In the last couple of posts I talked about vulnerability, taking risks and resistance to change and how the root of these is fear. If we can overcome the fear we can make ourselves at least a little vulnerable, take risks, overcome our resistance to change and take those actions steps. One way of overcoming the fear is to identify just how resilient we are. Another is to recognise when we are in our comfort zone and slowly move out of it.

How can we use visual images to move out of our comfort zone?

It can be quite hard to identify when we are in our comfort zone. We know what it feels like but don’t necessarily know what it looks like. Our comfort zone is like the protective bubble we keep ourselves in. We don’t like going outside the bubble and we don’t like anything from outside the bubble coming in. The worst thing that can happen is when we feel our bubble has burst. So let’s use this image of a bubble to draw our comfort zone. Your comfort zone at the time you are drawing the image will be relative to the purpose of the exercise, project, problem or goal. As an example let’s say I have an action to make a video of myself facilitating a meeting using drawing techniques. I am quite comfortable in meetings and I am pretty comfortable giving presentations. I am comfortable if I know my subject – but not if I don’t. I am comfortable with giving a presentation to a room full of people, but not a theater or large conference facility. But I am horribly uncomfortable being videoed. For many people their comfort zones will be flipped the other way around (they might be comfortable being videoed but not giving a presentation) and for some they will be uncomfortable doing either. In my picture I have drawn me inside the bubble doing what I am comfortable with, leaving all the other activities outside the bubble. Once you have drawn your ‘comfort bubble’, pick something outside the bubble to work on. So I’ll pick the web cam. This is the smallest step for me to get used to being in front of a video camera. At this stage I havn’t even drawn on Vimeo or YouTube although I could have done. The aim is to work on one of the elements outside your comfort zone over a period of perhaps a week, then redraw it once you have mastered that step. Over the period of a few weeks you will be able to see how far you have come and how your comfort zone has expanded. You could even drawn the bubble in pencil and simply rub it out each week and redraw it around the elements you have accomplished. This exercise is a great confidence booster and can really help you move outside your comfort zone and get you taking action towards your goals.  Let me know what is and isn’t in your comfort zone……….