Don’t Walk…Run Out of Your Comfort Zone

As human beings, we are inherently afraid. Afraid of failure, afraid of what other people will think of us, afraid of being alone, afraid of change and the unknown, and afraid to let ourselves go and step outside of our comfortable little environment – our tight-knit circle of friends – never wanting to leave the path we’ve been told we’re “supposed” to take.

I’ve been there. Hell, I’m still there sometimes. I’ve let my fear control and define who I am. It took me a long time to realize that sometimes, even when it seems ridiculous or even inappropriate, you just have to let yourself go – and be YOU – in the purest sense of the word – you have to connect with what makes you unique and tap into your full potential. We’re told all the time that you have to do what’s best for you – but when you take a step back and think – are you actually doing it? Can you honestly say you feel like you’re the master of your own destiny, or are you riding on the coattails of faith in hopes that it will lead you in the right direction?

If you’re wandering around wondering how to take that first step – how to quit your job and find something better, move to a new place, try a new food, get back into working out – whatever it is, big or small – just do it. Now, don’t get me wrong, I know “just do it” may be a cop out – and a total rip off from Nike – but all I’m saying is that you can do whatever you set out to once you’re ready and believe in yourself.

Usually, to get there, you have to step outside your comfort zone – you have to throw away being content and rock the boat a bit until you figure things out. You have to experiment and try new things – sometimes without a back up plan. It’s not easy, it can’t always be calculated and strategic – but causing a riff every now and then and introducing a little “chaos” into your lifestyle is sometimes the only way to get things done.

Do Something New. Starting Now.

Go out and try Sushi for the first time (not the lame-o California roll – as delicious as they might be – I mean the real raw fish kind). Travel to a place you’ve never been – and before you do it – try to make some friends there who can show you around and maybe give you a place to crash (no sense in not saving a little money, right?). At the next networking event, don’t just sit in the corner with the people you know – go challenge a friend to a game of pool and let complete strangers set the stakes of the game, even if it involves cartwheels you know you can’t possibly do (hypothetically speaking, of course). Start looking for another job if you’re feeling stuck where you’re at (there IS something better out there). It all comes down to you and your willingness to run, not walk, out of your comfort zone.

If your reading this from a business perspective – take this year, or hell, even this quarter or this month, and try something new. Get on board with Social Media – invest (IE hire someone) to join your team as a community manager – a person who is 100% invested in building relationships with your customers. Been there, done that? Then try something else – integrate new media (like video) into your marketing campaign – take your staff out for a happy hour every other week. Hell, just do something you’ve never done before.

Odds are – by going against the grain and trying new things – you’ll become a trend setter – someone that other people will follow and admire. One minute you’ll be shrugging your shoulders to Coolio’s rendition of “Fantastic Voyage” and the next, you’ll be leading everyone on the dance floor in the “Electric Slide”. Don’t believe me? Watch the video below.

What’s one thing you’ll do this year that you’ve never done before? How would you encourage others to bring a little innovation into their own lives?


134 Responses
  • Benjamin Reply

    Something interesting that I took from this video is how much Robert is being encouraged by his partner. A little encouragement can go a long way. Maybe that goofy person on the dance floor is only goofy because this is his first time dancing and needs some practice. Something that we all can do is try to encourage people when they try something new outside their comfort zone, even if they look ridiculous.

    Great stuff as always, nice work Matt!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Agreed 100% with you here Ben – a little encouragement CAN go a long way – and I think we would all be a lot better of if we were a little less selfish – willing to share ideas – encourage and challenge each other – and try new things. Thanks for the comment Ben!

  • Sheema Reply

    I completely agree- getting out of your comfort zone can be really scary, but 9 times out of 10, what you get out of it is truly beneficial and makes all the hesitation you once felt completely worth it. I’d say the biggest risk I took was transferring to a university in London and then getting a job here. This year, I want to travel to a place I’ve never been before (maybe Greece or Thailand!) and hopefully pick up a new hobby.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      That’s a huge step Sheema – to be honest, I wouldn’t even know where to begin when it comes to moving outside the country – I think I need to work on vacationing outside the country first! It’s on my bucket list! I don’t think you can go wrong with either Greece or Thailand – good luck to you and thanks as always for coming by!

  • Benjamin Reply

    Something interesting that I took from this video is how much Robert is being encouraged by his partner. A little encouragement can go a long way. Maybe that goofy person on the dance floor is only goofy because this is his first time dancing and needs some practice. Something that we all can do is try to encourage people when they try something new outside their comfort zone, even if they look ridiculous.

    Great stuff as always, nice work Matt!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Agreed 100% with you here Ben – a little encouragement CAN go a long way – and I think we would all be a lot better of if we were a little less selfish – willing to share ideas – encourage and challenge each other – and try new things. Thanks for the comment Ben!

  • Sheema Reply

    I completely agree- getting out of your comfort zone can be really scary, but 9 times out of 10, what you get out of it is truly beneficial and makes all the hesitation you once felt completely worth it. I’d say the biggest risk I took was transferring to a university in London and then getting a job here. This year, I want to travel to a place I’ve never been before (maybe Greece or Thailand!) and hopefully pick up a new hobby.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      That’s a huge step Sheema – to be honest, I wouldn’t even know where to begin when it comes to moving outside the country – I think I need to work on vacationing outside the country first! It’s on my bucket list! I don’t think you can go wrong with either Greece or Thailand – good luck to you and thanks as always for coming by!

  • Bryna Reply

    This was actually a huge part of my New Years resolutions (which I know is tres cheesy, but bear with me). I see a lot of my friends living with a sense of restraint (aka fear) because they’re comfortable. There’s a ‘mid-thirties’ mentality in many of my older friends (I’m still a young 28, lol) that says, “this is where your life *should* be at.” They’re fitting into a box that society’s dictated.

    I personally struggle with fear because as a single parent I grapple with trying to balance my personal wants/needs with the best interest of my son. Do I move when his family is all here? Do I risk leaving to fulfill my career goals at the cost of his comfort? It’s a really difficult balance. I have to weigh whether my trepidation is fear or genuine wisdom. Not an easy task.

    My first step in throwing out the fear is to go to Haiti for two weeks at the end of the month to regroup, focus on others (I’m teaching English at an orphanage), leave all things social behind, and let God (for me it’s God, for you, fill in the blank) do the work. It’s scary enough in itself just to go. I can use my son, finances, work—almost anything–as an excuse not to. But I’m most myself when I’m in a third world country, caring for others and giving “me time” a break. I discovered that in Africa last year.

    From there, fear be darned. If I can survive Haiti, then we’ll see what’s next. Maybe a new career? Maybe not. Maybe a big move? Maybe not. But no matter what, I won’t let fear dictate my decision.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Inspiring thoughts Bryna – and that is a level of balance that I haven’t even begun to realize yet – balancing the responsibility as a mother and pursuing your own personal and professional passions and goals. At the end of the day – and what it sounds like you’re doing – you have to have faith, and make time for yourself. No matter what responsibilities are before you, and however selfless you may be in giving back to others – you still HAVE to be selfish sometimes and do what’s best for you (if for nothing else then to maintain a little sanity).

      Your trip to Haiti sounds amazing – and it is an incredible thing you are doing to educate those less fortunate. I believe in karma and that great things will come back for every good thing you do. Best of luck – well wishes – and Happy New Year Bryna!

  • Bryna Reply

    This was actually a huge part of my New Years resolutions (which I know is tres cheesy, but bear with me). I see a lot of my friends living with a sense of restraint (aka fear) because they’re comfortable. There’s a ‘mid-thirties’ mentality in many of my older friends (I’m still a young 28, lol) that says, “this is where your life *should* be at.” They’re fitting into a box that society’s dictated.

