“GET OUT” of your Comfort Zone
We all go through different phases and points in our lives that changes us dramatically. The moment of realization I had to step outside of my comfort zone came three years ago, when I received my first acceptance letter. With the extra support from Esther, my best friend, I got accepted into all the school I applied to. I am still astonished of how I thought I lack the ability to get into any of the colleges I applied to. Because I am a homebody, my hardest decision came when it was time to choose on a school. I wanted more than anything to go to an out-of-state school because deep inside I knew I had to grow on my own. Thank God, I listened to Esther when she told me to write down the pros and cons of each school and make my decision based on what my needs were. And if I find a school that really interested me despite it being out of states to give it a chance. After all, my name does mean “Hope” – hope for the best.
“Do not follow where the path may lead. Go, instead, where there is no path and leave a trail.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson
That summer after deciding to attend Hollins University, I also decided to do a little experimenting by pursing my childhood dream of modeling. With support from my family and friends I was able to model in my first fashion show with FESTAFRICA USA. I stepped out my comfort zone and I did different things and honestly it was the best decision I have ever made. Since my first FESTAFRICA show, I went on to modeling in more shows, assisting, and interning for different organizations and even landed my first few paid gigs You can’t be great by doing small things, and I witness this when I saw how hard the women around me worked. As Newton says, “If I have seen further than others, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” I’ve developed and learned to deal with challenges head-on as I embark on a costly journey to build my dreams from scratch.
“The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eaglerly and without fear for newer and richer experience”.- Eleanor Roosevelt
When you find yourself on autopilot and constantly complaining about your life, you know it’s time to raise the bar and add a little spice to your life. Choosing to move out of your comfort zone and challenging yourself to get better is a choice of growth. You can never regret a decision to become better. It not only strengths you but motivates you to work harder. I honestly believe stepping out of your comfort zone can lead to happiness because that’s exactly what it did for me. You start learning and advancing from your experiences. Every day I challenge myself there are two options that enter my mind: keep going and reach for the top or quit. If you know me you know I love hiking, and I never turn my back on a great mountainous view even if that hike turns out to be 8 miles in the dark in a confederate county of Virginia. Nothing beats that view when you rise above it all. One of my all-time favorite quote is, “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.” It is a constant reminder to stand strong when tested, and to keep swimming away from my comfort zone because it is always an opportunity for growth. After stepping out of my comfort zone I found that I had alot better sense of myself and what I’m willing to accept in my personal, and business relationships. I found more opportunities being opened for me to explore, knowing the women I am inspiring to become I couldn’t just settle for anything or the first offer being put on the table for me. As a growing young professional, I cannot stress how important it is to truly know yourself and push past your boundaries and explore all of the things life has to offer. After all people do say your 20s are your selfish years, so be selfish with your time, energy, and all aspects of you in order to learn about YOU.
“Something strange happens when you decide to not let your fear be bigger than you decide to not let your fear be bigger than your dreams and just take action.”– Luisa Zhou
Why you should step outside of your comfort zone?
- Happiness (Most Important)
- God didn’t give us our human abilities to watch what other people are doing all day.
- You never know what or who is waiting for you.
- If you find yourself constantly complaining about life, it’s time for change.
- If you hate your job, step out and network. This your opportunity to embrace a side hustle.
- Face your fears, and stop cutting yourself short.
- Go from introducing yourself to being “Introduced” which also happens to be my ultimate goal.
- Challenging yourself pushes you allows you to utilize your personal store of untapped knowledge and resources.
- Taking risks, regardless of their outcome, are experiences for growth.
- Each time you transition you move to another level; inevitably, these life transitions transform you.
The choice is yours. Be open to new experience.
Images by Kevin Lukusa
Edits by Esther Alaran