If you think that the 600 or so words that follow couldn’t possibly apply to you, consider this:
For most of my life I have been a bona fide, measurable, testable, observable introvert – one of the least spontaneous people on planet Earth.
It’s the truth, and yet… as the days and the years go on, I am learning to get over myself, to intentionally challenge my well-worn grooves by enjoying the day-to-day in new ways. It wasn’t the pandemic that prompted this, or the move to the Southeast over four years ago. It was simply me sitting with the realization that I was missing out on something that was readily available to all of us; followed by the inescapable understanding that the only thing holding me back was me.
Making every day an adventure is about two things:
- Being responsive to whatever may show up.
- Choosing to do something out of the ordinary while having no expectation of it.
Honestly, it’s a blast, and maybe even exactly what you need if you’re feeling bored, restless, stuck, or apathetic. I’ve rounded up a few tips and ideas that may help you to make every day in your precious life an adventure.
- Choose to be the master of your universe. Instead of simply deepening the groove you’ve been in “since forever,” trust yourself to step outside of your patterns and habits.
- Let go of any resounding or residual concern about looking like a fool. Life is too short for that and it is healthier to accept that waiting around for others to really understand you is a waste of time.
- Remind yourself of the missed opportunities that, in retrospect, you wish you had said “yes” to. We all have them. Use that bit of regret to fuel your curiosity and transform a habitual “No, I think I’ll pass” into a “Sure, why not?”
- Choose to believe that every day you wake up is a new opportunity to see, do, or experience something in a new way.
Action follows Attitude
- Drive a new route. I generally drive Yadkinville Road to catch up with Reynolda. By going a different way, I discovered new places to eat and shop that I had no idea were there.
- Walk a different path. You’ll see landscape ideas to emulate, new people to say “Hello” to, and new dogs to love on.
- Try a new color. Whether it’s a garden scheme or a shade of fingernail polish, step outside of your comfort zone. This type of experimentation doesn’t need to be permanent, and that’s the point.
- Read something in a new genre or by an unknown author. I was amazed to discover – when I finally moved beyond 19th century literature – that there are a ton of great writers I had unwittingly snubbed!
- Start a different conversation. We tend to see the same people and have “repeat conversations.” If you always ask about Fido’s health, ask instead if that neighbor has always preferred large dogs and see where the conversation goes. Or, if you compliment your neighbor’s gardening skills, ask her what ideas she may have for your forlorn strip of horticultural neglect.
- Try a different supermarket or restaurant. We tend to stay with what we know because we like it and because it’s “what we know.” By changing things up once in a while, we discover new things and potentially expand what we “like and know.”
- Find a new way to achieve a goal. Maybe you started to do that while under the heavy thumb of the pandemic. Keep it up! Can’t go to the gym? Turn on YouTube and find a virtual class. The key is to hold onto the goal while identifying alternative ways to achieve it.
Most of all, remind yourself that every day can be filled with the magic of discovery and adventure if you stay open, curious, and engaged in the life around you.