    I personally struggle with fear because as a single parent I grapple with trying to balance my personal wants/needs with the best interest of my son. Do I move when his family is all here? Do I risk leaving to fulfill my career goals at the cost of his comfort? It’s a really difficult balance. I have to weigh whether my trepidation is fear or genuine wisdom. Not an easy task.

    My first step in throwing out the fear is to go to Haiti for two weeks at the end of the month to regroup, focus on others (I’m teaching English at an orphanage), leave all things social behind, and let God (for me it’s God, for you, fill in the blank) do the work. It’s scary enough in itself just to go. I can use my son, finances, work—almost anything–as an excuse not to. But I’m most myself when I’m in a third world country, caring for others and giving “me time” a break. I discovered that in Africa last year.

    From there, fear be darned. If I can survive Haiti, then we’ll see what’s next. Maybe a new career? Maybe not. Maybe a big move? Maybe not. But no matter what, I won’t let fear dictate my decision.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Inspiring thoughts Bryna – and that is a level of balance that I haven’t even begun to realize yet – balancing the responsibility as a mother and pursuing your own personal and professional passions and goals. At the end of the day – and what it sounds like you’re doing – you have to have faith, and make time for yourself. No matter what responsibilities are before you, and however selfless you may be in giving back to others – you still HAVE to be selfish sometimes and do what’s best for you (if for nothing else then to maintain a little sanity).

      Your trip to Haiti sounds amazing – and it is an incredible thing you are doing to educate those less fortunate. I believe in karma and that great things will come back for every good thing you do. Best of luck – well wishes – and Happy New Year Bryna!

  • Lindsey Reply

    It usually is that first step that is the hardest and after that it’s smooth(ish) sailing. Despite having moved to another country, leaving my family, friends and comfort zone, there are still times when I’m terrified of change, even little change. It comes with being human, I think, but it’s a constant challenge – one to be overcome. No one does great things when they remain static.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Ah you reminded me one an old post I wrote titled “The Trecherous First Step” – http://www.lifewithoutpants.com/personalprofessional-growth/the-treacherous-first-step/

      You are so right, the first step is always the most difficult. But like you said, the only way to make things start happening is to start DOING instead of waiting for change. I’d say everything you’ve been through took a LOT of guts Lindsey – I really admire you for all of the change you’ve been through and where you stand today.

      • Lindsey Reply

        Thanks Matt! Sometimes it feels like I haven’t come very far or that I’m actually nowhere close to doing what others my age have managed to accomplish (you’re a great example of this!) but since I’ve been home, I’ve heard from so many people “I can’t believe you live in Paris. That is such a dream. Do you know how many people envy your life and would never dream of moving abroad?”. I hate clichés but “the grass is always greener” definitely applies here. The glamour and idealism of my life in Paris lost its gloss when I realized that life there is like life anywhere – routines, challenges and fears that follow no matter where you are. Change is the same way.

        But I guess living in Paris is pretty fabulous. I just need to do great things to make the seemingly utopian-life more of a reality!

  • Lindsey Reply

    It usually is that first step that is the hardest and after that it’s smooth(ish) sailing. Despite having moved to another country, leaving my family, friends and comfort zone, there are still times when I’m terrified of change, even little change. It comes with being human, I think, but it’s a constant challenge – one to be overcome. No one does great things when they remain static.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Ah you reminded me one an old post I wrote titled “The Trecherous First Step” – http://www.lifewithoutpants.com/personalprofessional-growth/the-treacherous-first-step/

      You are so right, the first step is always the most difficult. But like you said, the only way to make things start happening is to start DOING instead of waiting for change. I’d say everything you’ve been through took a LOT of guts Lindsey – I really admire you for all of the change you’ve been through and where you stand today.

      • Lindsey Reply

        Thanks Matt! Sometimes it feels like I haven’t come very far or that I’m actually nowhere close to doing what others my age have managed to accomplish (you’re a great example of this!) but since I’ve been home, I’ve heard from so many people “I can’t believe you live in Paris. That is such a dream. Do you know how many people envy your life and would never dream of moving abroad?”. I hate clichés but “the grass is always greener” definitely applies here. The glamour and idealism of my life in Paris lost its gloss when I realized that life there is like life anywhere – routines, challenges and fears that follow no matter where you are. Change is the same way.

        But I guess living in Paris is pretty fabulous. I just need to do great things to make the seemingly utopian-life more of a reality!

  • Shereen Reply

    Matt – this post sings to my heart! I hear you, sometimes when I surrender to those voices in my head that say “yo! are you completely insane – you can’t do that” I freeze and get stuck in my own inertia and the only way out is to literally get up and “just DO it”.
    Growing up my whole life was leading me to follow a certain path, study science not literature subjects, specialize as an engineer and ultimately marry from my same culture and have kids before I hit 30! I was on that path for a while until things just didn’t “feel” right, it wasn’t me, I wasn’t being true to myself – so I broke free from the safe tried and tested life plan and it really felt like diving off a cliff yet what followed were the best things that could have ever happened to me.

    I steered into a new realm of media and communications, got a master’s degree, detoured careers again, worked abroad for a few years, engaged with many cultures and ultimately met my husband who’s so different in every aspect possible – yet it works so wonderfully.

    The gold really is off of comfort zone island, you need to swim out past all the sharks and scary water to get what you want. Doesn’t mean it’s easy, but it is absolutely worth the dive – why miss out and always wonder ‘what if?’

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Yes! Yes! Yes! Shereen – I couldn’t have summed all of this up any better. I think that each of us can think of at least one moment in our lives – that “epiphany” moment where we may have been heading one direction – then ended up taking a turn in another – changing careers, relationships, moving to a new place – whatever it may be – Within all of us is the ability to bring about REAL change if we really want it. I’m constantly inspired by what all of us are doing and what each one of you brings to the table here – it’s stories like this that keep me motivated as a writer. People talking the talk AND walking the walk. Thanks Shereen,

  • Shereen Reply

    Matt – this post sings to my heart! I hear you, sometimes when I surrender to those voices in my head that say “yo! are you completely insane – you can’t do that” I freeze and get stuck in my own inertia and the only way out is to literally get up and “just DO it”.
    Growing up my whole life was leading me to follow a certain path, study science not literature subjects, specialize as an engineer and ultimately marry from my same culture and have kids before I hit 30! I was on that path for a while until things just didn’t “feel” right, it wasn’t me, I wasn’t being true to myself – so I broke free from the safe tried and tested life plan and it really felt like diving off a cliff yet what followed were the best things that could have ever happened to me.

    I steered into a new realm of media and communications, got a master’s degree, detoured careers again, worked abroad for a few years, engaged with many cultures and ultimately met my husband who’s so different in every aspect possible – yet it works so wonderfully.

    The gold really is off of comfort zone island, you need to swim out past all the sharks and scary water to get what you want. Doesn’t mean it’s easy, but it is absolutely worth the dive – why miss out and always wonder ‘what if?’

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Yes! Yes! Yes! Shereen – I couldn’t have summed all of this up any better. I think that each of us can think of at least one moment in our lives – that “epiphany” moment where we may have been heading one direction – then ended up taking a turn in another – changing careers, relationships, moving to a new place – whatever it may be – Within all of us is the ability to bring about REAL change if we really want it. I’m constantly inspired by what all of us are doing and what each one of you brings to the table here – it’s stories like this that keep me motivated as a writer. People talking the talk AND walking the walk. Thanks Shereen,

  • Jenny Reply

    Great advice. Amazing video. I love the slow, hesitant start and then the all-0ut feel-the-flow.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Thanks Jen – I’m a big fan of the foot-slap move, I definitely need to introduce that one into my arsenal of dance moves. Note that he DOES have the standard “white guy staring up at nothing” look – I swear ALL of us do that, myself included. Not to mention I use my thumbs. Yeah, I’m that guy.

