You're probably wondering about the title. Plus ultra is a motto, which means "further beyond". You could call it "pushing the envelope" but that sounds a bit management speak to me.
I'm talking about going beyond your comfort zone. We all have a comfort zone - things we are happy doing because they don't make us anxious. This is because they don't have an element of risk or if they do, we are happy with the risk the task or activity poses because we don't feel it's risky. It's different for different people - we all know daredevils who take massive risks quite regularly.
The problem is, our comfort zone can very often hold us back. After all, if you don't take risks, how can you actually change your life? Testing our comfort zone is a good thing to do regularly, to understand how we respond to taking risks and how we can manage it. Taking risks shouldn't put us into a massive state of anxiety; certainly not for very long anyway.
I've scared you now, haven't I? Read on.
Your task is this:
- I want you to set yourself a task that you know takes you out of your comfort zone. If you don't know what that is, look at the things you need to be doing now and pick out something you keep putting off, or makes you anxious or nervous just thinking about it. Make it one that is useful and relevant to the things you need to do on your plan so that you will feel like you've really achieved something by completing it.
- Commit to tackling and completing this in the time allowed for this task. Remember you have a long time for this one - the linky doesn't open until 23rd February and remains open until 8th March, meaning you have nearly a month to complete this although it would be useful to see as many posts as possible around the time that the linky opens.
- You might want to record how you feel after you've committed to doing this task and during the process.
- Complete the task as best you can and notice how you felt during the process.
- When you blog, explain what feelings you had, whether you showed any physical or other signs of anxiety at any point, whether you were able to control those feelings or signs.
- Note also how you felt after completing the task.
- I want you to try your best to complete the task but if you really can't, then mention that too, how that came about, and how your feelings changed from the point you committed to the task to the point where you realised you couldn't do it.
Let me also make it clear - you don't HAVE to share with everyone what the task is or was. Obviously, we'd all love to share in the successes of these completed tasks but we don't necessarily need all the details.
Go easy on yourselves - I want to make clear now that anyone that doesn't get their task completed is most definitely NOT a failure. What is important is for you to understand why that happened and how you reacted to the thought of doing the task, and how you felt after you realised you wouldn't complete your task. That is going to be just as important to me to this process as people pushing themselves and succeeding. By the way, if you do complete your task, ask yourself if your task was challenging enough. If not, why not? Is it because you don't trust yourself to complete it, or you don't believe that you are capable of more? Did you surprise yourself how you dealt with it? What have you learned from this task? This is as much about self-awareness as it is about finishing the task.
Good luck, people. I'll see you on the other side. Twelve days and counting until that linky opens. You can do it.