say ‘No’ to anything. This means that I often find myself in situations that are out of my comfort zone. In these situations, I feel nervous and I’m not sure what to expect. But in a weird way, this is the excitement I really enjoy. Especially the feeling you have afterwards: You survived, realized you can do it and you know that next time you will do even better.
My experience is that pushing myself to do something that doesn’t feel so comfortable, has taught me the most. These situations have provided me professional growth, confidence and understanding what skills I need to develop and what are my strengths. This acknowledgment has helped me understand what skills I can count on in difficult situations, which will carry me through no matter what.
I believe that we need these uncomfortable situations in order to grow professionally. If you think of situations or experiences in your past, which ones are the most valuable ones? Do you think of moments when you did your basic job and felt that everything was in your control? Or do you think of moments when you exceeded your expectations and did something new? I bet that majority of you is thinking of a moment when they first felt a bit uncertain and uncomfortable but survived the situation, felt proud of themselves and realized there is a lot more they are capable of doing!
“we need these uncomfortable situations in order to grow professionally”
I challenge you all to push yourself in the coming months, try something new. Something that feels a bit uncomfortable. I can guarantee the feeling afterwards, when you have exceeded yourself is worth it. I am lucky, that in Agile Search I get to challenge myself daily and the best part is, I am encouraged to do so. I am provided with new opportunities constantly and in many cases, I am out of my comfort zone. The best part is that I know I have my team to support me.
In recruitment processes, candidates face the same question: should I stay in my old job and do what I already know OR should I try something different. Changing a job is always risky and you can’t be completely sure what to expect. On the other hand, there is the option that it is just what you needed. I’m not saying you should jump from one position to another, but to be open minded to other options as well. At least for me, job changes have been the biggest teachers, in a good way.