Change Begins Where Comfort Ends

Name something you’ve been wanting to do but haven’t quite built up enough courage. New situations and activities may trigger anxiety or feelings of discomfort that keep you from trying them. For example, it might be intimidating to go to a new gym or take an unfamiliar bus route; however, when you choose not to push yourself out of your comfort zone, you might actually be feeding your anxiety and discomfort. Instead, you might find yourself at a standstill.

woman on a mountain top

What’s important to you?

Start by making a list of your values. If being healthy is important to you, but you’re not exercising or eating well, you might feel down on yourself. But the fact is, a happy life is one that reflects your ideals. With this in mind, the risk of feeling anxious the first time you try something new (i.e., going to a new gym) could be worth it if what you’re doing is something that’s meaningful in your life. 

What’s the new thing you want to try? What’s the first, small step you can take in the next hour to get you closer to that goal? What about in the next eight hours? Or the next 24 hours? The more you can grow your circle of comfort and practice putting yourself in what might be new and anxiety-provoking situations, the more satisfied you’ll feel. You can learn to acknowledge your anxiety or discomfort but not feel like you have to change it — because you’re finally feeling fulfilled.

Now go out, try something new and have some fun!

Denver Health Medical Plan Staff Writer