Have you put limitations on yourself because of fear of judgement over who you are or any part of yourself that you deem “imperfect”?
We have developed a fear of being different from those we have compared ourselves to and have labeled as "perfect". This fear forces us to stay in our comfort zone. Yes, our comfort zones are safe, warm and cozy. So, we put some barriers and limits in place to keep us there. It's our instinct to feel safe and we all have our own individual tolerance for being able to push past those safe guards. I believe in order to feel more confident with who we are and in our own skin, then you need to push past those limitations you have created for yourself. In essence, give your comfort zone the finger.
Why should be push past them? Because that is where growth and change can happen. It is also where you start to feel your confidence grow on the inside, which will start to show on the outside. If you want the next generation to stand up for themselves and to not base their self-worth on what others may say about them, then get out of your comfort and embrace WHO YOU ARE.
So, we need to start by letting go of the fear of judgement and letting the opinions of others determine our self-worth. How much energy are we sucking by trying so hard to fade into the background, to hide ourself and our opinions? Think about all the amazing things we can do with our energy instead. What if it was spent more on positive things like serving and helping others, rather then listening to your negative self-talk and spending so much time trying to change who you are.
The energy you spend on focusing on what YOU determine are “imperfections” is limiting and can be all consuming. Yes, you read that right…YOU get to determine what is imperfect. We can't control what others say about us, but WE get to decide how we react to it. We can believe them and internalize it. Or we can determine our own thoughts and beliefs about ourselves.
We can believe them and internalize it. Or we can determine our own thoughts and beliefs about ourselves. I have had people body shame me and call me "skinny bitch" or tell me that I am too skinny and that I need to eat more. I could chose to think one of following:
Which line of thinking do you think is healthier for you in the long run?
Trust me when I say, people judge and think way less about you then you think they do. Even if they did, what does it truly matter to you? Shouldn’t your opinion about yourself matter the most? How can you truly embrace and love yourself if it’s dependent on what others think? Once you realize that you get to determine your own thoughts and beliefs, it can be SO freeing. You will realize that yes, you might not be perfect, but that doesn’t automatically mean you are imperfect. It doesn’t have to be an all or nothing situation. We are constantly changing and growing in our bodies and minds. Learn to embrace yourself at any stage. This will make it so much easier for you to let go of your fear of judgement by others and you can step into the uncomfortable with a newfound confidence and freedom.
So, how to we start to do this?
I have 5 tips to getting out of your comfort zone and to give it the finger:
1. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Let your silliness out. Don’t be afraid to show your personality and humour. Finding humour in difficult and uncomfortable situations can make it less scary. People will respond to you when you allow yourself to be YOU. Those that don't get you or judge you? Don't worry about them, because we attract the energy we put out. You will find your tribe.
2. Stop ignoring your own needs by putting all your focus and time on others first. Yes, we are caregivers, but this is also an easy way to avoid taking a look at ourselves and getting out of our comfort zone. If you are a mom, does your child have a beautiful wardrobe while yours is severely lacking? Is your wardrobe full of black because it’s easy and it hides your body? Have you fully embraced the leggings movement by swearing off pants of any kind? Sound familiar? If it does, then chances are you believe that you can’t pull off the fun lipstick or beautiful necklace. You probably don’t have a shirt that might actually show your beautiful shape and you would never invest in the quality pair of jeans that might actually show your beautiful bottom or hips. I mean…you might offend someone with your body, right?!? Are these the lessons we want to teach the next generation? Let me answer for you. Definitely not. So, this is going to require something from you. You are going to have to get out of your comfort zone ladies.
3. Let yourself feel vulnerable. Take risks and open yourself up to not being perfect. Perfectionism is an unreasonable expectation you put on yourself and the #1 way to never feeling happy for fulfilled. Allow yourself to make mistakes. This is how we grow and progress, so get comfortable with discomfort. When we constantly avoid situations that make us uncomfortable, then we can’t practice or learn how over coming them and see all the wonderful benefits to moving past the discomfort.
4. Find your passion or a hobby that you love that is just for YOU. Stop ignoring your needs and wants by spending all your time on your family or friends. Why do we try so hard to please others and never ourselves? Think about the one thing that you love to JUST do for yourself. What brings you joy? If you don’t know, then now is a great time to find out. Make a list and just start experimenting!
5. Realize that life is one big “grey area”. Stop your all or nothing thinking. Life is not black and white. If you are not perfect, then that means you are imperfect. If you don’t succeed, then it doesn’t mean that you are a failure. It is this all or nothing thinking that is the biggest hurdle to getting out of your comfort zone because we fear failure. There is no failure, just learning opportunities.