I finished another chapter in “The Best Advice So Far” around 3:00 this morning. The basic gist of the advice is this: do something new every day.
This is not some thrill-seeking mantra. Nor is it aimed at the rich. It’s simply about living life rather than wading through it.
Here are some new things that people I know have been doing:
Two friends recently got the heels of their feet tattooed with the letters “R” and “L” for “Right” and “Left.” On the wrong feet. On purpose.
My mother received “Flat Stanley” from my nephew in North Carolina. Among the many things she did with Stanley during his stay, she had him over for dinner, made him pajamas, and took him to Gillette Stadium, home of the New England Patriots. She took pictures of all the events, wrote essays on the history of New England, and created an elaborate scrap book to accompany Stanley back to my nephew’s class.
Another friend in her 50s has decided to take classes at the Apple store, rather than give in to just “not being able to figure it out.”
Other friends have taken ballroom dance lessons. Or gotten a new haircut. Or had an impromptu swim in the still-frigid Atlantic.
Doing something new doesn’t have to be expensive. It doesn’t actually need to cost anything. Meet your neighbors. Try a new food. Visit a shop you’ve never been in along your regular route (it doesn’t even matter if you have an interest in the wares).
It doesn’t matter what you do, only that you do something. Doing new things keeps us out of ruts that turn the world gray and rob us of years where life becomes a blur. It heightens creativity. It elevates mood. It reminds us of possibility.
And of choice.