TWENTY BY TWENTY | 4 & 5

Since I managed to fail miserably at accomplishing this Twenty by Twenty nonsense in a timely manner, and I will no longer be twenty next month, I'm gonna start lumping these guys together. Also just gonna call it right now and say I will definitely not get to twenty by the time I'm twenty-one. To that end, something important I've learned about myself throughout this series is that I am not nearly as full of wisdom as I once thought. Who knew?

So, because I'm brave and courageous and all that, I have decided to tackle two of the scariest topics known to adolescence: trying new things and change. Because while, yes, horror movies about killer dolls are terrifying, there's a much smaller chance you will get mutilated by a ceramic colonial child at some point in your life than there is that you will experience some form of change or be forced to try something new. I'm being practical here. 

4. trying new things won't always be rewarding, but you should do it anyway

The thing about the phrase 'try something new' is that it has some kind of oddly positive connotation. It sounds as if when you take this small risk and try something new, it will always turn out in your favor and produce something wonderful or at least be somewhat satisfying. I have found, as I'm sure most people have, that this is not always the case. Trying something new doesn't always end well. I think that's part of what has made it a weirdly scary thing. We don't know the outcome so why risk it, right? Right!

Trying new things is terrifying, even if there isn't any real risk involved. Example: there's this salad place I love (because health) and I have only ever ordered one thing from there because I got it the first time I went and I really liked it. Every time I go, I consider "trying something new" ;) but I never pull the trigger because I'm scared that I won't like it as much as what I normally get and then I'll be sad, disappointed, and hungry when I could've been happy, satisfied, and full. So, as illustrated above, trying new things is scary and I am a completely stable-minded individual. 

But! (there's always a but) trying new things can also be pretty great. There was this event I did close to three years ago that I was asked to do by someone I met over Twitter, which probably seems about as sketchy as it should. It's pretty much exactly like something I would avoid at all costs--going to a place I've never been with a bunch of people I've never met and doing something I've never done before sounds a whole lot more dreadful than ordering a salad that might not be that good. But I did it anyway, and it ended up being kind of dynamite. I got to talk to a bunch of kids about Jesus for the first time ever. I got to explore a random city that had one of the best coffee shops I've ever been to. I got to meet a lot of new people, some of whom became really important friends and one of whom became my very first boyfriend. All that could have never occurred had I just avoided the chance to do something new and said no. And while I realize that doesn't affect anyone else but me and probably matters 0% to anyone reading this, I'm just assuming everyone has some kind of similar example in their lives. So think of that example for you and apply it here, or whatever. 

All I'm trying to say is trying new things can suck or could be potentially dangerous or intimidating, but it isn't always that way and I think maybe the chance that something really great could come out of it is enough reason to do it anyway. But, hey, you do you. 

5. changed for good

The title is supposed to read like the lyrics from the song For Good from the musical Wicked, but I realize not everyone grew up singing both Glinda and Elphaba's parts to What Is This Feeling? and dramatically singing out the car window to I'm Not That Girl at ten years old, so if you didn't catch the drift, the title is lyrics from a song called For Good from the musical Wicked. It has nothing to do with what this is about. 

This is pretty much a re-hashing of what I just did with the whole 'trying new things' thing except with change.
Overall: change is scary! but! change can also be good! so try it!!! (There's a little more though)

Change is on a bit of another level, I think. Trying new things can sometimes mean just trying something once (here's where I bring up the salad thing again. you get it). The phrase usually implies short-term. But change usually means something a little more long-term and a little more permanent. That, in turn, makes it a little scarier to me. Why should I dye my hair blonde if I already know brunettes have more fun? Why should I start going to a different yoga studio if I know all the instructors and like all the classes at the place I go to now? Why should I start eating healthy if I know I could eat McDonalds for the rest of my (probably short) life and be happy? These are all somewhat ridiculous (and valid!) examples, but I think my point is clear. 

I don't think the point of change, however, is for it to be comfy. As human beings, we were not made to do or see or experience the same things every day of our lives. We literally change without provocation. We turn from infants into sticky toddlers and from toddlers into ratty elementary schoolers and so on, and we do it all without necessarily trying. We were made to change. So why are we so afraid of it? I don't know, but if I knew the answer I would tell you. 

All I know is that change, even bad change, is for the better. This may seem misguided, depending on what someone has been through in their life, but so far in mine, that is what I believe. I think sometimes life can change in what seems like a negative way--break ups, moving, losing friends or a job--but it always finds a way to benefit you in the end. These things can be painful, but they can also lead to new experiences and new people and new season of life or joy or love. I could be wrong, because as we all know I've only been on this earth for a mere twenty years and probably haven't been through half of the terrible things I'll endure in my life (positivity!), but for right now that's what I choose to live my life by. Change is always good, no matter how long it may take to reap the benefits. 

I hope any of this struck a chord with anyone or, at the very least, was a fun read. Try something new this week!
Or don't! What do I know? I'm only twenty. 

 

Piper