Tool For Tuesday: Try Something Untested and Totally New

Our Roving Reporter Tried Something New – Hiking in New Zealand.

A devoted reader of this blog pointed out that yesterday’s interview with Liz Jansen and The Writer’s Almanac with snippets from May Swenson, Walker Percy and Maeve Binchy shared a theme. Transformation. Since I’m a firm believer in synchronicity (the idea that there are certain moments when the whole universe is playing the same tune in the same symphony at the exact same time) I decided to make that the Tool For Tuesday (For an amusing Tool for Tuesday, look here.) Today’s Tool for Tuesday: Try something totally, terrifically and terrifyingly new.

Another dear friend –  I’ll call her Jessica – said that she would never comment on a blog but since she hears my mantra in her head (Be more you by being less you) she said she’d take the leap and write something. (Operators standing by!)

True confession: My perfectionism has often scared me from doing new things. I didn’t take college courses that fascinated me out of fear that I wouldn’t do well at them. I avoided entering competitions because of a very unhelpful idea I’d learned in childhood that if you weren’t number one, you were worthless. I unlearned this lesson when it dawned on me that somewhere between Number #1 and the bottom of the pile was a lot of room. A lot of places to be. And ways to live my life.

What are you going to try that’s new today? It could be something really big – like learning to ride a motorcycle – or something relatively small. It could be a new behavior – saying yes when you usually say no. Or saying no when you usually say yes.

Which brings me back to Jessica, who says that she has the kind of look which invariably draws people to her – in the supermarket, when they want to get ahead of her at the checkout line.

“For some reason, people always ask me if they can cut in front of me,” Jessica said. She doesn’t know why this is. Maybe because she looks like she has a big heart. (She does.) She always says yes because she wants to be nice and then two more people slip in front of her. She has so far been unable to say no. Then again, I don’t know if I’d be able to say no to a shopper with a green apple and a can of baby formula in her hands when I have a full cart. But it would be a good experiment just to try. (I still wouldn’t dare! Would you?)

What are you going to try that’s new for today? You can comment on Liz Jansen’s post and enter the draw to win her inspiring book, Women, Motorcycles and the Road to Empowerment in e-book version.

Oh, there are so many new things you could try. Speak up when you usually keep silent. Keep silent when you usually speak up. Wear polka dots. Wear white. Skip down the road. Climb a tree. Start learning a new language. Read a poem. Take a good, fresh look at life. As May Swenson wrote to Elizabeth Bishop, “Not to need illusion—to dare to see and say how things really are, is the emancipation I would like to attain.”

Try something untested and new today. One way to start our best chapter is to write a new page. What will yours be?

About dianabletter

Diana Bletter is the author of several books, including The Invisible Thread: A Portrait of Jewish American Women (with photographs by Lori Grinker), shortlisted for a National Jewish Book Award. Her novel, A Remarkable Kindness, (HarperCollins) was published in 2015. She is the First Prize Winner of Moment Magazine's 2019 Fiction Contest. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, tabletmag, Glamour, The Forward, The North American Review, Times of Israel, and is a reporter for Israel21C, and many other publications. She is author of Big Up Yourself: It's About Time You Like Being You and The Mom Who Took off On Her Motorcycle, a memoir of her 10,000-mile motorcycle trip to Alaska and back to New York. She lives in a small beach village in Western Galilee, Israel, with her husband and family. She is a member of the local hevra kadisha, the burial circle, and a Muslim-Jewish-Christian-Druze women's group in the nearby town of Akko. And, she likes snowboarding and climbing trees.
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3 Responses to Tool For Tuesday: Try Something Untested and Totally New

  1. This blog is such a great reminder that we need to take risks and create adventure, no matter how small, on a dailybasis. The experieces are always worth it because either something good happens (usually) or something goes awry, in which case we learn from it! For today, my “adventure” is that I am going to meet a new group of women in my attempt to find a regular Mahj Jongg game that I can join in the Miami area – – wish me luck!

    • dianabletter says:

      Pamela, You’re right–something good will happen or something we can learn from. Good luck finding a Mahj Jongg game–keep us posted (and let us know if you win!) Diana

  2. I was very pleased to search out this internet-site. I wanted to thanks in your time for this glorious read!! I undoubtedly having fun with each little little bit of it and I have you bookmarked to take a look at new stuff you blog post.

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