I recently read a quote that said something along the lines of anyone living at the edge of their comfort zone has imposter syndrome and if they don’t, they need to go further. The point of course is to continually push yourself further and harder, to always be striving for more. If you’re comfortable you may remain so for a time, but someone will come along, push you from your perch and pass you by. Instead, enjoy your successes and then challenge yourself to do better, to do more.
In my world I live in a state of constant discomfort purposefully. I have to mostly reinvent my law practice every year by continually bringing in new business because most of my clients have discreet deals or issues and are not a source of continual business. Based on this I set goals each year on the amount of business I hope to generate and then have to go about putting in the time and work to do so. Even when my year is going well, I’m aware that it takes one or two slow months to knock me off track. I use this purposeful discomfort to keep focus on my goals and taking the steps and actions to put me in the best position to reach them. For me, this has translated to success, but I am well aware if I sit back for any period of time all of this long building forward momentum will quickly fade.
I challenge you to look at your circumstances. Are you in your own state of purposeful discomfort looking to challenge yourself and grow or are you just cruising along, relying on past success and taking what comes your way? There are always steps you can take to move your life out of neutral and drive forward. This is another way to invest in yourself. When you improve or have success you need to look back at your hard work and give yourself credit while at the same time knowing and acknowledging that those around you helped take you to the next level. This should be a rinse and repeat exercise as you reach one goal and set a new one.
By doing this you always should be moving through stages of comfort and discomfort. You should be reaching or exceeding your goals and then setting new ones. To do so you have to realize there is no top of the mountain to reach in business. It’s a series of hard climbs to a false summit where you can rest in comfort for a moment before taking on the challenge of the next steep section of the climb. Conquering the steep sections is what brings satisfaction and enjoyment when you reach a summit. The fact is it’s up to you how high that mountain is and how far you climb.