HOMELESS: How Going WAY Out of Your Comfort Zone Can Change EVERYTHING

comfort zone, transformation

I recently wrote ‘Please Help’ on a cardboard sheet, dressed like a homeless person and sat on a French street, begging for money.  

I didn’t do this for fun….kicks or because I had nothing better to do that day.

I did it because I was deliberately seeking ways to go out of my comfort zone.

And trust me….begging on the streets is about as far out of a person’s comfort zone as you can get! (more on that later).

If you’ve ever felt there are things about yourself that never seem to change – even though you’ve spent literally HOURS thinking about them, analyzing them – perhaps even paying others to ‘fix’ them for you…

…… you will have some fresh ideas about how to get things really moving by the time you finish this blog post.

You see 15 months ago I spent most of the time feeling like a lioness trapped inside a mouse.

A little like this! 😉

Comfort Zone

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can you relate?

Even though I’d had some success with public speaking (I worked as a women’s rights campaigner in the UK) it often felt like I wasn’t being really myself.

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I was being ‘Sandy the Campaigner’ – and when I was around people in everyday situations, I was unbearably self-conscious because of a speech impediment I’d developed as a teenager.

Today that dreaded ‘mousey‘ feeling is a thing of the past.

I have the confidence and self-esteem to feel comfortable in my own skin, NO MATTER who I’m with and making inspirACTION videos like the one you’re about to watch has been a HUGE part of that.

Example of Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone: “HOMELESS”

 

Sitting on that sidewalk was one of the most excruciating experiences of my life and I truly mean that!

For starters a sidewalk is REALLY grimy and dirty.

You’re at ‘feet’ level – sitting directly where many people drop litter or cigarette butts and dogs like to er..mark their territory!

Glamorous it ain’t and to top if off I did this in November, so it was also very cold 🙁 

But aside from the physical discomfort what was unbelievably uncomfortable was the looks I received from people and their silent judgements as they passed, carefully avoiding my spot.

Many, many people pretended I didn’t exist (which if I’m honest I’ve done too when walking past homeless people) and that was harder to stomach than the ones who looked on disapprovingly.

Why? Well when someone sees you are obviously in a state of distress – which you’d have to be to be begging in the street on a cold winter’s day – and just ignores you…. it feels really crappy. 

 

All in all…. the experience was highly uncomfortable and therefore WAY out of my comfort zone.

What Happened Next

Making videos like this helped me do 3 things: 

1) I Stopped Letting Other People’s Potential Opinions Influence My Behaviour.

Most people unconsciously stop themselves from doing things other people might object to or judge.

For example if you’ve ever been at a party and witnessed that uncomfortable moment when an empty dance floor is just CRYING OUT for someone to dance on it…you’ll know what I’m talking about!

There are usually lots of people who’d secretly LIKE to be dancing but they sit back and wait until there’s a ‘safe’ number of people on the dancefloor so they can just blend in.

I know because I used to be one of them 😉

kidContrast this to children.

If music begins playing in a roomful of kids….there are bodies moving and shaking within seconds!

Kids don’t have the same fear we develop as adults of being criticized or judged.

This fear is a HUGE element of what determines our own personal comfort zone.

Each video helped me care less and less about other people’s opinions

That’s not to say you should be completely oblivious to them – as we live in a world full of opinions so understanding them is part of ‘playing the game’ here.

BUT there’s a difference between understanding them and not letting them RESTRICT you – to being governed by them, which is how I felt before.

2) I Began to Enjoy Feeling Uncomfortable

The more I made videos like this the the more I enjoyed what I noticed would happen afterwards. 

Even though I usually dreaded making them (as you’ll notice at the start of the Homeless video) once I’d actually done it, made the video and shared it on the internet….

…something strange would happen.

I’d feel more powerful.

More confident.

More BOLD.

And overtime, I truly began to feel like ‘Neo’ in the Matrix. Breaking free of the ‘box’ I’d lived in for so long.

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3) My Life Began to Change in Very Noticeable Ways

When I first began making videos I was working 6 days a week, running my own Zumba business. 

 

Although I absolutely love to dance and fell in love with Zumba from my very first class, I found turning my passion into my ‘job’ eventually killed the fun. 

There’s a difference between teaching Zumba every now and then because you love to dance, and teaching it nearly every single day, year after year.

After 3.5 years I was feeling very tired and burnt-out 🙁 

I also felt confused.

I’d left campaigning after falling seriously ill and deciding to focus on the ‘happier’ side of life. Yet teaching Zumba didn’t seem to be working! 

I found that the more videos I made…the more I got re-connected to what truly makes my soul sing – sharing WORD. 

Because I truly believe Word can change the world! It has done through time and today with the internet we have even more ways to do that.

Within 8 months of beginning my video adventure and using this online system I was able to stop teaching Zumba, move out to the countryside and to make videos and blog from wherever I choose. 

