• The Hopefulist

Find new ways to bring joy into your life

This is a picture of me doing something I love. If you have followed me at all you know I am obsessed with boats. I love being on boats more than anything. I don't have a boat so when I have the chance to get on one I am so, so grateful. I am heck bent on getting our very own boat but for now I will take any ride I can get. But does that mean I should only pursue all things boat? Of course not. We should always be open to new activities and interests. One day it could be something that changes your whole life. Sound a little far fetched? Let me explain.

I recently took up pickle ball. I love it. I'm not bad at it. I'm not great at it but I can see my progress week by week. It's also introducing me to a whole new group of people. I have made some friends at my local pickle ball hangout that I would have never met otherwise. I've recently met two new women and they could become life long friends. Maybe not, who knows? Maybe I will start grabbing some drinks with these ladies and invite them over to dinner. Maybe our husbands will hit it off and we start hanging out together all the time. Maybe we have similar interests when it comes to travel and we start taking vacations together. Maybe this new hobby will lead to a lifelong friendship. And this is all a bonus to doing something that I already love. But if I never tried pickle ball I would never have discovered a new hobby that I enjoy and potentially miss out on a new friendship.

It's so beneficial to keep looking for new interests and activities. We seem to think at a certain age that we know what we like and stop exploring new options. That is when we get stuck. We should always be open to bringing new things into our lives. And yes, it's even better if these things take you out of your comfort zone. A group of us all started playing at the same time last summer and we were all pretty bad. Then a bunch of ladies started taking lessons this summer. But I hurt my ankle and was out of commission for most of the summer. I'm now back and feeling a little behind the rest of them. I don't mind too much because I am improving and I really try. As an aside, there can be some dynamics you aren't crazy about in these group situations but don't let other people get you down.

For example, there is a particular woman that seems to be pretty hard on me for some reason. She tends to mock me and make fun of me. Yes, it seems I am singled out. I am a smart ass and love to rile people up for fun but this doesn't seem like it's in fun. It seems just mean. Frankly, it pisses me off and makes me not want to play when this person is around. But you know what? I'm not going to let her stop me from doing something I love. I want to play as often as possible and if she is in the group so be it. She can continue to make her remarks and I will handle it as I see fit at the time but I refuse to allow anyone to dampen my desire to play.

But keep looking for new ways to occupy your time. Try new games, online and off. Give a different genre of music a go. Go see plays and movies you think you may not be interested in. Look for gatherings and groups in your neighborhood (it's so easy now with Facebook) for things you may like. In my neighborhood alone we have a book club, a game night group, a bunco group and I even saw people getting together to learn knitting. There is a group for everything. Honestly! Just start exploring. Google games to play at home. Or physical activity for people in your age group. Check out some online games that may be fun. Just explore!

The more you have in your life the more you get to enjoy life. Wouldn't it be great if you have so many hobbies and interests that you have to take turns just in order to fit them in. It's always better to have too many options than not enough. In my opinion anyway. So, what are you interested in? What gets you excited? What are you waiting for? Get going!

It's hump day! Do a search today that will help give you ideas on some new activities you can try. Or research how you can get started on an interest you've had for awhile but have been putting off. (like horseback riding or taking swing dance lessons.)

If you like what you hear on 'The Hopefulist' please tell a friend. Spread the word. The more the merrier!

Go on and have a badass day. You know I'm here, cheering you on.

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