Through a friendly email chain, I took my umpteenth online personality quiz last week (admit it, you've taken one too). One question that often pops up is "Would you rather try new things, or stick to what you know works well?"
For years, I've usually checked the box "try new things". I love the exciting rush of new discoveries – like a little kid discovering One Eyed Willy's treasure. My recent "new things" include new foods (eggplant), a new band (elbow), even a new way of breathing (with the belly, a triathlete recommends).
And although I enjoy trying new things, I'm not the greatest at trying things that scare me. Take my work out regime for example – I like stability in a tried and true workout. When I want to sweat, I'll go for a run. I've done my fair share of Ashtanga and spin classes. I was trained in ballet and gymnastics. Everything is regimented and with specific direction.
Enter the new wave of enjoyable cardio, where the music is pumping and the energy is contagious. Where the guidelines are subtle and the effort is freelance. What? No set instructions with what my limbs are to do? To do something beyond the popular planes my body is used to? Something, as my friends would say, spicy? That scared me.
But with a little friendly encouragement, I am proud to say I tried a hip hop class two months ago, Zumba® last month, and yesterday, Socacize®!
My hips don't lie. While my first step was timid, by the end of third song I was laughing and uncontrollably jiving. Never in a hundred years would I have imagined myself having so much fun in a simple 60-minute dance workout. I'm sure I looked like a fool, but I felt like a million bucks.
So I ask myself again, "Would I rather try new things, or stick to what I know works well?"” I guess I can never know what works well if I'm not willing to try something new.
What have you done to scare yourself lately?