The challenge of getting out of comfort zone

Today I decided to live in a new city, after accepting the challenge of a new job, in a new company. Last time I did such decision I was single, had just finished my master degree and had almost no work experience at all, making the decision to change quite easy and obvious. Picture this: with no money, no family and no job experience, I was already out of comfort zone.

After my last city change I got married, had two daughters, bought a house and was hired by a multinational IT company. I got promoted every year until I got the leadership role. All that in 4 years! Due this, I got a stable life with my family and no big challenges in my daily work. This is great, right? Not so much.

Now I’m afraid of everything: buy a new house, make a wrong decision at work and lose my job, plan a trip with my family or even change my routine. The “comfort zone” made me the coward that I never was.

In order to get out the comfort zone, I decided to look for a new job, in a new company. Then, I saw two things: First, the IT job market changed. A lot! More than experience, now they want real talents (not technologies), and this is awesome! I wish I was with the fresh mind of a senior college today! Second, I saw my real market value as an IT professional: a 30's guy with a huge experience to make the right decisions and knowledge of old fashioned technologies (since for the 20’s guys, somehow, Java is the new COBOL).

I decided to follow my dreams looking for the ‘big picture’ of my life and applying for jobs in the city that I always wanted to live with my family. It’s a process of getting out of my comfort zone trying to get in a new one. Like a life cycle! And so I did: same salary, new job, in the beloved new city. I have butterflies in my stomach right now, but I’m not a coward anymore!

About the technologies… this is a subject of a new post, but to summarize… Frameworks, programming languages and technologies are tools for delivering the product respecting the client’s context. It’s more important having a quick learning curve! So… new projects and new jobs are opportunities to test your learning curve.

Now, I’m embracing the comfort zone cycle. Again. It’s more difficult when you get older, even more if you have a family to maintain, but this is what makes you alive: the butterflies in the stomach. When the things are easy and comfortable, you’re in the dead, zone. It’s time to get up and maybe live in a new city, for example.