In fact right now I’m writing this blogpost from one of the most exclusive parts of the world, Villefranche sur Mer on the French Riviera, and am looking out at St Jean Cap Ferrat – home to many celebrities and millionaires.

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And next month I’m moving to Portugal 🙂

A 3 Step Process to Get Out of YOUR Comfort Zone

Many people ‘get’ that the magic begins outside of our comfort zone…but far fewer actually DO anything about it. Use this simple process to get out of yours and begin experiencing the changes I’ve described. 

1) Ask Your Friends For Ideas

A fun way to get other people involved (and increase the likelihood you’ll take action) is to ask them for ideas.

That’s actually how I got the idea for making the homeless video – from my good friend Avram Gonzales, initiator of the ‘inspirACTION’ videos himself:

Inspiraction ideas

 

 

 

 

 

And the idea that triggered this video –>

homeless dare

2) Pick At Least ONE Thing You Know You’ll Do

Don’t try to do everything. Overwhelm is the fastest killer of enthusiasm (FACT!)

Ask yourself which idea will create the most transformation if you go for it and take some kind of step towards it.

For example after Avram suggested the homeless idea, I asked a friend if she’d come with me and film the challenge. Even though at that point I had NO desire to sit on the street and beg for money. This actually leads into my next point….

3) Surround Yourself With a Support System 

Doing everything alone works for some people but I can speak from personal experience when I say it’s far easier and also more FUN to be supported.

Having a friend there whilst you do the challenge will make a huge difference.

I also found that beyond this is the support a ‘mastermind’ provides.

Respected author Napoleon Hill found a common theme when he interviewed 500 of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs in the 1920s/30s:

Without ANY exceptions they were all in masterminds of some kind that helped them move faster than ‘average’ people.

I myself am in an incredible Mastermind which has supported me in so many ways since I first joined it in January 2013.

It’s like having a team of advisors, friends and cheerleaders who are there cheering for you and have got your back 🙂

For example these are comments posted in our Mastermind after I shared a recent success story: 

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Having taught Zumba in a very solo capacity for the 3.5 years before that I’ve seen with my own eyes what a tremendous difference this can make.

Over to You:

1.  If you know your comfort zone could do with a little stretching…share this post on social media and ask your friends for ideas.

2.  Pick the ONE idea you know will be a game-changer and take some kind of action towards actually doing it.

3.  Amp up the transformation by filming it too and take a look at this blogging platform and community so that you can share it online AND be supported in the process.

If you enjoyed this post you’ll want to read this one too. Click the photo below to read it:

Overcoming Low Self Esteem

 

I’ve expanded my comfort zone so much in the last 15 months. But I’m not done yet! I continue to make videos today and do things that stretch my reality because I know that’s how I’ll continue growing and accomplishing even more.

What’s ONE thing you know you could do to get out of your comfort zone today?

Comment Below!

 

Sandy Leveque

Zumba Dancing Change Maker at Sandy the Online Fairy
Quit my weekly grind to begin travelling and inspiring others to know they can live free AND make a difference!
About The Author

Sandy Leveque

Quit my weekly grind to begin travelling and inspiring others to know they can live free AND make a difference!

9 comments
Avram
Avram

This takes a lot of courage Sandy! But I think that's the beautiful thing about stepping out of your comfort zone... you begin to see just how courageous you actually are! I don't know anyone else who would be willing to take on a challenge like the one you did in this video!

Jackie Ramos Beyer
Jackie Ramos Beyer

Hi Sandy! I did something kinda like this once. About 5 years ago, I spent a day pushing a shopping cart around Portland, Oregon filled with my giant backpack, and stuff feeling like a homeless person. It was kinda true because I had a bad back and couldn't really carry my backpack but I had found two couches to sleep on so technically I wasn't homeless, but I still remember the experience today. Especially what to do with my stuff when I went into stores etc.

Ia Gustafsson
Ia Gustafsson

You´re such an inspiration Sandy! I hope many, many more people get to know you and what you do. You are a BIG part in me choosing to stretch some of my own comfort zones this year! One of them is the recent 30 videos in 7 day challenge in daring to show up a LOT, sharing value and being consistent with my business :)

avramgonzales@gmail.com
avramgonzales@gmail.com

Thank you Victoria! Was nerve wrecking to do it, even chickened out the first time when it came to actually just sitting down....but incredibly glad I did! thanks for stopping by!

avramgonzales@gmail.com
avramgonzales@gmail.com

Ah thank you Avram....as you say I literally didn't know I had it in me! But you reach a point where you're willing to do WHATEVER it takes to change your life! So grateful I did because my life has been changing ever since, and continues to :)

Sandy Lêveque
Sandy Lêveque

Oh wow Jackie - did you notice a difference in how people perceived you??

Sandy Lêveque
Sandy Lêveque

thank you Ia! I so appreciate your message! So glad you're going out of your comfort zone, Sweden will be different!! ;) & ....Congratulations to you for doing the 30 Videos - I know from personal experience that's a HUGE undertaking and you're one of the few people who finished it!