Inside your comfort zone, everything is familiar and known, it is expected and routine. And while this is where your anxiety is the lowest, it is also where you experience no growth or improvement because you are never learning anything new. Expanding your comfort zone helps you to learn new things, be open to new experiences, and connect with new people. It is where learning and growth take place, just outside of your current level of comfort. Here are seven reasons to expand that comfort zone and embrace the possibilities that lie outside of it.

1. You Will Gain More Confidence

When you learn something new or develop new skills, you expand your comfort zone and boost your self-confidence. The more you learn and build your own competence, the more confident you will feel in your ability to achieve your goals and overcome challenges. Learning new things can help you manage your fears about the unknown when you realize you have the strength and skills to get past tough times.

2. You Can Improve Your Productivity

A lot of people keep doing things the same way they have always done them, even though this may not be the most efficient strategy. Living inside your comfort zone makes you complacent and forces you to rely on your old routines and habits, but when you stretch that zone, you become more motivated to work harder and to learn new ways to do something familiar.

3. You Can Expand Your Social Circle and Professional Network

Expanding your comfort zone can help you to meet new people as you learn the skills or take on new challenges. Being open to things outside your comfort zone means getting to met people who are also unfamiliar or new to you. When you meet new people, you can benefit from their perspectives and opinions, which are often different from your own. So, meeting new people is a way to continue to expand your learning.

4. You Will Become More Resilient

The more you are comfortable with things that are new to you, the more you are mentally and emotionally able to deal with unexpected changes in your life. By embracing the unknown and becoming willing to learn from it, you approach adversity, setbacks, and even failures differently, seeing them and learning experiences rather than something to avoid. This helps you overcome challenges more quickly and remain positive in the face of adverse outcomes.

5. You Expand Your Understanding of the World and Others

When you expand outside your comfort zone, you see how others live and work, what they believe, and how they experience life. The more you open to accepting and understanding these differences, the more empathy you will have for others, and the more embracing you can be of the vast differences in our species that make us each unique and special.

6. You Will Find Change Easier

Those who are comfortable expanding or looking outside their comfort zone will find change less frightening and be more open to new experiences in the future. Many people avoid change or transformation because it represents the unknown, but stepping outside your comfort zone helps you get used to the anxiety that is normal when things are different. Learning to be comfortable with discomfort is what expanding your comfort zone is all about, which enables you to be okay with all types of changes in your life.

7. You Can Become More Creative

Being willing to expand your comfort zone helps you be more open to innovative ideas, which can expand your creativity and help you express yourself in new and exciting ways. When you seek out new, creative endeavors, it keeps your brain open to possibilities, which can inspire you to learn and grow in other areas of your life, too.