Time is incredibly fleeting. When you enter college, you can have big dreams and work hard to try to make them happen. However, along the way life can derail you. Now suddenly in your late 20s you wonder what happened and how you might able to recapture your goals. Feel like you don’t even recognize yourself and wonder how you got stuck. Is it possible to reinvent yourself? Research says YES! Your change might not be earth-shattering, but it can open you up to new possibilities. You will find hidden talents that you can explore and lead to self-growth. All you need to do is find the space to get to know yourself and shift perspective.
You learn throughout your life
Just because you are growing older doesn’t mean its too late to pick up a new skill. There are people every day going back to school well into their twilight years! All you need to discover an interest you wish to explore. Then either go online or visit a library to begin reading up on the subject. Discover either online or in-person communities where you can bond with others who share your passion and from whom you can learn. Be brave enough to be willing to stumble. With time, patience, and hard work you will increase your skills.
When I went to college a new friend told me to ditch the GPS and be willing to get lost while I try to find my way home. This piece of advice led me to discover cute back roads, sweet shops, and sweeping views on my way back to my rental house. When you are adventurous you are able to open yourself to new opportunities and lessons. When you discover something, you have the ability to explore it, and eventually share your finding with others. You may also meet some wonderful people or see some stirring sights along the way. Being adventurous helps to shake up your routine and create new pathways in your brain.
Create a ‘playful’ workplace
There is no reason that work or your office has to be boring! Every day you can get overstimulated from work, finding opportunities for play help to decrease stress and shift perspectives. Sure, it will require planning, ingenuity, and collaboration with colleagues and superiors, but it will be worth the effort! You can make play as simple as designation a section of the office for games, relaxation, and teambuilding. If this is not feasible consider creating a field day with filled with good natured contests and bonding over a catered BBQ. You may opt for an Employee Appreciation Day at a local pool hall or bowling alley. Another option is to create some contests to do on a certain day like a customer service bingo with a series of common or fun occurrences one may have during a phone call, and winners can receive company swag or a local gift card. Periodically review what play has been shown to be most effective.
Creativity is a great way to promote learning in your life. It’s a fun and relaxing way to grow neural pathways. When you build something from scratch you gain receive an immense of pleasure and pride. You may even experience an emotional journey that reinvigorates your soul in a myriad of ways. You could select a project that involved manual labor like pottery, woodwork, or construction. You may select a more artistic outlet like painting, knitting, or singing. If you feel like you lack the gene for creativity, you can even gain benefits from reading (especially when it is a poem, screenplay, or story of reinvention). As you read, allow your subconscious to place yourself within the piece to make the experience more personal. Viewing pieces of art can awaken an array of new thoughts and emotions within yourself. As you search for the value within a piece or the experience you will active both your capacity to learn and your pleasure centers within your brain. Don’t forget to get creative with being creative. Be bold and curious. Experiment and dare to fail. You may be amaze to see which new passions and skills begin to emerge in your life, as well as the new opportunities and blessings that arise.
Discover things daily
You don’t just have to a bucket list for life. You can create small tasks to experiment with on any given day. I have listed some ideas below to get you started:
- Order something new the next time you dine out.
- Try a new eatery.
- Take an alternative route to your next appointment.
- Experiment with the podcasts you listen to.
- Instead of listening to the radio, put on an audiobook as you drive to/from work.
- Sit with a new colleague during a coffee break or lunch.
- Discover and listen to new musical artists or genre.
- Let your body create its own dance steps when listening to upbeat music.
Find one new thing each day that helps push your boundaries and life your spirits. No activity requires you to spend any money. You can decide what new activity you want to try spontaneously since you don’t need amply planning or assistance.
Spontaneity can reignite your thinking processes. This can benefit both your professional and personal life. In all of your relationships write down your experience wish list and divide them into folded slips of paper. Now, put them in a jar. Let the other person pull one out from the jar and surprise you with the activity at any time. You can then return the favor for them at a later date. The goal is to create bonding experience that can delight you both. It shows how much you both care, value, and honor each other’s presence in your live. Make these random acts of adventure to maximize the impact and your pleasure.
Better to give than receive
The act of giving triggers pleasure centers in our brain more so than when we receive something. Research shows when we provide support to others, we have reduced activation in stress-response sections as well as activation in brain areas connection with rewards and personal gratification.
Changing up your patterns doesn’t mean you have to create major alterations. You can gain significant benefit by turning your attentions towards the needs of others. Providing compliments is free, but incredibly powerful. Nor does fixing someone a plate of dinner when you are at a family gathering. When you are decluttering your space, consider what items are able to be donated. You can also opt to donate your time, skills, and passionate around your local community as well. When you give back, you are building relationships and neural pathways in your brain, as well as sharing love with the communities you care about!
Make innovation a pattern
Shaking up your routine should be a regular part of your life. When you disrupt your patterns, you are able to reprioritize what matters most to you and what no longer serves you. Be choosey about how much change you put into your life at one time so you avoid feeling overwhelmed. Changing in small amounts also allows you to see which of these changes work for you and which ones do not. Keep in mind you must be patient since gratification is not always immediate. Giving yourself time to adjust to any change can also be helpful so you can record how much improvement you have gain. Enjoy the journey to self-discovery, it will open you up whole new world of possibilities.