  • Jenny Reply

    Great advice. Amazing video. I love the slow, hesitant start and then the all-0ut feel-the-flow.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Thanks Jen – I’m a big fan of the foot-slap move, I definitely need to introduce that one into my arsenal of dance moves. Note that he DOES have the standard “white guy staring up at nothing” look – I swear ALL of us do that, myself included. Not to mention I use my thumbs. Yeah, I’m that guy.

  • Megan Reply

    Did you write this post for me, Matt? Ha. :) Right now my life is ALL about running out of the comfort zone. I’ve been on the job hunt for the past 6 months. For most of that time I was simply applying for jobs in Chicago. Why? Because it was easy. I was comfortable. I would be staying close to friends, staying close to family. But then I realized some of the greatest rewards and experiences happen when you step out of your comfort zone.

    Tomorrow I’ll be leaving my family, my friends, and the city I love to take a job in New York. Sure, I’m scared. Hell, I’m terrified. But I recognize the incredible opportunity I’m being presented with and I know I’d forever regret not accepting the position just because I was scared.

    I agree Matt. Run, don’t walk out of the comfort zone. You’ll be surprised what you find. :)

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Of course this was all for you Megan. I can’t tell you how much I know what you’re going through. I’ve been lucky enough to know you for a while now – you were one of the first people I started talking to here in Chicago – and I have seen you go through a ton of ups and downs – times when you questioned yourself, doubted your abilities, and just didn’t know what to do. I was the same way a year ago – I was working my nine to five applying for other jobs in Nashville – and then eventually I told myself that I wasn’t going to be afraid of REAL change – and that even though I was leaving everything I’d ever known behind – it was time to live life on my terms, live life on purpose, and do what was best for me.

      I can’t tell you how happy I am for you – seeing all you’ve done and now, landing a great job in your field doing what you love in New York of all places. So awesome. You are going to have so many great experiences up there, and I hope you’ll tell me all about them…

  • Megan Reply

    Did you write this post for me, Matt? Ha. :) Right now my life is ALL about running out of the comfort zone. I’ve been on the job hunt for the past 6 months. For most of that time I was simply applying for jobs in Chicago. Why? Because it was easy. I was comfortable. I would be staying close to friends, staying close to family. But then I realized some of the greatest rewards and experiences happen when you step out of your comfort zone.

    Tomorrow I’ll be leaving my family, my friends, and the city I love to take a job in New York. Sure, I’m scared. Hell, I’m terrified. But I recognize the incredible opportunity I’m being presented with and I know I’d forever regret not accepting the position just because I was scared.

    I agree Matt. Run, don’t walk out of the comfort zone. You’ll be surprised what you find. :)

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Of course this was all for you Megan. I can’t tell you how much I know what you’re going through. I’ve been lucky enough to know you for a while now – you were one of the first people I started talking to here in Chicago – and I have seen you go through a ton of ups and downs – times when you questioned yourself, doubted your abilities, and just didn’t know what to do. I was the same way a year ago – I was working my nine to five applying for other jobs in Nashville – and then eventually I told myself that I wasn’t going to be afraid of REAL change – and that even though I was leaving everything I’d ever known behind – it was time to live life on my terms, live life on purpose, and do what was best for me.

      I can’t tell you how happy I am for you – seeing all you’ve done and now, landing a great job in your field doing what you love in New York of all places. So awesome. You are going to have so many great experiences up there, and I hope you’ll tell me all about them…

  • Sam Reply

    I think stepping outside your comfort zone is one of those things that you have to do if you want to get the most out of life. Life is too short to let awesome opportunities pass you by, even if the reason they’re so awesome is because they’re totally outside the box. You’re right though, it takes believing in ourselves and our abilities to be successful outside the box. Sometimes the thought of running out of your comfort zone is a little overwhelming, so maybe think of it as taking a big leap in making the decision to do so, and being determined to to succeed…at whatever speed you can. Great post Matt!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Right on Sam – it doesn’t matter how you do it or how quickly you make the transition – baby steps are OK to – as long as you’re moving the the right direction – you’re doing the right thing!

  • Sam Reply

    I think stepping outside your comfort zone is one of those things that you have to do if you want to get the most out of life. Life is too short to let awesome opportunities pass you by, even if the reason they’re so awesome is because they’re totally outside the box. You’re right though, it takes believing in ourselves and our abilities to be successful outside the box. Sometimes the thought of running out of your comfort zone is a little overwhelming, so maybe think of it as taking a big leap in making the decision to do so, and being determined to to succeed…at whatever speed you can. Great post Matt!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Right on Sam – it doesn’t matter how you do it or how quickly you make the transition – baby steps are OK to – as long as you’re moving the the right direction – you’re doing the right thing!

  • Kelli Reply

    Wow, I’m glad I took a couple minutes before diving into work to read your post. I think a comfort zone is one of the most dangerous places to be. While I was reading this, I couldn’t help but think of my best friend:

    He’s always been one to take chances and has accomplished a lot in his short 26 years on earth. When he returned from his whirl-wind adventures he took time off (which he totally deserved) and during that time off settled into a comfort zone. The kid who didn’t think twice about new experiences is now constantly mulling over what to do next. He feels like he’s lucky to be where he is and taking a chance could possibly mess up his lucky streak. He doesn’t realize that it’s his hard work, not luck, that’s gotten him to where he is. His comfort zone sucked out some of his confidence. He’s not the only one I’ve seen it happen to; I’ve seen it in family, friends, peers, and myself.

    Taking the first step out of the comfort zone requires you (me) to stop worrying about where others think you (I) should be. Who cares what others will think of you (me) if you (I) take the road less traveled. If it doesn’t work out, at least you (I) tried and gained experience along the way. What good does it do to stay in my comfort zone? Am I pushing myself? No. Am I learning anything new? Not really. Am I doing myself any favors by staying in my little box? Not at all.

    This is incredibly long and rambling so I’ll stop now… Thanks for the great post, this is exactly what I needed to read this morning. Oh and I loved the video.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Well thank you for taking the time to read and share your perspective before heading out for the day. Your story about your friend rings true with a lot of us – and honestly – I don’t think I really believe in luck. A lot of people are willing to just shrug something off as “getting lucky” but in reality – it’s hard work and dedication that will set you above the rest. When you become overly content, you really lose track of so many opportunities that you could be having. Thanks again Kelli – so glad that you could relate to it!

  • Kelli Reply

    Wow, I’m glad I took a couple minutes before diving into work to read your post. I think a comfort zone is one of the most dangerous places to be. While I was reading this, I couldn’t help but think of my best friend:

    He’s always been one to take chances and has accomplished a lot in his short 26 years on earth. When he returned from his whirl-wind adventures he took time off (which he totally deserved) and during that time off settled into a comfort zone. The kid who didn’t think twice about new experiences is now constantly mulling over what to do next. He feels like he’s lucky to be where he is and taking a chance could possibly mess up his lucky streak. He doesn’t realize that it’s his hard work, not luck, that’s gotten him to where he is. His comfort zone sucked out some of his confidence. He’s not the only one I’ve seen it happen to; I’ve seen it in family, friends, peers, and myself.

    Taking the first step out of the comfort zone requires you (me) to stop worrying about where others think you (I) should be. Who cares what others will think of you (me) if you (I) take the road less traveled. If it doesn’t work out, at least you (I) tried and gained experience along the way. What good does it do to stay in my comfort zone? Am I pushing myself? No. Am I learning anything new? Not really. Am I doing myself any favors by staying in my little box? Not at all.

