A woman (let’s call her Nancy) came into one of our programs not in the most open frame of mind. She was coerced to be there by a good friend of hers who had taken the program a few months before. She didn’t think she needed it. She had a very good reason for not wanting to be there. She had a library of self-help books. So many she could have opened her own self-improvement book store. And, every new one out she bought. She read them all and felt she was learning and doing just fine.
She was quiet in class. A typical “training hostage”. As the first session went on she began to open a little to reveal she had been trying to build a catering business for the last 10 years and was just keeping it afloat. She could never figure out why it wasn’t growing.
As we were covering the four foundational principles, we came to the section on comfort zone. We defined what a C.Z. is, how it is formed and how we feel when we are inside, on the edge and outside it. We also spent time talking about how our C.Z. keeps us from doing the things we want and need to be doing and that the further outside our comfort zone we get the less effective we are at whatever we are attempting to do out there.
All of a sudden this quiet, reserved training hostage jumped out of her seat and shouted, “that’s it!” She finally realized it was her C.Z, limitations which were at the heart of the business wall she had been trying to break through–and never could. When we showed her the simple process of how she could build and enlarge her comfort zone everyday and by doing that she could break through and create breakthrough growth for herself and her business she took the challenge.
Within 6 months she had doubled her business. She continued to write me emails for several months after telling me all the great things happening to her which she knew were as a result of her opening her C.Z. a little at a time which over time grew very big.
That experience and result would have never come to her by reading a book–it hadn’t for the previous 10 years. Book are great tools when used appropriately as part of an overall training process. What studies continue to prove is “knowledge doesn’t change performance.” Just because you know something doesn’t mean you can do it or do it well. Knowledge isn’t power until it is appropriately and properly applied.
If you are reading books, watching DVDs and listening to CDs, don’t stop. But, don’t think they will be enough to help you develop the skills you need to accomplish want you want. There isn’t a golfer, or any athlete worth their salt who will tell you they became proficient by relying on these tools. You need a good skill development program/process and a coach to help you practice the right things right. Nancy only caused herself and her business to move by digging deep into the principles which govern behavior and learned by training, example and practice how to make them work for her.
I challenge you to do the same and you will experience the same positive results. Identify those things which put you on the edge and outside your C.Z. Pull yourself outside your C.Z. just a little every day. In no time you will be doing things you never thought you would be able to do. Also, make a list of those behaviors which would make you more successful at anything you want to accomplish. I will bet the ones which would make you the most successful in any area you desire are outside your comfort zone. When you grow your C.Z. every day those things which you hesitate or refuse to do now will no longer stand it your way and greater success will be yours. Try it, you’ll be amazed..
To your Intentional Success!