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“Stability is a shut off switch for your brain.”

This is the central idea of Inc.’s article, “Science Has Just Confirmed That If You’re Not Outside Your Comfort Zone, You’re Not Learning” written by Jessica Stillman. Her statement is backed by research from Yale University that says brain regions associated with learning basically shut down when we are operating within a predictable pattern. When uncertainty comes into play, our brains snap into learning mode.

“This makes sense,” Stillman writes. “Once you’ve figured out the best way to behave in a given learning environment, learning new techniques or approaches is pointless.” She goes on to say that because stability “kills learning,” we need to avoid what’s easy or familiar in favour of what is unpredictable and difficult.

Okay. We live in a pretty chaotic world. We’re not sure anyone needs to invite more stress or uncertainty into their daily lives—but sure, we’ll play along here. Let’s explore the idea of strategic instability. That is to say, moments of uncertainty scattered throughout our day or week that make us uncomfortable by design.

Stretching Outside Your Behavioral Comfort Zone
One idea discussed in Everything DiSC® is stretch. We think of stretch as reaching outside of your home base or comfort zone in terms of behaviours and priorities.

The image on the left illustrates an individual’s DiSC style through a dot placement within the circumplex. The shading around the dot represents priorities, or the primary areas where that person’s energy is focused. This all creates a story around a person’s behavioural comfort zone.

The image on the right is a demonstration of stretch, where a person quite literally stretches across the circumplex and outside their comfort zone in order to more effectively connect with a different DiSC style. Everyone is a blend of all four DiSC styles, and we all have the ability to stretch outside our behavioural comfort zone. It’s important to remember that the further we stretch, the more energy required.

There are lots of different ways to stretch. To keep this post light, we thought it would be fun to present you with one example of stretch for each of the four core DiSC styles:

Of course, the idea of stretch goes much deeper and wider than this. But in skimming the surface, you can see how implementing Everything DiSC gives people the footing they need to reach outside their comfort zones.

Stretch, Learn, GROW
Beyond the workplace, Stillman offers up the following ideas to incorporate strategic instability:

  • Changing your routine, even something as simple as a coffee order
  • Starting a new project or picking up a new hobby
  • Talking to people you disagree with (this one is where Everything DiSC is super helpful!)

However you decide to implement strategic instability, do so knowing that although you may feel discomfort in the moment, you are in fact doing yourself a favour. We often level up through situations that challenge us, and it’s through these challenges that our continued learning and growing take place. 

When we learn about our personality styles, we learn about the styles of others. This helps us change our interaction with others to be more cohesive in a team or group – in business and our personal lives.

DiSC personality testing is the tool that over 70% of Fortune 500 companies use daily making this a tried and trusted tool.

Are you interested to know how we can DiSC-OURSE your workplace? Click this button and DiSC-OVER more.


Rebecca Wiles

Director & Facilitator of DiSC-OURSE and Director, Mentor & Lead Trainer of The Training Establishment

Rebecca has over 30-years experience in the Hospitality, Travel & Tourism industry, Rebecca is an expert in creating dynamic leaders, specialising Sales & Marketing. The DiSC psychometric testing tool has found its home at The Training Establishment since we’ve been using this in our training courses since 2016. Rebecca has a personal passion with DiSC and has created a way for participants to learn about their style in a fun, engaging and memorable way. Irene Parker, Lead Trainer, for DiSC-OURSE is equally as passionate about DiSC and is the perfect trainer to lead your team through DiSC. Her delightful and entertaining style makes every participant listen, learn and take action. Irene developes all trainers to have the same outcomes and ensures your training will have an outstanding ROI.