    This is incredibly long and rambling so I’ll stop now… Thanks for the great post, this is exactly what I needed to read this morning. Oh and I loved the video.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Well thank you for taking the time to read and share your perspective before heading out for the day. Your story about your friend rings true with a lot of us – and honestly – I don’t think I really believe in luck. A lot of people are willing to just shrug something off as “getting lucky” but in reality – it’s hard work and dedication that will set you above the rest. When you become overly content, you really lose track of so many opportunities that you could be having. Thanks again Kelli – so glad that you could relate to it!

  • The Maiden Metallurgist Reply

    I started my new thing last night! I live on the South Side, and for all the cons there are some serious pros. Like the Cultural Center with art classes and fitness classes that don’t fill up before you get a chance to enroll.

    Last night I started my first painting class. I’m not artist, I’m an engineer, but I want to just, sort of, jump.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Awesome! And good for you in trying something new – even if it totally doesn’t relate to anything you’re used to doing. Thanks for coming by – and hope to see you again at an upcoming networking event in the city!

  • The Maiden Metallurgist Reply

    I started my new thing last night! I live on the South Side, and for all the cons there are some serious pros. Like the Cultural Center with art classes and fitness classes that don’t fill up before you get a chance to enroll.

    Last night I started my first painting class. I’m not artist, I’m an engineer, but I want to just, sort of, jump.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Awesome! And good for you in trying something new – even if it totally doesn’t relate to anything you’re used to doing. Thanks for coming by – and hope to see you again at an upcoming networking event in the city!

  • Jonathan Hyland Reply

    I like what you’re getting at here: not doing more of the same, and sitting idly by and HOPING that “more of the same” will bring you something different than last year. It’s all about a change in behavior, right?

    But I think you missed something important. Changing behavior is a labor, and for long term change to take hold, it takes thought, encouragement, and planning. It’s not enough to do something “out of the box” once to get into the habit of identifying opportunities and being savvy and grounded enough to take them.

    If I had to say anything, your advice is great – but make a plan. Thanks for sharing, Matt!

  • Jonathan Hyland Reply

    I like what you’re getting at here: not doing more of the same, and sitting idly by and HOPING that “more of the same” will bring you something different than last year. It’s all about a change in behavior, right?

    But I think you missed something important. Changing behavior is a labor, and for long term change to take hold, it takes thought, encouragement, and planning. It’s not enough to do something “out of the box” once to get into the habit of identifying opportunities and being savvy and grounded enough to take them.

    If I had to say anything, your advice is great – but make a plan. Thanks for sharing, Matt!

  • Ashley Reply

    Matt -

    I’ve just recently started to read your blog although I’ve seen it listed multiple places prior. I’m so glad that I did though. I used to strive to live my life this way and then I fell in love. Maybe I got too comfortable with him, or maybe I let singledom define me and when that was gone, I forgot to take a part of me with. Whatever it is, your post is an inspiration to me. It’s given me that extra kick to explain to my fiance this part of me in detail so he can see just how beautiful life can be.

    Thanks for a fantastic post!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Ashley – I’m so glad you found me and that this post resonated with you. It means so much to me that my words can serve as an inspiration to anyone – and it’s why I will keep writing and more importantly, having amazing conversations with people like you. Happy we’ve connected and I look forward to a lot of good discussion between us. Sometimes we need someone else to give us a kick to get out on the “dance floor”, right? :)

  • Ashley Reply

    Matt -

    I’ve just recently started to read your blog although I’ve seen it listed multiple places prior. I’m so glad that I did though. I used to strive to live my life this way and then I fell in love. Maybe I got too comfortable with him, or maybe I let singledom define me and when that was gone, I forgot to take a part of me with. Whatever it is, your post is an inspiration to me. It’s given me that extra kick to explain to my fiance this part of me in detail so he can see just how beautiful life can be.

    Thanks for a fantastic post!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Ashley – I’m so glad you found me and that this post resonated with you. It means so much to me that my words can serve as an inspiration to anyone – and it’s why I will keep writing and more importantly, having amazing conversations with people like you. Happy we’ve connected and I look forward to a lot of good discussion between us. Sometimes we need someone else to give us a kick to get out on the “dance floor”, right? :)

  • ashalah Reply

    I am the queen of staying where i’m at just because it’s comfortable. Midway last year was the start of me shaking things up, as you know, with traveling by myself for three months in countries I didn’t speak the language. (and with very little money!) I was soo nervous to do it, but it was so awesome and really helped get me out of the rut that was caused by my horrible dead end job. This year, I am moving to a place where I don’t have a job lined up, I don’t really know anyone outside of my roommate Doni, and where I’ve never even BEEN to before. It’s scary but so exciting.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      I think you have accomplished a lot more than you give yourself credit for – and you are a great example of someone who has really made an effort to try new things, even if they didn’t seem the most “logical” to everyone else. You and Doni are going to have a BLAST out in Colorado – and when I make a trip out there (which is happening this year, damn it) we will all have to get together! Thanks for the comment Ash!

  • ashalah Reply

    I am the queen of staying where i’m at just because it’s comfortable. Midway last year was the start of me shaking things up, as you know, with traveling by myself for three months in countries I didn’t speak the language. (and with very little money!) I was soo nervous to do it, but it was so awesome and really helped get me out of the rut that was caused by my horrible dead end job. This year, I am moving to a place where I don’t have a job lined up, I don’t really know anyone outside of my roommate Doni, and where I’ve never even BEEN to before. It’s scary but so exciting.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      I think you have accomplished a lot more than you give yourself credit for – and you are a great example of someone who has really made an effort to try new things, even if they didn’t seem the most “logical” to everyone else. You and Doni are going to have a BLAST out in Colorado – and when I make a trip out there (which is happening this year, damn it) we will all have to get together! Thanks for the comment Ash!

  • Srinivas Rao Reply

    Hey Matt,

    Great ideas. I think the key is just to push out of your comfort zone. I think that growth is really defined by the moments that you are not comfortable. In those moments I think is when you experience your greatest breakthroughs.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Exactly – because it’s those moments of uncertainty when you are forced to learn, adapt, develop, and change. You have to be quick on your feet and willing to change your game plan on the fly. It’s in those “heated” moments – even though they might be extremely stressful – that you really find out what you’re capable of.

  • Srinivas Rao Reply

    Hey Matt,

    Great ideas. I think the key is just to push out of your comfort zone. I think that growth is really defined by the moments that you are not comfortable. In those moments I think is when you experience your greatest breakthroughs.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Exactly – because it’s those moments of uncertainty when you are forced to learn, adapt, develop, and change. You have to be quick on your feet and willing to change your game plan on the fly. It’s in those “heated” moments – even though they might be extremely stressful – that you really find out what you’re capable of.

  • Jason Mollica Reply

    Matt,
    Great post. I addressed being scared of change on my blog a few weeks ago. I urge students and professionals that I speak with that they should do something out of the their comfort zone. Stop being comfy… it’s boring anyways.
    Best,
    Jason

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Being content is OK – I want to urge that to everyone who might be passing through the comments. You don’t ALWAYS have to be hungry for change – but if you fall into the category of “going through the motions” and you want more – get out there and start doing it! Because simply living by the routine, as you said, is pretty damn boring…Thanks Jason.

  • Jason Mollica Reply

    Matt,
    Great post. I addressed being scared of change on my blog a few weeks ago. I urge students and professionals that I speak with that they should do something out of the their comfort zone. Stop being comfy… it’s boring anyways.
    Best,
    Jason

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Being content is OK – I want to urge that to everyone who might be passing through the comments. You don’t ALWAYS have to be hungry for change – but if you fall into the category of “going through the motions” and you want more – get out there and start doing it! Because simply living by the routine, as you said, is pretty damn boring…Thanks Jason.

