Are You Saying No When You Mean Yes?
By Sandy Schroeder
Most of us enjoy life, but there are some things that are way beyond special. Those things command all of our attention and make hours seem like minutes. It could be fashion, music, a hobby, or a sport. Usually we make room for our passions, but not always.
If you find everyday tasks routinely crowd out your passions, or you have not fully defined your passions, it may be time to make the effort.
Psychologists tell us to say yes to the things that stimulate or intrigue us. Sometimes they start as hobbies and evolve into careers. Whatever their role in life, they may make it deeper and more satisfying.
Start exploring yours.
Follow your curiosity – When something catches your interest, follow up on it and see where it takes you. You may meet a whole group of new people, discover a great book, or wind up trying all sorts of new things. Be open to what’s out there and let one new thing lead you on to more. When I do this, I always come away with a lot of information and inspiration.
Abandon your comfort zone – Too often we stick to what we know, and hesitate to venture out. When the opportunity arises, say yes. Watch for new community classes that interest you or join a friend trying rock climbing, yoga or tai chi. Watch for local events like guided wilderness hikes, cooking classes or nature photography sessions. Or check your local library for lists of local events. If it sounds like fun, try it.
Pause and look inside your head – You can sit quietly and meditate, or write it all down. Either way let those random thoughts and wishes float to the top. You may think of all sorts of things that never get your attention otherwise. If they raise questions, or sound like things you might want to explore, do it. Take the time to pursue them and see what happens.
Make a wish list – Jot down all of the things you always meant to do, but never quite did. It could be anything -- horseback riding, quilting, cross country travel, piano lessons, or pottery making. If it still seems appealing, make the effort to try it.
One passion may replace another as you explore your interests, but it’s all good if you are pleased, and your life has been broadened. Passion adds the zest we all need to keep life interesting.
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