14 February 2019

The only way to grow is by being uncomfortable

No one has ever achieved anything great by being in their comfort zone.

It is outside your comfort zone where all the magic happens. It is here we grow, it is here we learn and it is here we might find true happiness.

Only by pushing yourself you can achieve great things. So when things become uncomfortable don’t worry it means that you are doing something.

It’s like running, you never get faster running the same nice 5 km in your comfort zone each week. The only way to get faster is to do thoese uncomfortable high intense intervall training that I hate to do, but I know I need to do them in order to get faster.

The feeling of uncomfortable is a good thing

As an entrepreneur, SkyRunner and in life in general, the feeling of uncomfortable is just something you have to get used to. Because if you never take it, you will never grow. Actually it is the moments where I felt the most uncomfortable, that has been the greatest game changers in my life.

One of thoese moments where when I quit my job and started my first company together with my husband. I left something that was good and secure, for something new, unexplored and unsafe. Our financial situation weren’t very stable, and all the tasks that I needed to do in the start up were totally new to me. I did feel very uncomfortable all the time in the beginning, but I did all thoese uncomfortable things that I needed to do in order to get there. I remember all thoese sales calls that I needed to do (even though I’m not a typical sales person). I did hundreds of them (not very succesful), but finally I made it and got the hold of our first customers. And the next time it was a little bit easier and so on.

After a couple of many hard working years our business became quite stable and successful. Going to work became a habit, the job became quite easy, and I stopped challange myself enough. In other words, I was getting comfortable.

But it’s not so bad, right? I mean, I’m comfortable, so I must be happy?

If only it worked out that way. Unfortunately, the longer you stay within your comfort zone, the less happy you tend to be.

So, why do we stay within our comfort zone then? Because it takes energy to move something into action. That’s a simple fact of life. Science uses the word energy to describe the process in natural things, but when we talk about ourselves (humans), we usually just use the word motivation.

How to beat your comfort zone

The trick beating your comfort zone, is to make a habit of stepping outside of yourself and doing things that either feels very uncomfortable, scary or takes a lot of hard work.

When an opportunity presents itself, it’s probably your own fear that holds you back. That’s what we’re facing when we come up against our comfort zone.

A good way to get out of your comfort zone is to do small steps and start with anything in life. It could be anything from a sports challange that you really want to master or small daily challanges as calling a customer that you have procrasted for too long.

Anyone can get stuck in the “comfortable mode” and I’ve also been there. A couple of years ago I started to feel that my life weren’t moving forward fast enough, and I got bored. What I did then was that I started to challange myself.

First I started with a common Swedish Sport Challange “The Swedish Classics”. I made it, and my confidence grow. Then I started to believe in my self that I could accomplish more (also nice to know that I’m not totally dead by the age of 40). So my next challange became a “SkyRunning Marathon”. It’s not an easy one and it took a lot of hard work to get there.

But I did it.

At that moment I was able to feel true happiness, and the feeling inside of me that I can do anything I wan’t – GROW.

One thing led to another and finally I had collected so much of energy, courage and self-confidence to do the most uncomfortable and scariest move in my career. Leaving our baby (our first company Atrox that I loved).

The process was quite painful, but now when I moved on to a new unexplored future, it feels good and I’m on it again. Actually I’ve been missing the excitiness of the “start up feeling”, and  now I’m looking forward to new adventures with my new company Arduua.

Kia fjällmaraton 43 km 2018 Katinka Nyberg

Keep taking steps

Lessons learned from this is to always keep moving taking steps. Make a list of all the things you like to do, and start doing them. By doing that simple task, and stepping outside your comfort zone more often, you gain the energy and confidence that is necessary in order to take a bigger step forward and step further outside of your comfort zone. Once you’ve done this, pick another item on your list. Do this until you feel confident enough to finally talk to that person (or whatever that thing is for you).

Stepping outside of your comfort zone can be built up like a muscle – the more you do it, the easier it becomes (becoming comfortable with being uncomfortable).

Keep challange your self

Keep challange your self, and your life will be so much more fun and interesting. Keep trying new things and you will notice that each time it will get easier and easier.

I have small kids (twins 7 year old), that started to play hockey last year. I taught it looked fun and I wanted to be a part of it as a coach and a trainer (I realized that my other option was to spend my next 10 years outside the icehockey rink freezing).

But I’ve been stubborn and I have tried to hang out in the skating rink for some time now, even though I have sometimes felt very uncomfortable with the feeling that I don’t belong on the ice.

After 6 month on the ice with the kids I got a question if I wanted to play in the ladies team, and I took the oppertunity and said yes.

I have played for a couple of months now and it’s a lot of fun and I’m getting better and better. My next goal is to be in the team for real and play in a real game. And the best part of it is that I will be able to coach my daughters hockey team, even when they grow older and get better.

It’s a great feeling that you can actually learn new things (even a whole new sport) at age 44, and I’m glad I took this opportunity.

Getting comfortable with being uncomfortable

It’s your comfort zone — and stepping outside of it that is key to discovering your passion, accomplishing your goals, and finding true happiness.

Success is awarded to those of us who aren’t afraid to do the hard work, and to do what feels uncomfortable at the time.

Honestly… I can say from my personal experiences that true growth pretty much requires a constant state of being uncomfortable.

You can do it if you want it enough!

With this blog I like to encourage people to achieve more and be an inspiration for others.

Read the first blog post and how I got myself info SkyRunning…

Many people want. But a few do it ….

Coaching and guidance

We all need help some times, in order to get to our next level of running. Arduua Coaching is specifically focused in Skyrunning, Trail and Ultra-trail. We build strong, fast, and enduring runners and help them to prepare for race day. By building personal relationships with our runners, we create the individual training you need to ensure that you are 100% ready on the day of the competition. For more info please check out Arduua Online Coaching >>.

For more questions about our training please contact Katinka Nyberg at katinka.nyberg@arduua.com.

Have a great training day!

/Katinka, Arduua Founder

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