I have always enjoyed trying new things. As I think back on my life thus far, I am amazed at the things I have purchased, signed up for or attempted. Almost universally, every one of them seemed like a good idea at the time. I was thinking recently about why each of these things seemed so right at the time. What was I looking for in each situation? I think most times I was trying to solve a problem either for myself or someone else.
Sometimes the new opportunity was presented by some form of advertisement. I would respond to an ad and then receive a follow-up, by phone or in person. In all these situations, someone had something they wanted to sell me. The task was to make me see how what they were offering was a solution to what I was looking for and that the cost of what they were offering was a fair exchange for the solution being offered.
Of course, this is an over simplification of what took place each time I made one of these choices. Some choices seemed natural, like joining scouts or little league. It seemed as if everyone was doing things like this is it just seemed the right thing to do.
One of the things I’ve learned about my willingness to try new things is that my ideas need a grounding in reality. I have surrounded myself with people who can view my new ideas with objectivity and common sense. If these people see serious problems with what I am about to try, I take their advice seriously. Often they can bring an objectivity to a proposed situation that I cannot see on my own.
I also count on these trusted people to evaluate my behavior as I start something new. New experiences change us, at least mine have changed me. I want to be certain my new experiences are consistent with who I am. The responses of those I trust help me be certain my new activity seems consistent with my core beliefs. I would have to question any new activity that did not seem consistent with who I am.
Especially in times of crisis, it becomes difficult to objectively evaluate these changes on my own. Without the guidance of people I trust, I can easily lose sight of who I am in the midst of change. I also find it helpful to proceed cautiously and deliberately with taking on new things, particularly during a crisis. This is just me, but I would rather take extra time in adopting new things, especially during a time of crisis.
As we move forward, it is important to remember that a crisis brings factors into our lives that are both confusing and beyond our control. We should always be open to trying new things, but we should be especially careful to be cautious and to seek wise counsel. Together, we will move through this time of crisis and embrace new things.