You’ve heard the expression: if you’re not growing, you’re stagnating?

This is a guest post from David Brown, Group Leader of Drive the Network Huntingdon

If not, you have now.

In my experience this is true.

It’s true for you on a personal level and it’s true for your business.

And, if you’re self- employed, your growth is linked to your business’ growth.

If you’re not pushing yourself and your business forward in some way, then it is stagnating. Left too long and it begins to shrink, as our friend George Zitko shared with us on his talk at DRIVE Cambridge. You have to be strategic about your business growth and the growth you need to do to make your business grow. However, there are potential stumbling blocks, inherent resistance we all have when it comes to growth, development and change in areas where we feel uncomfortable and challenged.

You know this resistance to change as your comfort zone.

When you feel comfortable and confident in any role, doing anything, you are operating inside your comfort zone. To reach this stage is wonderful and it is important, as you are performing well in this role and this is good for productivity, customer satisfaction and sustaining your business. The comfort zone is not a bad thing in itself, it is just not the place you are going to grow, and eventually, neither is your business. So if you want to up productivity, customer satisfaction and grow your business, you are going to want to step up, to do something new and different, and that can be a challenge.

Now you are in the realm of stepping outside your comfort zone.

There are two ways to do this- either step just outside or way beyond it. The way beyond method suits some people as they love the challenge of really pushing themselves. It’s an adrenaline rush. For others, this method leads to overwhelm. I’m in this latter category.

For years I have had a fear of public speaking and tried to beat it. I’ve tried to speak at networking events, talks, lectures and so on and never been able to do it without feeling such overwhelming anxiety it was unreal. I knew my business was suffering for it, because I couldn’t get out there to promote myself. And so, rather than follow the lead of those I took advice from and take large steps which is what I had done in the past, I worked with a life coach to find a way that worked for me. It turned out that all I needed was to take smaller, more manageable steps. So I founded a public speaking group on MeetUp and for six months I spoke to whoever was in the room about something I was passionate about. It was never more than 5 people, but trust me that was a great start! In time I realised I could manage the anxiety fine and now the largest audience I have spoken in front of is three hundred.

The reason the audience size could increase is because once you have done something, your comfort zone expands with your experience. The fact of it is, if you want to keep growing you need to keep stepping out of your comfort zone. And, if you want your business to keep growing in new and exciting directions that stimulate and excite you, you are going to have to push your self to explore those avenues. This is an individual journey, as each person has their own sense of how they are prepared to stretch themselves.

Comparing your self to others does you no favours

Go at your own pace and make sure you keep moving forward, challenging your resistance to grow your self and your business.

Are you feeling cosy in your business? Have you noticed you haven’t offered anything new for a while because there is resistance within you to change and growth? Do you find your self feeling bored with your business? If so, you may be stuck inside your comfort zone and fearful of stepping outside it. Breaking out can be challenging for many reasons.

I am offering discounted coaching sessions to DRIVE members to support you in stepping out of your comfort zone and giving you the chance to grow your business into something that keeps evolving in the way that makes you grow too.

Get in touch if you’d like to talk about how we might work together or add your name to my mailing list to get new blog posts as they’re published.
www.potentialitycoaching.co.uk  Twitter: @PotentialityC