Sign up for my free 5-day email challenge designed to help you increase your income.
Helping small business owners, virtual assistants, and creative entrepreneurs grow their business.
You are probably saying, “Well, isn’t it a good thing to push myself outside my comfort zone?” We’ve all seen those quotes that people love to share, like ‘great things don’t happen in comfort zones’ or ‘you have to push yourself outside your comfort zone to see success.’ That can feel a bit terrifying to someone who is an introvert or has social anxiety. It can be tough to hear that and feel like you have to push yourself constantly. That’s not why you started your own business. Whether you started your business for freedom, to be able to impact others or to be a stay-at-home parent, you don’t have to force yourself to do things that are outside of your comfort zone.
In this episode, I dive into:
When it comes to talking about comfort zones, it’s important to realize that there are two types of people when saying that something is outside of your comfort zone. The first group of people is just scared of the unknown, and it is holding them back from something going wrong or right. If you fear something, then pushing yourself outside your comfort zone is excellent advice because sometimes we need that little push. However, it can be damaging for people who are introverts or those with social anxiety because if you feel that you have to push yourself continuously, it is a really quick way to head towards burnout. This leads to no longer enjoying your business, which will not be good for anyone, especially you.
The other group of people is those who simply do not enjoy doing something long-term in their business and know that it’s not sustainable for them after trying it. It is absolutely okay to be this way and not push yourself into doing something that overwhelms you. Sometimes we might have to push ourselves to find out if it’s something that we are just scared of doing or realizing that it’s not for you after trying it. It may not be enjoyable to try these things, but it should never come from a place of it being the only way to find success in your business. You don’t have to force yourself to do something that feels uncomfortable. You absolutely can stay inside your comfort zone and find ways to stay there that work for you and your business.
It is always important to ask yourself what your hard no’s are in your business. What have you tried and don’t enjoy doing? It’s okay to stop doing these things. You don’t have to feel like you have to push yourself constantly. In some instances, you do need to push yourself a little. You do need to push yourself to do something scary. Maybe that looks like launching something or being a speaker at a virtual summit. It probably will be scary the first time because it will push you outside your comfort zone, but after you do it a couple of times, you’re going to know if it’s still outside your comfort zone. That’s a sign that it may not be something you want to do long-term. However, once you do it a couple of times, if you find that it’s getting easier and you enjoy it, that pushes you outside your comfort zone in a good way.
I am in my comfort zone 95% of the time in my business, and I’m having so much more success. I feel so much inner joy with my business now that I’m not forcing myself to show up in ways that I just don’t enjoy. I’ve tried, pushed through, and got out of my comfort zone. It was exhausting at times. There is no way I could have kept doing what I was doing long-term. I would have immediately started to hate my work and what I was doing because I wasn’t passionate about showing up every day.
Pushing yourself, putting too much pressure on yourself, and hustle culture are all entangled in this web of entrepreneurship. There is nothing wrong with being an introverted entrepreneur who wants to stay in your comfort zone while growing and scaling your business. You can build a successful business that you enjoy and love waking up to every day without forcing yourself outside your comfort zone. Eventually, things that were outside your comfort zone may no longer be outside your comfort zone, but I think it’s important not to push yourself too far, like when you’re not having fun anymore. I have done this, and sometimes it has worked out, but then there have been other times where I pushed myself so far that I almost drove myself right to the breaking point with my mental health and how I wanted to build my business.
For example, back in 2015, when I had my jewelry business, I was contacted by Amazon several times to do several features. The first time, a camera crew came to my house, which was nerve-wracking, but it wasn’t too scary or outside my comfort zone. I think it’s because it was in my home I felt more relaxed and comfortable. However, a few months later, I was invited to the Amazon warehouse in Toronto to do a Black Friday press feature. That was scary. There were so many huge news outlets there and live news segments running that I knew would be seen by millions of people, and I was absolutely terrified. It was so far outside my comfort zone that looking back; I wish I hadn’t done it.
I stressed myself out so bad and was so tensed up the whole day that I couldn’t even turn my head for about a month afterward. I didn’t even realize in the moment how much I was pushing myself and how much of a physical toll it would take on me. I don’t think it was a good experience for me because I didn’t get the most out of it as I could have if I felt more prepared, or I was more confident, which, let’s just face it, I am not. I was just stressing myself out for nothing because I was actually there and then hiding from the opportunities that were possibly coming my way.
Also, it’s vital that instead of just these one-off opportunities, you think about pushing yourself to do something consistently or long-term in your business. You need to think about if this is something that you’re going to enjoy doing every day, every week, or every month. Does this actually feel good to you right now? Or is this something that you can do without? The biggest example I have is live video. I forced myself to do live videos for a couple of months. I tried to do it pretty consistently because that’s what I was told to do on social media, along with everyone else. I realized pretty quickly that it wasn’t fear holding me back. I just don’t like it. That’s completely fine to say.
You can stay in your comfort zone and focus on better marketing methods for you. The first episode I did for this podcast was on the very topic, The 4 Marketing Methods That Work Best For Introverts. As we get opportunities coming our way, think about how we want to market our business or take in advice from other people to figure out what will work for us and what we will be able to do consistently. If it’s not something that you’re going to do consistently, then focus on something else. Focus on blog writing. Focus on your email marketing. Focus on something else that’s going to keep you in a position in your business where you’re enjoying it, you’re able to scale, and your business is growing. But you’re not necessarily forced out of your comfort zone every single day.
Again, if you want to focus on marketing methods that are best for you as an introvert or as someone with social anxiety, then be sure to check out my first podcast episode on The Four Marketing Methods That Work Best For Introverts.
[1:59] The two types of people when it comes to saying that something is outside of their comfort zone
[4:09] Asking yourself about the hard no’s you have in your business and how being outside of your comfort zone sort of ties into the hustle culture
[6:32] Pushing yourself outside of your comfort; the good and the bad about giving yourself a small nudge or forcing yourself to do something that isn’t sustainable
[10:37] Instead of just doing one-off opportunities for business growth, focus on finding ways to do something for long-term sustainability consistently
[11:40] Staying in your comfort zone and focusing on marketing methods that are best for introverts
If you enjoyed this episode, I invite you to take a screenshot and tag me on your Instagram stories @introvertcoach and tell me your biggest takeaway!
The training vault contains on-demand access to several trainings and presentations around growing your business and creating additional revenue streams.
Want to learn the 4 marketing methods that work best for most introverts + how to use them effectively to grow your business? This free webinar covers it all.