Many of us feel confident and safe in a comfortable environment. Because of the way these environments make us feel, we tend to prefer them over others. This is sometimes referred to as your comfort zone.

Comfort zones take on many shapes and sizes. From that favorite room in our house where we like to be to the certain kind of foods that we will only eat, comfort zones can make us feel safe but also keep us from new and challenging experiences.

When we go to a pot luck dinner whose food do we usually eat? Most of us usually eat our own. Why? Do we feel safer eating our own food because we know the ingredients that went into it?

What is the first thing many of us do when we go to a party by ourself? Most will look for somebody that we know. Why? Are we afraid that others will think that we do not have any friends?

Would you relocate cross-country for a job with a sports organization? Would you be willing to volunteer with that organization? If you plan on pursuing a career in sports, you better consider these possibilities.

The possibility of long hours and low pay is one of the realities many job seekers cannot face up to. As you know, this is a highly competitive industry. Extending beyond your comfort zone will only open you up to more opportunities. By turning down job offers because they don’t pay enough or would require you to relocate, you only lower the odds of finding a job in the sports industry.

The previous examples show that we make decisions based on our need to stay within a comfort zone. Most of us tend to gravitate toward these comfort zones in our lives. After all, it is easy to stay on the safer course; to keep from making waves. However, it can also keep us from facing the challenges that are necessary to attain our goals.

Only about 3% of Americans have clearly written and defined goals. Most do not set goals because they are afraid that they will not attain them. Failure to realize goals may mean that they are a failure in life as well. This possibility of failure will keep them from venturing outside of their comfort zone.

To reach our goals we must expand our comfort zones. We must be willing to try new things or look at something in a new light. Successful individuals frequently fail while pursuing their dreams. However, they are successful because they do not allow themselves to get trapped in their comfort zones.

Look at the goals you have set for yourself. What kind of sacrifices will it take to reach those goals? A cut in pay? Relocating? Longer hours? If you are willing to make the sacrifices necessary to reach your goals, then you are willing to extend beyond your comfort zone. If you are not willing to extend beyond your comfort zone, then you need to reassess your goals.

If you’re tired of not attaining personal goals, try venturing beyond your comfort zone. Forget what you were told as a child, don’t be afraid to color outside of the lines.

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