In this ON Purpose episode, Jay Shetty shared three ways to get out of your comfort zone.
When you start getting too comfortable with your circumstances, that’s when you stop growing. Therefore, it is essential to challenge yourself regularly to evolve.
It doesn’t mean that everything you do needs to be uncomfortable. However, keeping a good balance between comfort and discomfort is crucial.
Jay Shetty spends every October, November, and December planning for the year ahead. This helps him gain an overview of his work and relieves the following months’ stress and pressure.
According to him, it feels better to push himself now and reap the benefits of calmness. His strategy diminishes the anxiety and stress usually associated with the beginning of a new year.
Change of Seasons
During the pandemic, people started to change their behavior. Because of the large amount of time spent at home, it was easy to slip into comfy clothes and never change out of them. Even now, when the restrictions have been lifted, people continue the habits they picked up during the lockdown.
Jay Shetty noticed that “we stay in the space we needed last season.” This means that we get comfortable doing what we were doing in the past, and change feels difficult.
Setting goals is the way to move forward. However, in Jay Shetty’s opinion, it is more important to enjoy the journey rather than focus solely on the destination. According to him,
“A good goal is not one you reach; a good goal is one that makes you better than you were. And so I think we often don’t realize that striving to move towards something without the pressure of getting there is good for our mental health. It’s actually good for our happiness.”
A study analyzed people who documented significant life events regularly.1 They kept a diary over the course of three, nine, and eighteen months respectively. This study concluded that the more varied the experiences, the more likely people were to retain positive emotions.
Similarly, a Yale-conducted study found that the only time we learn is when there is uncertainty in our emotions.2 If we stay in a comfortable and familiar atmosphere, it is nearly impossible to achieve new skills.
Jay Shetty admitted to also joining the trend of wearing comfortable clothes during the pandemic. Now, two years later, he finds wearing more fitted clothes challenging.
“It’s challenging even to change what you wear. So imagine how challenging it is to change how you think, what you believe, your values”, he added.
It is essential to leave the comfort zone. If you don’t, you will end up creating complacency, which, in turn, makes you more resistant to change.
Change Your Environment
Your environment plays a vital role in your state of mind. It can make or break your day. For example, if you wake up and read the news, you might start your day on a negative note. Therefore, surround yourself with things that bring you joy, such as a painting of your favorite artist or a picture of your loved ones. Then, when you glance at them first thing in the morning, your day will start off brighter.
Starting your day right makes a big difference. So, ensure that you surround yourself with things that put a smile on your face right after you wake up.
The Pitfall of Complacency
In Exponential Organizations, by Salim Ismail in collaboration with Michael S. Malone, and Yuri van Geest,, the authors explained how companies like Airbnb, Instagram, and Uber revolutionized their industries. Because old players took their position for granted and failed to adapt to changing times, these companies were able to rise and take their places..
For example, hotel chains have less access to real estate than Airbnb does. In only ten years, Instagram gained greater access to media than traditional media organizations accumulated in 50 years. And Uber now has access to more vehicles than any other car service in the world.
The secret to these companies’ success is that they challenged tradition and found their path forward. On the other hand, when you become complacent like the companies these three replaced, you end up stagnating.
Jay Shetty shared two statements that people use to justify their resistance to change and make themselves feel better about their choices. These phrases are:
“We’ve always done it that way,” and “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.”
Jay Shetty invited the listeners to reflect upon their lives and understand where they feel the most comfortable. Because comfort and complacency don’t come suddenly, you often don’t notice when you stop trying.
“Comfort creeps in ever so slowly that you don’t even know how it got involved, how it got engaged, how it was invited in,” he explained.
Always A New Challenge
In a conversation with a friend, Jay Shetty was asked about his blind spots. It was then that it dawned on him that thinking of his own blind spots makes him aware of them, in effect, removing them from his life.
Jay Shetty referenced Ammar, from YouTube’s Yes Theory, explained that challenging himself makes him move out of his comfort zone. Now, he regularly looks for new challenges to master, such as his current goal of meditating fifteen minutes each day. ng for
Jay Shetty asked the listeners to think about the things they mastered by leaving their safe space. Are you now comfortable doing things that used to make your skin crawl? Have you become complacent, or are you constantly challenging yourself with new and exciting opportunities?
In Jay Shetty’s view, evolution doesn’t equal pushing yourself to try harder. Instead, it means identifying the areas where you feel comfortable, then assessing if you want to achieve more in any of them, and conquering the fear of moving into uncharted territory.
Nobody started from a position of comfort. When we were children, we had to learn a lot of skills that were incredibly challenging. Walking, talking, and even eating solids were uncomfortable at first. To become adults, we had to evolve constantly. It may not have been easy, but we pushed through because it was necessary.
After finishing school, people are considered grown-ups. This term signifies that our evolution is complete. There is no more learning to do. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Humans should be learning something new throughout their lives, even outside an academic environment. Jay Shetty suggests replacing the term “a grown-up” with “a growing-up.” Never stop learning, and always keep evolving.
Curiosity Didn’t Kill The Cat
Zig Ziglar once said, “You don’t have to be great to start. But you have to start to be great.” It is essential to take the first step toward your goal. Jay Shetty urges us all to think about something that makes us curious. What have you always wanted to learn more about or try out?
In his opinion, it’s not curiosity that “killed the cat,” but complacency. It makes people settle and not try out new experiences. When life becomes too comfortable, the fear of discomfort can be greater than the thirst for adventure.
Jay Shetty is getting out of his comfort zone by going on a book tour next year. During this tour, he will promote his new book, 8 Rules of Love. You can check the dates and buy tickets on jayshettytour.com. And if you haven’t yet had the chance, head to 8rulesoflove.com to order your own copy of the book.
Finding a Balance
“We create our discomfort because we don’t build competence,” Jay Shetty warned. Usually, people have the choice between crushing it or crashing. Though there is only one letter difference in the words, the outcomes of each are worlds apart. So it all comes down to you taking either the path of curiosity or comfort.
However, not all things in life have to be challenging. We also need some comfort in some areas of our life. Jay Shetty has a comfortable private life, but the remaining 75% of his life challenges him daily. He shares how he balances these two extremes to find r a thriving experience. “I’ve tried to make my life surrounding [work] comfortable so that it can catch me so that not everything is uncomfortable.” It’s all about having a safety net, too.
The end of the year is the time when people make resolutions for the next twelve months. However, there is a need for a mindset change to ensure that you also achieve what you set your mind to do.
According to Jay Shetty, the first shift is to replace goals with challenges. When we set goals, we end up disappointed if we fail to achieve them. On the contrary, setting challenges brings excitement. It’s like competing against yourself in a race to become better. Be bold and go for the thing you’ve always wanted to achieve.
Second, have a look at your environment. As mentioned previously, it influences your mindset immensely. It is crucial to surround yourself with things that make your life easier and happier. Create a routine that will enable you to move forward rather than staying in the same spot.
And lastly, change the inner monologue. Jay Shetty suggested repeating these three affirmations regularly:
“I am ready to go to the next level.”
“I can do hard things.”
“I will not settle for less than I deserve.”
More From Jay Shetty
Listen to the entire On Purpose with Jay Shetty podcast episode on “3 Ways to Get Out of Your Comfort Zone & 3 Ways to Challenge Yourself This Week” now in the iTunes store or on Spotify. For more inspirational stories and messages like this, check out Jay’s website at jayshetty.me.