From Comfort Zone to Growth Zone was presented by two Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Educators, Melissa J. Rupp, Fulton County and Patrice Powers-Barker, Lucas County on Wednesday October 23, 2019 at the 2019 Family and Consumer Sciences Annual Conference. The theme of the two-day conference was Growing Our Comfort Zone. The goals for the annual FCS conference:
- Enhanced ability to create meaningful connections and relationships that enable strong internal and external collaborations
- Clarify and strengthen our roles within Family and Consumer Sciences
- Get comfortable with being uncomfortable
- Find new ways to relate and adapt to diverse audiences
- Identify and examine what you would define as your comfort zone and determine ways of reaching outside that zone
The goals From Comfort Zone to Growth Zone lunchtime group activity focused on identifying and examining personal definitions of comfort zones in a non-judgmental way. Comfort zones are not good or bad. After identifying some personal zones, colleagues were encouraged to envision ways to help others when they are making the stretch to grow from the comfort zone to a growth zone.
This activity was inspired by the group training offered by Scott VanderWey, Associate Professor and Director, 4-H Adventure, Washington State University Extension. He presented in Fulton County Ohio in the summer of 2019. He shared a wide variety of resources including the workbook, Building Successful Learning Communities, Educator’s Handbook, 2019, Washington State University Extension. The information on comfort zones is on page nineteen of the handbook.
This link outlines the 4-H Challenge Model including the previously quote on “comfort and growth circles” and the simple theories of education: Adventure-Based Learning, Experiential Education, Full Value Contact, Comfort & Growth Circles and Challenge by Choice. In addition, this blog notes Challenge by Choice as one of the five elements of Brave Space. The goal of Brave Space is to create a supportive environment for all members to participate in dialogue.
Live Smart Ohio Blogs:
- Seeking the Optimal Zone
- Coming Soon – Helping Others Seek Their Optimal Zone
4-H challenge model. Washington State University Extension. Retrieved from https://extension.wsu.edu/chelan-douglas/communities/corporatechallenge/programsactivities/challenge/thechallengemodel/
Ali, D. (2017). Safe spaces and brave spaces: Historical context and recommendations for students affairs professionals. NASPA Policy and Practice Series. Issue 2. Retrieved from: https://www.naspa.org/images/uploads/main/Policy_and_Practice_No_2_Safe_Brave_Spaces_DOWNLOAD.pdf
Arao, B., & Clemens, K. (2013). From safe spaces to brave spaces: A new way to frame dialogue around diversity and social justice. In L. Landreman (Ed.). The art of effective facilitation: Reflections from social justice educators (pp. 135-150). Sterling, VA: Stylus. Retrieved from: https://sites.lsa.umich.edu/inclusive-teaching/wp-content/uploads/sites/355/2016/06/From-Safe-Spaces-to-Brave-Spaces.pdf
Building successful learning communities, Educator’s handbook (2019). Washington State University Extension. Retrieved from https://s3.wp.wsu.edu/uploads/sites/2050/2019/01/teacher-workbook-2019-Edited-19-0109.pdf
Franc Cyr, L. (2004). Bulletin #6103, Effective Communication, GroupWorks: Getting things done in groups. University of Maine Cooperative Extension. Retrieved from https://extension.umaine.edu/publications/6103e/
Naden, Y., & Stark, M. (2017). The pedagogy of discomfort: Enhancing reflectivity on stereotypes and bias. British Journal of Social Work, 47 (3). Retrieved from https://academic.oup.com/bjsw/article/47/3/683/2622288
Navigating for Success Lesson 1: Getting acquainted and facilitating learning (2017). Division of Nutritional Sciences, Cornell University.
Seery, M. D., Holman, E. A., & Cohen Silver, R. (2010). Whatever does not kill us; cumulative lifetime adversity, vulnerability, and resilience. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 99,6. 1025-1041
Torretta, A., & VanderWey, S. (2019). Creating group norms by using full value commitments in experiential education programming. Journal of Extension, 57 (3), 3TOT8. Available at https://www.joe.org/joe/2019june/tt8.php
Treber, M. (2015). Are there connections between stress and your heart health? The Ohio State University, Live Smart Ohio Blog. Retrieved from https://livesmartohio.osu.edu/mind-and-body/treber-1osu-edu/are-there-connections-between-stress-and-your-heart-health/
Tugend, A. (2011). Tiptoeing out of one’s comfort zone (and of course, back in). New York Times. Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/12/your-money/12shortcuts.html
White, A. (2009). From comfort zone to performance management. Understanding development and performance. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/228957278_From_Comfort_Zone_to_Performance_Management
Zembylas, M., (2015). ‘Pedagogy of discomfort’ and its ethical implications: The tensions of ethical violence in social justice education. Ethics and Education 10 (2):163-174.