Daily Inspiration – Skills & Ability : “Never have just one comfort zone!”

Category under: Blog, Daily Inspiration

“Never have just one comfort zone!” – Futurist Jim Carroll

If public speaking ranks high on the fear list of many people, where does working on a film production rank?

Yesterday was a wildly exciting day down in San Jose as I moderated a panel discussion on – what else! – artificial intelligence on an HP production in partnership with Intel.

This wasn’t my first video rodeo; indeed, as I described over on the page Custom Corporate Projects, I’ve had a few such projects along the way, a few of them involving very detailed and nuanced corporate projects. (Including one highly embarrassing but fascinating project from the 90s, The IBM Family Guide to the Internet….starring….. me.)

Even so, yesterday ranks up there as a complexity highlight – at one moment, I counted upwards of 25 people involved in various aspects of the setup and production.

And for me, a tech nerd with a home broadcast studio, it was indeed tech nerd-heaven!

While working on the project through the day – and spending a lot of hurry-up-and-wait time, I could not help but think how lucky I am to have developed the ability to step outside my regular keynote speaking spot into a film production moderator role. My spot was the near side of the table, with my little moderator notes hiding by the laptop. Once the camera started rolling, the next 45 minutes were entirely mine to control – the pace, the flow, the direction of the discussion. And rather than being freaked out by the responsibility, I welcomed with joy the excitement of it all!

That’s where the phrase ‘many comfort zones‘ came to mind.

And that’s the point of today’s post. Perhaps one of the most frequent, overused bits of motivational guidance is that we all need to step out of our comfort zones into something new. But just one new thing? My mindset has always been that we should have many different comfort zones – we need to become multi-skilled, multi-capable, and multiple-ability oriented. We should not learn how to do one thing and be comfortable with it – we should learn how to do many things, and be comfortable with all of it.

In my case, I’ve led many panel discussions on stage, so it was natural to flow this into a tightly organized film production. I’ve hosted many radio shows over the years and have interviewed many people through the flow of such a show. I’ve been interviewed on TV hundreds of times so am comfortable with studio work. I’ve worked on many film productions so am comfortable with the flow of production.

With that being the case, I’m lucky to be multiskilled and multi-comfort-zoned, if that makes any sense.

So should you – don’t master just one thing – master many things!

And with that, master many different comfort zones!



THE FUTURE BELONGS TO THOSE WHO ARE FAST features the best of the insight from Jim Carroll’s blog, in which he
covers issues related to creativity, innovation and future trends.