Why Try Something New?
Now that summer is over and we’re all back to our “normal” school year routines, I think it’s important to take a moment to examine what these routines are. Are they beneficial? Do they help make us the best person/student we can be? Are they even the most efficient routines?
Many of us wake up in the morning, check our phones, take a shower and head off for work or school. Once we’re at work or school there is likely a routine we follow for much of the day: same class periods each day, same meetings each week, same teacher and customers, etc. Then we get home, eat dinner, and watch TV before bed. These routines provide structure and make things somewhat predictable. But what if we step outside of our comfort zone and do things a little differently? Let’s take a look.
Stepping Outside Your Comfort Zone
Yesterday morning my wife and I decided to try a new church. Our two year old recently enrolled in pre-school at a new church, so we thought we’d check it out and see if it was a good fit for us. This doesn’t seem like a big step, but stepping into a whole new environment with people we don’t know is definitely outside of our comfort zone. We didn’t know what to expect, but we gave it a shot anyway.
To our pleasant surprise, people were incredibly warm and welcoming, and the pastors message was both inspirational and timely. We both left feeling optimistic, with a strong desire to come back next Sunday. Although this was not part of our normal routine, I think we may have stumbled on to something that will be very positive for us going forward.
Benefits of Trying Something New
Our minds are meant to stretch and learn new things. The only way we can do this is by trying new things. I constantly encourage students to try a new elective or extracurricular activity. Doing so has so many benefits, including:
- Meeting new friends
- Discovering a hidden talent
- Enhancing your resume
- Filling open time in your schedule
- Replacing activities in your routine that are not healthy
- Exploring leadership opportunities
- Enabling Social and Emotional Learning
- Reinvigorating a stale routine
What Can You Do?
School offers many opportunities for trying something new. Sports, theater, community service, art, yearbook, student council, and numerous other avenues exist for students to pick up something new. I highly suggest talking to classmates you maybe aren’t as familiar with or a teacher you’ve never had a class with. This can kickstart a new interest.
Outside of school you can explore opportunities with organizations such as National Charity League, Younglife, your local church, Toastmasters, a running group, and many others. Most communities have some sort of newsletter or website with listings of meetups. Really anything to change up a routine has potential benefits. The best thing to do is just do something; take that first step and put yourself out there. Chances are you will find something interesting that gives you a new perspective on your routine.