For most, it’s easy and almost human nature to fall into a routine. After all, “routine” is without surprise or risk; it’s entirely safe. Sure, some people seem to be perpetually tackling new adventures, trying new activities, travelling to exotic places or pushing their bodies with new sports, but not everyone finds that lifestyle attractive.
However, if you can’t remember the last time you tried something new, no matter how small it seemed, it may be time to look at some ways to give your life some easy little jolts of fun.
“New doesn’t always have to be something exciting and risky!”
If you’re already a thrill-seeker, don’t dismiss the opportunity to define “something new” in your life, as well. New doesn’t always have to be something exciting and risky! If you’re already used to a lifestyle of climbing mountains and extreme sports, perhaps trying the quieter side of life is new ground for you to consider.
Balance is good, so trying some quiet activities like yoga, meditation or simply reading a book can give you a calm inner peace that’s missing from the non-stop excitement in your current life.
“Increasing dopamine gives you a feeling of elation; those ‘high spirits’ that feed our happiness.”
For those who already live a relatively gentle existence, “something new” doesn’t have to mean signing up to climb Mt. Everest! Dopamine is a brain chemical that scientists have proven to be integral to many aspects of brain function. Without it, humans can have failing memory and attention span and even suffer from depression. Increasing dopamine gives you a feeling of elation; those “high spirits” that feed our happiness. It’s not surprising that new experiences and challenges increase dopamine. Our brains are literally programmed to need new activities and challenges!
The list of new experiences you can try is endless, but here are a few simple ones to ease even the most change-adverse person into a world of trying new things:
- Eat at a new restaurant, especially if it offers a type of cuisine you’ve never tried before
- Try a new type of exercise
- Plan a day-trip or weekend road trip to a destination you’ve never visited
- Create something! Write a short story or poem, do a painting or sketch or simply buy a craft kit and finish it
- Put on your favourite song and dance, whether nobody’s watching or you grab a partner
- Develop a new skill like photography, calligraphy, cake decorating or a new language.
- Volunteer with an organization that appeals to you
“Getting stuck in the rut of predictability can suck your joy out of life.”
Remember: you’re not signing up for a lifetime commitment! If you try something and don’t like it, you don’t have to continue doing it. Even if you do enjoy it, that doesn’t mean you should stop trying more new things! Getting stuck in the rut of predictability can suck your joy out of life. People who continuously try new things seem to have an animated glow to them.
Conversation with those who have a healthy appetite for new experiences is often far more interesting as well. Have you ever noticed that the foods that are healthiest for us all taste best when they are fresh? The same can be said for your life’s activities. If the last time you tried something new was back in high school, it’s time to add some freshness to your daily life.