Most of us are really partial to the comfort of the well-known and habitual.
Even when we feel like it’s time to move on to something new because what we’re used to is boring — or doesn’t yield any results — it’s difficult to just go and start out. For many reasons: from fear and discomfort, to not knowing where to actually go, and what to actually start out on.
I’ve been in a situation like that fairly recently and for quite a long time, and so I’m here to help you out with the knowledge I’ve been given in this situation.
Change up your routine
It can start with something very simple, like going for an hour-long walk every day before/after work/university, or something more complex and niche, like starting art classes or taking care of plants on your balcony.
Remember what you used to do before and dropped; remember what you aspired to be as a kid; talk to your friends that have hobbies… There are a lot of ways to discover what to do.
What’s important is to start out on anything at all — if you don’t like it you can drop it, but it might introduce you to new activities and people. And that will definitely help.
‘Cringy’ is not a concept
Have you wanted to finish Naruto for years? Well, start out on that.
Have you been thinking about cosplaying Bayonetta? Feel free as long as you have the spare money to.
Go out there and do things, no matter how ‘cringy‘ they’re supposed to be, because having fun and enjoying yourself is not cringy. As soon as you take that barrier down, it’s so much easier to start out on completely new, unexpected things and journeys.
Don’t come up with excuses
Have you ever thought about doing photography, but then decided against it because ‘it’s too mainstream’ or ‘I don’t have a camera and it’s too expensive’? Have you been meaning to go to the gym, but gotten embarrassed about being out of shape?
Just because a lot of people like photography doesn’t mean that you can’t bring your own vision into the field; after all, only you are you. And most phones, even the really budget ones, have incredibly good cameras these days, so you don’t even need an expensive rig.
As per gym, I promise, as someone who goes to the gym regularly, I don’t even look at anyone else in the process — I’m too focused for that. And that’s how it works with most things, really.
Drag a friend into it
Obviously, you can’t and shouldn’t force friends into doing things with you, but it never hurts to ask. I’ve been invited to all sorts of events — from paranormal activity observers’ lectures, to burlesque costume parties, to being asked to pose for painters as a model — and even though I’d never even considered doing even one of those, I still agreed because the ideas struck me as cool.
Your friends might think that whatever you’re suggesting is fun too — so at least try to. And if they do agree, then you no longer have the chance to bail and change your mind the last minute, which is the best motivator to do things for some of us.
Find the online community centred around it
If you have any thoughts about particular hobbies, interests or activities that you’re unsure of, and unsure as to whether you would enjoy, fandoms exist for everything; people flock into communities of gamers, cinemafiles, anime lovers, sports junkies, cooking aficionados, vegans — the list is practically endless.
As soon as you start reading up on other people’s experiences, talking to them about it and asking them the questions that bug you (and believe me, people love talking about whatever they’re into) it will be much easier for you to figure things out for yourself and to potentially start out on something new.
In addition, it’s so much easier to talk to strangers online than it is in real life.