  • Tim Jahn Reply

    This can only be summed up with one word: karaoke.

    :)

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Nuff’ said – Diamond Lil’s is calling our name!

    • phampants Reply

      i demand video evidence!

      • Tim Jahn Reply

        I think karaoke is best remembered in the memories, right? :)

        • Matt Cheuvront Reply

          I agree – it’s best kept for the people in attendance, and their eyes only, LOL.

  • Tim Jahn Reply

    This can only be summed up with one word: karaoke.

    :)

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Nuff’ said – Diamond Lil’s is calling our name!

    • phampants Reply

      i demand video evidence!

      • Tim Jahn Reply

        I think karaoke is best remembered in the memories, right? :)

        • Matt Cheuvront Reply

          I agree – it’s best kept for the people in attendance, and their eyes only, LOL.

  • Melissa Gorzelanczyk Reply

    This is advice I almost never follow (running out of my comfort zone) except once when I was 18 years old. I was 3 days in at a job I HATED. It was toxic and I was miserable. I decided I was through and called the next day to let them know.
    Did I have bills to pay? Yes.
    Did I have a back up plan? No.
    But a week later I landed a job as a proofreader/reporter which was much more in line with my dreams. Because I had to.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      I hear you Melissa – I don’t think it’s about ALWAYS leaving your comfort zone – but rather knowing WHEN to do it, and making the most of those situations, which, as you’ve shown here, you clearly did. Best to you and thanks for stopping by!

  • Melissa Gorzelanczyk Reply

    This is advice I almost never follow (running out of my comfort zone) except once when I was 18 years old. I was 3 days in at a job I HATED. It was toxic and I was miserable. I decided I was through and called the next day to let them know.
    Did I have bills to pay? Yes.
    Did I have a back up plan? No.
    But a week later I landed a job as a proofreader/reporter which was much more in line with my dreams. Because I had to.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      I hear you Melissa – I don’t think it’s about ALWAYS leaving your comfort zone – but rather knowing WHEN to do it, and making the most of those situations, which, as you’ve shown here, you clearly did. Best to you and thanks for stopping by!

  • Jenny Blake Reply

    Great post Matt! Sometimes running is the only way to get up the courage to make big changes – especially when they are happening all at once. True to real life, running gives me a sense of energy, exhilaration and “i can do it!”-ness that I don’t get from a relaxing stroll (or worse, hiding in my house).

    PS – Karaoke? I want in!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Agreed! Sometimes you cant tippy-toe into the unknown, you can’t “test” the water over in the shallow end, you just have to jump in head first into the deep end. And as for Karaoke, the next…or should I say first time I make it out to Cali, it’s on like Donkey Kong!

  • Jenny Blake Reply

    Great post Matt! Sometimes running is the only way to get up the courage to make big changes – especially when they are happening all at once. True to real life, running gives me a sense of energy, exhilaration and “i can do it!”-ness that I don’t get from a relaxing stroll (or worse, hiding in my house).

    PS – Karaoke? I want in!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Agreed! Sometimes you cant tippy-toe into the unknown, you can’t “test” the water over in the shallow end, you just have to jump in head first into the deep end. And as for Karaoke, the next…or should I say first time I make it out to Cali, it’s on like Donkey Kong!

  • Antonina Mamzenko Reply

    Great post Matt! It’s so easy to forget that taking risks is, in fact, LIFE. And also it’s easy to think that people who’ve achieved something in their lives or have done something amazing do not feel the fear. They SO do, they just know that feeling this fear is necessary to do well.

    When I moved to UK from Russia 5 years ago, everyone thought I was mad. I thought I was mad, too. I had no job, no plan, nothing. I just knew that’s what I wanted. But it all worked out – beautifully. 5 years later, I find myself in the situation where I need to start taking risks & run, SPRINT out of my comfort zone – and I am scared. I know what I want, but I’ve got too settled in my new comfortable life and I am scared to take action.

    It took me some time to remember that I am where I am now because I took a risk & felt the fear. And although I’m still scared, it’s not going to stop me! I am going to get my business going, and I’m going to travel to places I’ve never been before and take pictures. That’s what I’m going to do!

    I read a wonderful thing the other day. Bruce Springsteen was once asked if he ever got scared before playing those huge stadiums. He said: “Never. When I get ready to go on stage, my heart starts pounding, my hands start shaking, my breath goes up into my throat, and I know that I am PUMPED and ready to play!”.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      That’s what it’s all about – being ready to play like “The Boss” – cheers to you for really stepping out of your comfort zone – and here’s to much success for you to come!

  • Antonina Mamzenko Reply

    Great post Matt! It’s so easy to forget that taking risks is, in fact, LIFE. And also it’s easy to think that people who’ve achieved something in their lives or have done something amazing do not feel the fear. They SO do, they just know that feeling this fear is necessary to do well.

    When I moved to UK from Russia 5 years ago, everyone thought I was mad. I thought I was mad, too. I had no job, no plan, nothing. I just knew that’s what I wanted. But it all worked out – beautifully. 5 years later, I find myself in the situation where I need to start taking risks & run, SPRINT out of my comfort zone – and I am scared. I know what I want, but I’ve got too settled in my new comfortable life and I am scared to take action.

    It took me some time to remember that I am where I am now because I took a risk & felt the fear. And although I’m still scared, it’s not going to stop me! I am going to get my business going, and I’m going to travel to places I’ve never been before and take pictures. That’s what I’m going to do!

    I read a wonderful thing the other day. Bruce Springsteen was once asked if he ever got scared before playing those huge stadiums. He said: “Never. When I get ready to go on stage, my heart starts pounding, my hands start shaking, my breath goes up into my throat, and I know that I am PUMPED and ready to play!”.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      That’s what it’s all about – being ready to play like “The Boss” – cheers to you for really stepping out of your comfort zone – and here’s to much success for you to come!

  • phampants Reply

    Go out and have an adventure!

  • phampants Reply

    Go out and have an adventure!

  • Chelsie Reply

    This is a an awesome place to be, Matt, and I’m pretty thrilled (but not surprised!) you’re speaking my language! Instead of fear motivating and defining your life, you’re motivating your life, traveling roads you haven’t been down before, and creating a bigger life in abandoning the “shoulds” and securities that fears restrict us to.
    In fact, rocking the boat, as you put it, is essentially the theme of my year. The little nerd inside me is calling it “a year in the sun: hot sometimes, but never cold”. In embracing opportunity and possibility, I’ll be warmed with energy and excitement, feeling life fully. It’s probably the only way to get the most life out of yourself, eh?

    Sidenote: It’s interesting how fear appears in nature. The prey/predator relationship seems fearful–something is going to be eaten, and die. But nature doesn’t view it as good/bad. It’s as it is: natural.
    Ultimately, it’s the differences/inconsistencies we see outside ourselves (and sometimes inside) that scare us–they question who we are and what the best ‘way’ might be, throwing us into uncertainty.
    Instead of viewing everything comparatively, we could accept life wholly- viewing ourselves, others, and circumstances not as good/bad, right/wrong, etc…, but as choices we are free to change. Then, we’d have no reason fear, but every reason to understand.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Wonderfully summarized here Chelsie – is it any surprise that you and I are on the same wavelength virtually…all the time…dating back to our online philosophy course college days. I think out of all the people here – you have actually known me the longest. How does that make you feel? ;)

      I 100% agree with you – that it’s not fate or free will – it’s all about choice – it’s the one thing that we can and always will be able to control.

