Moving out of your comfort zone

 Moving out of your comfort zone is a subject I mention quite a lot – and I guess that’s because it is one of the key areas of our lives where growth happens.

A few years ago, our IT support man visited our office to help us install some new computers. He commented on how he didn’t understand how we could work with just a single screen and how working with multiple screens made a big difference. (At the time I think his office was set up with over 5 screens!). I don’t remember why but I decided I would take his advice and install another screen on my desk. Perhaps it was the fact he’d said something like once I had tried it, I would never be able to go back to a single screen.

He wasn’t wrong – I now work with 3 screens although I could easily have 5 (if there was room on my desk!). Working with 3 screens is infinitely easier and it means I can work faster, more efficiently and with greater clarity when I am trying to do things that involve different applications or programs (which is ALL the time).  I have rather forgotten now if I found it difficult to adapt to the 3 screens. I guess there was a small learning curve – but it wasn’t that hard and the benefits have paid off massively.

Not willing to take advice

What I find really interesting, is the people who visit our office who exclaim in amazement at my 3 screens and comment how strange it looks and how they could NEVER work with more than one. When I suggest they should try it, they say thank you very much but No I won’t be going there!  As someone who is a very late adopter of things, I can understand this in one way. When the improvement to ones life is considerable, it’s hard to hear others reject something that could really help and make a difference to them.

It struck me that the advice we give and response we get from members about their dating experience is so similar to my 3 screens experience. Often, we talk to members about trying something new, or acting in a slightly different way to what they are currently doing albeit, the response we get is one of dismissal, and a reiteration of their contentedness with doing things the way they’ve always done them. The response is often also peppered with a disbelief that our suggestions could make any difference.

Part of this I guess is moving out of one’s comfort zone because, by definition, none of us like moving out of our comfort zone.

Getting used to it

Yes, initially working with 3 screens takes a bit of getting used to. But it doesn’t take long – and soon enough the 3 screens become normal and before you know it, it’s become familiar and you could never go back to the single screen. My IT colleague was right and I’m so glad I trusted him. In fact, now I find working on a laptop really hard because of the single screen issue.

What is interesting to me is how few people are willing to try new things. I guess if I had tried the extra screens and really hated them. I could have dismantled the set up and gone back to one. But at least I tried it. (As indeed all my team have – and we all now have more than one screen). It amazes me that we give our members suggestions of ways to be more successful and they are dismissed out of hand – even though they have worked for other members – and when I say ‘have worked’ what I mean is that those other members have gone on to meet and marry someone – which is what they ultimately wanted and it’s OFTEN as a result of the small change in the way they were ‘doing’ things that made the difference.


I can think of so many examples here – whether it’s getting a better profile written up; having more photos on your profile; contacting someone who lives further away from you than you’d like; contacting someone who doesn’t ‘jump off the page’ at first; trying our 3 date rule; trying a different church; learning a new way of communicating with others, and so on – these are just a tiny handful of examples (our Finding Someone Special Toolkit has masses more suggestions). It doesn’t matter what the suggestion is, if you find yourself saying “No thank you – that’s not for me” then remember that you are most likely resisting moving out of your comfort zone and restricting the potential for change in your life.

The benefits

Yes, sometimes there’s a cost involved – my 2 extra screens didn’t come free – but often the cost is relatively small compared to evident benefit gained – and often there is no cost at all.

As ever, I offer this up as something for you to think about. Are you resistant to trying out new ideas and things? If you are, do you want to stay this way? More to the point, do you want your life to stay the way it is – because that’s really what is happening! Can you experiment with saying Yes to new experiences that take you out of your comfort zone? Hence, it’s worth a try because the benefits can be really significant – and where a life partner is concerned, the benefits could be massive!

Here’s to trying new things then…. and if you work with a computer – I’d certainly recommend a second screen!