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Staying Within My Comfort Zone

Abdulrahman Alhenaki
Staying in our comfort zone doesn’t restrict our growth as we often believe. Our comfort zone is the only place where we feel confident. It is where we found our experiences and our sources of strength. So, staying in it while constantly nurturing it is the best practice. It allows us to discover new challenges and approach them firmly and courageously. This will not only improve our journey, but it will also inspire our team to take on their own challenges.
About The Author
Abdulrahman Alhenaki
August 15, 2023
Senior Project Officer, Misk Foundation

In leadership development, the phrase “get out of your comfort zone” is often the first thing we hear when people talk about leadership development as the only solution for growth and success. However, I believe it is false and can be a waste of time. Throughout my journey (though a short one), I have, like most people in fact, gotten out of my comfort zone many times and done things I had not done before, and I did not get the best result I wanted.

During one of my self-feedback and self-reflection sessions, which I believe every leader should do regularly, I had a realization that reshaped my perspective on personal growth. I realized that each time I get out of my comfort zone, like many others, I immediately return to it, irrespective of whether the outcome was good or bad. This made me realize that instead of viewing my comfort zone as a limiting space, I began to see it as a fortress of strengths built upon years of skill development and experiences. Within this zone, I feel confident in my abilities and decisions, allowing me to lead the team or organization with clarity and purpose. This fact allowed me to challenge this popular notion. I firmly believe that staying within your comfort zone and strategically expanding it is a powerful approach to self-improvement and achieving remarkable success.

My comfort zone, I discovered, is the fertile ground from which I can confidently face challenges and seize opportunities. Rather than fleeing from it, I embraced the idea of gradually expanding it, like nurturing a garden to yield even greater fruits. This shift in mindset allowed me to approach growth as a continuous journey of exploration of new challenges while being equipped with the skills, network, and experiences I have developed over the years.

Expanding my comfort zone has become an integral part of my leadership, personal, and technical skills development. Instead of diving headfirst into the unknown, I chose to challenge myself gradually and continuously. This approach involved taking on new responsibilities, seeking projects beyond my usual domain, and engaging in skill-building activities. Each step I took to expand my comfort zone contributed to my growth, bolstering my adaptability and resilience.

In the process of embracing my comfort zone and strategically expanding it, I discovered a profound sense of empowerment. I no longer feared the unknown; instead, I approached it with curiosity and enthusiasm. This newfound mindset opened doors to opportunities I had never imagined possible, allowing me to tap into hidden potential and unlock uncharted capabilities.

As leaders, it is essential to recognize the impact of our personal growth on our team. When we embrace the idea of staying within our comfort zones and pushing our boundaries, we lead by example, inspiring our team members to embark on their own journeys of growth.

I conclude by sharing the wisdom of Eng. Omar Najjar, the deputy CEO of Misk Foundation, regarding a three-year approach to a particular role. During the first year, learn from your predecessors. In the second year, execute your tasks exceptionally to showcase your abilities. By the third year, focus on exceptional productivity and impart your knowledge to your team before embarking on a new mission.

Let us embrace the idea that true growth lies not in escaping our comfort zones but in expanding them continuously. By doing so, we embark on a journey of continuous improvement, self-discovery, and empowerment. As leaders, let us inspire others to nurture their comfort zones, transforming them into launching pads for greatness.


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