When I was a kid, my Dad used to take me fishing a lot. We would get up at like 3am, grab some quick breakfast (usually pancakes or oatmeal) and jump in the car before there was even a hint of sunrise. Within an hour or so, we would pull in to the trail head parking lot, grab our gear, and take a short hike to someplace like Rainbow Lakes. We would always be the first ones there and we would be at the lake before the trout started to feed.
I loved those trips and I cherish the memories.
But I didn’t like getting out of bed in the morning THAT early. I was comfortable under my covers sound asleep – cocooned in my comfort zone. If my Dad didn’t prod me and drag me out of bed, I would have happily slept on — never knowing what awaited me outside my comfort zone.
The same is true in business, only it is a lot more intense because there is a lot more perceived risk in business than in fishing.
Business is scary for many of us, especially for independent entrepreneurs. Just making the decision to take control of your own destiny requires a big jump out of the comfort zone for most of us.
We make the jump anyway. We throw off the covers and hit the trail with hope, aspirations and big plans. We land on both feet and start walking into the unknown wilderness.
Little do we know at the time, but this is just one of many leaps that we must make out of our comfort zone.
In fact, the best things in business happen outside of our comfort zones. Like the fishing trips I took with my Dad at oh-dark-thirty in the morning, they can’t be experienced or benefited from while residing under the covers.
The natural desire to remain in one’s comfort zone is one reason why most businesses don’t measure their results consistently.
But there is only one way to be the first one on the trail — the one who sees the sunrise, breathes the fresh air, and lands the hungry fish — and that is to get out of your comfort zone.
Turn on the light, throw off the covers, and develop a fool-proof measurement system for your business.
Until you do, you won’t know what you are missing — and, believe me, when you are landing an 18″ rainbow while everyone else sleeps, you aren’t wishing you were in bed under the covers.
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