I was watching a TV show recently where the main character felt in over her head regarding a work project. She didn’t feel she had the experience, know-how, etc. to do her job. As she’s rambling on about all the reasons she couldn’t handle the project, her friend interrupts her and says, “You’re not in over your head, you’re just outside your comfort zone.” Pause. Rewind. Let’s see that again.
“You’re not in over your head. You’re outside your comfort zone.”
Who knew CBS was putting out TV shows with such wisdom? That sentence really hit me. As I embark on a major career change, I’ve experienced countless moments of self-doubt. Can I handle this? Am I good enough? In watching that scene, I realized that the answer to all of my questions was a resounding yes. So, why the anxiety and negative self-talk then? It’s simple really…change is uncomfortable and a little scary.
I started thinking about how many other people I know whose lives are changing and the anxiety they’re feeling from it. From a good friend who was recently married and hopes she’ll be a great wife, to our AinA members who are chasing their dream jobs or applying to grad school. We all have one thing in common: We’re stepping outside our comfort zones and it has us all a little nervous. Guess what? That doesn’t mean we won’t be successful. If anything, I think it means we WILL be.
That fear and anxiety comes from moving beyond what’s comfortable or secure. It’s unmarked territory, but that’s the only place growth happens. It’s necessary if we plan to attack life the way I know the AinA community wants to. We’re better (and braver) than sitting back, letting life happen around us because we’re too afraid we might fail if we go after what we really want.
It’s been my experience that there are enough naysayers out there waiting to tell us that we can’t have/be/do whatever we want in this life. So, instead of jumping on that bandwagon and allowing fear or insecurity take over; let’s pause for a minute. Let’s realize that we’re not in over our heads, we’re just making the bold choice to step out of our comfort zone and we’re entirely capable of taking that leap.
“Change is learning. Learning is growing. Growing is living. So LIVE.”
– From “What Are You Afraid Of?”