I can understand how tempting it is for people to stay in one place.
The familiar books and furniture and places to go to and cable channel numbers and roads to drive on that you don’t need a GPS or a map for… I like being home because all my STUFF is one place. You would be amazed if you piled all your stuff up in one place. Just the sheer amount of clothes I have blows my mind. My stuff literally fills more than two Toyota Sienna mini vans (I know, because I’ve filled them). My mom is another reason I like having that familiar place to go back to. She’s like Batman – always watching. When I’m at school and work, outside in the world, it’s nice to feel independent, but I’m still in that phase of my life where I depend on my mom very much. She knows me best – sometimes even better than I know myself. She’s always got my back. She’s got my back so much so that she’s annoying about it. She wakes me up if I oversleep. She makes my dentist appointments. She cooks. (Kind of. She specializes in “one pot Crockpot meals,” but even so – those are usually better than whatever I find and throw in a pan and hope tastes alright.)
I digress. Basically, change is hard. It’s easier to be a creature of habit. The feeling of safety and security is, after all, the immediate basic need after our physiological needs (thanks, Maslow #nursingiscool).
But when we stay stagnant, we don’t learn, and we get boring. First we’re boring to other people. Then we’re boring to ourselves. The solution is to initiate change. Simply put – do new things. This is how you get better – through constant reinvention.
That said, your new things should be stable decisions, not reckless choices. A nursing friend of mine always says, “be smart with your dumb decisions.” In other words, if you’re going to do something new, give it some thought before you do it. Like check out the tattoo place online at least before you just show up. Future-you will thank past-you when future-you avoids an infection and possibly sepsis later on from a dirty needle.
Other new things to try – food. Places. People. Shows. Exercise. Join a class and learn a new language. Join a club. Join a gym. Personally, I think it’s better to go out and physically interact with people, rather than making your new habit something through a screen, like starting a new Netflix show. People are the most interesting. They are the primary source. All the media, entertainment, gyms, clubs, classes, foods, etc. comes from them – so it makes the most sense to go out and get to know them. Put down your phone and put on your shoes and just go.
It’s going to require effort, but it will make your life, and you, more interesting. You won’t feel tired as much because you’ll have more to look forward to. This shouldn’t be an overly frequent process, but something that you seek out naturally. If you push yourself too hard, you’ll just relapse and melt into your couch or something.
When you’re young you don’t know what you want. Stuff just kind of appears in front of you and you think, “that looks good I guess,” so you do it, but you do so without really knowing all your other options. I didn’t fully know the qualities I wanted in a partner or even in a friend until I got to college. I invested myself in a serious relationship and a serious friendship right away when I got here, and I learned more about myself through those people.
Learning about yourself is a lifelong process. Constantly be working to improve and reinvent yourself with new plans and dreams. Viewed cynically, sure, it’s exhausting to always be changing. But when you recall how far you’ve come, then you realize that you can only move forward.
You should always think, there is more that you can do, because there is.
I welcome any and all comments and thoughts. No one ever got better by just listening to themselves. That just makes you crazy.