Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone With Extreme Sports
By TRISOFT team
“In any given moment we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety.” — Abraham Maslow
We are creatures of habit. Fear of failure is probably our biggest fear. Fear can cripple us and be a major obstacle in us growing to our full potential because it keeps us on the sideline — and in our comfort zone.
But what is this dreaded comfort zone? In essence, it’s just a behavioural space where all you do, think and believe are patterns that minimise stress and risk. It is what gives us mental security, happiness, low anxiety and reduced stress. Simply put, the comfort zone is the level at which we function with ease and familiarity.
However, back in 1908, when the idea of comfort zone first appeared, psychologists Robert M. Yerkes and John D. Dodson revealed that this state of comfort is bound to create a steady level of performance and in order to increase it, we need just a bit of anxiety in our lives. Not the disruptive kind, the one that will put us upside down, but the slightly higher than normal kind — called Optimal Anxiety. This point is just outside our comfort zone.
Author and speaker Denis Waitley also explored the risks of staying in our comfort zone and explains that this is what actually creates psychological barriers that lead to real limitations.
How do we fight it?
There are many ways to stretch your personal boundaries. Ones that are basically easy to do and ones that are more challenging. If you want to start slow, you could learn a new language or skill. You could connect with people that inspire you, or volunteer with an organisation that does great work. Or travel the world.
However, there are people who need more and their escape from their comfort zone lies in adrenaline and thrill-seeking activities. If flirting with your fears and overcoming all your limits are your deepest desires, here are some activities that you can try:
1. Mountain Biking
It’s one thing to hop on a stationary bike at your local gym for an hour and pedal up and down virtual hills while watching the news. It’s a totally different thing to take your mountain bike out into the real world and into the wild.
Biking through forests and over rocky terrain requires complete control over your body and bike. And not in the least, it’s about mental toughness as well. You need to be able to keep focus and be prepared for any danger that could come across your path. Keeping your eyes on the road and being present in the moment, all muscles tense, this is one way to run away from your comfort zone.
2. Mountain Climbing
For those of you not absolutely terrified of heights, mountain climbing is a great way to work your core, build up stamina, and do something most people would never dream of doing. And of course, cross that line that’s holding you inside the safe perimeters of your comfort zone.
Of course, it requires practice and building up endurance — don’t just haul yourself up the side of a mountain, because mountains don’t exactly have rest points built into them. So be sure you are up to the task before going …up. And be sure, your lungs will fill with the fresh air and your eyes will sparkle with the wonderful view from the top. Comfort zone, so long!
3. Surfing/Water Skiing
If you’re more into the sea than the mountains, you could take up surfing or water skiing. But watching professionals surf, or even everyday people waterski, you might think it looks pretty easy. You simply stand up on the board or skis and let the waves push you or the boat pull you, right? Obviously, it’s not that simple. Both require a lot of physical and mental prowess throughout the entire process — maintaining balance, shifting your weight, leaning in to counteract natural bumps along the way.
Of course, in order to be good on the board, you need first to be good under it. Meaning you absolutely need to be a great swimmer before daring to do any of these sports.
Riding against the tide takes pretty much the same strengths as getting out of your comfort zone, so if you dig the sound of the waves and the traces of salt on your skin, this one is specially designed for you!
If the rocky mountains or the sandy beaches aren’t your cup of tea, then maybe sliding on the most powdery snow imaginable is. Skiing and snowboarding are two great winter sports that will push your limits and kick you right outside of your comfort zone in no time.
Though we can all agree that the dangers of these extreme sports are fairly obvious, many of us probably think it’s pretty simple — start at the top of a hill, stand up, and don’t hit any trees on the way down. But being on a moving ground requires much more. You need to utilize a variety of strengths and skills and most importantly, you need your weight to be correctly distributed or else you can end up quickly off course.
So here is our fourth proposal for sport you can use to overcome your fears and get out of your comfort zone. As you race downhill and take in all the white beauty of the snowy hills, you will feel lighter and braver and your comfort zone will fade into the horizon.
We’ve all seen and read a lot of inspirational quotes that encourage one to get out of his/her chair and do something different — something you wouldn’t normally do. But breaking our routine takes work and genuine desire to do so. It’s nice to be able to push the boundaries of your comfort zone, and when you do, it’s kind of a big deal.
Speaking about how we choose to do it, well, that is up to each of us. Some will start small, trying new foods and visiting a new country. Others will race to the top of the mountains because that is what they need to do. Whichever you choose, the benefits you get after stepping outside of your comfort zone will linger — you will self-improve on so many levels, your horizons will broaden and your mind will be able to take in much more challenges and dares than before.
Mind over matter
At TRISOFT, we like our challenges to be daring, so the extreme sports we’ve proposed as means of getting out of your comfort zone may feel like they are just for certain people. But allow us to let you in to a little secret — everything can be accomplished with the “mind over matter” mentality. If you can think of it, then you absolutely can do it!
But there is a key to remember when doing this. As you get out of your comfort zone, you need to stay in your strength zone. Knowing what your strengths are is vitally important because it’s there where you get the greatest return for your efforts. By focusing your energy to grow and develop in specific areas of strength and living in light of them, you will be more engaged, more productive, more satisfied and more fulfilled in life and at work.