“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom” Anais Nin
Sometimes it is just easier to keep doing the same thing because it feels safe or it is what you have become accustomed to; even if is causes you pain or difficulty. Often people are quite aware that what they are doing is not working but the unknown, doing something different, can seem terrifying. Just taking that step into unknown territory can seem so overwhelming that the current state seems like a better of two evils.
It is important to try and work through these times, take the risks necessary to make your life better. In school, to be successful in your academic program, you may need to add strategies that push your comfort zone but help you to be more engaged in your learning. Speaking out and asking questions in class may seem terrifying to some students, try taking small steps and setting a goal to ask one small question, or provide a comment, once per week. In your personal life you may be avoiding someone that you care about because of a fight, a miscommunication or you may be embarrassed about something that happened. Try making a small gesture or step toward open communication by setting your stubbornness aside and apologizing for your part; or just try “putting out there” something that you may be embarrassed about (of course with someone you trust). Push your limits…slightly. Ask those questions that you fear may sound dumb, speak up and defend someone who is being picked on, share your views…essentially try small things to push your comfort zone. If you take a pace that fits you and keep trying, you will find that your fear of the unknown slowly becomes known and familiar…and maybe even easy!
Today… try doing something that scares you a little bit…push yourself to try something that will help you engage more in a classroom environment. Speak out in class discussions, stay after and ask your professor a question, introduce yourself to a classmate, open that text book and read a chapter that you may be avoiding…
Remember to sign up for the eLearn modules by emailing me. I have more hints, tips and tricks that can help you stretch and grow in the area of Assertiveness.
Heather Drummond, M.Ed. (Counselling Psychology)
FG Success Coach @ Mohawk College