There are many benefits to trying new things: personal fulfillment, mental clarity—not to mention fun! There’s no time like the present to push yourself out of your comfort zone. However, you’ll quickly realize that your comfort zone is like a giant Snuggie, and these rewarding pastimes will leave you yearning for your same-old nightly routine of Netflix and cocoa pebbles. So go ahead and break out of your shell to give off the impression that you’re open to trying new things, before rejecting them wholesale and remaining firmly entrenched in your usual habits.
Try a new food.
The best way to have a new experience is to start small. The next time you’re at a restaurant, order the most exotic thing on the menu. Maybe octopus, or that extra-spicy curry you’ve always been too nervous to taste. Order it, then pick at your dining partner’s plate for the rest of the meal, vowing never to stray from Chicken Tikki Masala ever again. This is why you’re not a “free spirit”. Reckless decisions have disastrous consequences. Remember that.
Plan a vacation.
We’ve all seen photos of gorgeous overwater huts on the coast of Tahiti. What’s stopping you from going, other than being completely content with your local surroundings and perilously afraid of the unknown, not to mention your job and family? Change your screen saver to an image of a sun-soaked beach and visualize yourself there with a cocktail in hand. Then, a few months out, use the excuse of not renewing your passport in time to cancel your trip and instead visit your friend’s parents’ lake house again. Ahh, the familiar!
Try a new hobby.
Have you ever wanted to do something bold, such as kayak down a river? The mental health benefits of all that nature time would make it worth the adventure and hassle (for other people). Consider joining a local rowing team to motivate you to get started. Be sure and put plenty of photos of the one time you actually hold an oar in your hand on Facebook so everyone will say, hey, that’s a girl who tries new things. Then spend the following weekend watching Office reruns.
Try something really weird, such as candlelight yoga.
People who are into strange stuff like burning sage and participating in group meditations claim to be getting really great benefits from those activities. To you, though, these seem a great way to spend $200 on something crazy. So try it once, decide everyone there is a kook, and go back to your life with the confirmation that you don’t need change to be happy.
Improve yourself and broaden your world-view by going on an adventure. Then, immediately settle for the things you’ve done most of your life. Change and growth? Who needs it!