Changing things up

September 8, 2019 Sandra Dawes

I’ve been doing a lot of climbing in the last couple of weeks. No, I haven’t started hiking or wall climbing! We’re building a deck in our backyard and there are make-shift stairs to get us to the different levels in the meantime. Back to my climbing – I noticed that whenever I would start my climb, I always led with my left foot. Aside from thinking that was odd since I’m right handed (I’m sure there’s an explanation for it), I decided to challenge myself to change it up each time I did the climb.

I like to challenge myself to change things up every once in awhile. I think I got the idea from my dad. As grim as it may sound, he used to tell me that I should try practicing to write with my left hand every now and then just in case something happened and I lost the use of my right hand. That was my dad – ever practical 😉

When I first got Lulu, I had to walk her using my right arm because she was a puller. Once I got more comfortable with her I decided to change things up and started walking her with my left arm. Needless to say after 13 plus years of doing that (and still having to deal with the occasional tug) my left arm, including my hand is almost if not as strong as my right!

I like to change things up because it makes me more aware of what I’m doing. If you’ve ever driven a car that didn’t belong to you, you know what I’m talking about. Even if you’re driving the same route home, you pay a little more attention when you’re driving a car you’re not used to. You might be someone who has been driving for 20 years, but it’s different when it’s not your car. After a while you realize it’s not that big a difference and you get comfortable, but there is an adjustment period.

It’s funny how changing things up in small ways can make a meaningful difference. It allows us to test ourselves in small ways. I wonder what would happen if I tried doing it this way for the day? I find that testing out new things for a day is easy, there’s no commitment, so if I don’t like it I just go back to what I was doing before. The cool thing is that if it makes things more interesting/fun/easier/meditative, etc. then I might just keep it in the toolbox!

I like challenging myself to try new things, not necessarily adventurous things, but testing out different ways of doing things. I feel like I’m still learning everything that I’m capable of doing and being and I am enjoying the ride. I’m not afraid of change, I’m all for it as long as it doesn’t impact me in a negative way. Even if it does impact me in a negative way, I’m going to look for what I can do to lessen the impact and the long term benefits of the change.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that change can be difficult but it is necessary. In this day and age things are constantly changing. Trying to resist the changes is, I believe, an act of frustration. We can’t prevent change, the only thing we have is control over how those changes affect us. I believe the best thing we can do in the face of change that we cannot control is to accept them  and stay open to the opportunities.

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