  • Chelsie Reply

    This is a an awesome place to be, Matt, and I’m pretty thrilled (but not surprised!) you’re speaking my language! Instead of fear motivating and defining your life, you’re motivating your life, traveling roads you haven’t been down before, and creating a bigger life in abandoning the “shoulds” and securities that fears restrict us to.
    In fact, rocking the boat, as you put it, is essentially the theme of my year. The little nerd inside me is calling it “a year in the sun: hot sometimes, but never cold”. In embracing opportunity and possibility, I’ll be warmed with energy and excitement, feeling life fully. It’s probably the only way to get the most life out of yourself, eh?

    Sidenote: It’s interesting how fear appears in nature. The prey/predator relationship seems fearful–something is going to be eaten, and die. But nature doesn’t view it as good/bad. It’s as it is: natural.
    Ultimately, it’s the differences/inconsistencies we see outside ourselves (and sometimes inside) that scare us–they question who we are and what the best ‘way’ might be, throwing us into uncertainty.
    Instead of viewing everything comparatively, we could accept life wholly- viewing ourselves, others, and circumstances not as good/bad, right/wrong, etc…, but as choices we are free to change. Then, we’d have no reason fear, but every reason to understand.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Wonderfully summarized here Chelsie – is it any surprise that you and I are on the same wavelength virtually…all the time…dating back to our online philosophy course college days. I think out of all the people here – you have actually known me the longest. How does that make you feel? ;)

      I 100% agree with you – that it’s not fate or free will – it’s all about choice – it’s the one thing that we can and always will be able to control.

  • Emily Jane Reply

    Can I Facebook and retweet this post? Seriously, every time I read your blog, you’re like the little white angel above my shoulder reminding me where I’ve been and what I need to keep doing in order to stay (and grow beyond) where I am now.

    Wonderfully inspirational, and I hope this thought reaches the souls of many :)

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Haha – well thank you for the analogy Emily. I’m really happy and humbled to hear that this was a source of inspiration to you. Words are great, but when they can inspire action, that’s what it’s all about – so hopefully I’ve been able to do that for you :)

  • Emily Jane Reply

    Can I Facebook and retweet this post? Seriously, every time I read your blog, you’re like the little white angel above my shoulder reminding me where I’ve been and what I need to keep doing in order to stay (and grow beyond) where I am now.

    Wonderfully inspirational, and I hope this thought reaches the souls of many :)

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Haha – well thank you for the analogy Emily. I’m really happy and humbled to hear that this was a source of inspiration to you. Words are great, but when they can inspire action, that’s what it’s all about – so hopefully I’ve been able to do that for you :)

  • Jen Reply

    I just discovered your blog today and I think I’m in love with you, or at least in love with your blog.

    I’ve done quite a few of the things that you mentioned, and no it absolutely wasn’t easy and at times it still isn’t easy for me. I quit a job I was at for 5 years and actually loved and moved from the Northeast all the way to the South where I knew absolutely no one. It was supposed to be an adventure, and I guess that is what it has been.

    Then I totally told my last boss and his boss to shove it because they deserved it and I up and quit with no back up plan, no new job lined up (though I did have some savings). I was scared to sign up with a temp agency because I thought I knew how it would turn out. That is my main problem, I always think I know what will happen before it does so I don’t give it half a chance. In the end it didn’t turn out how I expected at all and had I not made the move when I did, I would have lost out on a wonderful job that I didn’t even know existed. On top of that I decided to go back to school and finish one of the degrees I started. I always worried that I was too old, but now, I don’t really care about that. I’m doing it because I like the subject matter and I want to, and being older actually helps since I have some common sense and experience.

    But I have decided this year that I want to live my life for me and stop concerning myself with what others think I should be doing. I just want to be me and be happy being myself. Even if that means doing things alone. Hey at least I know I’ll enjoy my own company.

    Thanks for your post, it is very motivating.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      My pleasure to share this with you Jen – the feeling of love is mutual! :)

      At the end of the day – you have to do what’s best for you FIRST. If you’re not happy with yourself – you’re not going to be happy with anyone else and they sure as hell aren’t going to be happy with you.

      Thanks for coming by and sharing some thoughts – hope to see you around here more often!

  • Jen Reply

    I just discovered your blog today and I think I’m in love with you, or at least in love with your blog.

    I’ve done quite a few of the things that you mentioned, and no it absolutely wasn’t easy and at times it still isn’t easy for me. I quit a job I was at for 5 years and actually loved and moved from the Northeast all the way to the South where I knew absolutely no one. It was supposed to be an adventure, and I guess that is what it has been.

    Then I totally told my last boss and his boss to shove it because they deserved it and I up and quit with no back up plan, no new job lined up (though I did have some savings). I was scared to sign up with a temp agency because I thought I knew how it would turn out. That is my main problem, I always think I know what will happen before it does so I don’t give it half a chance. In the end it didn’t turn out how I expected at all and had I not made the move when I did, I would have lost out on a wonderful job that I didn’t even know existed. On top of that I decided to go back to school and finish one of the degrees I started. I always worried that I was too old, but now, I don’t really care about that. I’m doing it because I like the subject matter and I want to, and being older actually helps since I have some common sense and experience.

    But I have decided this year that I want to live my life for me and stop concerning myself with what others think I should be doing. I just want to be me and be happy being myself. Even if that means doing things alone. Hey at least I know I’ll enjoy my own company.

    Thanks for your post, it is very motivating.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      My pleasure to share this with you Jen – the feeling of love is mutual! :)

      At the end of the day – you have to do what’s best for you FIRST. If you’re not happy with yourself – you’re not going to be happy with anyone else and they sure as hell aren’t going to be happy with you.

      Thanks for coming by and sharing some thoughts – hope to see you around here more often!

  • Eve Ashworth Reply

    Here at Ashworth Creative, we believe that the norm is not acceptable. We seek projects that challenge us as we thrive and grow on feeling uncomfortable. If we were not willing to do so we would not be able to evolve. Matt you have done it once again, made us look at who we really are and what motivates us to do our best… thats why I love your stuff! By the way, the best is yet to come.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Hi Eve – nice to see Ashworth back in this neck of the woods – I hope you’ve been doing well. Happy New Year to you and your crew! I agree with you 100% on pursuing “challenging” projects. I’ve done the same – especially in the last six months. I have established myself with regular freelance work opportunities and have worked with clients from many different backgrounds with different wants and needs. I’m always sure to be honest about what I am and am not capable of – but I also encourage each client to let me “experiment” a bit and try something new with them (if the opportunity allows, of course).

      It’s all about learning and growing from our experiences with one another. And I agree – the best is still ahead of us.

  • Eve Ashworth Reply

    Here at Ashworth Creative, we believe that the norm is not acceptable. We seek projects that challenge us as we thrive and grow on feeling uncomfortable. If we were not willing to do so we would not be able to evolve. Matt you have done it once again, made us look at who we really are and what motivates us to do our best… thats why I love your stuff! By the way, the best is yet to come.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Hi Eve – nice to see Ashworth back in this neck of the woods – I hope you’ve been doing well. Happy New Year to you and your crew! I agree with you 100% on pursuing “challenging” projects. I’ve done the same – especially in the last six months. I have established myself with regular freelance work opportunities and have worked with clients from many different backgrounds with different wants and needs. I’m always sure to be honest about what I am and am not capable of – but I also encourage each client to let me “experiment” a bit and try something new with them (if the opportunity allows, of course).

      It’s all about learning and growing from our experiences with one another. And I agree – the best is still ahead of us.

