Bursting Out of Your Bubble
“All progress takes place outside the comfort zone.” — Michael John Bobak
Earlier this year, I powered on my laptop and stared into the blank canvas on the Webflow site builder. It was an early Saturday morning, and I had only one task on my index card:
- Design jasongutierrez.me in Webflow
I had been dreading that moment for months. For the previous 4 years, I had used WordPress as the engine for my website, blog, and central hub of my writing. During that time I learned it inside and out.
You could say we were best friends, or at least as close as a man and a series of web applications could be to best friends. I knew WordPress and WordPress knew me.
But all good things eventually come to an end. WordPress had grown too clunky for my “lean” business model. I wanted to re-brand from The Monk Life to my own name, and it just made so much more sense to start fresh on a newer, better application for building websites.
Webflow came struttin’ down the runway and caught my eye, and I knew sooner or later making the switch was inevitable.
So as I stared into the blank canvas, feelings of doubt, dread, and procrastination swirling about, I took a sip of my coffee, put some music on, and got to work.
Half a day later, the foundation for jasongutierrez.me had been laid, and I felt pretty darn satisfied at the work I had accomplished.
On more than a handful of moments throughout the day, I felt extremely frustrated, each time wanting to chuck my phone into the wall and go enjoy the fresh Spring sunshine.
That’s how it feels to step outside of your comfort zone. By definition, it’s uncomfortable. But as Michael John Bobak says, it’s the only place where progress occurs.
If you live inside your comfort zone your entire life, you never have the opportunity to grow, and though it certainly would be “comfortable” you’re extremely limited.
However, the more often you step outside of it, the more it grows along with you.
The obvious benefits of stepping outside of your comfort zone are things like progress, success, skills, knowledge, and self-confidence.
But, one overlooked benefit of growing your comfort zone is that you’re actually MORE comfortable retreating back into it. Your circle of comfort is bigger because you’ve experienced more things that you’re confident you can handle.
I knew next to nothing about Webflow going in, and now, I’ve used my newly learned skills to grow my audience at jasongutierrez.me and to develop a coffee website from scratch — the one that’s launching soon. Without powering through the frustration and discomfort, I’d be stuck in the past, missing out on all the amazing experiences that new horizons have to offer.
The only way to break out of the cycle of stagnancy is to step out of your bubble and just do the damn thing.
Do something that makes you uncomfortable today. Learn a new skill, meet someone new, try a new activity.
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