Everyone has moments where they really question whether or not they’ll be able to accomplish a goal. “I don’t have the skill set necessary” or “i don’t know my next step” constantly fills our minds, making us uncertain as to whether our leap is misguided. Depending on the situation, I feel that females are more prone to question themselves. We are stereotypically protected and often proudly stay in our comfort zones.
Staying in our comfort zone is not a bad thing, but lack of confidence or laziness should not be your reason for not taking risks in your life. Accomplishing goals and dreaming big dreams is one of the most human instincts – I urge you to get the training and take those big steps.
Not many things scare me to the point of not doing them. I’m very comfortable not being the best at given activities and being competitive with myself means that I’ll regularly attempt the next challenge. However, as I’m gotten older, I have noticed myself becoming more fearful of taking risks and more hesitant to step outside of my comfort zone. I have realized that faltering has larger impacts the older I get and I watch other people skipping challenges and think, “if they’re not doing it, I don’t have to, right?” But this is not something to be proud of in life. i don’t want to stop challenging myself and remain stagnant in this life.
When I went skiing with my girlfriends this past weekend, we all had challenges that we decided to face.:
- One of the girls had not skied in the past three years. She powered through and joined three of us that ski frequently. I know that she was a bit skeptical about some of the runs we took her on, but she rocked those runs and should be so proud of herself for all that she accomplished.
- On Sunday, three of us were having a blast going down areas of the mountain where we were incredibly comfortable. After a few hours, one of the girls suggested we try a different area that looked to us incredibly difficult. While I won’t speak for all of us, I noticed a tendency in myself to slow my speed down intentionally and to shy away from a mountain because it looked like a challenge. I even asked the lift operator why no one was in that line and about the conditions because I was incredibly nervous. But we went up the lift and loved the runs available. I am so proud of us for taking on a challenge and not skipping this challenge because of how it looked at face value. Taking this risk was worth it!
One thing that I love about skiing (an early lesson from Ray) is that it’s all about confidence. Within logic (I’m not going back-country skiing, because I don’t have that specialized skill set), I can accomplish any ski run in the park. I might move slower, but I can always get down the mountain.
And I think this lesson applies to most things in life. We learn by taking one small step and being willing to take the next challenge head on. Fitness in general should be starting with walking, moving on to a few minutes of running, then adding on some lifting – before you know it, you’ll have a complete fitness routine. On the other side, starting a business means researching everything you can, then investing in pieces with minimal overhead, and always being proud of your accomplishments and kind enough to share them with the world – it may take time, but elbow grease and confidence will allow your business to grow.
Fear of the next step is logical, but allowing that to stop you is not. Get comfortable with where you are, then be confident enough to take the logical next step. And though it all, remember Epictetus’ quote, “It’s not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.”
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What big challenges are you facing in life where you need to build confidence?
How have you recently stepped outside of your comfort zone?
I can’t wait to see what we can accomplish when we decide to not be guided out of fear and, rather, be guided out of faith and confidence in ourselves!
Create a great life!