  • Steven Ponec Reply

    I love this article! Nothing really improves unless you walk out of the comfort zone and try something new.
    I think the reason I love the video of the guy dancing so much is everyone can relate. It’s a great metaphor for walking out of the comfort zone. And lots of people are really self-conscious of dancing in front of others. Nice choice!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Thanks Steve – that’s one of my favorite all time episodes of Raymond – it was on the other day and as I was watching it, I wrote this post. God bless Youtube for having a visual example to back my point up. That whole episode is really about Robert coming out of his comfort zone and letting himself go – a wise lesson that we can all learn from, set to Coolio. You can’t go wrong with that!

  • Steven Ponec Reply

    I love this article! Nothing really improves unless you walk out of the comfort zone and try something new.
    I think the reason I love the video of the guy dancing so much is everyone can relate. It’s a great metaphor for walking out of the comfort zone. And lots of people are really self-conscious of dancing in front of others. Nice choice!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Thanks Steve – that’s one of my favorite all time episodes of Raymond – it was on the other day and as I was watching it, I wrote this post. God bless Youtube for having a visual example to back my point up. That whole episode is really about Robert coming out of his comfort zone and letting himself go – a wise lesson that we can all learn from, set to Coolio. You can’t go wrong with that!

  • Rich DeMatteo Reply

    Great work again from big Matt Chevy. The worst thing that can go wrong when stepping outside of the comfort dome is that it won’t be a good experience. Oh well, now you know not to try that again.

    Also, I like with Benny Wilcox said in the first comment about encouragement. Even the most confident people can benefit from the slightest bit of encouragement. While we need to take care of ourselves and push ourselves to go the limit, we also need to help each other whenever we can providing support and encouragement when possible.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      True that Richie Rich! (what I’ll be calling you from now on) – I think the extent of planning usually can stop with the question “what’s the worst that can happen” – if it’s just about making a fool of yourself. Who cares? Seriously? Make a fool. People look at me like I’m nuts when I belt out a (terrible) falsetto high-pitched rendition of Roxanne on Rock Band but you know what – that’s what that game is all about – making a total ass of yourself, gathering with friends, having a few drinks, and letting yourself go.

      Weird example, I know – but I think you’re with me. If not, you know, just totally forget that I said anything and pretend this conversation never happened…

  • Rich DeMatteo Reply

    Great work again from big Matt Chevy. The worst thing that can go wrong when stepping outside of the comfort dome is that it won’t be a good experience. Oh well, now you know not to try that again.

    Also, I like with Benny Wilcox said in the first comment about encouragement. Even the most confident people can benefit from the slightest bit of encouragement. While we need to take care of ourselves and push ourselves to go the limit, we also need to help each other whenever we can providing support and encouragement when possible.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      True that Richie Rich! (what I’ll be calling you from now on) – I think the extent of planning usually can stop with the question “what’s the worst that can happen” – if it’s just about making a fool of yourself. Who cares? Seriously? Make a fool. People look at me like I’m nuts when I belt out a (terrible) falsetto high-pitched rendition of Roxanne on Rock Band but you know what – that’s what that game is all about – making a total ass of yourself, gathering with friends, having a few drinks, and letting yourself go.

      Weird example, I know – but I think you’re with me. If not, you know, just totally forget that I said anything and pretend this conversation never happened…

  • Kyle Harris Reply

    Interesting post. As a college freshman I can say that stepping out of your comfort zone can make our break your experience at school. It helped me get the most out of social and academic settings so far and I’ve seen fellow students hold themselves back because they didn’t want to step out of it.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Oh man – a college freshman. You HAVE to be willing to step out of your comfort zone in college my friend – try new things – make some bad decisions, and keep on trucking. You will learn a TON about yourself in those four years!

      • Karen Reply

        Hell yea! My university was a huge one (University of Toronto, a total microcosm of our city, really), so our undergraduate program seemed to be stretched out quite thinly. Students had to really work at finding their niche. I was one of the lucky ones who found people I could trust, laugh with, study with, do stupid crap with.. so I loved my experience at UofT. That school is quite dear to me. Others, on the other hand, weren’t so lucky.. they felt isolated, alone, detached from the rest of the student body. But of course, when I asked them if they joined any clubs or got involved in student life, what do you think their answer was? A big fat “no”. So I wonder.. is it the school, or is it them? I would say the school made it a little more difficult.. but at the end of the day, they didn’t take charge of their own undergrad experience. And so they missed out on potentially the best years of their young adult life!

        • Matt Cheuvront Reply

          Right on Karen – I think I sort of missed that “real” college experience because I went to a pretty small private university – but looking back, those were some great times and both in and out of the classroom – you really find out who you are – even though sometimes figuring out what you want to do doesn’t happen until you step into the “real” world…

  • Kyle Harris Reply

    Interesting post. As a college freshman I can say that stepping out of your comfort zone can make our break your experience at school. It helped me get the most out of social and academic settings so far and I’ve seen fellow students hold themselves back because they didn’t want to step out of it.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Oh man – a college freshman. You HAVE to be willing to step out of your comfort zone in college my friend – try new things – make some bad decisions, and keep on trucking. You will learn a TON about yourself in those four years!

      • Karen Reply

        Hell yea! My university was a huge one (University of Toronto, a total microcosm of our city, really), so our undergraduate program seemed to be stretched out quite thinly. Students had to really work at finding their niche. I was one of the lucky ones who found people I could trust, laugh with, study with, do stupid crap with.. so I loved my experience at UofT. That school is quite dear to me. Others, on the other hand, weren’t so lucky.. they felt isolated, alone, detached from the rest of the student body. But of course, when I asked them if they joined any clubs or got involved in student life, what do you think their answer was? A big fat “no”. So I wonder.. is it the school, or is it them? I would say the school made it a little more difficult.. but at the end of the day, they didn’t take charge of their own undergrad experience. And so they missed out on potentially the best years of their young adult life!

        • Matt Cheuvront Reply

          Right on Karen – I think I sort of missed that “real” college experience because I went to a pretty small private university – but looking back, those were some great times and both in and out of the classroom – you really find out who you are – even though sometimes figuring out what you want to do doesn’t happen until you step into the “real” world…

  • Karen Reply

    The destructive comfort zone that I stepped out of relates to my relationship.

    I’m at the early stages where I still have doubts. Lots of them, actually. I used to bottle them up, because I didn’t want to hurt the other person by voicing them. But then I recently realized that not only was this another form of dishonesty, but it was also patronizing. I needed to trust my boyfriend that he could handle my absolute vulnerable honesty, even if it meant telling him that I was doubting our compatibility.

    So I took a breath, sucked it up, and started talking. It’s so different from what I’d experienced before. I guess it helps that my boyfriend now is incredibly kind and understanding, and values this sort of painful honesty too. Perhaps my exes weren’t so understanding and patient with me. But I took a leap of faith – fully aware of the worst that could happen, of course – and spoke up. I expressed my doubts, my concerns, and potential needs that should be met in order to make things work a bit better. I let myself be vulnerable, and I trusted that he would be able to handle it like a man.

    And he did =)

    This was a scary step, being so honest about my feelings and doubts about our relationship. He could have easily gotten scared of my doubts and picked up and left me then and there. We could have both been very hurt. But the point is, I took the leap of faith, and it’s turned out alright. Even if this relationship doesn’t work out in the long run, at least I know what sort of honesty I should expect, both from him and me. This act of courage on both our parts has set the bar higher for both of us. We’ve discovered what to expect.. and that’s a pretty awesome incentive to continue taking these leaps of faith!!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Establishing trust and honestly from the VERY beginning is the key to any successful relationship – even if that means stepping out of your comfort zone and being brutally honest about your doubts and concerns. You have to lay that foundation to build upon…

  • Karen Reply

    The destructive comfort zone that I stepped out of relates to my relationship.

