It’s easy to get stuck in a rut when at work. We tend to repeat the same set of activities exactly the same way every other day. As a result, we become too comfortable with fixed routines that we refuse to go outside our comfort zones.
In Singapore, fresh graduates challenge themselves by exploring new opportunities with SkillsFuture Singapore (SSG) courses. Through the program, the participants receive industry-relevant training and develop critical skills in their chosen fields.
Learning how to take risks is the key to professional development. With that in mind, we’ll talk about you can practice getting out of your comfort zone at work.
Ask for Something New
Things can get pretty monotonous at work after some time. This often applies to administrative jobs involving the same set of tasks every day. People have different ways of viewing redundant tasks at work; they either leave the job or just settle because they already got used to it. Another reason is that the job has become so easy that they refuse to do something more challenging.
Choosing to settle on routines can harm your professional growth. In fact, it’s one of the worst habits to develop if you want to advance in your career.
In life, there are plenty of opportunities to challenge yourself. These opportunities will push you to try new things. But if you’re at work and you don’t know where to start, you can always ask. Talk to your boss about how your job has become less challenging and your desire to try new responsibilities in the office.
This approach is something many people are afraid to try. Asking for something new is like finding a reason to increase your stress and cram your schedule. Instead, tell your boss how you’re keen to take on a new challenge to break your routine, but the job should be enough for you to act and think differently than before. It can be taking on a new project, participating in the new company initiative, or offering your time to train the new employee or your coworker about a new process. You’re not only helping your team and the company, but you’re also building your credentials.
In other words, it’s all about changing your perspective. Additional responsibilities aren’t something to be avoided but should be treated as a challenge and an opportunity to work with different technology, processes, and people.
Face Your Fears
Sometimes people stay in their comfort zone because it serves as their escape from engaging in activities or responsibilities they find intimidating or scary. If you keep avoiding role changes or job opportunities because of your fear, every day is an opportunity to face your fears. Are you scared of speaking in a room filled with people? Join a public speaking training course! If working with graphs and charts isn’t your forte, ask your coworker who knows how to interpret quantitative reports.
It only takes small baby steps to address those fears. Once you have a plan in place, starting with an initial action is easy. Facing your fears is an effective way to desensitize yourself to the feelings of fear, stress, and anxiety. Still, this approach will require a lot of patience because it’s something you don’t want to push yourself forcefully. Your main goal is to start doing it and allow yourself to be comfortable in the process.
Learn Something New
Curiosity is a common attribute among risk-takers. Their curiosity towards unfamiliar things is what pushes them to try new opportunities and learn new things.
One example is learning new technology at work. In this digital world where technology has become a part of work life, you have to adapt to the digital landscape to upgrade your skill and utilize tools to keep you productive.
To leave your comfort zone, you have to divert your attention from anything mundane and become more curious about your surroundings. It doesn’t need to be related to your work; you can simply start at home by trying a new hobby or any unfamiliar activity that will allow you to learn skills and would deem helpful to your job. So if you really want to succeed in your career, you have to stay curious.
It isn’t easy to venture into new and unfamiliar things. But having encounters that challenge your approach and mindset can bring a significant impact on your overall performance and ability to take risks in times of uncertainty and change. Once you embody this outlook physically and mentally, you’ll soon discover your comfort zone isn’t that comfortable after all.