Out Of Their Comfort Zone

Out Of Their Comfort Zone

Life tends to fall into a routine, we live safe, normal lives, some people don’t even realise they are alive until it is too late.

The title of this book is ‘Beyond the Comfort Zone’ because I wrote it to make me think actively about how I can make my business networking activity more effective. I know I will not improve things by doing things normally. To gain the maximum benefit from time, I needed think and act differently.

The only person who is going to change your way of thinking and acting is you. If you continue to do the same things week in week out, not only at your meetings but in the rest of your life, nothing is going to change, except when something happens out of the blue.

If you wait for things to change or for that mythical ‘one day’, it will never come. You have the power within your mind to achieve anything you want, to take control of your life, your universe, your everything.

Within the pages of this book are the basic instructions you need to create your brand of business networking success. Don’t delude yourself, no one in the world (not even me) does everything this book suggests, 100% of the time. The point is for you to think actively with your networking brain turned on, allowing you to gain maximum benefit from every opportunity. You are just one person, but you can make a difference.

Guess what happens if one person in your group starts to make a difference, yep that’s right, others become inspired and make a difference themselves, and before you know it you have an active group. The benefit of the increased activity is easy to see; you watch more confident presentations, more active recon meetings, and the ultimate payoff, more referrals.

Here are two simple ways you can make an effort to move from your comfort zone:

1. Sit somewhere different at every meeting.

2. Do something different every day.

Sit Somewhere Else

Just changing your seating position each meeting will give you a new way of looking at the meeting. Some may find sitting somewhere different every meeting is quite hard to do. We are human and fall easily into habitual activity. Take a look at your group and see how many people sit in the same place each week, you will be astounded how many do.

By changing seating position, you will see the meeting differently. I am not just talking about because you are sitting next to different people, but also because you will get a different view of the room in which you meet.

If you think about it, most of us have very repetitive lives. We wake up in the same bed each morning which gives us the same view; we eat breakfast with our families which though nice gives us the same view. We drive to our place of work along the same roads, which gives us the same view. We tend to sit in offices behind our desks at our computers, which gives us the same view. By view, I do not mean the things we are focusing on, I mean the frame, the backdrop, the surroundings, that we tend to block out because they are the same as we see them every day.

Sitting in a different seat at the meeting, will change the backdrop, change the scenery and allow you to experience the meeting differently.

I can hear the cynics already, thinking that just sitting in a different seat cannot make a big difference, but you will be surprised.

Your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is to sit in the space normally occupied habitually by another member. Two reasons. One, you will be out of your comfort zone by doing it and two, you will push them out of theirs as well, but nicely and subtly.

Do something different every day

Moving ‘Beyond the Comfort Zone’ does not mean you have to live in a state of chaos, doing things differently every time you do them. This would achieve nothing. Neither do you want to portray an image of being this way! Humans like to have stability in their lives; they need to know that you as an (insert your role here) are a person who is solid and trustworthy, someone they can refer with confidence.

As with changing the view, we have in our lives, changing the routines is important. Just travelling to work in a slightly different way changes our way of thinking. Trying a different beverage with our lunch or using a blue pen instead of black. Little changes that open our minds to new experiences. The worst words you can ever hear anyone say are, ‘we have always done it like that’.

Why not choose one member and do a micro-recon with them at your regular meeting. You ask them three very focused questions, requiring meaningful replies, which will allow you to “look” for referrals Suggested micro dance questions are:

• Do you have any specific companies you want me to look out for this week?

• Do you have any new developments in your product range that I can tell people about this week?

• What has been your company’s greatest achievement in the last month?

These micro recons are very good for focusing you on the needs of your fellow members. They are also a good refresher for touching base with people you have already done a full recon with, by keeping your knowledge of their needs up to date.

Applying the ‘do it differently’ model to your membership, might mean that instead of just standing around before the meeting with the same group of people, you decide to meet and greet everyone in the room. Just simply say hello and shake their hand. Sounds easy, doesn’t it? Well, it is very hard. I have only managed to do it two or three times in my many year's memberships in networking groups. But like a lot of things, just because it is not easy, does not mean you shouldn’t do it.

The point of this chapter was to make you think about routines and breaking them. A little change in your life and activity makes you realise that you are not cast in stone and that you can change.

You can adapt, you can move from your comfort zone, into a new place where the potential is limited only by your desire to make things happen.