New stuff to try…

the next step

  1. Call an old friend.
  2. Send a card to that friend if you’d rather not commit to an in-person interaction.
  3. Hack your life. Find a book on hacks or shortcuts. That alone will give you tons of ‘try new!’ ideas. This site looks interesting: https://www.youtube.com/user/HouseholdHacker
  4. Start a digital journal.
  5. Start a hand written journal.
  6. Heighten one of your senses. Eavesdrop. On nature. And yes, even people. No, not to snag juicy details about others’ personal lives. Rather, to just open up to others’ experiences. A few not-so-sincere tips: 1. Noticeably leaning toward your eavesdropping target—not a good idea, especially if your own sense of balance is questionable. ;-]  2. If you have a hearing aid, amping up the settings in mid-eavesdrop is probably not a good idea. 3. Asking your target to repeat something for you might also be a little off-putting.
  7. Dig through your record albums and play some of the oldies or one of your more questionable purchases. Just playing an album almost qualifies as ‘something new’ nowadays.
  8. Create a list of theories about life. Who cares if they have absolutely no scientific foundation? If it works for you, that’s all that counts. Besides, your own observations serve as reinforcing data.
    Here is my own unscientific theory: Retired people aren’t forgetful as much as we’re over-multitasking. [No, that’s not redundant.] Translation: We’re trying to do too much at one time. We know time is limited so we are squeezing in as much life as possible. Result? We catch ourselves wearing our underwear on the outside of our jeans. Go ahead and check right now. We can wait…
  9. This one’s easy–Try a new recipe. I have pearl spelt simmering. Fingers crossed. Later, I’ll make hand pies with a crust I made this morning and a can of sweetened dark cherries that’s been calling my name. Hey! It’s a rainy Sunday afternoon! That’s my go-to rationalization for baking. My other rationalization: Hey! It’s an afternoon! My other rationalization: Hey! I’m alive and breathing!
  10. Find a new interesting website. Here’s one I’ve been using for the last 12 hours:
    https://emojipedia.org/ Can you tell?

Remember…

cooltext282308206669610

Stepping Stone 5: I should have sought more novelty.

im-possible

At the end of some of my days, things felt stale. Why the uneasiness? I hadn’t tried anything new.

And at this stage in my life, it felt like lost time. Not a reason to get all worked up–like I said, just a general state of disquiet.

Still, I liked those days when I reminded myself to look for opportunities for novelty.

A favorite book: Do One Thing Every Day That Scares You
[Note: Not an affiliate link.]

These mini-adventures don’t have to be life-changing, however. They don’t have to upset the apple cart. They could be as simple as cruising a new aisle at the library or ordering–Lord, help us–a different drink from your favorite coffee hangout.

Sidebar: There are benefits to seeking novelty. Then again, for some, it can be taken a bit too far. But that’s hardly my intention.

I’ll be following up with lists of ten ‘new things to try’. We wouldn’t want to be overwhelmed, now would we?
Face With Head-Bandage on Google Android 8.1

So today… ‘Try new!’.

See my next post on the benefits of seeking novelty


What are stepping stones?

A list of my ideal retirerenew.com readers

They want:

  1. to take forward steps in their lives.
  2. to look ahead to new experiences, not to dread what’s ahead.
  3. a focus on creativity.
  4. affirmations and thoughts and guidance from people like Todd Henry and Austin Kleon.
  5. a lighter touch on retirement and aging issues.
  6. to share their experience.
  7. community, but more on a drop-in basis. No pressure to participate by any means.
  8. some insulation from political and religious discussions and from exposure to the painful goings-on of the day.
  9. an emphasis on good news and laughter.
  10. shared experiences as family members.
  11. shared experiences as pet owners.
  12. a excerpt or chapter or two or more from my fiction/mystery project.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Stepping Stone #4: As a retiree, I had one job…

“…get whatever is in you out.”

tools of creation 2

Todd Henry began ‘speaking to me’ way back in 2015 when part of my job was to create something ‘new’ or ‘more original’ than what was already out there.

This author/creator of four books [Die Empty, The Accidental Creative, and Louder Than Words, and Herding Tigers–I have the first three.] has been a go-to ‘mentor’ ever since.   NON-affiliate link to his books

Let’s ‘listen in’ to this excerpt from his newsletter that arrived today [March 30, 2018]:

“You have one job: get whatever is in you out. Your one and only job today, and every day, is to get whatever is in you out. Not tomorrow’s work, not yesterday’s work, but today’s. On my computer monitor is a note that reads, “Can I lay my head down tonight satisfied with the work I did today?” If I have made my contribution that day, I can rest with a clean conscience.

Do not be dulled, friends. Do not allow the lull of comfort to cause you to abdicate your contribution. Stay sharp. Keep your edges. Nothing – NOTHING – is worth giving up the most precious thing you have to offer.”

***

Pep talk: Hey, there is not this vast expanse of creative time and energy in front of us. We have to get to it. Now. Find your creative tools of choice. Start with five minutes. Then maybe ten minutes the next day. And let’s see where it takes us.

Stepping Stone 3: From self-doubt springs comparisonitis.

self-doubt statue

Or is it the other way around?

In reality, they probably work hand in hand.

When everyone on earth was writing more posts, creating more courses, selling more products [no matter that I didn’t have anything to sell nor was I even thinking ‘sales’], it was easy to get drawn into that trap.

And while wrestling with the feeling that I should be doing ‘more’, it would have been nice to have these reminders to gain perspective. [Thank you, Amy Johnson from tinybuddha.com]

Stepping Stone 2: Self-doubt creeps in.

bear_behind_chair

It was a weird thing, but early on in my year, it seemed like there was always an internal tug-of war–Should I do this? Can I do that?

Things in the past as simple as writing a short blog post…”Is the wording exactly right?” “Is there really any value in these words…for anybody?” “Maybe it needs an extra day to cool off.”

Did this uncertainty come from the shift to a new chapter in life?