    I’m at the early stages where I still have doubts. Lots of them, actually. I used to bottle them up, because I didn’t want to hurt the other person by voicing them. But then I recently realized that not only was this another form of dishonesty, but it was also patronizing. I needed to trust my boyfriend that he could handle my absolute vulnerable honesty, even if it meant telling him that I was doubting our compatibility.

    So I took a breath, sucked it up, and started talking. It’s so different from what I’d experienced before. I guess it helps that my boyfriend now is incredibly kind and understanding, and values this sort of painful honesty too. Perhaps my exes weren’t so understanding and patient with me. But I took a leap of faith – fully aware of the worst that could happen, of course – and spoke up. I expressed my doubts, my concerns, and potential needs that should be met in order to make things work a bit better. I let myself be vulnerable, and I trusted that he would be able to handle it like a man.

    And he did =)

    This was a scary step, being so honest about my feelings and doubts about our relationship. He could have easily gotten scared of my doubts and picked up and left me then and there. We could have both been very hurt. But the point is, I took the leap of faith, and it’s turned out alright. Even if this relationship doesn’t work out in the long run, at least I know what sort of honesty I should expect, both from him and me. This act of courage on both our parts has set the bar higher for both of us. We’ve discovered what to expect.. and that’s a pretty awesome incentive to continue taking these leaps of faith!!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Establishing trust and honestly from the VERY beginning is the key to any successful relationship – even if that means stepping out of your comfort zone and being brutally honest about your doubts and concerns. You have to lay that foundation to build upon…

  • Rowena Briones Reply

    I’m a little late on finding this gem of a post, but I couldn’t resist just making one little comment.

    This post is pretty much my life to a tee. As a person who has a back-up plan for the other two back-up plans with EVERYTHING, sometimes it is really hard for me to accept a sudden change should it occur when I least expect it. Or, if I expect something to go a certain way and the reality is a complete 180 of that expectation, it is sometimes hard for me to adjust and move on. Why is this?

    I completely agree that fearing the unknown can truly prevent you from looking outside of the box and coming across hidden opportunities that could truly be beneficial. I also agree that we should run outside of our comfort zones and try something entirely new, with no regrets. And with that in mind, I close with a quote that one of my long-time mentors has told me which has really changed my perspective on life:

    “Sometimes regret holds us back because we are thinking ‘what if’ and what we should be thinking is ‘what’s next’.”

    I may not know what’s next, but at this point I think I’m willing and ready to take the leap and find out!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Yes! (and you can never be too late to the party around here Rowena)

      As long as you’re willing to take that leap – it doesn’t matter what’s next, because you’ve braced yourself for whatever the future may bring, and you’re ready to take it on, full steam ahead. Love that quote!

  • Rowena Briones Reply

    I’m a little late on finding this gem of a post, but I couldn’t resist just making one little comment.

    This post is pretty much my life to a tee. As a person who has a back-up plan for the other two back-up plans with EVERYTHING, sometimes it is really hard for me to accept a sudden change should it occur when I least expect it. Or, if I expect something to go a certain way and the reality is a complete 180 of that expectation, it is sometimes hard for me to adjust and move on. Why is this?

    I completely agree that fearing the unknown can truly prevent you from looking outside of the box and coming across hidden opportunities that could truly be beneficial. I also agree that we should run outside of our comfort zones and try something entirely new, with no regrets. And with that in mind, I close with a quote that one of my long-time mentors has told me which has really changed my perspective on life:

    “Sometimes regret holds us back because we are thinking ‘what if’ and what we should be thinking is ‘what’s next’.”

    I may not know what’s next, but at this point I think I’m willing and ready to take the leap and find out!

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      Yes! (and you can never be too late to the party around here Rowena)

      As long as you’re willing to take that leap – it doesn’t matter what’s next, because you’ve braced yourself for whatever the future may bring, and you’re ready to take it on, full steam ahead. Love that quote!

  • C. Zimmermann Reply

    Couldn’t decide where to post this, here or on “I’ll Never Go Back to School” but there’s more room here! I stepped out of my comfort zone and went back to school and have not had a moment of regret. The smallest part of why I went back was the “piece of paper,” although it was a consideration. I did alright without it, learning on the job and always asking questions to take it one step further. But I wanted new challenges I couldn’t find in the business world, and there are some things you just can’t teach yourself. I was tired of settling, and wanted more choices for myself. I’ve watched your blog blossom, and clearly your path does not require more schooling – you’ve been extremely successful in creating a new community on your own. But for some of us, going back can be a way of getting out of the comfort zone – starting over and making it a whole new ball game.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      First off, thank you for the kind words! And I agree, going back to school CAN be that step out of your comfort zone that’s needed. It can be that “fresh start” you need to get yourself headed in the right direction…Thanks for the comment.

  • C. Zimmermann Reply

    Couldn’t decide where to post this, here or on “I’ll Never Go Back to School” but there’s more room here! I stepped out of my comfort zone and went back to school and have not had a moment of regret. The smallest part of why I went back was the “piece of paper,” although it was a consideration. I did alright without it, learning on the job and always asking questions to take it one step further. But I wanted new challenges I couldn’t find in the business world, and there are some things you just can’t teach yourself. I was tired of settling, and wanted more choices for myself. I’ve watched your blog blossom, and clearly your path does not require more schooling – you’ve been extremely successful in creating a new community on your own. But for some of us, going back can be a way of getting out of the comfort zone – starting over and making it a whole new ball game.

    • Matt Cheuvront Reply

      First off, thank you for the kind words! And I agree, going back to school CAN be that step out of your comfort zone that’s needed. It can be that “fresh start” you need to get yourself headed in the right direction…Thanks for the comment.

  • C. Zimmermann Reply

    Hey, thanks for the Beyond the Pedway video link. Followed that to the Zacuto website and found some great stuff. That’s what I love about this. People like you leave a trail of bread crumbs for people like me to follow and hit the mother lode!

  • C. Zimmermann Reply

    Hey, thanks for the Beyond the Pedway video link. Followed that to the Zacuto website and found some great stuff. That’s what I love about this. People like you leave a trail of bread crumbs for people like me to follow and hit the mother lode!

  • Pam Reply

    I love your post, thank you! It’s very encouraging. I always have an open mind to others, and to everything, never scare or fear to try new tasks at work, or new challenges, always smile to anyone even I don’t know them, I don’t feel shy or intimidated by anything when at work or in parties. However, when I need to sing in front of a large audience, this is where the problem is. I feel little shy and feel like everyone will judge me, look at what I wear, and scare to make any little move because I am scare too look dumb. The funny thing is, I have been participating in so many small contests in my area to get the stage experience and learn how to not fear the stage but I still feel shy. I give credits to those actors and comedians and artist that can pull it off. I really want to be like them and get out of my comfort zone. Not sure how to do this in public, I have this singing audition coming soon and my friend told me you need to sing something out of your comfort zone and show off what you got.
    Thank you for your post and the video.

  • Ann-Katrin Reply

    Thanks for an interesting point. I have been working on pushing myself out of the comfort zone for years, and with that my comfort zone has grown. I travel alone, to countries where I can’t even read the signs, I explore, I eat foods that I can’t pronounce, I do interesting and fun stuff all the time. But even so, I realise that there are areas where I haven’t challenged myself enough. I am trying to do that now. Resigned from a good job and moving even further abroad. To a new country, a new part of the world, and to do something completely new. I realised that my comfort zone was my work life: So now I am changing that. I need to work and live what my passions are – but it isn’t easy. It’s scary at times, also when I know it is the right thing to do. Your post was a good reminder!
    Best of luck yourself – and thanks for the inspiration.

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