Be Bold! How to Successfully Step Outside Your Home’s Comfort Zone

published Apr 20, 2014
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(Image credit: Adrienne Breaux)

Tired of feeling like you’re always playing it too safe with your home — both in buying and DIYing? You’re not alone. Sometimes it just feels better to go with the more comfortable choice than to take an expensive or time-consuming chance on something wild (because who has tons of extra money or time laying around?!). But here’s something we know for sure: Allowing yourself to take bigger and bolder chances with your home decor will give you a home that you love more — and that will make it a space that encourages you to be your best self (at home and out in the world). So how do you step outside your comfort zone? We’ve got your step-by-step guide after the jump.

(Image credit: Tyler’s Bright Bungalow in Silver Lake)

START HERE: Mimic your pool-jumping-in style
How do you get into pools? Do you prefer to dive right in and get the coldness over with? Or do you like to dip a toe in first, slowly easing in? This is how you’re going to proceed with breaking out of your comfort zone.

If you’re a dive-in-get-the-cold-over-with pool jumper, you’re going to want to step outside your comfort zone in a really dramatic way by picking a really bold, well-seen space in your home to start with. Like your entryway. A wall in your living room. Some place big and obvious.

If, rather, you peel you slip slowly into pools, start somewhere small. Like your bedroom closet. Your laundry room. A more private place that only you can see.

And do what, exactly? Do a recent DIY change you’ve spotted on a blog or in a magazine somewhere that you instantly felt drawn to, but for some reason decided you couldn’t do it. Is it paint your wall a glossy crimson red? Buy that chair in the shape of a hand? DIY metallic gold diagonal stripes on something? Doesn’t matter what it was…take the plunge.

Hint: Try DIYing something rather than buying something if that first step out of your comfort zone seems too hard to take. Why? Because you can always abort the project at any step, and having the power over what you did will make you feel better knowing you’ll probably be able to undue it if it’s a total disaster (spoiler alert: It probably won’t be a total disaster).

(Image credit: Alexis Buryk)

Ask a friend what you should do
This is definitely your home, but because you’re in it all the time, you might not see its possibilities anymore — only its limitations. Ask a friend that you trust (and who’s been inside your home) and ask them what you should do that would be the perfect mix of just outside your comfort zone but also match your personality.

Test your progress by sharing
It’s not really stepping out of your comfort zone fully if you don’t share your results. It doesn’t have to be with the world, but don’t be afraid to show off a few sneak peeks on your Instagram to see what reactions are. If you get great reactions — great! If you get bad ones — ignore them if you love what you’ve done. This isn’t about listening to other people’s opinions about your home, it’s just about practicing putting your bold ideas out there.

(Image credit: Marcia Prentice)

Let the boldness spread through your space
So as your home doesn’t seem incredibly lopsided (and especially if you were a slow jump-in-er and only did something wild in a hidden spot), you’re going to want to spread some boldness throughout the rest of your space. Take the motivation from your big project gone-good and tackle some other DIY project or indulge in an art piece you love. Go for an oversize plant. Break a design rule. Do this step a few more times, maybe once in each room.

Embrace epic failures and laugh off mistakes
If you try any of the above and it turns out to be a visual disaster and look horrible in your space, we bet the world won’t end. And that you probably will have had fun in the process. And maybe you’ll learn a few lessons, too. You’ll be better off for even just trying something new. And guess what? We bet you’ll be less afraid to try something bold next time.

How have you stepped outside your home’s comfort zone? Share your comfort zone-busting ideas!