by Matt Baryluk

“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein

If there’s one thing I’ve been told since I began college, it’s that now’s the chance for me to leave my comfort zone – to branch out and discover new opportunities that may otherwise have gone undetected. Along with “find your passion,” it’s probably the one piece of advice I’ve received most frequently.

Despite this, I didn’t really take the advice to heart. I kept doing what I knew, because it was comfortable and it had worked for me thus far. Even worse, however, was the fact that I wanted change, and even expected it, although I wasn’t changing anything myself. I mistakenly believed I could broaden my horizons without ever leaving my comfort zone.

This was a problem because I knew I could never grow as an individual or a professional so long as this was the case. What’s more, no one has ever done great things by sticking to what they know. I had to take steps to make real changes.

I joined new organizations and took on leadership roles, but it still wasn’t quite enough. I was doing many of these activities with the same people and I rarely got out of my comfort zone.

I was still limiting myself. I needed to surround myself with people who would challenge and enable me to do more than I thought possible. This led me to AMEND.

AMEND offers me new challenges and experiences. They give me the opportunity to take on responsibilities – to make a real difference in the outcomes our clients achieve. This kind of hands-on and meaningful work simply isn’t possible in most other places.

My previous posts, many  8-to-5 office jobs, simply offer a different experience like filing, computer work, running errands, and sitting in meetings. Crazy as it sounds, I’m now looking forward to early mornings on factory floors – sometimes in the freezing cold. I’m excited to see what new things each day holds…to learning new skills…from experts and leaders in their fields.

Despite the environment and the often very hard work, diving in each day with a group of individuals similarly committed to pushing their boundaries and exceeding expectations is exhilarating.

I can say thus far that AMEND has been everything I hoped it would be.

I was on-site in safety glasses and steel-toed boots ON MY THIRD DAY!

I’ve been sent on overnight trips on two days notice.

I’ve worked all hours, in all kinds of interesting environments.

I’ve been forced to change. To adapt. To find a new kind of strength I didn’t know existed within me.

I was recently asked whether the rapid change was overwhelming? I replied, without hesitation, “I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

I’ve already grown more at AMEND than I have in most all my previous experience combined and I can’t wait to see what’s next.

My work at AMEND has taught me plenty. Most importantly, it has reinforced one important, life-long lesson…if you’re looking to make some real changes, to learn new skills, and maybe even surprise yourself…it’s time to branch out!