Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

Screen Shot 2013-07-12 at 7.13.01 PMGoal 5: Step Out of Your Comfort Zone of The 30 Goals Challenge for Educators. Click the link to find out more about the 30 Goals Challenge for Educators.

“A ship in port is safe, but that is not what ships are built for. Sail out to sea and do new things.” ~ Grace Hopper

This year with the 30 Goals Challenge for Educators, our 30 Goals Facebook community is voting on what some of the goals will be. We are grabbing this from the list of goals from the previous 3 cycles. This year’s theme is, “This is MY Moment.” Each goal will focus on getting educators to believe their plans of action now will lead to positive changes and transformation in their teaching and learning environments. We will also be having our 4th Google Hang-Out interview on Wednesday, July 17th with Sylvia Guinan, @ESLBrain,who is an amazing educator in Greece. Find the livestream here, and ask Sylvia questions through our Facebook group.

My Take on the Goal

All of us have our ports, our places where we feel safe. We develop rituals and those rituals help us to manage our time and the stress of being an educator. These rituals are a necessity and can help us keep our sanity. There comes a time when each of us has an idea or opportunity that challenges our comfort zone and differs so much from the rituals we develop. We need to be able to seize those opportunities and go forth with new ideas.  We need to be able to take risks so we grow as educators and also help our learners grow. For many teachers, integrating a new technology, allowing students more choices and control in the curriculum, or alternative assessments are out of their comfort zones. And once we begin the journey to something different, we must also realize that change is difficult. The first time we decide to integrate technology, it may fail us. The first time we decide not to use letter grades, parents may get upset with us. The first time our learners get to make curricular choices we may struggle with classroom management. The idea is to try the change because we feel it will improve learning for our students.  When you step out of your comfort zone, expect it to be uncomfortable but stick with it. We are here to support you and see you through the transformation that will occur because you embarked on the journey outside your comfort zone.

Short-term–  Commit to stepping out of your comfort zone and setting your ship to sea. I have built the Ships Sailing Padlet wall where we can post how we are going to step out of our comfort zones so we leave the comfort of our ports. Please post this here with the rest of us,

Here are ideas for you to step out of your comfort zone:

Long-term– Think about what uncomfortable change you will make either in your professional or personal life and encourage yourself to be bold enough to make that step in the upcoming week. After this initial step, find more opportunities to step out of your comfort zone.

More Resources


Post on the Set Sail Wall what way you will step out of your comfort zone. 

Please leave a comment that you accomplished this goal by either posting your own video reflection on Youtube, using the hashtag #30GoalsEdu, posting on the 30 Goals Facebook group, or adding a comment below! All goals are organized in this 30 Goals Livebinder.

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Please fill out this Google Form if you reflected on at least 1 goal so you will be listed in a 30 Goals blog list and on a 30 Goals Twitter list.

Shelly Terrell

Shelly Sanchez Terrell (@ShellTerrell) is an award winning digital innovator, an international speaker/consultant, and the author of Hacking Digital Learning with EdTech Missions, The 30 Goals Challenge for Teachers, and Learning to Go. She has trained teachers and taught English language learners in over 20 countries as an invited guest expert by organizations, like the US Embassy, UNESCO Bangkok, Cultura Inglesa of Brazil, the British Council in Tel Aviv, IATEFL Slovenia, HUPE Croatia, ISTEK Turkey, and Venezuela TESOL. She has been recognized by several organizations and publications as a leader in the movement of teacher driven professional development as the founder and organizer of various online conferences, Twitter chats, and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Two of the projects she co-organized were shortlisted for ELTons, #ELTChat and the Virtual Round Table Language and Technology online conference. She was named Woman of the Year by the National Association of Professional Women, awarded a Bammy Award as a founder of #Edchat, and named as one of the 10 Most Influential People in EdTech by Tech & Learning. Her greatest joy is being the mother of baby Savannah and Rosco the pug. Shelly has an Honors BA in English with a Minor in Communication and a specialization in Electronic Media from UTSA, a Masters in Curriculum Instruction ESL from the University of Phoenix, and a CELTA from CELT Athens. She regularly shares her tips for effective technology integration via Twitter (@ShellTerrell),, and on her blog,, which has won several awards and recognitions as one of the top ESL, Edtech and Elearning blogs. Find over 400 of her slide presentations at


  1. I’m just learning how to use a blog and am wondering if I will be notified when other people post “real goals” on the wall – or respond to this post??

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