Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone


There are moments in life and in business where you need to challenge the boundaries and assumptions that define your reality. Pushing through the accelerated heartbeat, the uncomfortable sweat on the palms of your hands, and the creeping shadows of self-doubt will hasten the revolution needed for the next achievement. Our profession spends intemperate time lamenting the accelerated rate of change in business and yearning for simpler times. We rebel against the discomfort while simultaneously encouraging our clients to innovate. Hypocritical behaviors aside, developing an intimate relationship with discomposure is crucial for survival.

Finding your balance in the torrent of a tornado can feel insurmountable. If you do not believe that you can, you never will. As my father says, “perception governs reality.” Mindset matters. Mindset matters arguably more than anything else. Deciding that you will commit to the change, embracing the difficultly in the change, and accepting the improved reality are the essential steps in building a positive mindset around innovation. What if I told you that you control the winds of the tornado? But, you have to be outside to try. Hiding in the basement hurts more than standing strong before a storm and settling it with the power of your mind.

We all know that showing up prepared contributes to ensuring a positive outcome. Change management does not only apply to institutional change; it can also apply to personal change. Consider the reasons you have made the decision to enhance an aspect of your life or business. Create a cadence of self-learning and truly dedicate that time to immersing yourself in the new.

Say your commitment out loud, over and over again. Say it so many times that you no longer see another option.

Find support systems. Do you know another human or another firm that is pushing the boundaries in similar ways? Do you have someone on your team that can be the voice of reason? Use these people as the wind break that you need to see through the storm of change. Have your team members remind the team what it looks like on the other side. Sponsor their hard work with generosity and kindness.

Learn everything there is to know about the new. Do a deep dive into education with your team or whomever the change is affecting. Give them ample opportunity to learn and grow with the innovation. Encourage everyone around you to embrace the new by doing it yourself.

Metamorphosis is not easy, and it is necessary. Being uncomfortable sucks and it is the path to a more satisfied future.

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Liz Mason is a serial entrepreneur, a giant nerd, and an involved accounting vanguard. She is the Founder of High Rock Accounting, Rebel Rock Accounting, TheDepartment.Tax, and a few other related brands. Liz speaks on a national stage, guests stars on podcasts, and writes frequently. To further her passion for the advancement of the accounting profession, Liz currently serves as a Xero National Ambassador and as the Content Strategist for Tax Practice News. Liz started her career in tax at Grant Thornton (at 20) and automated a portion of her job landing her in the national tax practice. She spent a decade in large public accounting firms working on highly technical tax consulting before branching off on her own. Liz utilizes her creativity and passion at her company to uproot traditional practices and replace them with innovative concepts. She finds joy in efficient technology and her core belief is that everyone and everything can continuously improve (she says "be better" too often). When Liz isn't planning world domination in accounting, she is a die-hard skier, down for any adventure, plays the ukulele, reads everything, and has a good sense of humor. If you're looking for her, you can find her traveling the world and enjoying new food and cultures with her young son. Follow Liz and High Rock Accounting on Twitter at @LizzyNorMa and @HighRockCPAs.