Thoughts About 2016: December 8th New Stuff

Growing requires trying something new

Countdown to the end of this year. 23 days left. This month I am writing posts each day reflecting on what has transpired and where I think I am headed and any advice or offers I can make for 2017. So today’s installment – Try something new as often as you can. 

Doing what you know is easier, more comfortable, cozy even. And I am all for cozy. But… If we never push our boundaries, if we never try new things, if we don’t seek out the unfamiliar we get root bound. Like a plant overgrowing our container.

When you stay in your own safe space strange things can happen. You can lose touch with the world. Often if we get to cozy in what we know we stop learning. We stop making new friends.

The way to avoid being rootbound? So  easy and hard at the same time. Each day, try something new, something small but something new. And every once in while try that big new scary thing.

Some small ways to try something new each day

Changing a small part of your daily routine can open up new thinking -- photo cc from Flickr by Jovi Mirabueno
Changing a small part of your daily routine can open up new thinking — photo cc from Flickr by Jovi Mirabueno
  • Go to work or school or wherever you go in a different way. Choose a different type of transport, or a different route. Look around you on the journey.
  • Get a new haircut or color.
  • Eat something you have never tried before.
  • Say hello to a stranger and ask how their day is going.
  • Introduce yourself to a neighbor you have not talked to before.
  • Buy a new shirt or sweater or hat in a color that you would not normally choose. Did you know there were lucky colors for each year?
  • If you stay up late go to be early. If you go to bed early stay up late.
  • Read a book or magazine that is not your usual fare.
  • Same with music, Change the radio station to something totally different than your normal tunes.
  • Hang out with kids, especially if you don’t usually do that. Kid’s always know how to do new stuff.

See what you can learn when you do all these things– don’t treat it like a chore but an adventure.

Some BIG ways to try something new in your life.

Try something new Head out into nature or take on a big challenge -- photo cc from Flickr by Tom Fahy
Try something new Head out into nature or take on a big challenge — photo cc from Flickr by Tom Fahy
  • Consider that move. New apartment or house, new town, even a new country.
  • Vacation in the wilderness (especially if that is not your thing) new stuff is always going on off the beaten track.
  • Learn a new language.
  • Go back to school for a degree or a new trade or learn a new craft.
  • Volunteer somewhere to help people that are very different than you. Talk to them, and work hard to understand a different type of life.
  • Go for that huge (or not so huge) project you dreamed about- that novel you wanted to write, make a short film, create your own coffee table art book, paint a mural somewhere. Do that thing that you always wanted to do but never put a priority on. Just start it and see what happens.

Trying something new. Keep growing. Whatever your age or circumstance.